Chained Optimization of Steel Sections in Graitec Advance Design

16 January 2023Advance Design, Structural design, Trainingadvance design



Article by Mohamed Attibbi

Advance Design intelligent tool

Designing optimized steel elements and sections can be a long and a repetitive process. An intelligent tool to automatically select the most suitable and economical section based on design requirements of the project can be very handy and time saving. Instead of manually switching the section type to meet the required capacity of the design, this tool can check a full list of compatible sections and provide the user with most suitable case in terms of either weight, moment of inertia height, etc.

The Graitec Advance Design FEM solution provides designers with an automatic calculation sequence tool which iterates between the full list of the section library and change the cross section to optimize the design for every element.

In Graitec Advance Design, the design tool is accessible from the analysis ribbon:

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By selecting “Settings”, the following window will appear:

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It contains all the necessary parameters to define and configurate the design, as well, the type of verification can be selected based on the user criteria.

From the Optimization section users can select and activate the following tools:

  • Optimization mode: Advance Design will optimize the cross section based on several criteria; the option by element will result in having different cross section for each element based on the work ratio result and the optimization criteria.
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  • Optimization criteria: In this section users can define the percentage value to be used by Advance Design for the optimization mode process, moreover it is possible to activate and define a minimum for the work ratio to be compared with. This function will help the users to have the most economical section in case the work ratio is low.
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  • Search range: the optimization tool proposes two methods to search for the adequate cross section. From the library Advance Design can automatically look for the new section and apply the modifications or use a determined number of steps to reach the final search range.
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At this point Advance Design will run the verification and display the work ratio with a table of suggested shapes:

In addition to that, Advance Design can modify and assign a new cross section for the members based on all the mentioned criteria. This automated process can be activated from Calculation Sequence section:

By simply activating the option Chained optimization and defining the number of iterations the desired modifications will be applied after running the analysis.

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By respecting the mentioned steps, users can design and optimize the structure quickly and easily.

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