Design and Weight Optimization of an Automobile Link - A Case Study 2013-26-0078
A case study was conducted on the design, optimization and material replacement for an automobile suspension link. The link is part of a four bar mechanism. The mechanism was developed in Adams/Car® and multibody simulation was carried out on it. The joint forces arrived from the simulation were exported for finite element analysis of the components in OptiStruct®. Finally, topology and shape optimization was conducted to reduce the weight of the original component. A feasibility study was also carried out to replace the fabricated steel link with a heat treated cast iron link. Heat treated cast iron being lighter than steel, ensures reduction in weight without compromising on strength. The experiment resulted in a feasible optimized shape which was 32% lighter than the current shape of the link being used in the vehicle, while keeping the stresses and displacements within limits.