The ability of origami fold patterns to transform two-dimensional sheets into complex three-dimensional structures provides utility for design and development of multifunctional devices. Recently, a topology optimization framework has been developed to discover fold patterns that realize optimal performance including mechanical actuation. This work incorporates an efficient nonlinear mechanics model into the topology optimization framework that accurately captures the geometric non-linearities associated with large rotations of origami facets. A nonlinear truss model, with accommodation for fold stiffness and large rotations, is implemented in both gradient and non-gradient optimization algorithms in this study. The ability of this framework to discover fold topology maximizing actuation motion is verified for the well known “Chomper” and “Square Twist” patterns. In particular, the performance of various optimization algorithms is discussed, and genetic algorithms consistently yield solutions with better performance.

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