Tailoring vibration mode shapes using topology optimization and functionally graded material concepts

Wilfredo Montealegre Rubio, Glaucio H. Paulino, Emilio Carlos Nelli Silva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Tailoring specified vibration modes is a requirement for designing piezoelectric devices aimed at dynamic-type applications. A technique for designing the shape of specified vibration modes is the topology optimization method (TOM) which finds an optimum material distribution inside a design domain to obtain a structure that vibrates according to specified eigenfrequencies and eigenmodes. Nevertheless, when the TOM is applied to dynamic problems, the well-known grayscale or intermediate material problem arises which can invalidate the post-processing of the optimal result. Thus, a more natural way for solving dynamic problems using TOM is to allow intermediate material values. This idea leads to the functionally graded material (FGM) concept. In fact, FGMs are materials whose properties and microstructure continuously change along a specific direction. Therefore, in this paper, an approach is presented for tailoring user-defined vibration modes, by applying the TOM and FGM concepts to design functionally graded piezoelectric transducers (FGPT) and non-piezoelectric structures (functionally graded structures - FGS) in order to achieve maximum and/or minimum vibration amplitudes at certain points of the structure, by simultaneously finding the topology and material gradation function. The optimization problem is solved by using sequential linear programming. Two-dimensional results are presented to illustrate the method.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number025009
JournalSmart Materials and Structures
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Signal Processing
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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