Tutorial of Pro/MECHANICA


• Familiarizing Pro/MECHANICA Structure Menus • Learning the Process of FEA Using Pro/M
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Pro/M user interface, windows, menus, mouse buttons Formation of A FEA Model: 1. Specification of part material 2. Specification of constraints 3. Specification of load conditions Mesh Generation FEA Analysis and Result Analysis Post-processing and Plotting Result Interpretation.

Introduction Pro/MECHANICA is a powerful linear finite element analysis (FEA) package developed for design engineers. This tutorial serves as an introduction to the three main functions provided by Pro/MECHANICA. These are: • • • structural analysis; design parameter sensitivity analysis; and design optimization.

Pro/MECHANICA can work either as an independently FEA package, or as an integrated part of Pro/Engineering. This tutorial will outline its use in conjunction with Pro/E. The example part used in this tutorial will the same "base" part that we have used in the previous Pro/Engineer tutorial, as shown in Figure B (a). Assuming this part is part of a fixture for a milling machine. The part is tightened to the table of the mill through the center step hole using a bolt through the T slot. A block is pushed in horizontally to hold the part with the left arm of the dent. The left dent arm is then going to bear the holding force. The task of FEA is to calculate the maximum stress, verify the structural integrity, identify the week area and design the part with a minimum volume (weight) while satisfying the strength and deformation requirements. The FEA of the part is carried through the following process, illustrated in Figure A and discussed in the following.


Figure A Pro/M Process [4] (a) Design Model (b) Geometric Model for FEA (c) FEA Model Figure B Pro/E Models 2 .

left click DTM1. align the four vertexes to the edges of the base part. Choose File -> Erase. Solid. Done. FEAT CLASS -> Solid. the sharp corner will produce high stress concentration. SKET VIEW -> Right. Start Pro2001. select BASE_FEM. we assume the bottom surface of the part is completely fixed to the table. SETUP PLANE -> Plane. GET SELECT -> Pick. then File -> Open. Copy the BASE. A complex part model requires extensive computational effort. to a new file for finite element analysis. For simplicity. A groove is usually created to reduce stress concentration. SOLID OPTS -> Extrude. DIRECTION -> Okay. click DTM3. To remove the right part of the fixture model. Choose FEAT -> Create. and only the left inner surface of the dent arm bears the holding load. as shown in Figure B (a). we need to redefine the protrusion feature. Choose Sketcher -> Sketch. select BASE. then File -> Save As. A simplified geometric model is thus produced as shown in Figure B (b).PRT. 0. Then dimension the part as shown in Figure 1. you can create the feature without referring to the following description. Done. SOLID -> Cut. enter the new name as BASE_FEM. GET SELECT -> Pick.1. 3 .1 DTM1 45o DTM2 Figure 1 Cross-section of the groove 3. Choose File -> Open. For simplicity. Given the previous experience in Pro/Engineer.PRT.Preparation of the Model 1. The step hole and the right portion of the part have no influence to the analysis. Delete unnecessary features A finite element analysis process divides part geometry into many small elements. this dimension will be called necking size later in this tutorial. SETUP PLANE -> Plane.PRT. 2. SETUP SKPLN -> Setup New. Create a groove at the intersection of the two plane surfaces When the base part is used as a fixture. respectively. these portions of the part are erased. Current to clear the window. In this analysis. Modify the half-diagonal length of the square to be 0.PRT. ATTRIBUTES -> One Side. draw the square around the left dent corner of the base.

In the PROTRUSION: Extrude window. The Pro/MECHANICA windows and the Screen Menus are illustrated in Figure C. Redefine the protrusion feature Choose PART -> Feature. Choose SKETCHER -> Regenerate. FEAT -> OK. align the two right corner points to DTM1. In the sketch view. Define. select Section. Go to the Pro/MECHANICA Screen Menu MECHANICA. 4 . delete the right half part. Figure 2 The Redefined Base Part Start Pro/MECHANICA 1. pick up the protrusion feature. FEAT -> Redefine. Choose SAME/NEW -> Same Ref twice to accept the previous 2-D setup. and re-dimension the part as shown in Figure 2. select MECHANICA 2.4. select Structure The system will first confirm the user with the default unit system of the program by displaying an information window. The constraints and loads will be applied onto the simplified geometric model of the dent as illustrated in Figure B (c). and then ask the user to specify the material of the part. Go to the Pro/E Pull-down Menu Application.

Material Selection Menu Unit Confirmation Menu Pro/M Menus Figure C Pro/MECHANICA Windows and Menus 5 .

then press Accept or click the middle mouse button. (3) Specify the load condition Choose STRC MODEL -> Loads. GET SELECT -> Pick. click the part BASE_FEM -> Don Sel. choose STRC MODEL -> Done/Return. Components. Different mesh generation scheme may result in considerately different analysis results. In the pop up window. pick up the left inner surface. can automatically generate finite element mesh.” The description is optional. in which more detailed mesh can be generated. GET SELECT -> Pick. the generated mesh is invisible to users. In the pop up window. choose Next until the bottom surface is highlighted. These small elements form a mesh of the model. The finished finite element model is shown in Figure 3. Choose Steel. Building the finite element model To prepare a finite element model is to specify the properties of the product. In the integrated mode of Pro/MECHANICA. 4. One should then be able to see a symbol of constraint as shown in Figure 3. one can specify important regions on the model. Then press Accept. In advanced application of Pro/MECHANICA. Uniform. Pro/MECHANICA. when integrated in Pro/Engineer. GET SELECT -> Query Sel. enter force FX “–5000. LOADS -> New. ASSIGN -> Part. click the area of the bottom surface. make sure all six degrees of freedom for the bottom surface are fixed. Pre-processing/Mesh generation The finite element method divides a finite element model to small elements. Materials in Library are shown in the window.Structure Analysis of the Base Part 3. Choose GET SELECT -> Don Sel. If a wrong surface is selected. 6 . and accept the name Constrainset1 then Accept. the loading condition. the options Total Load. A description can be added for record. GET SELECT ->Done Sel. CONSTRAINTS -> New. (2) Specify the constraints Choose STRC MODEL -> Constraints. One can see the properties of steel shown in the window. LOAD TYPES -> Surface. Then press Close. accept the name Loadset1. even though is hidden on the screen. and the constraints. The mesh generation is called pre-processing for finite element method. STRC MODEL -> Material. (1) Specify the material Choose MEC STRUCT -> Model. CONSTRAINT TYPES -> Surface.

accept the name “Window1. In the Static Analysis Definition window. Run the analysis. Performing analysis Choose MEC STRUCT -> Analyses. accept “Magnitude”. This helps an engineer check the finite element model. select Yes to the error detection. and prepare for a more accurate analysis. Create. the mesh scheme. the model is tested correct and the obtained result is meaningful. Once the analysis is done. 6. This process takes about 1.” Convergence Method “Single-pass Adaptive. one can use Ctrl + middle mouse button to rotate the object to an appropriate position for a better view. The single-pass convergence allows a rough analysis result can be quickly obtained. press Done. select “Displacement” as the quantity. then one can start the final analysis to obtain a more accurate result. 7.” “Loadset1. choose “Multi-pass Adaptive” as the convergence method. Final analysis From the quick analysis. Accept the name as “Analysis1” “Constraintset1. choose Close. then press OK. choose “Fringe” for the display. In the result window. Create a new analysis called “Analysis2”. and accept all the other default settings.” deselect Rotations and Reactions for output. In the Analyses window. repeat the same process as in Step 5 and 6.Figure 3 The Finite Element Model of Part BASE_FEM 5. Select Yes to save the current mode. accept New Analyses type “Static” and select New. One can see a pop up summary window that records the process of analysis.” then choose Start. then choose Summary. In the pop up window. then select “Deformed”.” Accept. in the Run window. and choose Accept and Show. Choose MEC STRUCT -> Run. In the Untitled pop up window. Insert Result Window. The analysis process takes about 1. Post-processing/Results Choose MEC STRUCT -> Results.5 minutes on a Pentium III 500 MHz workstation. In the Analyses window.” then select “Analysis1.5 minutes on a Pentium III 500 MHz workstation. select “Analysis1 (Standard/Static). 7 .

84E-07 +1. (2) Convergence Plot The analysis method used in Pro/MECHANICA is called the p-element method.46E+03 Figure 4 Stress and Displacement Analysis Result of Part BASE_FEM 8 .6534E-06 Scale 3.89E+03 +1. Show the two created windows at the same time. Displacement Mag Max +1. choose “Measure”. choose the right Printer name and reselect output to File then choose OK. Accept the rest options. and select “strain_energy” from the list.” In the Quantity option. The best convergence criterion is the structure strain energy.2940E+04 Avg.19E-07 +7.0000E+00 Deformed Original Model Max Disp +1. and select “max_stress_vm” from the list. (3) Plotting the results Choose File -> Print in Result window.0241E+05 Load: load1 Stress Von Mises (Maximum) Avg.0241E+05 Load: load1 +1.51E-07 +4. To generate the plots for the strain energy.20E+03 +7. choose Results.29E-06 +1.47E-06 +1. This method uses high order elements and gradually increases the order of elements based on the same mesh until the process converges. generate a new window. Post-processing (1) Displacement/Stress analysis result Following the same procedure described in Step 6.9579E+01 Deformed Original Model Max Disp +1. Max +1. Min +1.6534E-06 Min +0. one can create a displacement window and a stress window and show the two windows at the same time as in Figure 4.35E-07 +5.6534E-06 Scale 3. and select “anlys2.01E+04 +1.67E-07 +2. choose “Measure”. The plots indicate the strain energy well converges after six iterations while the maximum Von Mises stress is unstable. select Output format ->Microsoft Print Manager.33E+03 +3.10E-06 +8. Follow the same procedure to create another window. one will get the plots as in Figure 5.8.76E+03 +5.15E+04 +1.63E+03 +9. The maximum Von Mises stress of the structure is a value based on local information and thus may generate singular value (“freak” value).

0 8 1. MEC STRUCT -> DesignStudies. click the part.1 is the current value). Done.” choose “Analysis1 (Static). (Note: A smaller number will lead to shorter time. Enter the minimum value as 0. dimensions will show up on the screen. choose Create in the dialog window.4 12 2. as shown in Figure 6).” Select the design parameter. accept “dimension” as the parameter type.” Choose the type as “Global Sensitivity.6 2. Create.2 1 2 3 4 5 6 P Loop Pass P Loop Pass Figure 5 Convergence Plots for Strain Energy and Maximum Von Mises Stress Parameter Sensitivity Study Pro/MECHANICA also can help a designer to study the parameter sensitivity to a certain criterion.2 10 2.4 4 1 2 3 4 5 6 1.15. Choose Accept.max_stress_vm P-Pass Load: load1 strain_energy P-Pass Load: load1 14 m a x _ s t r e s s _ v m X 1 E + 0 0 3 s t r a i n _ e n e r g y X 1 E 0 0 3 2. maximum 0.) Make sure the Repeat P-loop Convergence is deselected to shorten the process time. Defining design parameter Choose MECHANICA -> Dsgn Controls. 2. Defining a design study Choose MECHANICA -> Structure. choose Select. its name is d44. accept the name as “study1. 1. we’d study the sensitivity of the necking size to the maximum Von Mises stress and maximum displacement. then pick the necking size dimension (0. Choose Accept. Done.8 1. Choose the Number of Interval as 10. In this example.08. GET SELECT -> Pick. DSGN CONTROL -> Design Parameters.6 6 1. The symbolic name of the dimension will then appear in the dialog window (in this tutorial. 9 .

the goal of the design optimization is to minimize the total mass. Results Refer to Step 6 in the structure analysis part.15 9450 0.08 0. and create another window for “max_displ_x. which usually associates with the cost.14 0.09 0. the part has to sustain certain load and the maximum deformation has to be controlled. and accept the other default values. choose “Measure” for the Quantity option. Choose Accept.09 0.08 9550 -1. If 10 is chosen as the Number of Intervals. Thus a designer can choose 0. 10 . while the maximum Von Mises stress achieves the lowest when the necking size equals to 0.14 0.06 9600 -1.12 d44 0. Yes to error detection.04 M e a s u r e m a x _ s t r e s s _ v m 9650 -1.13 0.” select the necking size dimension for the Location option.13 0.11 0. One can see as the necking size increases. the study will take about 22 minutes on a Pentium III 500 MHz workstation.3. Performing the study Choose MEC STRUCT -> Run.10 0. select “max_stress_vm.10 0.” Show the results as in Figure 6. Follow the same procedure. select “study1 (Global Sensitivity). then choose Summary.12 d44 0. max_disp_x Design Var Load: load1 max_stress_vm Design Var Load: load1 M e a s u r e m a x _ d i s p _ x X 1 E 0 0 6 -1.14 as the ideal value for the necking size if to lower the maximum Von Mises stress is the only concern.02 9700 -1.08 0.” choose Start.10 9500 -1. Design Optimization For the base part functioning as a fixture.12 0.11 0.15 Figure 6 The Sensitivities of the Necking Dimension to the Maximum Displacement along X Direction and Maximum Von Mises Stress 4. As a fixture. the maximum displacement increases along the X direction.14.

Defining a design study Thus far. GET SELECT -> Pick. The Pro/MECHANICA working environment is switched to the Pro/Engineer modeling mode. Done. Choose PART -> Relations. see Figure 7): D0=0. PART -> Regenerate. the second is d48 as shown in Figure 7. DSGN CONTROL -> Design Parameters. dimensions will show up on the screen. choose Select.5*D48 D6=D0 D1=D0 D49=D1 and then press Enter key to finish. The symbolic name of the dimension will then appear in the dialog window. We define the dimension d48 as the control dimension as shown in Figure 7.5 is the current value). which is defined in the sensitivity study. Enter the minimum value as 1 and maximum 3. Dimensions with symbolic names will show up. then pick d48 (2. Choose Accept. Choose pull down menu Applications -> Standard. Then choose RELATIONS -> Add. Choose RELATIONS -> Sort Rel. accept “dimension” as the parameter type. click the part. 2. RELATIONS -> Switch Dim. type the following relations (varies according to the name of your dimensions. we have defined two design parameters. MODEL REL -> Done. The following step is to define a design study to specify the design optimization goal and constraints. we want to limit the number of parameters. click on the part. other dimensions will change accordingly as constrained by the relations. Then we add d48 to the design control parameter list.1. choose Create in the dialog window. Choose MECHANICA -> Dsgn Controls. GET SELECT -> Pick. The first is the necking dimension. 11 . Defining design parameters and parameter relations Figure 7 Symbolic Names of Dimensions To simplify the problem. d44.

The maximum displacement along X direction is 1. Accept the default Optim Convergence 1% and Max Iterations 20.” and choose “total_mass” and “stain_energy.0046E+04 Avg.” Measure: “total_mass. Create.3157E+05 Load: load1 +1. Yes to the error detection.” respectively.59E+03 +5.096 inch and d48 = 1 inch. the strain energy increases. The optimal design is at d44 = 0. The total mass is 6.48E+03 +4.5986E+01 Deformed Optimized Model Max Disp +1. select “Study2 (Optimization).25E+03 +1. The convergence plots tells us the history of optimization.2559E-06 Min +0. accept the name “Study2. Min +2. make two constraints: max_disp_x > -1.” Select Limits on Measures.” then choose Start. The maximum Von Mises stress is 1e4 psi.40E-07 +1.58E-07 +4. the optimization process will take about 15 minutes on a Pentium III 500 MHz workstation. 4.93E+03 +9. One can print out the plots by Choosing File -> Print in Result window. The initial value for d48 is chosen as 2. Max +1.5 for an initial guess.08.Choose MEC STRUCT -> DesignStudies.14E+03 Figure 8 The Maximum Displacement and Stress Plots for the Optimal Design 12 . Select “Analysis1. At the pass three.77E-07 +7. select Output format ->Microsoft Print Manager.2559E-06 Scale 3. Then choose Accept. As the total mass keeps decreasing.82E+03 +8. choose the right Printer name and reselect output to File then choose OK.37E-07 +6.” “loadset1.98E-07 +5.12E-06 +8. Results plotting One can generate the plots as shown in Figure 8 as before for the optimal design.256e-6 in.2559 E-06 Scale 3.2e-6 and max_stress_vm < 30000.0000E+00 Deformed Optimize d Model Max Disp +1.3157E+05 Load: load1 Stress Von Mises (Maximum) Avg.71E+03 +6.” In the Design Study Definition window.79E-07 +2.87 lbm.” Select Goal as “Minimize. the initial value of the necking dimension is chosen as the minimum. One can monitor the optimization process. Create. Displacement Mag Max +1.” and the two design parameters. If no error exists. 3. use “Measure. the increase in strain energy is negligible and the optimization converges. which is far less than the constraint value 3e4 psi. Select Repeat P-Loop Convergence for a more accurate solution. and accept the other options. 0. The range of design parameters is from the minimum to maximum. Performing the design optimization Choose MEC STRUCT -> Run. select Type as “Optimization.37E+03 +2. choose Summary. Done.19E-07 +3. The optimization takes three passes to converge. To generate the plots in Figure 9.

8 10 1. 4. pp. 5. “Avoiding Pitfalls in FEA. November 9. Pro/MECHANICA Using Structure with Pro/ENGINEER.1 25 2. November 7.7 5 0 1. P. 1999. Release 20. 1994. Pro/MECHANICA On-line Help. 2001. SDC Publications.30 s t r a i n _ e n e r g y X 1 E 0 0 3 2. 2. 7886. 13 .. M. Parametric Technology Corp. 2nd Edition. 1995. 3. “When Good Engineers Deliver Bad FEA.” Machine Design. P. Parametric Technology Corp.9 15 1. M. Kurowski. 61-66. R.0 t o t a l _ m a s s 20 1. pp. Pro/MECHANICA Structure Tutorial Release 20.6 1 Optimization Pass 2 3 0 1 Optimization Pass 2 3 Figure 9 The Total Mass and Strain Energy Convergence Plots in the Optimization References 1. DOC-U0108-EN-200.” Machine Design. Toogood. Kurowski.. Release 2001.0. 1999..