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Visualization and Data Mining of Pareto Solutions

Using Self-Organizing Map

Shigeru Obayashi and Daisuke Sasaki

Institute of Fluid Science, Tohoku University,

Sendai, 980-8577 JAPAN

obayashi@ieee.org, sasaki@reynolds.ifs.tohoku.ac.jp

Abstract. Self-Organizing Maps (SOMs) have been used to visualize tradeoffs

of Pareto solutions in the objective function space for engineering design

obtained by Evolutionary Computation. Furthermore, based on the codebook

vectors of cluster-averaged values of respective design variables obtained from

the SOM, the design variable space is mapped onto another SOM. The resulting

SOM generates clusters of design variables, which indicate roles of the design

variables for design improvements and tradeoffs. These processes can be

considered as data mining of the engineering design. Data mining examples are

given for supersonic wing design and supersonic wing-fuselage design.

1 Introduction

Multiobjective Evolutionary Algorithms (MOEAs) are getting popular in many fields

because they will provide a unique opportunity to address global tradeoffs between

multiple objectives by sampling a number of non-dominated solutions. To understand

tradeoffs, visualization is essential. Although it is trivial to understand tradeoffs

between two objectives, tradeoff analysis in more than three dimensions is not trivial

as shown in Fig. 1. To visualize higher dimensions, Self-Organizing Map (SOM) by

Kohonen [1,2] is employed in this paper.

SOM is one of neural network models. SOM algorithm is based on unsupervised,

competitive learning. It provides a topology preserving mapping from the high

dimensional space to map units. Map units, or neurons, usually form a two-

dimensional lattice and thus SOM is a mapping from the high dimensions onto the

two dimensions. The topology preserving mapping means that nearby points in the

input space are mapped to nearby units in SOM. SOM can thus serve as a cluster

analyzing tool for high-dimensional data. The cluster analysis of the objective

function values will help to identify design tradeoffs.

Design is a process to find a point in the design variable space that matches with

the given point in the objective function space. This is, however, very difficult. For

example, the design variable spaces considered here have 72 and 131 dimensions,

respectively. One way of overcoming high dimensionality is to group some of design

variables together. To do so, the cluster analysis based on SOM can be applied again.

Based on the codebook vectors of cluster-averaged values of respective design

variables obtained from the SOM, the design variable space can be mapped onto

another SOM. The resulting SOM generates clusters of design variables. Design

variables in such a cluster behave similar to each other and thus a typical design

variable in the cluster indicates the behaviour/role of the cluster. A designer may

extract design information from this cluster analysis. These processes can be

considered as data mining for the engineering design.

At first, SOM is applied to map objective function values of non-dominated

solutions in four dimensions. This will reveal global tradeoffs between four design

objectives. The multipoint aerodynamic optimization of a wing shape for SST at both

supersonic and transonic cruise conditions has been performed by using MOEAs

previously [3]. Both aerodynamic drags were to be minimized under lift constraints,

and the bending and pitching moments of the wing were also minimized instead of

imposing constraints on structure and stability. A high fidelity Computational Fluid

Dynamics (CFD) code, a Navier-Stokes code, was used to evaluate the wing

performance at both conditions. In this design optimization, planform shapes, camber,

thickness distributions and twist distributions were parameterized in total of 72 design

variables. To alleviate the required computational time, parallel computing was

performed for function evaluations. The resulting 766 non-dominated solutions are

analyzed to reveal tradeoffs in this paper. The resulting SOM is also used to create a

new SOM of the cluster-averaged design variables.

Second, SOM is applied to map entire solutions evaluated during the evolution of

two-objective optimization. Based on the wing design system mentioned above, an

aerodynamic optimization system for SST wing-body configuration was developed in

[4]. To satisfy severe tradeoff between high aerodynamic performance and low sonic

boom, the present objectives were to reduce CD at a fixed CL as well as to satisfy the

equivalent area distribution for low boom design proposed by Darden [5]. Wing shape

and fuselage configuration were defined in total of 131 design variables. The SOM of

the objective function values indicates the non-dominated front as edges of the map

and the SOM of the cluster-averaged design variables reveals the role of the design

variables for design tradeoffs.

2 objectives 3 objectives ?

4 objectives

?

4 objectives

Projection

Minimization problems

Fig. 1. Visualization of Pareto front

2 Evolutionary Multiobjective Optimization

2.1 MOGAs

The genetic operators used here are based on MOGAs [6,7]. Selection is based on the

Pareto ranking method and fitness sharing. Each individual is assigned to its rank

according to the number of individuals that dominate it. A fitness sharing function is

used to maintain the diversity of the population. To find non-dominated solutions

more effectively, the so-called best-N selection is employed.

For real function optimizations like the present research, however, it is more

straightforward to use real numbers for encoding. Thus, the floating-point

representation is used here. Accordingly, blended crossover (BLX-α) [8] is adopted at

the crossover rate of 100%. This operator generates children on a segment defined by

two parents and a user specified parameter α. The disturbance is added to new design

variables within 10% of the given range of each design variable at a mutation rate of

20%. Crossover and mutation rates are kept high because the best-N selection gives a

very strong elitism. Details for the present MOGA were given in Refs. 3, 4 and 7.

2.2 CFD Evaluation

To evaluate the design, a high fidelity Euler/Navier-Stokes code was used. Taking

advantage of the characteristic of GAs, the present optimization is parallelized on SGI

ORIGIN2000 at the Institute of Fluid Science, Tohoku University. The system has

640 Processing Elements (PE’s) with peak performance of 384 GFLOPS and 640 GB

of memory.

A simple master-slave strategy was employed: The master PE manages the

optimization process, while the slave PE’s compute the Navier-Stokes code. The

parallelization became almost 100% because almost all the CPU time was dominated

by CFD computations. The population size used in this study was set to 64 so that the

process was parallelized with 32-128 PE’s depending on the availability of job

classes. The present optimization requires about six hours per generation for the

supersonic wing case when parallelized on 128 PE’s.

2.3 Neural Network and SOM

SOM [1,2] is a two-dimensional array of neurons:

{

}

qp×

=mmM L

1 (1)

One neuron is a vector called the codebook vector:

[

]

n

iii mm L

1

=m (2)

This has the same dimension as the input vectors (n-dimensional). The neurons are

connected to adjacent neurons by a neighbourhood relation. This dictates the

topology, or the structure, of the map. Usually, the neurons are connected to each

other via rectangular or hexagonal topology. One can also define a distance between

the map units according to their topology relations.

The training consists of drawing sample vectors from the input data set and

“teaching” them to SOM. The teaching consists of choosing a winner unit by means

of a similarity measure and updating the values of codebook vectors in the

neighbourhood of the winner unit. This process is repeated a number of times.

In one training step, one sample vector is drawn randomly from the input data set.

This vector is fed to all units in the network and a similarity measure is calculated

between the input data sample and all the codebook vectors. The best-matching unit is

chosen to be the codebook vector with greatest similarity with the input sample. The

similarity is usually defined by means of a distance measure. For example in the case

of Euclidean distance the best-matching unit is the closest neuron to the sample in the

input space.

The best-matching unit, usually noted as mc, is the codebook vector that matches a

given input vector x best. It is defined formally as the neuron for which

[

]

i

i

cmxmx −=− min (3)

After finding the best-matching unit, units in SOM are updated. During the update

procedure, the best-matching unit is updated to be a little closer to the sample vector

in the input space. The topological neighbours of the best-matching unit are also

similarly updated. This update procedure stretches the best-matching unit and its

topological neighbours towards the sample vector. The neighbourhood function

should be a decreasing function of time. In the following, SOMs were generated in

the hexagonal topology by using Viscovery® SOMine 4.0 Plus [9].

2.4 Cluster Analysis

Once SOM projects input space on a low-dimensional regular grid, the map can be

utilized to visualize and explore properties of the data. When the number of SOM

units is large, to facilitate quantitative analysis of the map and the data, similar units

need to be grouped, i.e., clustered. The two-stage procedure --- first using SOM to

produce the prototypes which are then clustered in the second stage --- was reported

to perform well when compared to direct clustering of the data [10].

Hierarchical agglomerative algorithm is used for clustering here. The algorithm

starts with a clustering where each node by itself forms a cluster. In each step of the

algorithm two clusters are merged: those with minimal distance according to a special

distance measure, the SOM-Ward distance [9]. This measure takes into account

whether two clusters are adjacent in the map. This means that the process of merging

clusters is restricted to topologically neighbored clusters. The number of clusters will

be different according to the hierarchical sequence of clustering. A relatively small

number will be chosen for visualization (§3.2), while a large number will be used for

generation of codebook vectors for respective design variables (§3.3).

3 Four-Objective Optimization for Supersonic Wing Design

3.1 Formulation of Optimization

Four objective functions used here are

1. Drag coefficient at transonic cruise, CD,t

2. Drag coefficient at supersonic cruise, CD,s

3. Bending moment at the wing root at supersonic cruise condition, MB

4. Pitching moment at supersonic cruise condition, MP

In the present optimization, these objective functions are to be minimized. The

transonic drag minimization corresponds to the cruise over land; the supersonic drag

minimization corresponds to the cruise over sea. Lower bending moments allow less

structural weight to support the wing. Lower pitching moments mean less trim drag.

The present optimization is performed at two design points for the transonic and

supersonic cruises. Corresponding flow conditions and the target lift coefficients are

described as

1. Transonic cruising Mach number, M∞,t = 0.9

2. Supersonic cruising Mach number, M∞,s = 2.0

3. Target lift coefficient at transonic cruising condition, CL,t = 0.15

4. Target lift coefficient at supersonic cruising condition, CL,s = 0.10

5. Reynolds number based on the root chord length at both conditions, Re=1.0 x 107

Flight altitude is assumed at 10 km for the transonic cruise and at 15 km for the

supersonic cruise. To maintain lift constraints, the angle of attack is computed for

each configuration by using CLα obtained from the finite difference. Thus, three

Navier-Stokes computations per evaluation are required. During the aerodynamic

optimization, wing area is frozen at a constant value.

Design variables are categorized to planform, airfoil shapes and the wing twist.

Planform shape is defined by six design variables, allowing one kink in the spanwise

direction. Airfoil shapes are composed of its thickness distribution and camber line.

The thickness distribution is represented by a Bézier curve defined by nine polygons.

The wing thickness is constrained for structural strength. The thickness distributions

are defined at the wing root, kink and tip, and then linearly interpolated in the

spanwise direction. The camber surfaces composed of the airfoil camber lines are

defined at the inboard and outboard of the wing separately. Each surface is

represented by the Bézier surface defined by four polygons in the chordwise direction

and three in the spanwise direction. Finally, the wing twist is represented by a B-

spline curve with six polygons. In total, 72 design variables are used to define a whole

wing shape. A three-dimensional wing with computational structured grid and the

corresponding CFD result are shown in Figs. 2 and 3. See Ref. 3 for more details for

geometry definition and CFD information.

Fig. 2. Wing grid in C-H topology Fig. 3. Pressure contours on the upper surface

of a wing computed by the CFD code

3.2 Visualization of Design Tradeoffs: SOM of Tradeoffs

The evolution was computed for 75 generations until all individuals become non-

dominated. An archive of non-dominated solutions was also created along the

evolution. After the computation, the 766 non-dominated solutions were obtained in

the archive as a three-dimensional surface in the four-dimensional objective function

space. By examining the extreme non-dominated solutions, the archive was found to

represent the Pareto front qualitatively.

The present non-dominated solutions of supersonic wing designs have four design

objectives. First, let’s project the resulting non-dominated front onto the two-

dimensional map. Figure 4 shows the resulting SOM with seven clusters. For better

understanding, the typical planform shapes of wings are also plotted in the figure.

Lower right corner of the map corresponds to highly swept, high aspect ratio wings

good for supersonic aerodynamics. Lower left corner corresponds to moderate sweep

angles good for reducing the pitching moment. Upper right corner corresponds to

small aspect ratios good for reducing the bending moment. Upper left corner thus

reduces both pitching and bending moments.

Figure 5 shows the same SOM contoured by four design objective values. All the

objective function values are scaled between 0 and 1. Low supersonic drag region

corresponds to high pitching moment region. This is primarily because of high sweep

angles. Low supersonic drag region also corresponds to high bending moment region

because of high aspect ratios. Combination of high sweep angle and high aspect ratio

confirm that supersonic wing design is highly constrained.

Fig. 4. SOM of the objective function values and typical wing planform shapes

CDt

0.02 0.15 0.29 0.42 0.55 0.68 0.81 0.95

CDs

0.04 0.17 0.31 0.44 0.57 0.70 0.83 0.96

Mb

0.03 0.17 0.30 0.43 0.57 0.70 0.83 0.97

Mp

0.01 0.15 0.28 0.42 0.56 0.69 0.83 0.97

Fig. 5. SOM contoured by each design objective

3.3 Data Mining of Design Space: SOM of Design Variables

The previous SOM provides clusters based on the similarity in the objective function

values. The next step is to find similarity in the design variables that corresponds to

the previous clusters. To visualize this, the previous SOM is first revised by using

larger number of clusters of 49 as shown in Fig. 6. Then, all the design variables are

averaged in each cluster, respectively. Now each design variable has a codebook

vector of 49 cluster-averaged values. This codebook vector may be regarded to

represent focal areas in the design variable space. Finally, a new SOM is generated

from these codebook vectors as shown in Fig. 7.

This process can be done for encoded design variables (genotype) and decoded

design variables (phenotype). In the earlier study, the genotype was used for SOM.

However, the genotype and phenotype generated completely different SOMs. A

possible reason is because the various scaling appears in phenotype, for example, one

design variable is between 0 and 1 and another is between 35 to 70. The difference of

order of magnitude in design variables may lead to different clusters. To avoid such

confusion, the genotype is used for SOM here.

In Fig. 7, the labels indicate 72 design variables. DVs 00 to 05 correspond to the

planform design variables. These variables have dominant influence on the wing

performance. DVs 00 and 01 determine the span lengths of the inboard and outboard

wing panels, respectively. DVs 02 and 03 correspond to leading-edge sweep angles.

DVs 04 and 05 are root-side chord lengths. DVs 06 to 25 define wing camber. DVs

26 to 32 determine wing twist. Figure 7 contains seven clusters and thus seven design

variables are chosen from each cluster as indicated. Figure 8 shows SOM’s of Fig. 4

contoured by these design variables.

The sweep angles, DVs 02 and 03, make a cluster in the lower left corner of the

map in Fig. 7 and the corresponding plots in Fig. 8 confirm that the wing sweep has a

large impact on the aerodynamic performance. DVs 11 and 51 in Fig. 8 do not appear

influential to any particular objective. By comparing Figs. 8 and 5, DV 01 has similar

distribution with the bending moment Mb, indicating that the wing outboard span has

an impact on the wing bending moment. On the other hand, DV 00, the wing inboard

span, has an impact on the pitching moment. DV 28 is related to transonic drag. DV

04 and 05 are in the same cluster. Both of them have an impact on the transonic drag

because their reduction means the increase of aspect ratio. Several features of the

wing planform design variables and the corresponding clusters are found out in the

SOMs and they are consistent with the existing aerodynamic knowledge.

Fig. 6. SOM of objective function values with 49 clusters

v01

d

v

15

d

v

23

d

v

41

d

v

00

d

v

56

d

v

20

d

v

60

d

v

16

d

v

1

dv50 dv68

dv42 dv08 dv49 dv

0

dv10 dv43 dv29

dv54

dv30 dv66 dv36

3

4 dv48 dv25 dv

0

dv46 dv19 dv24

dv62 dv65 dv67

dv13 dv

5

dv58 dv06

dv64 dv14

v

18 dv21 dv71

dv26 dv22 dv

3

dv35 dv53

dv12 dv37 dv40

11 dv69 dv32 dv59

dv07dv52 dv70 dv47 dv

0

0

2 dv63 dv45 dv39 dv51

dv03

dv55

dv61

dv27

dv28

dv38

dv44

dv3

v01

d

v

15

d

v

23

d

v

41

d

v

00

d

v

56

d

v

20

d

v

60

d

v

16

d

v

1

dv50 dv68

dv42 dv08 dv49 dv

0

dv10 dv43 dv29

dv54

dv30 dv66 dv36

3

4 dv48 dv25 dv

0

dv46 dv19 dv24

dv62 dv65 dv67

dv13 dv

5

dv58 dv06

dv64 dv14

v

18 dv21 dv71

dv26 dv22 dv

3

dv35 dv53

dv12 dv37 dv40

11 dv69 dv32 dv59

dv07dv52 dv70 dv47 dv

0

0

2 dv63 dv45 dv39 dv51

dv03

dv55

dv61

dv27

dv28

dv38

dv44

dv3

dv01

dv11

dv02

dv00

dv28

04

05

Fig. 7. SOM of cluster-averaged design variables

dv02

0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0

dv11

0.0 0.3 0.5 0.8 1.0

dv01

0.04 0.49 0.95

dv28

0.01 0.50 0.99

dv51

0.0 0.3 0.5 0.8 1.0

dv00

0.0 0.2 0.5 0.7 1.0

dv04

0.00 0.44 0.88

Fig. 8. SOM contoured by design variables selected from clusters in Fig. 7

4 Two-Objective Optimization for Supersonic Wing-Fuselage

Design

4.1 Formulation of Optimization

In this study, SST wing-body configurations are designed to improve the aerodynamic

performance and to lower the sonic boom strength. Therefore, design objectives are to

reduce CD at Mach number 2.0 at a fixed CL (=0.10) and to match Darden’s equivalent

area distribution that can achieve low sonic boom. Multiblock Euler calculation was

used to evaluate aerodynamic performance [11]. For the evaluation of sonic boom

strength, an equivalent area distribution is matched to Darden’s equivalent area

distribution for 300 ft fuselage SST at Mach number 1.6 at CL = 0.125.

To evaluate aerodynamic performances, aerodynamic evaluation has to be

automatically performed for a given SST wing-body configuration. The wing

definition was almost same as the previous wing optimization. Then, 55 additional

design variables were used to define nonsymmetric fuselage configuration. Four more

design variables represented the wing lofting. The total number of design variables is

131.

As body length and wing area is fixed to 300 ft and 9,000 ft2, respectively, body

volume, minimum diameter of body and wing volume must be greater than values

given in Table 1. The other constraints are implemented to design variables as

boundaries. As a result, the present SST wing-body design problem has two objective

functions of minimization, three constraints and 131 design variables, and is

optimized by real-coded MOGAs. Master-slave type parallelization was again

performed to reduce the large computational time of each CFD evaluation in the

optimization process. Figures 9 and 10 show typical computational grid and

corresponding CFD result, respectively. See Ref. 4 for more details for geometry

definition and CFD information.

Table 1. Constraints of SST wing-body configuration

Body volume ≥ 30,000 ft3

Minimum diameter ≥ 11.8 ft (0.23≤x/L≤0.70)

Wing volume ≥ 16,800 ft3

X Y

Z

17

18

19 23

17

18

19 23

Fig. 9. Surface grid for SST wing-

fuselage configuration (numbers indicate

corresponding multiblock grids)

Fig. 10. Computed pressure distribution

on the upper surface of SST wing-

fuselage configuration

4.2 Visualization of Design Tradeoffs: SOM of Function Landscape

First, all the solutions obtained during the present evolutionary computation were

mapped onto SOM according to the scaled objective function values. The resulting

SOM is shown in Fig. 11. Several non-dominated solutions are indicated by * in the

figure. The map consists of eight clusters. The lower left cluster contains the extreme

non-dominated solution of the minimum drag. The upper right cluster contains the

extreme non-dominated solution of the minimum boom. The corresponding objective

functions values are then plotted in Fig. 12. Because only two objectives are used

here, the map coordinates approximately matches to the objectives. The vertical

direction corresponds to the drag and the horizontal axis corresponds to the sonic

boom. The lower edge and the right edge of the map indicate the non-dominated

front. Although the mapping is not essential to visualize tradeoffs here, the cluster

analysis may be used to generate clusters of design variables.

Fig. 11. SOM of the objective function values

DRAG

BOOM

Fig. 12. SOM coloured by each design objective

4.3 Data mining of Design Space: SOM of Design Variables

To generate SOM of the design variables, Fig. 11 was divided into 50 clusters as Fig.

13. Then, Fig. 14 was generated from codebook vectors of cluster-averaged design

variables in Fig. 13. Figure 14 shows SOM of the design variables in five clusters. In

Fig. 14, the labels indicate 131 design variables. Figure 14 can be interpreted from the

behaviors of the design variables representing the corresponding clusters. Figure 15

shows the map of Fig. 11 contoured by the five design variables indicated in Fig. 14.

A trend of the design variables in the left cluster of Fig. 14 is represented by DV 123

in Fig. 15. Its distribution appears the inverse of the sonic boom in Fig. 12. DV 123

determines the twist angle at the wing tip. It has an impact on the list distribution,

leading to influences on the equivalent cross sectional distribution and thus on the

sonic boom strength. The center cluster in Fig. 14 is represented by DV 2 and its

distribution in Fig. 15 appears the inverse of the drag in Fig. 12. DV 2 is one of the

design variables that define the sharpness of the nose of the fuselage. Blunt nose is

known to increase drag for supersonic aircraft. The right cluster in Fig. 14 is

represented by DV 28 and the corresponding distribution in Fig. 15 has a local

minimum in the middle of the left, upper edge of the map. This is one of the design

variables that determine the body radius distribution at the side of the fuselage, but it

does not seem primarily related to either objective here. DV’s 89 and 91 have

opposite trends, but they are not influential to the non-dominated front, either.

*

Pret

o

Pareto

Pareto

*

*

*

Pareto *

Fig. 13. SOM of objective function values with 50 clusters

DV32

DV61

DV30

DV91

DV69

DV60

DV82

DV88

DV55

DV37

DV2

DV4

DV20

DV52

DV28

DV1

DV93

DV2

V

72 DV8 DV110 DV62

DV128 DV108 DV122 DV18 DV81 DV

3

DV58 DV76

D

V27 DV96 DV94

DV125 DV67 DV106 DV48 DV9 DV56

V

77 DV36 DV39 DV73 DV78 D

V

DV102 DV109 DV121 DV97 DV45 DV26

DV115 DV16 DV104

D

V14 D

V

D

V64 DV33 DV57 DV63 DV116 DV113

DV46 DV34 DV51 DV7 DV53 DV95 DV40

DV119 DV126 DV66 DV9

DV

9

1 DV2 DV2

8

1

23 DV86 DV41 DV13 DV107 DV22

DV120 DV35 DV71 DV10 DV87

V

83 DV130 DV114 DV47 D

V

DV79 DV127 DV25 DV112 DV70 DV118 DV101 DV65

DV5 DV6 DV19 DV75 DV80 D

V

D

V15 DV105 DV12 DV38 DV129 DV29

DV21 DV11 DV103 DV99

DV12

3

D

V

V117

DV31

DV85

DV100

DV50

DV68

DV54

DV23

DV84

DV74

DV42

DV111

DV124

DV59

DV131

DV49

DV17

DV

89

Fig. 14. SOM of cluster-averaged design variables

DV123

*

Preto

Paret

o

Paret

o

*

*

*

Paret o

*

0.0 0.2 0.3 0.5 0.7 0.8 1.0

DV91

*

Preto

Paret

o

Paret

o

*

Paret o

*

0.00 0.25 0.50 0.74 0.99

DV2

*

Preto

Paret

o

Paret

o

*

*

*

Paret o

*

0.01 0.26 0.50 0.74 0.99

DV89

*

Preto

Paret

o

Paret

o

*

*

*

Paret o

*

0.00 0.24 0.48 0.72 0.97

DV28

*

Preto

Paret

o

Paret

o

*

Paret o

*

0.0 0.2 0.3 0.5 0.7 0.8 1.0

Fig. 15. SOM contoured by design variables selected from clusters in Fig. 14

5 Concluding Remarks

Design tradeoffs have been investigated for two multiobjective aerodynamic design

problems of supersonic transport by using visualization and cluster analysis of the

non-dominated solutions based on SOMs. The first optimization is to design

supersonic wings defined by 72 design variables with four objectives to be

minimized. The second optimization is to design supersonic wing-body

configurations represented by in total 131 design variables with drag and boom

minimization. Design data were gathered by MOGAs.

SOM is first applied to visualize tradeoffs between design objectives. In the first

design case, four objective functions were employed and 766 non-dominated

solutions were obtained. Three-dimensional non-dominated front in the objective

function space has been mapped onto the two-dimensional SOM where global

tradeoffs are successfully visualized. In the second design case, entire solutions

during the evolution have been mapped onto SOM to visualize function landscape,

and the non-dominated front was found at the edges of the map. The resulting SOMs

are further contoured by each objective, which provides better insights into design

tradeoffs.

Furthermore, based on the codebook vectors of cluster-averaged values for

respective design variables obtained from the SOMs, the design variable space is

mapped onto another SOM. Design variables in the same cluster are considered to

have similar influences in design tradeoffs. Therefore, by selecting a member (design

variable) from a cluster, the original SOM in the objective function space is contoured

by the particular design variable. It reveals correlation of the cluster of design

variables with objective functions and their relative importance. Because each cluster

of design variables can be identified influential or not to a particular design objective,

the optimization problem may be divided into subproblems where the optimization

will be easier to lead to better solutions.

These processes may be considered as data mining of the engineering design. The

present work demonstrates that MOGAs and SOMs are versatile design tools for

engineering design.

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