The aim of this paper is to assess the impacts of topology optimisation and generative design on design optimisation processes when paired with additive manufacturing. This is being done as topology optimisation is a common practice in industry, but the advent of generative design may allow for further critical refinement of parts while maintaining functionality. Additionally, when paired with additive manufacturing the benefits of generative design compound with material savings and the ability to maximise the effectiveness of generative designs complex, organic geometries. A car suspension upright was manually created as an original design. The process of topology optimisation was undertaken on the original part, and a volume reduction to the original part of 65.17% was achieved. Using a case of loading of turning braking, a generative design was produced. This achieved a volume reduction of 88.13% when compared to the original design and 65.91% when compared to the topology optimisation result. Prototype parts were then produced in ABS via the FDM additive manufacturing method as a proof of concept. The optimisation processes on the design were both successful with the topology approach providing a stronger part while the generative design provided a bespoke, refined design using much less material of organic nature. It is found that the generative methodology also provides significant positive sustainability impacts.
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