Making lighter structures is a major objective of materials science across any number of applications that depend on increased mobility, such as the transport industry or the increasing number of mobile communications devices. It is also an important goal in the construction sector, where lighter structures enable innovations in design.
Traditionally, two strategies were carried out to reduce structural weight:
increasing the specific properties of materials;
optimizing the architectural design.
Today, these two traditional strategies can no longer be treated independently, especially in a context of multifunctionality. Hence the need for joint consideration of material and architectural optimization, which opens a whole new field of research.
Attempts to make lighter structures are not restricted to the optimization of structural weight, often the structure has functional requirements whether acoustic, electrical, aesthetic, etc... Combining functional and mechanical requirements to find the optimum architecture for a structure is a major field of research for CEMAM.