1012 Limit Analysis and Shape Optimization of Curved Structures

Francesco Marmo, University of Naples Federico II
Salvatore Sessa, University of Naples Federico II
Luciano Rosati, University of Naples Federico II
Computational approaches based on the Limit Analysis theory have become popular in structural engineering because of their capability of addressing real cases for which more traditional strategies turn out to be inaccurate or inefficient. Such a broad variety of solutions can be roughly summarized in approaches based on the well-known kinematic and static theorem, respectively, and are used in addressing several typologies of structural problems such as soil stability, structural analysis of existing structures and shape-optimization problems.
As an example, the Rigid Block Analysis, belonging to the kinematic strategies, analyzes a structural model by means of the interaction between mutually-interacting rigid domains. It is capable to overcome several drawbacks affecting the traditional strategies of dynamic analysis because of its capability of dealing with complex models regardless of the mechanical characterization of structural elements; a procedure which can often be difficult in the case of existing structures. Moreover, static-based approaches, such as the Force-Density method, have become very popular in shape-finding problems and, more generally, in structural analyses for which boundary conditions are unknown.
A common issue consists in the fact that most of such strategies require to solve structural optimization problems. For this reason, current research focused on the development of suitable optimization strategies including genetic algorithms, load-path methods and heuristic strategies.
This mini symposium aims to present the most recent advancements in the development of computational strategies based on the Limit Analysis theorems with peculiar focus on the analysis of curved structures and on the use of optimization algorithms in conjunction with semi-analytical solutions. Some topics of interest include, but are not limited to, the modeling of failure mechanisms of vaults and domes, the combination of multiple load conditions, dynamic analysis and structural shape optimization.
Case studies presenting the analysis of real and/or existing structures are also welcomed as well as validation procedures based on experimental evidences.