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Auto-tuning of isotropic hardening constitutive models on real steel buckling data with finite element based multistart global optimisation on parallel computers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Article number6132106
Number of pages10
JournalModelling and Simulation in Engineering
DateAccepted/In press - 6 Dec 2016
DatePublished (current) - 16 Jan 2017


An automatic framework for tuning plastic constitutive models is proposed. It is based on multistart global optimisation method, where the objective function is provided by the results of multiple elasto-plastic finite element analyses, executed concurrently. Wrapper scripts were developed for fully automatic pre-processing, including model and mesh generation, analysis and post-processing. The framework is applied to an isotropic power hardening plasticity using real load/displacement data from multiple steel buckling tests. M. J. D. Powell's BOBYQA constrained optimisation package was used for local optimisation. It is shown that using the real data presents multiple problems to the optimisation process because (1) the objective function can be discontinuous, yet (2) relatively at around multiple local minima, with (3) similar values of the objective function for different local minima. As a consequence the estimate of the global minimum is sensitive to the amount of experimental data and experimental noise. The framework includes the verification step, where the estimate of the global minimum is verified on a different geometry and loading. A tensile test was used for verification in this work. The speed of the method critically depends on the ability to effectively parallelise the finite element solver. Three levels of parallelisation were exploited in this work. The ultimate limitation was the availability of the finite element commercial solver license tokens.

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