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structural optimization; material optimization; topology optimization; finite elements
Free material optimization solves an important problem of structural engineering, i.e. to find the stiffest structure for given loads and boundary conditions. Its mathematical formulation leads to a saddle-point problem. It can be solved numerically by the finite element method. The convergence of the finite element method can be proved if the spaces involved satisfy suitable approximation assumptions. An example of a finite-element discretization is included.
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