A design of the truss is specified by a unique set of values for the analysis variables: height (H), diameter, (d), thickness (t), separation distance (B), modulus of elasticity (E), and material density (rho). Suppose we are interested in designing a truss that has a minimum weight, will not yield, will not buckle, and does not deflect "excessively,” and so we decide our model should calculate weight, stress, buckling stress and deflection.

Two Bar Assignment

This introductory assignment is designed as a means of demonstrating the optimization capabilities of a number of software packages. Below are tutorials for solving this problem with a number of software tools. Below are a few step-by-step tutorials.


Python Tutorial


MATLAB Tutorial


Objective Function Plot

One part of the assignment asks you to select width and load as variables for a 3d optimal surface plot and plot the solution of the optimization problem to minimize deflection at each of the width / load combinations. This tutorial example shows how to do this same activity but for the alternative problem of minimizing weight.


This assignment can be completed in collaboration with others. Additional guidelines on individual, collaborative, and group assignments are provided under the Expectations link.

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