The Promise (and Reality) of Multidisciplinary Design Optimization
Burgee, Susan L.
Watson, Layne T.
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Modern aerospace vehicle design requires the interaction of multiple disciplines, traditionally processed in a sequential order. Multidisciplinary optimization (MDO), a formal methodology for the integration of these disciplines, is evolving towards methods capable of replacing the traditional sequential methodology of aerospace vehicle design by concurrent algorithms, with both an overall gain in product performance and a decrease in design time. This paper discusses the obstacles to MDO, and presents a parallel MDO paradigm using variable-complexity modeling and multipoint response surface approximations for the particular instance of the design of a high speed civil transport (HSCT). This paradigm interleaves the disciplines at one level of complexity, and processes them hierarchically at another level of complexity, achieving parallelism within disciplines, rather than across disciplines. A master-slave paradigm manages a coarse grained parallelism of the analysis and optimization codes required by the disciplines showing reasonable speedups and efficiencies on an Intel Paragon.