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Section: New Results

Shape and topology optimization

Null space gradient flows for constrained optimization with applications to shape optimization

G. Allaire, F. Feppon and C. Dapogny

The purpose of this article is to introduce a gradient-flow algorithm for solving equality and inequality constrained optimization problems, which is particularly suited for shape optimization applications. We rely on a variant of the Ordinary Differential Equation (ODE) approach proposed by Yamashita for equality constrained problems: the search direction is a combination of a null space step and a range space step, aiming to decrease the value of the minimized objective function and the violation of the constraints, respectively. Our first contribution is to propose an extension of this ODE approach to optimization problems featuring both equality and inequality constraints. In the literature, a common practice consists in reducing inequality constraints to equality constraints by the introduction of additional slack variables. Here, we rather solve their local combinatorial character by computing the projection of the gradient of the objective function onto the cone of feasible directions. This is achieved by solving a dual quadratic programming subproblem whose size equals the number of active or violated constraints. The solution to this problem allows to identify the inequality constraints to which the optimization trajectory should remain tangent. Our second contribution is a formulation of our gradient flow in the context of—infinite-dimensional—Hilbert spaces, and of even more general optimization sets such as sets of shapes, as it occurs in shape optimization within the framework of Hadamard's boundary variation method. The cornerstone of this formulation is the classical operation of extension and regularization of shape derivatives. The numerical efficiency and ease of implementation of our algorithm are demonstrated on realistic shape optimization problems. An article on this topic is under preparation.

A variational formulation for computing shape derivatives of geometric constraints along rays

G. Allaire, F. Feppon and C. Dapogny

In the formulation of shape optimization problems, multiple geometric constraint functionals involve the signed distance function to the optimized shape Ω. The numerical evaluation of their shape derivatives requires to integrate some quantities along the normal rays to Ω, a task that is usually achieved thanks to the method of characteristics. The goal of the present paper is to propose an alternative, variational approach for this purpose. Our method amounts, in full generality, to compute integral quantities along the characteristic curves of a given velocity field without requiring the explicit knowledge of these curves on the spatial discretization; it rather relies on a variational problem which can be solved conveniently by the finite element method. The well-posedness of this problem is established thanks to a detailed analysis of weighted graph spaces of the advection operator β· associated to a 𝒞1 velocity fields β. One novelty of our approach is the ability to handle velocity fields with possibly unbounded divergence: we do not assume ÷(β)L. Our working assumptions are fulfilled in the context of shape optimization of 𝒞2 domains Ω, where the velocity field β=dΩ is an extension of the unit outward normal vector to the optimized shape. The efficiency of our variational method with respect to the direct integration of numerical quantities along rays is evaluated on several numerical examples. Classical albeit important implementation issues such as the calculation of a shape's curvature and the detection of its skeleton are discussed. Finally, we demonstrate the convenience and potential of our method when it comes to enforcing maximum and minimum thickness constraints in structural shape optimization. An article on this topic is under preparation.

3-d topology optimization of modulated and oriented periodic microstructures by the homogenization method

G. Allaire, P. Geoffroy-Donders and O. Pantz

This paper is motivated by the optimization of so-called lattice materials which are becoming increasingly popular in the context of additive manufacturing. Generalizing our previous work in 2-d we propose a method for topology optimization of structures made of periodically perforated material, where the microscopic periodic cell can be macroscopically modulated and oriented. This method is made of three steps. The first step amounts to compute the homogenized properties of an adequately chosen parametrized microstructure (here, a cubic lattice with varying bar thicknesses). The second step optimizes the homogenized formulation of the problem, which is a classical problem of parametric optimization. The third, and most delicate, step projects the optimal oriented microstructure at a desired length scale. Compared to the 2-d case where rotations are parametrized by a single angle, to which a conformality constraint can be applied, the 3-d case is more involved and requires new ingredients. In particular, the full rotation matrix is regularized (instead of just one angle in 2-d) and the projection map which deforms the square periodic lattice is computed component by component. Several numerical examples are presented for compliance minimization in 3-d. An article on this topic is under preparation.