Open Access Article

Title: Design optimisation for an additively manufactured automotive component

Authors: Meisam Abdi; Ian Ashcroft; Ricky D. Wildman

Addresses: Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK; Faculty of Technology, De Montfort University, Leicester, UK ' Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK ' Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK

Abstract: The aim of this paper is to investigate the design optimisation and additive manufacture of automotive components. A titanium brake pedal processed through selective laser melting (SLM) is considered as a test case. Different design optimisation techniques have been employed including topology optimisation and lattice structure design. Rather than using a conventional topology optimisation method, a recently developed topology optimisation method called Iso-XFEM is used in this work. This method is capable of generating high resolution topology optimised solutions using isolines/isosurfaces of a structural performance criterion and extended finite element method (XFEM). Lattice structure design is the other technique used in this work for the design of the brake pedal. The idea is to increase the stability of the brake pedal to random loads applied to the foot pad area of the pedal. The use of lattice structures can also significantly reduce the high residual stress induced during the SLM process. The results suggest that the integration of the design optimisation techniques with a metal additive manufacturing process enables development of a promising tool for producing lightweight energy efficient automotive components.

Keywords: topology optimisation; lattice structures; additive manufacturing; automotive; powertrain; extended finite element method; XFEM; selective laser melting; SLM.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPT.2018.090371

International Journal of Powertrains, 2018 Vol.7 No.1/2/3, pp.142 - 161

Received: 17 Jan 2017
Accepted: 24 Jul 2017

Published online: 13 Mar 2018 *