A mathematical framework is developed which integrates the reliability concept into topology optimization to solve reliability-based topology optimization (RBTO) problems under uncertainty. Two typical methodologies have been presented and implemented, including the performance measure approach (PMA) and the sequential optimization and reliability assessment (SORA). To enhance the computational efficiency of reliability analysis, stochastic response surface method (SRSM) is applied to approximate the true limit state function with respect to the normalized random variables, combined with the reasonable design of experiments generated by sparse grid design, which was proven to be an effective and special discretization technique. The uncertainties such as material property and external loads are considered on three numerical examples: a cantilever beam, a loaded knee structure, and a heat conduction problem. Monte-Carlo simulations are also performed to verify the accuracy of the failure probabilities computed by the proposed approach. Based on the results, it is demonstrated that application of SRSM with SGD can produce an efficient reliability analysis in RBTO which enables a more reliable design than that obtained by DTO. It is also found that, under identical accuracy, SORA is superior to PMA in view of computational efficiency.
Zhao, Q., Chen, X., Ma, Z. D., & Lin, Y. (2015). Reliability-Based Topology Optimization Using Stochastic Response Surface Method with Sparse Grid Design. Mathematical Problems in Engineering, 2015. https://doi.org/10.1155/2015/487686