Achieving minimum length scale in topology optimization using nodal design variables and projection functions

J. K. Guest, J. H. Prévost, T. Belytschko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

711 Scopus citations

Abstract

A methodology for imposing a minimum length scale on structural members in discretized topology optimization problems is described. Nodal variables are implemented as the design variables and are projected onto element space to determine the element volume fractions that traditionally define topology. The projection is made via mesh independent functions that are based upon the minimum length scale. A simple linear projection scheme and a non-linear scheme using a regularized Heaviside step function to achieve nearly 0-1 solutions are examined. The new approach is demonstrated on the minimum compliance problem and the popular SIMP method is used to penalize the stiffness of intermediate volume fraction elements. Solutions are shown to meet user-defined length scale criterion without additional constraints, penalty functions or sensitivity filters. No instances of mesh dependence or checkerboard patterns have been observed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)238-254
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering
Volume61
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 14 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Numerical Analysis
  • Engineering(all)
  • Applied Mathematics

Keywords

  • Length scale
  • Topology optimization

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