Design methodology of piezoelectric energy-harvesting skin using topology optimization

A. Takezawa*, M. Kitamura, S. L. Vatanabe, E. C.N. Silva

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


This paper describes a design methodology for piezoelectric energy harvesters that thinly encapsulate the mechanical devices and exploit resonances from higher-order vibrational modes. The direction of polarization determines the sign of the piezoelectric tensor to avoid cancellations of electric fields from opposite polarizations in the same circuit. The resultant modified equations of state are solved by finite element method (FEM). Combining this method with the solid isotropic material with penalization (SIMP) method for piezoelectric material, we have developed an optimization methodology that optimizes the piezoelectric material layout and polarization direction. Updating the density function of the SIMP method is performed based on sensitivity analysis, the sequential linear programming on the early stage of the optimization, and the phase field method on the latter stage of the optimization to obtain clear optimal shapes without intermediate density. Numerical examples are provided that illustrate the validity and utility of the proposed method.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-297
Number of pages17
JournalStructural and Multidisciplinary Optimization
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Feb
Externally publishedYes


  • Energy-harvesting
  • Non-linear finite element method
  • Piezoelectric
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Topology optimization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Control and Optimization
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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