A new Evolutionary Structural Optimization method and application for aided design to reinforced concrete components


The Evolutionary Structural Optimization (ESO) has been applied to find the optimal structural topology for design and construction purposes. However, its efficiency is low due to the imperfect deletion criteria. This paper presents an improved elimination criterion and the Windowed Evolutionary Structural Optimization (WESO) method. The former considers the structural average strain energy as the elimination criteria in the optimization, with the elimination rate set as a self-adaption state by an adjustable window. Thus, the problems of low optimization efficiency and distorted optimization results in the traditional ESO can be solved to a certain extent. The WESO method can then be extended and applied with a complex finite element model. It is found that the method has better optimal ability in handling discrete elements in vast structures. Compared with the other method, the WESO method has high computational efficiency and offers more stable and reliable topology than the Michell theoretical solution. Lastly, upon developing the optimal topology for a double-deck structure, it is shown that the WESO method has a great potential in civil engineering applications.

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Replication of results

All the data presented in this study were generated using the licensed computer program ANSYS APDL. The full data sets as well as the source code are available upon request.


The authors are grateful for the financial support provided by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 51378202, 51578236, and 51508182).

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Correspondence to Huzhi Zhang.

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Wang, L., Zhang, H., Zhu, M. et al. A new Evolutionary Structural Optimization method and application for aided design to reinforced concrete components. Struct Multidisc Optim 62, 2599–2613 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00158-020-02626-z

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  • Structural optimization
  • Topology optimization
  • Evolutionary Structural Optimization method
  • Computational efficiency
  • Windowed