Optimization Blog Posts

Designing New Structures with Shape Optimization

Walter Frei | December 29, 2015

While designing a structure, have you ever been unsure of how to achieve the best shape? If so, then you will want to add a useful technique called shape optimization to your COMSOL Multiphysics modeling skill set. Today, we will discuss the concept of shape optimization and demonstrate its use through a classical problem.

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Walter Frei | December 24, 2015

In this blog post, we will introduce the concept of shape optimization for adjusting part dimensions by using analytic sensitivity methods. If you have a single objective function that you want to improve, a set of geometric parameters that you want to change, as well as a set of constraints, then you can use the functionality of the Optimization Module and the Deformed Geometry interface in COMSOL Multiphysics to find the optimal structure without any remeshing. Let’s find out how!

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Aditi Karandikar | December 23, 2015

3D printing, also known as additive manufacturing, has been a popular topic of discussion on the COMSOL Blog and throughout the scientific community. New initiatives have furthered the capabilities of this technology, while extending its reach in various fields of research, manufacturing, and design. With the help of COMSOL Multiphysics, researchers at the Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) are investigating the promise of 3D printing in the realm of material design.

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Benjamin Loubet | September 23, 2015

Think about the first architects who designed a bridge above water. The design process likely included several trials and subsequent failures before they could safely allow people to cross the river. COMSOL Multiphysics and the Optimization Module would have helped make this process much simpler, if they had computers at the time, of course. Before we start to discuss building and optimizing bridges, let’s first identify the best design for a simple beam with the help of topology optimization.

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Caty Fairclough | September 11, 2015

Weight reduction is a key design focus in many applications. This is particularly true in the automotive industry, where lightweight materials help foster the development of fuel efficient cars. Maintaining the structural integrity of these materials is, of course, an important concern. As we will show you today, simulation is a valuable tool for addressing this challenge.

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Chandan Kumar | June 24, 2015

Previously on the blog, we have discussed the need for appropriate measured data to fit the material parameters that correspond to a material model. We have also looked at typical experimental tests, considerations for operating conditions when choosing a material model, and an example of how to use your measured data directly in a nonlinear elastic model. Our focus today will be on how to fit your experimental data to different hyperelastic material models.

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Fanny Littmarck | July 7, 2014

There’s a new book out there for those of you who work with or research electromechanical system design. It’s titled Multiphysics Simulation: Electromechanical System Applications and Optimization and is more than your average textbook. This is a reference guide on simulation and topology optimization written with both students and industry engineers in mind.

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Lexi Carver | June 18, 2014

Cardiovascular disease is a condition where the arteries in the heart are blocked by plaque. Narrowed arteries can restrict blood flow and cause chest pain and shortness of breath. Bare metal stents can be used to resolve the problem, but excessive tissue can grow over them and narrow the artery again (a process called restenosis). Engineers at Boston Scientific are using simulation to understand the release mechanisms in drug-eluting stents, which can be used to prevent this excess cell growth.

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Walter Frei | February 17, 2014

COMSOL’s Optimization Module is a powerful tool for improving the performance of your devices and systems. Here, we will look at optimizing the power applied to two heaters in a flow channel with the objective of heating up the fluid as much as possible as it passes through the channel, while constraining the peak temperature at the heaters themselves. One application of this technique is improving the efficiency of thermal processes.

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Walter Frei | August 2, 2013

The COMSOL Optimization Module includes both gradient-based and gradient-free optimization techniques. Whereas the gradient-based optimization method can compute an exact analytic derivative of an objective function and any associated constraint functions, it does require these functions to be smooth and differentiable. In this blog post, we examine the use of the gradient-free optimizer, which can consider objective function and constraints that are not differentiable or smooth. The dimensions of a spinning wheel are optimized to reduce the mass while maintaining […]

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Andrew Griesmer | February 26, 2013

Metamaterials are a new and emerging technology with vast potential to reshape our views on what is and isn’t possible in this physical world of ours. Unlocking the mysteries and overcoming the obstacles associated with metamaterials would lead to a host of technological advances once thought impossible by even the most imaginative of individuals. From making computer chips smaller and faster than the most advanced current ones, to protecting structures from earthquakes, to developing imaging technology that doesn’t harm tissue […]

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