Reliability-Based Design Optimization (RBDO) can provide optimum designs in the presence of uncertainty. It can therefore, be a powerful tool for design under uncertainty. The traditional, double-loop RBDO algorithm requires nested optimization loops, where the design optimization (outer) loop, repeatedly calls a series of reliability (inner) loops. Due to the nested optimization loops, the computational effort can be prohibitive for practical problems. A single-loop RBDO algorithm is proposed in this paper for both normal and non-normal random variables. Its accuracy is the same with the double-loop approach and its efficiency is almost equivalent to deterministic optimization. It collapses the nested optimization loops into an equivalent single-loop optimization process by imposing the Karush-Kuhn-Tucker optimality conditions of the reliability loops as equivalent deterministic equality constraints of the design optimization loop. It therefore, converts the probabilistic optimization problem into an equivalent deterministic optimization problem, eliminating the need for calculating the Most Probable Point (MPP) in repeated reliability assessments. Several numerical applications including an automotive vehicle side impact example, demonstrate the accuracy and superior efficiency of the proposed single-loop RBDO algorithm.

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