An anisotropic topology optimization method for carbon fiber-reinforced Fused Filament Fabrication.
Topology optimization has become an increasingly important field in materials engineering for determining optimal material distribution given certain loading conditions. As the desire for stronger, lightweight structural parts grows as well as the influence of additive manufacturing in the composites industry, there is a need for determining optimal structural orientation of Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF)-produced parts, especially those that have been improved with the addition of carbon fiber to the polymer feedstock. In this work, variations of the Solid Isotropic Material with Penalization (SIMP) method for topology optimization are proposed and modified, using the Adjoint Variable Method for design sensitivity analysis, a sensitivity filter to prevent checkerboarding, and a transversely isotropic material model. Using this technique, optimizations are performed for varying x- and y- direction orientation, as well as a variable material angle. Tested FFF-produced samples show agreement with computational results.