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In recent years increasingly consideration has been given to the lifetime extension of existing structures. This is based on the fact that a growing percentage of civil infrastructure as well as buildings is threatened by obsolescence and that due to simple monetary reasons this can no longer be countered by simply re-building everything anew. Hence maintenance interventions are required which allow partial or complete structural rehabilitation. However, maintenance interventions have to be economically reasonable, that is, maintenance expenditures have to be outweighed by expected future benefits. Is this not the case, then indeed the structure is obsolete - at least in its current functional, economic, technical, or social configuration - and innovative alternatives have to be evaluated. An optimization formulation for planning maintenance interventions based on cost-benefit criteria is proposed herein. The underlying formulation is as follows: (a) between maintenance interventions structural deterioration is described as a random process; (b) maintenance interventions can take place anytime throughout lifetime and comprise the rehabilitation of all deterioration states above a certain minimum level; and (c) maintenance interventions are optimized by taking into account all expected life-cycle costs (construction, failure, inspection and state-dependent repair costs) as well as state- or time-dependent benefit rates. The optimization is performed by an evolutionary algorithm. The proposed approach also allows to determine optimal lifetimes and acceptable failure rates. Numerical examples demonstrate the importance of defining benefit rates explicitly. It is shown, that the optimal solution to maintenance interventions requires to take action before reaching the acceptable failure rate or the zero expected net benefit rate level. Deferring decisions with respect to maintenance not only results, in general, in higher losses, but also results in overly hazardous structures.

In this study, an application of evolutionary multi-objective optimization algorithms on the optimization of sandwich structures is presented. The solution strategy is known as Elitist Non-Dominated Sorting Evolution Strategy (ENSES) wherein Evolution Strategies (ES) as Evolutionary Algorithm (EA) in the elitist Non-dominated Sorting Genetic algorithm (NSGA-II) procedure. Evolutionary algorithm seems a compatible approach to resolve multi-objective optimization problems because it is inspired by natural evolution, which closely linked to Artificial Intelligence (AI) techniques and elitism has shown an important factor for improving evolutionary multi-objective search. In order to evaluate the notion of performance by ENSES, the well-known study case of sandwich structures are reconsidered. For Case 1, the goals of the multi-objective optimization are minimization of the deflection and the weight of the sandwich structures. The length, the core and skin thicknesses are the design variables of Case 1. For Case 2, the objective functions are the fabrication cost, the beam weight and the end deflection of the sandwich structures. There are four design variables i.e., the weld height, the weld length, the beam depth and the beam width in Case 2. Numerical results are presented in terms of Paretooptimal solutions for both evaluated cases.

Turbomachinery plays an important role in many cases of energy generation or conversion. Therefore, turbomachinery is a promising approaching point for optimization in order to increase the efficiency of energy use. In recent years, the use of automated optimization strategies in combination with numerical simulation has become increasingly popular in many fields of engineering. The complex interactions between fluid and solid mechanics encountered in turbomachines on the one hand and the high computational expense needed to calculate the performance on the other hand, have, however, prevented a widespread use of these techniques in this field of engineering. The objective of this work was the development of a strategy for efficient metamodel based optimization of centrifugal compressor impellers. In this context, the main focus is the reduction of the required numerical expense. The central idea followed in this research was the incorporation of preliminary information acquired from low-fidelity computation methods and empirical correlations into the sampling process to identify promising regions of the parameter space. This information was then used to concentrate the numerically expensive high-fidelity computations of the fluid dynamic and structure mechanic performance of the impeller in these regions while still maintaining a good coverage of the whole parameter space. The development of the optimization strategy can be divided into three main tasks. Firstly, the available preliminary information had to be researched and rated. This research identified loss models based on one dimensional flow physics and empirical correlations as the best suited method to predict the aerodynamic performance. The loss models were calibrated using available performance data to obtain a high prediction quality. As no sufficiently exact models for the prediction of the mechanical loading of the impellercould be identified, a metamodel based on finite element computations was chosen for this estimation. The second task was the development of a sampling method which concentrates samples in regions of the parameter space where high quality designs are predicted by the preliminary information while maintaining a good overall coverage. As available methods like rejection sampling or Markov-chain Monte-Carlo methods did not meet the requirements in terms of sample distribution and input correlation, a new multi-fidelity sampling method called “Filtered Sampling“has been developed. The last task was the development of an automated computational workflow. This workflow encompasses geometry parametrization, geometry generation, grid generation and computation of the aerodynamic performance and the structure mechanic loading. Special emphasis was put into the development of a geometry parametrization strategy based on fluid mechanic considerations to prevent the generation of physically inexpedient designs. Finally, the optimization strategy, which utilizes the previously developed tools, was successfully employed to carry out three optimization tasks. The efficiency of the method was proven by the first and second testcase where an existing compressor design was optimized by the presented method. The results were comparable to optimizations which did not take preliminary information into account, while the required computational expense cloud be halved. In the third testcase, the method was applied to generate a new impeller design. In contrast to the previous examples, this optimization featuredlargervariationsoftheimpellerdesigns. Therefore, theapplicability of the method to parameter spaces with significantly varying designs could be proven, too.

Briefly, the two basic questions that this research is supposed to answer are:
1. Howmuch fiber is needed and how fibers should be distributed through a fiber reinforced composite (FRC) structure in order to obtain the optimal and reliable structural response?
2. How do uncertainties influence the optimization results and reliability of the structure?
Giving answer to the above questions a double stage sequential optimization algorithm for finding the optimal content of short fiber reinforcements and their distribution in the composite structure, considering uncertain design parameters, is presented. In the first stage, the optimal amount of short fibers in a FRC structure with uniformly distributed fibers is conducted in the framework of a Reliability Based Design Optimization (RBDO) problem. Presented model considers material, structural and modeling uncertainties. In the second stage, the fiber distribution optimization (with the aim to further increase in structural reliability) is performed by defining a fiber distribution function through a Non-Uniform Rational BSpline (NURBS) surface. The advantages of using the NURBS surface as a fiber distribution function include: using the same data set for the optimization and analysis; high convergence rate due to the smoothness of the NURBS; mesh independency of the optimal layout; no need for any post processing technique and its non-heuristic nature. The output of stage 1 (the optimal fiber content for homogeneously distributed fibers) is considered as the input of stage 2. The output of stage 2 is the Reliability Index (b ) of the structure with the optimal fiber content and distribution.
First order reliability method (in order to approximate the limit state function) as well as different material models including Rule of Mixtures, Mori-Tanaka, energy-based approach and stochastic multi-scales are implemented in different examples. The proposed combined model is able to capture the role of available uncertainties in FRC structures through a computationally efficient algorithm using all sequential, NURBS and sensitivity based techniques. The methodology is successfully implemented for interfacial shear stress optimization in sandwich beams and also for optimization of the internal cooling channels in a ceramic matrix composite.
Finally, after some changes and modifications by combining Isogeometric Analysis, level set and point wise density mapping techniques, the computational framework is extended for topology optimization of piezoelectric / flexoelectric materials.

The production of a desired product needs an effective use of the experimental model. The present study proposes an extreme learning machine (ELM) and a support vector machine (SVM) integrated with the response surface methodology (RSM) to solve the complexity in optimization and prediction of the ethyl ester and methyl ester production process. The novel hybrid models of ELM-RSM and ELM-SVM are further used as a case study to estimate the yield of methyl and ethyl esters through a trans-esterification process from waste cooking oil (WCO) based on American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards. The results of the prediction phase were also compared with artificial neural networks (ANNs) and adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS), which were recently developed by the second author of this study. Based on the results, an ELM with a correlation coefficient of 0.9815 and 0.9863 for methyl and ethyl esters, respectively, had a high estimation capability compared with that for SVM, ANNs, and ANFIS. Accordingly, the maximum production yield was obtained in the case of using ELM-RSM of 96.86% for ethyl ester at a temperature of 68.48 °C, a catalyst value of 1.15 wt. %, mixing intensity of 650.07 rpm, and an alcohol to oil molar ratio (A/O) of 5.77; for methyl ester, the production yield was 98.46% at a temperature of 67.62 °C, a catalyst value of 1.1 wt. %, mixing intensity of 709.42 rpm, and an A/O of 6.09. Therefore, ELM-RSM increased the production yield by 3.6% for ethyl ester and 3.1% for methyl ester, compared with those for the experimental data.

Numerical models and their combination with advanced solution strategies are standard tools for many engineering disciplines to design or redesign structures and to optimize designs with the purpose to improve specific requirements. As the successful application of numerical models depends on their suitability to represent the behavior related to the intended use, they should be validated by experimentally obtained results. If the discrepancy between numerically derived and experimentally obtained results is not acceptable, a model revision or a revision of the experiment need to be considered. Model revision is divided into two classes, the model updating and the basic revision of the numerical model. The presented thesis is related to a special branch of model updating, the vibration-based model updating. Vibration-based model updating is a tool to improve the correlation of the numerical model by adjusting uncertain model input parameters by means of results extracted from vibration tests. Evidently, uncertainties related to the experiment, the numerical model, or the applied numerical solving strategies can influence the correctness of the identified model input parameters. The reduction of uncertainties for two critical problems and the quantification of uncertainties related to the investigation of several nominally identical structures are the main emphases of this thesis. First, the reduction of uncertainties by optimizing reference sensor positions is considered. The presented approach relies on predicted power spectral amplitudes and an initial finite element model as a basis to define the assessment criterion for predefined sensor positions. In combination with geometry-based design variables, which represent the sensor positions, genetic and particle swarm optimization algorithms are applied. The applicability of the proposed approach is demonstrated on a numerical benchmark study of a simply supported beam and a case study of a real test specimen. Furthermore, the theory of determining the predicted power spectral amplitudes is validated with results from vibration tests. Second, the possibility to reduce uncertainties related to an inappropriate assignment for numerically derived and experimentally obtained modes is investigated. In the context of vibration-based model updating, the correct pairing is essential. The most common criterion for indicating corresponding mode shapes is the modal assurance criterion. Unfortunately, this criterion fails in certain cases and is not reliable for automatic approaches. Hence, an alternative criterion, the energy-based modal assurance criterion, is proposed. This criterion combines the mathematical characteristic of orthogonality with the physical properties of the structure by modal strain energies. A numerical example and a case study with experimental data are presented to show the advantages of the proposed energy-based modal assurance criterion in comparison to the traditional modal assurance criterion. Third, the application of optimization strategies combined with information theory based objective functions is analyzed for the purpose of stochastic model updating. This approach serves as an alternative to the common sensitivity-based stochastic model updating strategies. Their success depends strongly on the defined initial model input parameters. In contrast, approaches based on optimization strategies can be more flexible. It can be demonstrated, that the investigated nature inspired optimization strategies in combination with Bhattacharyya distance and Kullback-Leibler divergence are appropriate. The obtained accuracies and the respective computational effort are comparable with sensitivity-based stochastic model updating strategies. The application of model updating procedures to improve the quality and suitability of a numerical model is always related to additional costs. The presented innovative approaches will contribute to reduce and quantify uncertainties within a vibration-based model updating process. Therefore, the increased benefit can compensate the additional effort, which is necessary to apply model updating procedures.