Multifunctional design of heterogeneous cellular structures

Yunlong Tang, Yaoyao Fiona Zhao

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17 Citations (Scopus)


Mesoscale cellular structures with different desired physical properties are promising for a broad spectrum of applications. The availability of Additive Manufacturing (AM) technology has significantly relaxed the fabricating limitation of cellular structures. It enables the design of cellular structure with complex cell topologies and relative density distribution. In this paper, a multifunctional design method for heterogeneous cellular structures is proposed. To introduce this method, Function-Performance-Property-Design parameter model is proposed at first. This proposed model can help designers to analyze the complex relations between focused functions and their related design parameters. Based on the proposed F-P-P-D model, the template of compromise Decision Support Problem (DSP) is applied to generate the optimization formulation which can generally consider the performances defined for several different functions. To solve the defined optimization problem, a multifunctional design simulation infrastructure is proposed for the designed heterogeneous cellular structures. Based on this simulation infrastructure, both the value of the objective function and its gradients can be evaluated. Then, Sequential Quadratic Programming (SQP) solver can be applied to solve the defined optimization formulation. The optimal relative density of cellular structures can be achieved and converted to the heterogeneous cellular structures at the end. A case study is provided at the end of this paper. For this case study, two different cell topologies and several different combinations of optimization parameters are used. A brief discussion is made to conclude the effects of cell topologies and other optimization parameters on the optimization results. Generally, the result of this design case validates the efficiency of the proposed design method. This method provides a useful design tool for users to take advantage of heterogeneous cellular structures for multifunctional purposes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1121-1138
Number of pages18
JournalStructural and Multidisciplinary Optimization
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Cellular structures
  • Design optimization
  • Heterogeneous
  • Multifunction

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