Optimization of shell structure acoustics
Hardesty, Sean S.
Doctor of Philosophy
This thesis analyzes a mathematical model for shell structure acoustics, and develops and implements the adjoint equations for this model. The adjoint equations allow the computation of derivatives with respect to large parameter sets in shape optimization problems where the thickness and mid-surface of the shell are computed so as to generate a radiated sound field subject to broad-band design requirements. The structure and acoustics are modeled, respectively, via the Naghdi shell equations, and thin boundary integral equations, with full coupling at the shell mid-surface. In this way, the three-dimensional structural-acoustic equations can be posed as a problem on the two-dimensional mid-surface of the shell. A wide variety of shapes can thus be explored without re-meshing, and the acoustic field can be computed anywhere in the exterior domain with little additional effort. The problem is discretized using triangular MITC shell elements and piecewise-linear Galerkin boundary elements, coupled with a simple one-to-one scheme. Prior optimization work on coupled shell-acoustics problems has been focused on applications with design requirements over a small range of frequencies. These problems are amenable to a number of simplifying assumptions. In particular, it is often assumed that the structure is dense enough that the air pressure loading can be neglected, or that the structural motions can be expanded in a basis of low-frequency eigenmodes. Optimization of this kind can be done with reasonable success using a small number of shape parameters because simple modal analysis permits a reasonable knowledge of the parts of the design that will require modification. None of these assumptions are made in this thesis. By using adjoint equations, derivatives of the radiated field can be efficiently computed with respect to large numbers of shape parameters, allowing a much richer space of shapes, and thus, a broader range of design problems to be considered. The adjoint equation approach developed in this thesis is applied to the computation of optimal mid-surfaces and shell thicknesses, using a large shape parameter set, proportional in size to the number of degrees of freedom in the underlying finite element discretization.
Applied mathematics; Mathematics; Acoustics