A reliability-based design optimization (RBDO) incorporates a probabilistic analysis with an optimization technique to find a best design within a reliable design space. However, the computational cost of an RBDO task is often expensive compared to a deterministic optimization, which is mainly due to the reliability analysis performed inside the optimization loop. Theoretically, the reliability of a given design point can be obtained through a multidimensional integration. Integration with multiple variables over the safety domain is, unfortunately, formidable in most cases. Monte- Carlo simulation (MCS) is often used to solve this difficulty. However, the inherit statistic uncertainty associated with MCS sometimes causes an unstable RBDO solution. To avoid this unstable solution, this study transforms a multi-variable constraint into a single variable constraint using an exponential function with a polynomial coefficient (EPM). The adaptive Gauss-Kronrod quadrature is used to compute the constraint reliability. The calculated reliability and its derivative are incorporated with an optimizer such as sequential quadratic programming (SQP) or most probable point particle swarm optimization (MPP-based PSO) to conduct the RBDO task. To ensure the design accuracy, the stability of the RBDO algorithm with respect to the initial point is investigated through several numerical examples.
Reliability; Optimization; EPM; RBDO; MPP-based PSO