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Optimization & Inverse Methods Blog Posts

Student Team Wins R&D Award for Optimizing a Mini Race Car

July 22, 2015

You may know of Boreas, the Greek god of North Wind, but did you know that it’s also the name of a German team for Formula 1 in schools? This is no coincidence; it describes their strong will to develop race cars that are “as fast as a storm”. With this spirit and COMSOL Multiphysics, the team won several qualifying races, reached third place in the 2014 world finals, and was honored with the innovation award for Research and Development.

Fitting Measured Data to Different Hyperelastic Material Models

June 24, 2015

Previously on the blog, we have discussed the need for appropriate measured data to fit the material parameters that correspond to a material model. We have also looked at typical experimental tests, considerations for operating conditions when choosing a material model, and an example of how to use your measured data directly in a nonlinear elastic model. Our focus today will be on how to fit your experimental data to different hyperelastic material models.

New Book on Topology Optimization for Electromagnetics

July 7, 2014

There’s a new book out there for those of you who work with or research electromechanical system design. It’s titled Multiphysics Simulation: Electromechanical System Applications and Optimization and is more than your average textbook. This is a reference guide on simulation and topology optimization written with both students and industry engineers in mind.

Understanding Drug-Eluting Stents at Boston Scientific

June 18, 2014

Cardiovascular disease is a condition where the arteries in the heart are blocked by plaque. Narrowed arteries can restrict blood flow and cause chest pain and shortness of breath. Bare metal stents can be used to resolve the problem, but excessive tissue can grow over them and narrow the artery again (a process called restenosis). Engineers at Boston Scientific are using simulation to understand the release mechanisms in drug-eluting stents, which can be used to prevent this excess cell growth.

Optimizing Heater Power for Thermal Processing

February 17, 2014

COMSOL’s Optimization Module is a powerful tool for improving the performance of your devices and systems. Here, we will look at optimizing the power applied to two heaters in a flow channel with the objective of heating up the fluid as much as possible as it passes through the channel, while constraining the peak temperature at the heaters themselves. One application of this technique is improving the efficiency of thermal processes.

Using Gradient-Free Optimization

August 2, 2013

The COMSOL Optimization Module includes both gradient-based and gradient-free optimization techniques. Whereas the gradient-based optimization method can compute an exact analytic derivative of an objective function and any associated constraint functions, it does require these functions to be smooth and differentiable. In this blog post, we examine the use of the gradient-free optimizer, which can consider objective function and constraints that are not differentiable or smooth. The dimensions of a spinning wheel are optimized to reduce the mass while maintaining […]

Metamaterials Make Physics Seem Like Magic

February 26, 2013

Metamaterials are a new and emerging technology with vast potential to reshape our views on what is and isn’t possible in this physical world of ours. Unlocking the mysteries and overcoming the obstacles associated with metamaterials would lead to a host of technological advances once thought impossible by even the most imaginative of individuals. From making computer chips smaller and faster than the most advanced current ones, to protecting structures from earthquakes, to developing imaging technology that doesn’t harm tissue […]


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