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In this thesis we develop a shape optimization framework for isogeometric analysis in the optimize first–discretize then setting. For the discretization we use
isogeometric analysis (iga) to solve the state equation, and search optimal designs in a space of admissible b-spline or nurbs combinations. Thus a quite
general class of functions for representing optimal shapes is available. For the
gradient-descent method, the shape derivatives indicate both stopping criteria and search directions and are determined isogeometrically. The numerical treatment requires solvers for partial differential equations and optimization methods, which introduces numerical errors. The tight connection between iga and geometry representation offers new ways of refining the geometry and analysis discretization by the same means. Therefore, our main concern is to develop the optimize first framework for isogeometric shape optimization as ground work for both implementation and an error analysis. Numerical examples show that this ansatz is practical and case studies indicate that it allows local refinement.

We develop a framework for shape optimization problems under state equation con-
straints where both state and control are discretized by B-splines or NURBS. In other
words, we use isogeometric analysis (IGA) for solving the partial differential equation and a nodal approach to change domains where control points take the place of nodes and where thus a quite general class of functions for representing optimal shapes and their boundaries becomes available. The minimization problem is solved by a gradient descent method where the shape gradient will be defined in isogeometric terms. This
gradient is obtained following two schemes, optimize first–discretize then and, reversely,
discretize first–optimize then. We show that for isogeometric analysis, the two schemes yield the same discrete system. Moreover, we also formulate shape optimization with respect to NURBS in the optimize first ansatz which amounts to finding optimal control points and weights simultaneously. Numerical tests illustrate the theory.