The genetic algorithm, a search and optimization technique based on the theory of natural selection, is applied to structural topology design problems with compliance and manufacturability considerations. After describing the genetic algorithm and reviewing previous research in structural topology design, we detail the chromosome-to-design representation which enables the genetic algorithm to perform structural topology optimization. Extending our prior investigations, this article details the use of our genetic algorithm-based technique to minimize a structure’s compliance, subject to a maximum volume constraint. The resulting structure is then directly compared with a solution obtained using a mathematical programming technique and material homogenization methods. We also demonstrate how our technique can generate structures which combine high stiffness-to-weight ratio with high manufacturability. After a brief discussion of our findings, we describe potential future work in genetic algorithm-based structural topology design.

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