What every engineer needs to know about FEA

I remember feeling overwhelmed when I started to learn FEA! It's just too much to deal with at once! Gathering my experience from running an FEA design company I will do my best to share with you, the most important aspects that you really should know about. There are a lot of things you can [...]

What every engineer needs to know about FEA

Buckling length of a column with a variable cross-section

We all know (or so I hope!) the basics of buckling. You know, the classical buckling lengths in a non-sway structure, etc. However, life is "rich", and oftentimes we have to solve more complex problems than those classically described in the textbooks. One of the great examples is this problem: How to calculate the buckling [...]

Buckling length of a column with a variable cross-section

Mesh convergence with examples

I must confess, that I haven't always pay attention to mesh size. At the beginning of my career, I simply build my models and was happy when they converged. I was vaguely (and I mean vaguely!) aware, that the element size does "something". But I was absolutely happy with whatever default options were set! Now [...]

Mesh convergence with examples

FEMAP API tutorial

I really like writing scripts that do stuff for me, so this post was a long time coming! I was just waiting for a time when I will be writing some FEMAP tools for my office. And finally, the time is now! Automating work in FEMAP (or any other FEA package) is a great idea! [...]

FEMAP API tutorial

2D vs 3D Finite Element Analysis (with examples)

My relationship with 3D FEA is definitely love and hate. There are things I think are critical, and those that are completely unnecessary most of the time. Let's take a deeper look into this today! 3D FEA has an advantage: there are things that you simply cannot solve in 2D. But of course, this doesn't [...]

2D vs 3D Finite Element Analysis (with examples)

Femap Bolt Preload Tutorial

I think that many engineers, especially in the structural field, start FEA to calculate complex connections. There are few traps on such problems, and one of them is preloading bolts! This is why I've created a tutorial to do just that in Femap! I hope you will like it! There are several ways in which [...]

Femap Bolt Preload Tutorial

How to Tackle Nonlinear Finite Element Analysis

There is no doubt in my mind, that mastering Nonlinear Finite Element Analysis was the biggest stepping stone of my career so far. It's mind-boggling how much one can do and design when using such tools. But I also remember when I started in FEA, how frustrating learning is, and how difficult it is to [...]

How to Tackle Nonlinear Finite Element Analysis

How to perform electromagnetic FEA

I often learn stuff when I write on the blog, as it forces me to rethink what I already know. This time, however, it's completely different! I invited a friend of mine to teach me (and you) how to perform electromagnetic FEA! This will be super fun, because in Anttis words: Electromagnetic FEA is performed exactly [...]

How to perform electromagnetic FEA

Difference Between Implicit vs Explicit Analysis

Picture this: You are making a presentation of your Ph.D. thesis on stability at one of the seminars. Everything goes smoothly, and finally, it's question time! And someone out of the blue asks: "what is the difference between implicit and explicit approach?"! And since you are doing static stability... you never even heard those terms! [...]

Difference Between Implicit vs Explicit Analysis

The difference between static and dynamic analysis

When I was doing my first civil engineering design I hardly thought about dynamics. Static analysis was "all there was" for me. And to some degree, it might have been even justified back then. Now, when I understand a bit more, I would like to take you on a trip! We will learn about the [...]

The difference between static and dynamic analysis

What is Meant by Degrees of Freedom in FEA?

What I really like about Finite Element Analysis (FEA) is, that it's full of small things that make you say "ah, so this is what it does!". Degrees of Freedom is just like that. It's critical to understand the very basics, but there are a few fun nuances here and there as well. Let's take [...]

What is Meant by Degrees of Freedom in FEA?

What is Buckling Analysis

I remember well when I first tried to understand buckling. For whatever reason, this was not natural for me. There were so many equations, that didn't make any sense back then! But it's way easier to understand stability thanks to FEA. To go there, we need to find a good answer to a question: what [...]

What is Buckling Analysis

What are the advantages of Finite Element Method

Learning how to do Finite Element Analysis took me several years. I admit I mostly learned with trial and error (there were no FEA online courses back then, or at least I haven't found any!). So if you are at the beginning of this learning process, it's natural to have doubts. It's only fair to [...]

What are the advantages of Finite Element Method

What are the Applications of Finite Element Analysis

I think that I have a tendency to overuse FEA. Since I know how to do it, it feels natural for me to do so! I guess it's true that when you have the hammer, everything looks like a nail to you! Thinking about this, in this post I want to discuss what are the [...]

What are the Applications of Finite Element Analysis

Can You do Finite Element Analysis by Hand?

It's the beginning of 2009. I'm sitting in one of the lectures of my Ph.D. program. Finally, we will start to learn about Finite Element Method! My company is slowly developing, and I'm really hopeful that this will allow me to spread my wings! And then professor says: "let's start with basic matrix operations"... You [...]

Can You do Finite Element Analysis by Hand?

Difference between linear and nonlinear elastic material

A few years ago I wrote an article about various nonlinear material models. Since I'm a civil engineer to me the obvious dividing line was: linear = no yielding, nonlinear = yielding. But of course, there is far more than that! Today let's take a look at a nonlinear elastic material. Both linear and nonlinear [...]

Difference between linear and nonlinear elastic material

What are the Types of Elements Used in FEA?

I started paying attention to meshing way too late I think. When I started my Ph.D. I literally divided elements into two categories: those that throw errors and those that don't! But even then I was lucky - I could simply check scientific papers on similar topics and use the elements that someone else used before. [...]

What are the Types of Elements Used in FEA?

What’s the Difference Between FEA and CFD?

I got lucky (I think!). At an early point in my career, I realized I won't be able to learn everything there is to learn. Instead, I will focus on what I consider "fun" while giving myself some ease about other things. This is why there aren't any CFD articles on the blog - I simply don't [...]

What’s the Difference Between FEA and CFD?

Why is a Triangular Element Stiffer?

Somehow I never used triangular elements. Not that I knew why TRI are "bad". I think I just didn't like how they look (!). This saved me quite some trouble, proving that sometimes having luck (let's call this a gut feeling shall we?) really helps! But you don't have to rely on a gut feeling - [...]

Why is a Triangular Element Stiffer?

The Difference Between Linear and Nonlinear FEA?

I remember my first presentation regarding my Ph.D. It was my first year on the doctoral program, and I was starting to be on a first-name basis with people that were my teachers just a semester ago. I went to the middle of the room and started talking about shell buckling... the problem was everything [...]

The Difference Between Linear and Nonlinear FEA?