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Student Projects

 

Student Projects

 
 
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Cost minimization on Michell Trusses

Summer 2016 - Joint w. Kristen McCrary, William Soller

We examined geometric objects called Michell trusses, exploring questions of existence, uniqueness, and cost-optimization of these trusses (under a natural cost function). Using the Calculus of Variations, we proved that a Michell Truss which equilibrates a fixed set of point forces and has an exterior 4-corner cannot be cost minimizing, and that it is always possible to lower the cost by "shaving" off the corner in a way that does not change the underlying set of point forces.