Member design in FEA

I got a really interesting question on my email from Fateme. I wanted to address this issue so many times now, so finally there is a great occasion to do this! In Abaqus, can we review the capability of a structural member? Whether or not it can bear the load like: shear, bending, twisting, axial [...]

Member design in FEA

Few thoughts on meshing

Recently I've checked what topics are the most popular on my blog and it seems meshing is in high demand ( : I also figured I will try something different as a style of writing. This post will be a list of few short ideas instead of a long article about something. Let me know [...]

Few thoughts on meshing

FEA results verification with hand calculations: stability

Last time I described 5 steps to FEA results verification. Among those steps were FEA results verification with hand calculations. I figured it makes sense to expand on this idea. Especially since Luke asked me about something on this topic via email. Luke asks: How is the eigenvalue calculated, can this be done longhand? Can [...]

FEA results verification with hand calculations: stability

5 steps of FEA results verification

Whatever we design life will verify it at the end... but I would rather know if my design has a fighting chance before any major collapse occurs! This is why FEA results verification is a very important thing. When you are solving a known problem (i.e. as a benchmark) this is easy to do. You [...]

5 steps of FEA results verification

Nonlinear supports in FEA: Gap Elements (NX Nastran) [Q&A #2]

Recently I got a great question from Ardalan (thanks for writing mate!) about defining nonlinear supports in FEA. I think he does a better job of defining the problem: First how to constraint an entity with in tolerance rather than completely fixing it? i.e. how to define a certain range of motion for an entity [...]

Nonlinear supports in FEA: Gap Elements (NX Nastran) [Q&A #2]

Buckling length in sway and non-sway structures

One of the few difficult things about buckling lengths is, that you need to know if your structure is a "sway" structure or a "non-sway" structure. Commonly the simple check is made with displacements, but unfortunately, it may lead to serious mistakes! Why should you care about sway and non-sway system Firstly, I want to [...]

Buckling length in sway and non-sway structures

Symmetry in FEA may be dangerous

Symmetry in FEA is great, as it reduces the size of the task. This, in turn, shortens the computing time. Computing time is still a big issue, especially when you run complex models. Without a doubt, this is why using symmetry in FEA is so popular. There is a catch to this, however, as you [...]

Symmetry in FEA may be dangerous

When to ignore contact in FEA?

Linear FEA calculations are the most common type of static analysis done with finite elements. So far we have discussed when it is safe to ignore material nonlinearity and when to ignore geometric nonlinearity. Ignoring those aspects allow you to use linear analysis which is a simple yet robust tool. There is another thing we should [...]

When to ignore contact in FEA?

When to ignore geometric nonlinearity?

Linear FEA calculations are the most common type of static analysis done with finite elements. Last week we have discussed when it is safe to ignore material nonlinearity to use this simple yet robust tool. Today I will describe when we can safely ignore material nonlinearity. A short remainder There are several things you should [...]

When to ignore geometric nonlinearity?

When to ignore material nonlinearity?

Linear FEA calculations are the most common type of static analysis done with finite elements. There are a lot of benefits to the method itself, but of course, there are risks involved as well. Today you will learn when it is safe to ignore material nonlinearity. I will also tell you what things you should [...]

When to ignore material nonlinearity?

Load multiplier an ultimate FEA outcome

If you are starting with nonlinear FEA you most likely heard the term load multiplier. Usually, people associate this with some sort of "safety factor" but frankly this has nothing to do with safety. In fact, this is the only way you can get an outcome out of nonlinear analysis and today I will explain [...]

Load multiplier an ultimate FEA outcome

Changing active forces for enforced deformations and vice versa

I have seen many mistakes where people wrongly changed enforced deformations with active forces. In some cases, this is a simple task, which gives beginners the feeling that they can always do it easily. This, in turn, leads to various mistakes in analysis. I think it is worth discussing this, to point out common mistakes [...]

Changing active forces for enforced deformations and vice versa

Solve issues with nonlinear analysis convergence!

Lately, I got several emails with questions about nonlinear analysis convergence. There are a lot of reasons why your analysis could not converge. One of them is a wrong loads/increment strategy which I call "steering". Take a look at what are the possible options and what are the positive/negative aspects of each approach. Steering have [...]

Solve issues with nonlinear analysis convergence!

What is FEA for?

There is a lot of talk about Finite Element Analysis in engineering. Whatever you try to learn or whichever engineering field you have chosen - FEA is waiting there for you! For me, Finite Element Analysis was the tool that literally transformed my career. I'm pretty sure it can be just as important for you. [...]

What is FEA for?

Finite Element Analysis workflow

When I first started working with Finite Element Analysis (FEA) I had a huge problem in understanding what to do. I had a basic engineering knowledge but I simply did not understand what was the order of the steps. Suddenly the software had many "modules" and each was screaming at me that some data is [...]

Finite Element Analysis workflow

Materially nonlinear analysis – how does it work

When people think about nonlinear analysis usually what first comes to mind is material nonlinearity. This is the most “visible” aspect of nonlinearity in calculations. I won’t dare to say that materially nonlinear analysis is the most important one (I think that there is not such thing), but without a doubt, this is an important [...]

Materially nonlinear analysis – how does it work

Geometrically nonlinear analysis – how does it work?

Geometric nonlinearity is incredibly useful in structural analysis. It can help you check if your model is correct, or allow for a great structural optimization. Today I will discuss the basics of what does geometrically nonlinear analysis do using not the theory but real-life examples! […]

Geometrically nonlinear analysis – how does it work?

Boundary conditions influence on static design – case study

Each day we do simplifications to boundary conditions just to reduce time spent on analysis. We are all aware, that structured support is crucial, but the actual influence of the proper boundary conditions is rarely examined. See yourself how drastic influence BC have on your design! I will discuss this using a project I just [...]

Boundary conditions influence on static design – case study

Correct mesh size – a quick guide!

Mesh size is one of the most common problems in FEA. There is a fine line here: bigger elements give bad results, but smaller elements make computing so long you don’t get the results at all. You never really know where exactly is your mesh size on this scale. Learn how to choose the correct [...]

Correct mesh size – a quick guide!

Design your silos with FEA – it pays!

Designing steel silos with analytical approach always yields very conservative results. Nonlinear Finite Element Method allow for great optimization of those structures (and other shell structures as well!). I will discuss this based on a silo I have recently designed. […]

Design your silos with FEA – it pays!
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