Genetic Algorithms And Finite Element Coupling For Mechanical Optimization
Free (open access)
G. Corriveau, R. Guilbault & A. Tahan
Optimization of mechanical components is an important aspect of the engineering process; a well-designed system will lead to money saving during the production phase and better machine life. On the other hand, optimization actions will increase the engineering investment. Consequently, and since computer time is inexpensive, an efficient design strategy will tend to transfer the effort from the staff to the computers. This paper presents an efficient design tool made to carry out this task: a new optimization model based on genetic algorithms is developed to work with commercial finite element software. The objective is to automate optimization of static criteria (stresses, weight, strength, etc.) with finite element models. In the proposed model, the process acts on two geometric aspects of the shape to be optimized: it controls the position of the vertices defining the edges of the volume and, in order to minimize stresses concentrations, it can add and define fillet between surfaces. The model is validated from some benchmark tests. An industrial application is presented: the genetic algorithms-finite element model is employed to design the fillets at the crown-blade junctions of a hydroelectric turbine. The results show that the model converges to a very efficient solution without any engineer intervention. Keywords: genetic algorithms, shape optimization, finite element, hydroelectric turbine. 1 Introduction The design process of any mechanical part controls its global cost. A welldesigned system will lead to money saving during the production phase and better machine life. Incorporate an optimization cycle into the design process is
genetic algorithms, shape optimization, finite element, hydroelectric turbine.