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Micro & Smart Systems Lab

1. FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS


1.1 A Brief History
Finite Element Analysis (FEA) was first developed in 1943 by R. Courant, who utilized the Ritz method of numerical analysis and minimization of variational calculus to obtain approximate solutions to vibration systems. Shortly thereafter, a paper published in 1956 by M. J. Turner, R. W. Clough, H. C. Martin, and L. J. Topp established a broader definition of numerical analysis. By the early 70's, FEA was limited to expensive mainframe computers generally owned by the aeronautics, automotive, defense, and nuclear industries. Since the rapid decline in the cost of computers and the phenomenal increase in computing power, FEA has been developed to an incredible precision. Present day supercomputers are now able to produce accurate results for all kinds of parameters.

1.2 What is Finite Element Analysis?


FEA consists of a computer model of a material or design that is stressed and analyzed for specific results. It is used in new product design, and existing product refinement. Modifying an existing product or structure is utilized to qualify the product or structure for a new service condition. In case of structural failure, FEA may be used to help determine the design modifications to meet the new condition. There are generally two types of analysis that are used in industry: 2-D modeling, and 3-D modeling. While 2-D modeling conserves simplicity and allows the analysis to be run on a relatively normal computer, it tends to yield less accurate results. 3-D modeling, however, produces more accurate results while sacrificing the ability to run on all but the fastest computers effectively.

1.3 How Does Finite Element Analysis Work?


FEA uses a complex system of points called nodes which make a grid called a mesh. This mesh is programmed to contain the material and structural properties which define how the structure will react to certain loading conditions. Nodes are assigned at a certain density throughout the material depending on the anticipated stress levels of a particular area. Regions which will receive large amounts of stress usually have a higher node density than those which experience little or no stress. Points of interest may consist of: fracture point of previously tested material, fillets, corners, complex detail, and high stress areas. The mesh acts like a spider web in that from each node, there extends a mesh element to each of the adjacent nodes. This web of vectors is what carries the material properties to the object, creating many elements. (Theory) A wide range of objective functions (variables within the system) are available for minimization or maximization: Mass, volume, temperature Strain energy, stress strain
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Force, displacement, velocity, acceleration Synthetic (User defined) There are multiple loading conditions which may be applied to a system. Some examples are: Point, pressure, thermal, gravity, and centrifugal static loads Thermal loads from solution of heat transfer analysis Enforced displacements Heat flux and convection Point, pressure and gravity dynamic loads Each FEA program may come with an element library, or one is constructed over time. Some sample elements are: Rod elements Beam elements Plate/Shell/Composite elements Shear panel Solid elements Spring elements Mass elements Rigid elements Viscous damping elements Many FEA programs also are equipped with the capability to use multiple materials within the structure such as: Isotropic, identical throughout Orthotropic, identical at 90 degrees General anisotropic, different throughout

1.4 Types of Engineering Analysis


1.4.1 Structural analysis consists of linear and non-linear models. Linear models use simple parameters and assume that the material is not plastically deformed. Non-linear

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models consist of stressing the material past its elastic capabilities. The stresses in the material then vary with the amount of deformation. 1.4.2 Vibrational analysis is used to test a material against random vibrations, shock, and impact. Each of these incidences may act on the natural vibrational frequency of the material which, in turn, may cause resonance and subsequent failure. 1.4.3 Fatigue analysis helps designers to predict the life of a material or structure by showing the effects of cyclic loading on the specimen. Such analysis can show the areas where crack propagation is most likely to occur. 1.4.4 Heat Transfer analysis models the conductivity or thermal fluid dynamics of the material or structure. This may consist of a steady-state or transient transfer.

1.5 Results of Finite Element Analysis


FEA has become a solution to the task of predicting failure due to unknown stresses by showing problem areas in a material and allowing designers to see all of the theoretical stresses within. This method of product design and testing is far superior to the manufacturing costs which would accrue if each sample was actually built and tested.

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2. ANSYS
2.1 Introduction
ANSYS, Inc. is an engineering simulation software (computer-aided engineering, or CAE) developer that is headquartered south of Pittsburgh in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, United States. Its primary purpose was to develop and market finite element analysis software for structural physics that could simulate static (stationary), dynamic (moving) and heat transfer (thermal) problems. ANSYS offers engineering simulation solution sets in engineering simulation that a design process requires. Companies in a wide variety of industries use ANSYS software. The tools put a virtual product through a rigorous testing procedure (such as crashing a car into a brick wall, or running for several years on a tarmac road) before it becomes a physical object. It offers soloutions for various fields, such as: Automotive Aerospace Energy Electronics Consumer products Products

2.2 Products
Simulation Technology: Structural Mechanics, Multiphysics, Fluid Dynamics, Explicit Dynamics, Electromagnetics, Hydrodynamics (AQWA). Workflow Technology: ANSYS Workbench Platform, High-Performance Computing, Geometry Interfaces, Simulation Process & Data Management.

2.3 Starting ANSYS


The ANSYS graphical user interface can be started by selecting the ANSYS icon located in the ANSYS 11 folder. Selecting the ANSYS icon will take you directly to the graphical user interface. 2.3.1 ANSYS Graphical User Interface After starting ANSYS, two windows will appear. The first is the ANSYS 11 Output Window. This window displays a listing of every command that ANSYS executes. If you encounter problems, this is a good place to look to see what ANSYS is doing or has done. This is one location where you will find all of the warnings and error messages that appear and the command that generated the warning/error.

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The second window is the ANSYS ResearchFS graphical user interface. This is divided into 4 sections: ANSYS Utility Menu ANSYS Toolbar Menu ANSYS Main Menu Display window 2.3.1.1 ANSYS Utility Menu Within this menu, you can perform file operations, list and plot items, and change display options. File (Drop-down Menu): The File drop-down menu includes the options to clear the database, change, resume, and save the current model. Clear and Start New deletes the current database. It does not clear the log or error files. List (Pull-down Menu): The list pull-down menu allows you to view the log and error files, obtain a listing of geometric entities, elements and their properties, nodes, and boundary conditions and loads applied to the model. Plot (Pull-down Menu): This pull-down menu allows you to plot the various components of the model such as keypoints, areas, volumes and elements. PlotCtrls (Pull-Down Menu): This menu includes the controls to pan/zoom/rotate your model, select the numbering options, change styles and generate hard copies of the plots. 2.3.1.2 ANSYS Main Menu The ANSYS Main Menu contains all of the commands to create, mesh, apply loads, solve, and view results of the FE analysis. The Main Menu is divided into sections that sequentially follow the steps involved in an analysis. Preprocessor: Element Type: Select the element types to be used. Multiple types may be selected and applied to a model. Material Props: Input the material properties. Multiple materials may be entered and applied to a model. Modelling: Use the modeling options to create the model. Note: ANSYS uses a hierarchy for modeling: keypoints (lowest) lines areas volumes (highest)
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Meshing: If you create a volume, all of the areas, lines and keypoints will be automatically created for you. Use the meshing options to mesh the model. To delete mistakes, choose the Delete menu under Modeling. Solution:

Analysis Type: Choose the type of analysis to perform. Define Load: Apply loads and boundary conditions to the model. Solve: Solve the model.
Post Processing: Contour Plot: Plot contour or vector plots of results. Percent Error: Lists the percent error. If you get a message Cannot view percent error with powergraphics on, click the powergraphics button on the ANSYS Toolbar to turn it off. Nodal Soloution: List the results for every node. This can be used to get the maximum and minimum values of results.

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3. ANSYS PROCEDURE (data taken from 1st experiment)


3.1. Define the analysis as a structural analysis
Main Menu -> Preference -> check Structural. Click Ok.

3.2. Select the element type as Solid


Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Element Type -> Add/Edit/Delete. Click Add in the element dialog box. Choose Solid under Structural in the left scroll box of element types. Choose Tet 10node 187 in the right scroll box. Click Ok to close the library. Click Close to close the element dialog box.

3.3. Input the material properties


Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Material Props -> Material Models. In the Define Material Model Behavior dialog box, double click Structural on the right box -> double click Linear -> double click Elastic -> double click Isotropic. Input 20E3 in the box for EX (Elastic Modulus) -> Input 0.29 in the box for PRXY (Possions Ratio). Click Ok to add the properties. Close the Define Material Model Behavior dialog box.

3.4. Create the Model


Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Modeling -> Create -> Areas -> Rectangle -> By Dimension. Input 0 in the box for X1 -> Input 0 in the box for Y1 -> Input 100 in the box for X2 -> Input 0 in the box for Y2. Click Ok. Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Modeling -> Extrude -> By Area -> Along Normal. Select the solid model. Click Ok.

3.5. Mesh the structure


Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Meshing -> Mesh Tool. In the Mesh Tool dialog box, check Smart Size and move the size down to fine 3. Click on "Mesh. Click "Close" to close the Mesh Tool dialog box.

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3.6. Apply the load


Main Menu -> Solution -> Define Loads -> Apply -> Structural -> Displacement -> On Nodes. Pick the fixed end area by dragging the mouse. (You can go to File Menu -> PlotCtrls -> Pan Zoom Rotate, to find the area, check "Dynamic Mode" to rotate the model by mouse). Click "Ok". Choose "All DOF" and put "0" as the value. Click "Ok". Main Menu -> Solution -> Define Loads -> Apply -> Structural -> Force/Moment -> On Nodes. Pick one vertex point on the edge. Click "Ok". Choose "FY" as the direction and Input -1000 into the value. Click "Ok".

3.7. Solve the problem


Main Menu -> Solution -> Current LS. Click "Ok". Click "Yes" if the warning message pops up. Click "Close" after the solution is done and close the window of commands.

3.8. Review the results


Main Menu -> General Postproc -> Plot Results ->Contour Plot -> Nodal Solu. Choose the results you want to review, for example, Stress -> XY shear stress. Click "Ok".

3.9. Save the file


File Menu -> Save as Jobname.db.

Additional procedures for other operations:

3.10. Boolean Operation


Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Modeling -> Operation -> Boolean -> Add. Select the elements to be added. Click Ok. Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Modeling -> Operation -> Boolean -> Sub. Select the element from which a portion has to be deleted. Click Ok. Select the portion to be deleted. Click Ok.
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3.11. Line Fillet Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Modeling -> Operation -> Add Areas -> Create ->
Lines -> Line Fillet.

Select the lines between which the fillet has to be added. Click Ok. Enter the radius. Main Menu -> Preprocessor -> Modeling -> Operation -> Add Areas -> Arbitrary -> By Lines.

Select the lines and line fillet. Click Ok.