Welcome to the website for Professor Graeme Kennedy’s research group in the School of Aerospace Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology.  Our group’s research is focused both on the development of new methods for structural and multidisciplinary optimization and the application of these methods to structural and multidisciplinary design problems.

mult_material_stlThe video above shows the convergence history of a large multimaterial structural optimization problem solved using both parallel analysis and parallel design optimization methods developed by our group. The solution of this large-scale design problem would not be possible within a practical time frame without the efficient use of high-performance parallel computing resources.

IMG_20150103_102451530To make this design into a physical structural component, we can use additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing. In this case, we remove the specification of different materials, and concentrate on the manufacturing process with the given geometry. To manufacture the structure, we create a representation of the model that is compatible with additive manufacturing tools. For this purpose, we generate an .stl file in a post processing step from the voxel-based description of the structure used during optimization. More information on the .stl file format can be found here. After this post-processing step, the part can be manufactured using additive manufacturing techniques. Thanks to Justin Gray for printing this sample part!

The objective of this research is to close the gap between methods used to parametrize the structure for design optimization and the manufacturing process itself in order to achieve higher-performance structures that meet all design requirements.

This is one area covered by our group’s research. Other research areas include the following:

  • Large-scale topology optimization for additive manufacturing
  • Aeroelastic optimization of flexible aircraft
  • Optimization of composite structures

Links to these topics can be found here.