Convergence analysis for cellular automata applied to truss design

Douglas J. Slotta, Brian Tatting, Layne T. Watson, Zafer Gürdal, Samy Missoum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Traditional parallel methods for structural design, as well as modern preconditioned iterative linear solvers, do not scale well. This paper discusses the application of massively scalable cellular automata (CA) techniques to structures design, specifically trusses. There are two sets of CA rules, one used to propagate stresses and strains, and one to perform design updates. These rules can be applied serially, periodically, or concurrently, and Jacobi or Gauss-Seidel style updating can be done. These options are compared with respect to convergence, speed, and stability for an example, problem of combined sizing and topology design of truss domain structures. The central theme of the paper is that the cellular automation paradigm is tantamount to classical block Jacobi or block Gauss-Seidel iteration, and consequently the performance of a cellular automation can be rigorously analyzed and predicted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)953-969
Number of pages17
JournalEngineering Computations (Swansea, Wales)
Issue number7-8
StatePublished - 2002


  • Cellular automata
  • Parallel computing
  • Structural analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • General Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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