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optimization of automobile suspension component

optimization of automobile suspension component

optimization of automobile suspension component

Hello Everyone !
I am doing project on " Optimization of suspension component"(Mcpherson Strut Lower Link). In that I have to reduce the 'weight' of the link keeping it's strength and stress distribution same . I want to know more about .....
1. How to find the areas from which the material can be removed??? Is there any specific method for that. ??? Please note here that stress distribution should not be changed drastically. What properties of the component we have to consider for that ??
2. What is load path . How do we find that in statically indeterminate structures ???  How can we use load path to find the areas for weight reduction .
3. Is there any FEM  based method for this ???

RE: optimization of automobile suspension component

1) FEM

2) FEM

3) Yes

part of the trick is defining your loads for the optimisation. As a minimum you should determine the stresses in response to 3 g vertically 2g longitudinally and 1 g laterally (times the corner mass, or 1/4 vehicle mass) and consider the effect of mixtures of those loads.

In practice the fore-aft and lateral loads will probably be the most significant.

I imagine that most modern FE packages have an optimiser built in, whether it is any good is another issue.


Greg Locock

RE: optimization of automobile suspension component

If you are refering to typical, simple lower lateral links (2 pt. pickup each), then it is primarily a column buckling analysis.
If it is an arm arangement (3 pt. pickup) then a FEA analysis is probably your best bet.

RE: optimization of automobile suspension component

If you want to decrease the weight or increase the strength or both of an existing system, (asuming that is fairly well designed to start with), you will need to increase the quality and cost of the materials.  These suspension arms on a normal car would be mild steel.  To upgrade this, replicate the part in aluminum, and make it just slightly thicker (depending on grade).  That redices the weight by about half, and retains the strength.  Or you can do the same with a chrome-moly steel, and halve the thickness.  This has the same effect, but work out the cost first.  Just look at expencive bicycles for better/expensive ways of doing things to reduce the weight.  Cars are made of mild steel because its cheap, and ductile.  Competitive race cars use 4130 steel tubes.  Cheap race cars use a mild steel for the roll over bars.  Expensive race cars use aluminum suspension components.  Only F1 cars would dare use carbon fibre or titanium for suspension, so don't bother.

RE: optimization of automobile suspension component

Hello Everyone ! First of all Thank you very much for the replies
I have one doubt relating to earlier question .
1. In statically inderminate structures , does maximum stress and
    maximum strain energy locations  same or different. ????
2. How to find strain energy locations in a component using I-DEAS 8.0 and MSC/NASTRAN. ???

Thanks all in advance


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