Light Weight Lattice Truss Structures

Benjamin Bruce


Current research into light weight lattice truss structure designs has focused primarily on functional necessity rather than the best solution available. This is often a result of complexity and cost of manufacture limiting the range of structure topologies that can be analysed. In addition there has been minimal investigation into optimizing the geometry of these topologies, nor any wide ranging comparison of various designs. The aim of this project was to investigate the influence of topology and geometry on the specific strength of light weight lattice truss structures; the ultimate goal being to determine which design provides a better relative strength to relative density. Initially, the vast array of variables involved in this problem made it difficult to conceive any form of direct comparison between them for the purpose of design or analysis. The task was made even more difficult as the lack of any design criteria meant that the project was unable to focus on any particular element of possible design configurations. The number of independent variables were eventually reduced through extensive research, investigation and analysis to a point where an acceptable level of comparison could be achieved. The ANSYS model described in this report enables a user armed with design criteria to make informed decisions regarding the performance of designs based on how topology and geometry influence the end product. Different variables can now be systematically eliminated, enabling the focus of a study to shift to whichever argument is deemed appropriate by specified criteria. The determination of which design provides a better relative strength to relative density proved problematic due to the extensive number of dependencies involved; however a tool for good comparison of topology and geometry of light weight lattice truss structures was produced.



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