Introducing loading uncertainty in topology optimization

Peter D. Dunning*, H. Alicia Kim, Glen Mullineux

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

143 Citations (Scopus)


Uncertainty is an important consideration in structural design and optimization to produce robust and reliable solutions. This paper introduces an efficient and accurate approach to robust structural topology optimization. The objective is to minimize expected compliance with uncertainty in loading magnitude and applied direction, where uncertainties are assumed normally distributed and statistically independent. This new approach is analogous to a multiple load case problem where load cases and weights are derived analytically to accurately and efficiently compute expected compliance and sensitivities. Illustrative examples using a level-set-based topology optimization method are then used to demonstrate the proposed approach.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)760-768
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2011
Event6th AIAA Multidisciplinary Design Optimization Specialist Conference - Orlando, United Kingdom
Duration: 12 Apr 201015 Apr 2010


  • level-set method
  • geometrically nonlinear structures
  • structural optimization
  • design
  • shape


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