The work deals on computational design of structural materials by resorting to computational homogenization and topological optimization techniques. The goal is then to minimize the structural (macro-scale) compliance by appropriately designing the material distribution (microstructure) at a lower scale (micro-scale), which, in turn, rules the mechanical properties of the material. The specific features of the proposed approach are: (1) The cost function to be optimized (structural stiffness) is defined at the macro-scale, whereas the design variables defining the micro-structural topology lie on the low scale. Therefore a coupled, two-scale (macro/micro), optimization problem is solved unlike the classical, single-scale, topological optimization problems. (2) To overcome the exorbitant computational cost stemming from the multiplicative character of the aforementioned multiscale approach, a specific strategy, based on the consultation of a discrete material catalog of micro-scale optimized topologies (Computational Vademecum) is used. The Computational Vademecum is computed in an offline process, which is performed only once for every constitutive-material, and it can be subsequently consulted as many times as desired in the online design process. This results into a large diminution of the resulting computational costs, which make affordable the proposed methodology for multiscale computational material design. Some representative examples assess the performance of the considered approach

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Published on 01/01/2016

DOI: 10.1186/s40323-016-0078-4
Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license

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