This paper describes a general approach to structural design using Genetic Algorithms, and an application of that approach to the design of energy absorbing laminated composite beams containing distributed thin, compliant layers. We first discuss a method for applying a Genetic Algorithm (GA) to structural design, using it as an evolutionary search optimizer in conjunction with a structural simulator as its objective function. The simulator used is an efficient and robust special purpose finite element model based on a layerwise laminate theory. The GA “designs” the beam by selecting material assignments for the subregions and the locations of compliant layers, and evaluates the design using the simulator. The efficiency of the GA search is improved by use of the “injection island” architecture. The results demonstrate that the parallel GA architectures achieved algorithmic superlinear speedup to similar quality of solution in comparison with single-population genetic algorithms.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.