Impact of Shape Parameterisation on Aerodynamic Optimisation of Benchmark Problem

Dominic A Masters, Daniel Poole, Nigel Taylor, Thomas Rendall, Christian Allen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)

24 Citations (Scopus)
388 Downloads (Pure)


This paper presents an investigation into the influence of shape parameterisation and dimensionality on the optimisation of a benchmark case described by the AIAA Aerodynamic Design Optimisation Discussion Group. This problem specifies the drag minimisation of a NACA0012 under inviscid flow conditions at M = 0:85 and ∝ = 0 subject to the constraint that local thickness must only increase. The work presented here applies six different shape parameterisation schemes to this optimisation problem with between 4 and 40 design variables. The parameterisation methods used are: Bezier Surface FFD; B-Splines; CSTs; Hicks-Henne bump functions; a Radial Basis Function domain element method (RBF-DE) and a Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) method. The optimisation framework used consists of a gradient based SQP optimiser coupled with the SU2 adjoint Euler solver which enables the efficient calculation of the design variable gradients. Results for the all the parameterisation methods are presented with the best results for each method ranging between 25 and 56 drag counts from an initial value of 469. The optimal result was achieved with the B-Spline method with 16 design variables. A further validation of the results is then presented and the presence of hysteresis is explored.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication54th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting
PublisherAmerican Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Inc. (AIAA)
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781624103933
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jan 2016


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