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Special Issue "Additive Manufacturing: Topology Optimization and Cellular Microstructures"

Dear Colleagues,

Topology optimization (TO) is a mathematical method that spatially optimizes the distribution of material within a defined domain, by fulfilling predefined constraints and, if required, the cost function. However, topology optimization results are characterized by high complexity. The proposed optimized structures are difficult to manufacture with subtractive technologies. Additive manufacturing (AM) is a well-established technology already applied for the fabrication of structural components with nearly no geometric constraints. The combination of TO and AM allows for the creation of optimized parts with reduced mass and increased stiffness. Additive manufacturing leads to new structural design constraints and manufacturing defects, such as porosity and unmelt regions, shape inaccuracy after support structures removal, degradation of material properties, etc. Additionally, defects induced during additive manufacturing processes including unmelt regions and pores are the main cause of fatigue failure. These defects may cause crack initiation under cyclic loading.

Developments in AM techniques enable the fabrication of materials with intricate cellular architectures. A rapidly growing research area of cellular structures is auxetic materials with negative Poisson’s ratio (NPR). These materials expand in the lateral direction when stretched longitudinally or contract laterally under uniaxial compression. These materials possess a combination of high stiffness and strength with significant weight savings and demonstrate a series of particular characteristics over conventional materials, such as excellent indentation resistance, high shear stiffness, remarkable fracture toughness, and unique acoustic energy and impact absorption abilities.

The purpose of this Special Issue is to encourage the two scientific communities of additive manufacturing and topology optimization to focus on this novel and rapidly growing research area. In addition to the above fields, example topics may include new auxetic materials applications, machine learning applications, and novel algorithms linking topology optimization with additive manufacturing. This issue will publish original research papers, short reports, and reviews related to cellular structures fabricated with 3D printing and topology optimization methods for additive manufacturing.

Prof. Dr. Georgios Ε Stavroulakis
Dr. Loucas Papadakis
Mr. Ioannis Ntintakis
Guest Editors

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