# Quantum Computing for Structural Optimization

Quantum Computing for Structural Optimization

AuthorWils, Kevin (TU Delft Aerospace Engineering)

Chen, B. (mentor)

Möller, M. (graduation committee)

De Breuker, R. (graduation committee)

Delft University of Technology

Programme Date2020-10-30

AbstractQuantum computing is a new form of computational technology, which can potentially be used to solve certain problems faster than is possible using classical computers. For this reason, there is an industry drive to develop early quantum computing applications. In this thesis, an overview of quantum computing technologies is provided, along with a practical discussion of the Traveling Salesman Problem, making use of the D-Wave quantum annealer. Subsequently, the main objective of the thesis can be investigated, which is toexplore how quantum computing can be used to aid in solving structural optimization problems. Two methods are developed with which simple 2-dimensional truss systems can be optimized using the D-Wave quantum annealer. The methods aim to find the most lightweight choices for the truss cross-sectional areas while complying with material limit stress constraints. The first method directly casts such an optimization problem into a QUBO format. However, due to difficulties with formulating the stress constraint, this method was found to produce a trivial optimization problem. The second method attempts to symbolically solve a truss finite-element problem, using the resulting symbolic expressions to set up an optimization objective function. Although these objective functions are confirmed to work via classical brute-force analysis, the quantum annealer is shown to have difficulty finding the global optimum solution for truss systems with three or more elements. These results indicate that it is not currently beneficial to use quantum annealing for these structural optimization problems. Nevertheless, some improvements to the method for setting up the objective functions are suggested. The next generation of quantum annealers is expected to perform better for these practical applications, potentially becoming a useful tool in the engineering toolbox.

SubjectQuantum Computing

Quantum Annealing

Structural Optimization

QUBO

Truss

FEM

Python

http://resolver.tudelft.nl/uuid:5167107a-7c26-4779-825a-e99702949870

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