Advanced manufacturing processes provide a tremendous opportunity to fabricate materials with precisely defined architectures. To fully leverage these capabilities, however, materials architectures must be optimally designed according to the target application, base material used, and specifics of the fabrication process. Computational topology optimization offers a systematic, mathematically driven framework for navigating this new design challenge. The design problem is posed and solved formally as an optimization problem with unit cell and upscaling mechanics embedded within this formulation. This article briefly reviews the key requirements to apply topology optimization to materials architecture design and discusses several fundamental findings related to optimization of elastic, thermal, and fluidic properties in periodic materials. Emerging areas related to topology optimization for manufacturability and manufacturing variations, nonlinear mechanics, and multiscale design are also discussed.


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