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- Structural and Multidisciplinary Optimization
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- National Science Foundation
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Generative Design of Bionic Structures Via Concurrent Multiscale Topology Optimization and Conformal Geometry MethodAbstract Topology optimization has been proved to be an efficient tool for structural design. In recent years, the focus of structural topology optimization has been shifting from single material continuum structures to multimaterial and multiscale structures. This paper aims at devising a numerical scheme for designing bionic structures by combining a two-stage parametric level set topology optimization with the conformal mapping method. At the first stage, the macro-structural topology and the effective material properties are optimized simultaneously. At the second stage, another structural topology optimization is carried out to identify the exact layout of the metamaterial at the mesoscale. The achieved structure and metamaterial designs are further synthesized to form a multiscale structure using conformal mapping, which mimics the bionic structures with “orderly chaos” features. In this research, a multi-control-point conformal mapping (MCM) based on Ricci flow is proposed. Compared with conventional conformal mapping with only four control points, the proposed MCM scheme can provide more flexibility and adaptivity in handling complex geometries. To make the effective mechanical properties of the metamaterials invariant after conformal mapping, a variable-thickness structure method is proposed. Three 2D numerical examples using MCM schemes are presented, and their results and performances are compared. The achievedmore »
3rd and 11th orders of accuracy of ‘linear’ and ‘quadratic’ elements for Poisson equation with irregular interfaces on Cartesian meshesPurpose The purpose of this paper is as follows: to significantly reduce the computation time (by a factor of 1,000 and more) compared to known numerical techniques for real-world problems with complex interfaces; and to simplify the solution by using trivial unfitted Cartesian meshes (no need in complicated mesh generators for complex geometry). Design/methodology/approach This study extends the recently developed optimal local truncation error method (OLTEM) for the Poisson equation with constant coefficients to a much more general case of discontinuous coefficients that can be applied to domains with different material properties (e.g. different inclusions, multi-material structural components, etc.). This study develops OLTEM using compact 9-point and 25-point stencils that are similar to those for linear and quadratic finite elements. In contrast to finite elements and other known numerical techniques for interface problems with conformed and unfitted meshes, OLTEM with 9-point and 25-point stencils and unfitted Cartesian meshes provides the 3-rd and 11-th order of accuracy for irregular interfaces, respectively; i.e. a huge increase in accuracy by eight orders for the new 'quadratic' elements compared to known techniques at similar computational costs. There are no unknowns on interfaces between different materials; the structure of the global discrete system is themore »
Abstract A large amount of energy from power plants, vehicles, oil refining, and steel or glass making process is released to the atmosphere as waste heat. The thermoelectric generator (TEG) provides a way to reutilize this portion of energy by converting temperature differences into electricity using Seebeck phenomenon. Because the figures of merit zT of the thermoelectric materials are temperature-dependent, it is not feasible to achieve high efficiency of the thermoelectric conversion using only one single thermoelectric material in a wide temperature range. To address this challenge, the authors propose a method based on topology optimization to optimize the layouts of functional graded TEGs consisting of multiple materials. The multimaterial TEG is optimized using the solid isotropic material with penalization (SIMP) method. Instead of dummy materials, both the P-type and N-type electric conductors are optimally distributed with two different practical thermoelectric materials. Specifically, Bi2Te3 and Zn4Sb3 are selected for the P-type element while Bi2Te3 and CoSb3 are employed for the N-type element. Two optimization scenarios with relatively regular domains are first considered with one optimizing on both the P-type and N-type elements simultaneously, and the other one only on single P-type element. The maximum conversion efficiency could reach 9.61% andmore »
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