Application of Structural Optimization for an Early Stage Product Development
Paper in proceeding, 2017

In today’s automotive industry there is a growing demand for more fuel efficient vehicles and reduced development times. These trends are driven by stricter environmental regulations, a growing environmental awareness, and increasing technological development and competitiveness. Finding an optimized and balanced component that fulfils the requirements in an early phase of the product development is a prerequisite for enabling more competitive lead times, costs, weights and minimizing the risk for late design changes. The aim with this paper is to show a process capturing CAE driven development for an early stage development of components in a complex system. The process utilizes structural optimization techniques to generate knowledge, optimize and balance packaging volumes of adjacent components in complex systems. The paper also highlight the organizational challenges and technical challenges involving the use of structural optimization for realizing the process completely. The paper will illustrate the simultaneous use of topology and shape optimization to generate knowledge for the optimized design volume for multiple adjacent components linked together. The linking of the multiple component is carried out using morphing technique and the design space between the multiple components is dynamic in nature during simulation. The mesh in one component is allowed to change according to the mesh of the other component during the simulation. The result from the simultaneous topology and shape optimization simulation generates the knowledge if it is feasible to change design volume to meet the weight and performance targets. The process also indicates how much performance increase is possible if the design volume is allowed to change and thus generating a trade-off between the components performance. The new process has a potential to be extended to other conflicting scenarios in adjacent components which exists in early stages of development process especially, cases involving conflicting structural requirements in various industries.

Engineering Design

CAE Driven Product Design.

Topology Optimization

Wheel Suspension


CAD CAE Integration

Product Development


Kanishk Bhadani

Chalmers, Product and Production Development, Product Development

Joakim Skön

Chalmers, Product and Production Development, Product Development

Magnus Bengtsson

Chalmers, Product and Production Development, Product Development

Magnus Evertsson

Chalmers, Product and Production Development, Product Development

Harald Hasselblad

Volvo Cars

NAFEMS World Congress 2017, A World of Engineering Simulation, Stockholm, Sweden

978-1-910643-37-2 (ISBN)

Subject Categories

Mechanical Engineering

Applied Mechanics

Vehicle Engineering

Areas of Advance


Learning and teaching

Pedagogical work

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