Technical Brief

Simultaneous Discrete Topology Optimization of Ply Orientation and Thickness for Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic-Laminated Structures

[+] Author and Article Information
Chi Wu

School of Automotive Studies,
Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, China;
Shanghai Key Lab of Vehicle Aerodynamics and Vehicle
Thermal Management Systems,
Tongji University,
Shanghai 201804, China;
School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Mechatronic
The University of Sydney,
Sydney 2006, NSW, Australia

Yunkai Gao

School of Automotive Studies,
Tongji University,
Shanghai 201804, China;
Shanghai Key Lab of Vehicle Aerodynamics and Vehicle
Thermal Management Systems,
Tongji University,
Shanghai 201804, China
e-mail: gaoyunkai@tongji.edu.cn

Jianguang Fang

School of Civil and Environmental Engineering,
University of Technology Sydney,
Sydney 2007, NSW, Australia
e-mail: fangjg87@gmail.com

Erik Lund

Department of Materials and Production,
Aalborg University,
Fibigerstraede 16,
Aalborg East 9220, Denmark

Qing Li

School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Mechatronic
The University of Sydney,
Sydney 2006, NSW, Australia

1Corresponding authors.

Contributed by the Design Automation Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF MECHANICAL DESIGN. Manuscript received March 24, 2018; final manuscript received December 4, 2018; published online January 11, 2019. Assoc. Editor: Samy Missoum.

J. Mech. Des 141(4), 044501 (Jan 11, 2019) (6 pages) Paper No: MD-18-1251; doi: 10.1115/1.4042222 History: Received March 24, 2018; Revised December 04, 2018

This study developed a discrete topology optimization procedure for the simultaneous design of ply orientation and thickness for carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP)-laminated structures. A gradient-based discrete material and thickness optimization (DMTO) algorithm was developed by using casting-based explicit parameterization to suppress the intermediate void across the thickness of the laminate. A benchmark problem was first studied to compare the DMTO approach with the sequential three-phase design method using the free size, ply thickness, and stacking sequence of the laminates. Following this, the DMTO approach was applied to a practical design problem featuring a CFRP-laminated engine hood by minimizing overall compliance subject to volume-related and functional constraints under multiple load cases. To verify the optimized design, a prototype of the CFRP engine hood was created for experimental tests. The results showed that the simultaneous discrete topology optimization of ply orientation and thickness was an effective approach for the design of CFRP-laminated structures.

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Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Iteration histories of objective function, and discrete indicators Mcnd and Mdnd

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Loading and boundary conditions for the stiffness analysis of the CFRP-laminated engine hood: (a) load case 1: torsional rigidity, (b) load case 2: front bending stiffness, (c) load case 3: rear bending stiffness, (d) load case 4: lateral stiffness (1, 2, and 3 denote the translational, and 4, 5, and 6 denote the rotational degrees-of-freedom around the x-, y-, and z-axes, respectively)

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Convergence histories of the objective function and discreteness

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Thickness distribution and stacking sequence of CFRP inner panel

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

The experimental setup for the tests of the optimized CFRP hood

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Optimization of (a) the DMTO approach and (b) the three-phase design method



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