A Survey of Discrete Variable Optimization for Structural Design

by G. N. Vanderplaats, VMA Engineering, Goleta, United States,
P. B. Thanedar, VMA Engineering, Goleta, United States,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Electronic Computation

Abstract: Available methods for discrete variable structural optimization are reviewed. Methods are classified according to three categories: branch and bound, approximations using branch and bound, and ad-hoc methods. The branch and bound method is theoretically correct for convex design tasks, but is costly to use. Approximation methods provide efficiency, but do not guarantee an optimum discrete solution. Ad-hoc methods attempt to solve the discrete variable problem without resorting to branch and bound methods and do not guarantee an optimum discrete solution. However, these latter two methods often provide a reasonable solution at an acceptable cost.

Subject Headings: Approximation methods | Structural design | Optimization models | Geomatic surveys

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