Topology and alignment optimization of additively manufactured, fiber-reinforced composites

David Ryan Seifert, Andrew Abbott, Jeffery Baur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A design algorithm is presented for finding optimal topologies and alignment profiles of additively manufactured, fiber-reinforced composite structures. A SIMP-like scheme is used to determine where a constrained amount of material is to be located in the design space, while an additional local design variable determines print speed. The local print speed affects fiber alignment based on an experimentally determined relationship, allowing for graded control over effective orthotropy. Material properties are selected from experimental results for additive printed, chopped fiber composites. Two different load cases and three different global print directions are selected for a total of six minimum compliance optimization cases. Results show the design is sensitive to both local fiber control and global print angle selection. A post-processing and manufacturing technique is also introduced for fabricating the optimized structures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2673-2683
Number of pages11
JournalStructural and Multidisciplinary Optimization
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Additive manufacturing
  • Composite optimization
  • Functionally graded material
  • Topology optimization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Software
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Control and Optimization


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