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1 Overview of Contact and glue conditions


NX creates a number of different commands that you can use to model:

Regions in your model where contact occurs between surfaces.


Problems where separate surfaces, or an edge and a surface, need to be tied or glued together to prevent any relative motion between them.
The commands available for defining contact and glue conditions depend on your specified solver.

Solver Contact condition commands Glue condition commands


NX Nastran Surface-to-Surface Contact Surface-to-Surface Gluing
Advanced Axisymmetric Nonlinear Contact Edge- to-Surface Gluing
Edge- to-Edge Gluing
Abaqus Bolt Contact with Clearance Tie Surface
Contact with Clearance
Element Removal
Surface-to-Surface Contact
Surface to Surface Thermal Conductance
ANSYS Structural Contact (including node-to-surface, node-to-line, line-to-surface, and line-to-line contact)
Thermal Contact

13.2 Advanced nonlinear contact for axisymmetric elements


Use the Advanced Axisymmetric Nonlinear Contact dialog box to create a contact condition between axisymmetric elements in an NX Nastran advanced
nonlinear solution. The axisymmetric 2D element types CQUADX4, CQUADX8, CTRAX3, and CTRAX6 are supported. This command is available for solutions
601,106 and 601,129.

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The contact definition consists of a flexible source region that you can pair with either a flexible target region or a rigid target region. For example, you
might use the rigid method when you have a steel die stamping a softer metal.
You define the source and target regions by selecting nodes along a face edge.

Flexible target; (1) is the source and (2) is the target


Note The yellow block and cone symbols appear in the graphics window to represent the contact. The block indicates the source region and the cone
represents the target region.

A rigid target contact region must be a sequence of nodes not connected to elements.

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Rigid target; (1) is the source and (2) is the target
Note The direction of the yellow cone symbols has no significance.

Target contact side


Advanced nonlinear contact uses the target region's contact side (top or bottom) to determine if the contact condition is a separation or interference.
When the target's top contact side points toward the source, the contact has initial separation. When the target's top contact side points away from the
source, the contact is an interference.
The top contact side of a flexible target always points away from the elements connected to the target nodes.
For a rigid target, the order in which you select the nodes determines the top contact side. The node selection defines a vector that is crossed by the
vector that points into the Y direction relative to the axisymmetric X-Z coordinate plane. For example, if you select the target region nodes working
downward (as shown by the numbers in the following graphic), the top contact side is to the right.

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Rigid Contact Target Side (SURF)
With a rigid target, you can change the contact side by setting the Rigid Contact Target Side option to Top or Bottom. It is important to specify the
appropriate contact side relative to the top contact side that was defined by the node selection.
In the following graphic, the white arrow indicates the top contact side of the rigid target as defined by the node selection (for this example, assume that
the nodes in the target region were selected in a downward sequence, so the top contact side is pointing to the right). The Rigid Contact Target Side is
set to Bottom. The red arrow represents the direction of the contact, which has an initial separation.

Rigid Contact Target Side set to Bottom


Master Grid Point (MGP)
With a rigid target, you can tie all nodes on the target to a master node that you define as a Master Grid Point. Internally, rigid links connect all the
nodes on the rigid target region to this master node. You can then apply a displacement constraint or a load to this node and the entire rigid target region
moves with it.

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(1) Master Grid Point with displacement constraint
Where do I find it?
In the Simulation Navigator, right-click Simulation Object ContainerNew Simulation ObjectAdvanced Axisymmetric Nonlinear Contact.

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar, click Advanced Axisymmetric Nonlinear Contact

13.2.1 Create an axisymmetric nonlinear contact

1. From the Advanced Simulation toolbar, select Advanced Axisymmetric Nonlinear Contact from the Simulation Object Type list.
Note NX Nastran SOL 601,106 and SOL 601,129 solutions support advanced nonlinear contact.

2. From the Type list, select the type of target contact region to create. The source region is flexible in both types.
o Flexible 2D Contact The target contact region is flexible.

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o Rigid 2D Contact The target contact region is a sequence of nodes that are not connected to elements. You can tie all nodes on the
target to a master node that you define in Master Grid Point.
3. In the Source Region group, select the contacted 2D region. Use the Type Filter to filter your selection by points, mesh points, polygon edges,
elements, or nodes.
4. In the Target Region group (or Rigid Target group if you select Rigid 2D Contact as the Type), select the contacting region.
o If you are defining a flexible 2D contact, you can use the Type Filter to filter your selection by points, mesh points, polygon edges,
elements, or nodes.
Note For nonlinear contact, the contact side is controlled using only the target region. For more information, see Advanced nonlinear contact for
axisymmetric elements.

o If you are defining a rigid 2D contact, select a sequence of nodes that are not connected to elements. The sequence in which you select
the nodes determines the contact side of the target region. For more information, see Advanced nonlinear contact for axisymmetric elements.
5. If you are defining a rigid 2D contact, you can select a single node or point as a master node to control the motion of the rigid target contact
region. Internally, rigid links connect all the nodes on the rigid target region to this master node. You can then apply a displacement constraint or a
load to this node.
6. In the Contact Region Parameters group and Contact Set Parameters group, enter additional properties for the contact between these face
pairs.
Note With a rigid 2D contact, you can reverse the target contact side using the Rigid Contact Target Side option (set it to Top or Bottom).

7. For more information about the individual parameters, see the appropriate bulk data entry in the NX Nastran Quick Reference Guide.
8. Click OK to create the contact.

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13.3 Automatic face pairing
Many simulation objects, such as contact or glue objects, require you to define pairs of surfaces. You can use the Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box
to determine all the face pairs in the model, or in a selected set of faces, whose distance is below a specified tolerance.

Where do I find it?


You can access the Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box from the following dialog boxes:

Create Surface-to-Surface Contact


Create Surface-to-Surface Gluing
Create Advanced Nonlinear Contact
Create Thermal Coupling
Create Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance
Disjoint Fluid Mesh Pairing
Understanding face pair grouping
When you create solution objects manually, you can specify source or target face sets containing multiple faces. Automatic face pairing enables you to
specify grouping options that create solution objects based on face pair sets derived from your geometry. For example, the following part consists of four
solid bodies, and Create Automatic Face Pairs has identified seven face pairs for defining surface-to-surface contact.

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The software creates three face pairs between blocks A and C, one face pair between blocks C and D, and three
face pairs between blocks D and B.
Depending on which grouping option you select, you can create one, three, or seven surface-to-surface contacts:

If you select One, the software creates a single contact that contains all seven face pairs.
If you select Per Body Pairs, the software creates three contacts: one contact containing a single face pair
between C and D; one contact containing three face pairs between A and C, and one contact containing three
face pairs between B and D.
If you select Per Face Pair, the software creates seven contacts, one for each face pair.
Updating automatic face pairs
Automatic face pairs require an update when:

Faces in the master model have been modified.


Bodies in the master model have been transformed.
Bodies have been added or removed.
When you update the model, all automatically generated face pairs are deleted and regenerated. Manually created face pairs are unaffected. On update:

If an automatically generated face pair has the same source and target face sets as an existing manually created face pair, the automatically
generated face pair is not regenerated.
If an automatically generated face pair shares a subset of the same surfaces as an existing manually created face pair, the automatically
generated face pair is still regenerated. You may need to manually edit the face pair definitions to ensure a solvable model.

13.4 Bolt Contact with Clearance (Abaqus)


What is it?

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When you are working with Abaqus as your solver, you can use the Bolt Contact with Clearance command to define precise clearance or overclosure
(initial penetration) values when you model contact between a single-threaded bolt and a bolt hole. With Bolt Contact with Clearance, the initial
clearance or overclosure value you specify overwrites the initial clearance or overclosure value that the software calculates at each slave node.

Contact with clearance for threaded bolts


The Bolt Contact with Clearance dialog box includes additional Clearance Definition options that let you model the thread characteristics of a bolt even
if detailed thread geometry is not included in the model. These options let you specify details about the bolt threads, including the half thread angle (),
pitch (p, or the thread-to-thread distance), and major (d) and mean (m d) bolt diameters. You also use the Bolt Axis options to define two points (a and b)
along the bolt's axis. The software uses these points to generate the bolt's contact normal direction.

p = pitch, or the thread-to-thread distance


= half thread angle
d= major bolt diameter
dm = mean bolt diameter
a and b = two points along the bolt's axis used to define its contact normal
direction

Abaqus threaded bolt


geometry
Clearance or overclosure value can be uniform or spatially varying
In the Bolt Contact with Clearance dialog box, you can use the Clearance Definition options to define the clearance or overclosure value as either
uniform or spatially varying for the contact pair. From the Value list:

If you select Expression, you can specify a uniform clearance or overclosure value for the contact pair. A positive value indicates a clearance
value, and a negative value indicates an overclosure value.

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If you select Field, you can specify spatially varying clearances or overclosures. With this option, you use a table field to specify the clearance at
a single node or set of nodes on the slave surface. In the table field, the node ID is the independent variable, while the clearance or overclosure
value is the dependent variable. You can also specify a Scale Factor to apply to the field. For more information, see Fields.
Contact with clearance is supported only in small-sliding contact analyses
You can only use the Bolt Contact with Clearance command when you use the small-sliding contact formulation in your analysis. In Abaqus, you use the
*CONTACT PAIR keyword to specify the contact formulation. In Advanced Simulation, you use a Contact Pair modeling object to specify the parameters for
the *CONTACT PAIR keyword:
1. In the Contact Pair dialog box, select Small from the Sliding Type list to use the small-sliding formulation instead of the finite-sliding
formulation.
2. In the Bolt Contact with Clearance dialog box, use the Contact Pair option to associate the Contact Pair modeling object with the simulation
object.
Associated Abaqus keywords
When you export or solve your model, the software uses the options you specify in the Bolt Contact with Clearance dialog box to define the *CLEARANCE
keyword with the BOLT parameter as well as the *CONTACT PAIR keyword in your Abaqus input file. For more information, see Adjusting Initial Surface
Positions and Specifying Initial Clearances in Abaqus/Standard Contact Pairs in the Abaqus Analysis User's Manual and *CLEARANCE and *CONTACT PAIR in
the Abaqus Keywords Reference Manual.

Where do I find it?

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar, click Bolt Contact with Clearance .

13.5 Contact with Clearance (Abaqus)


When you are working with Abaqus as your solver, you can use the Contact with Clearance command to define precise clearance or overclosure (initial
penetration) values for the nodes on the slave (target) surface in a contact pair. With Contact with Clearance, the initial clearance or overclosure value
you specify overwrites the initial clearance or overclosure value that the software calculates at each slave node.

Clearance or overclosure value can be uniform or spatially varying


In the Contact with Clearance dialog box, you can use the Clearance Definition options to define the clearance or overclosure value as either uniform or
spatially varying for the contact pair. You a table field to define the clearance or overclosure as spatially varying. For more information, see Fields.

Contact with clearance is supported only in small-sliding contact analyses

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You can only use the Contact with Clearance command when you use the small-sliding contact formulation in your analysis. In Abaqus, you use the
*CONTACT PAIR keyword to specify the contact formulation. In Advanced Simulation, you use a Contact Pair modeling object to specify the parameters for
the *CONTACT PAIR keyword:
1. In the Contact Pair dialog box, select Small from the Sliding Type list to use the small-sliding formulation instead of the finite-sliding
formulation.
2. In the Contact with Clearance dialog box, use the Contact Pair option to associate the Contact Pair modeling object with the simulation object.
Associated Abaqus keywords
When you export or solve your model, the software uses the options you specify in the Contact with Clearance dialog box to define the *CONTACT PAIR
and *CLEARANCE keywords in your Abaqus input file. For more information, see Adjusting Initial Surface Positions and Specifying Initial Clearances in
Abaqus/Standard Contact Pairs in the Abaqus Analysis User's Manual and *CLEARANCE and *CONTACT PAIR in the Abaqus Keywords Reference Manual.

Where do I find it?

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar, click Contact with Clearance

13.6 Axisymmetric Edge-to-Edge Contact (NX Nastran)


In axisymmetric structural analyses, you can use the Edge-to-Edge Contact command to define contact conditions between selected polygon or element
edges. With this command, you can define contact conditions between the following types of elements:

Axisymmetric elements (CTRAX3, CQUADX4, CTRAX6 and CQUADX8).


Plane strain elements (CPLSTN3, CPLSTN4, CPLSTN6, and CPLSTN8).
Plane stress elements (CPLSTS3, CPLSTS4, CPLSTS6, CPLSTS8
Note The elements must be oriented in the XZ plane.

Supported analysis types


You can use the Edge-to-Edge Contact command to contact conditions between edges in SOL 101 analyses in the axisymmetric structural or structural
environment.

Defining the source and target edges with Simulation Regions

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To define contact between edges, you must first create a Simulation Region to define the source and target regions. A region is a collection of element
edges in a section of the model where you expect contact to occur.
For more information, see Working with reusable regions for contact and glue definitions.

Additional contact parameters available for Nastran analyses


Use the Local Contact Pair Parameters options to define additional parameters to control the contact algorithm. A Contact Parameters modeling object
corresponds to the Nastran BCTPARM bulk data entry.
For more information, see:

Contact ParametersLinear Global dialog box


BCTPARM in the NX Nastran Quick Reference Guide
Contact for Linear Solutions in the NX Nastran User's Guide
Requesting contact output
In NX Nastran, you use the BCRESULTS case control command to request edge-to-edge contact force, traction, and separation distance output. In
Advanced Simulation, create a Structural Output Requests modeling object and select the Enable BCRESULTS Request option on the Contact Result tab.

Associated NX Nastran syntax


When you solve or export your model:

The options in the Edge-to-Edge Contact dialog box define a BCTSET bulk data entry in your NX Nastran input file.
The options in the Region dialog box define a BEDGE bulk data entry for the source (edge) and target (edge) regions.
Additional information
For more information, see:

BCTSET in the NX Nastran Quick Reference Guide


Contact for Linear Solutions in the NX Nastran User's Guide
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with NX Nastran as the specified solver environment, axisymmetric structural or structural as the analysis

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type, and SOL 101 as the solution type
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationEdge-to-Edge Contact
Simulation Right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectEdge-to-Edge Contact
Navigator

13.7 Edge-to-Edge Gluing (NX Nastran)


Video
This video demonstrates how to define edge-to-edge gluing.

Use the Edge-to-Edge Gluing command to connect two edges to prevent relative motion in all directions. An NX Nastran glue connection is a simple and
effective method to join dissimilar meshes.

Note The nodes on the glued edges do not need to be coincident.

You can use the Edge-to-Edge Gluing command to define glue connections between selected:

2D element edges (CQUAD4, CQUAD8, CQUADR, CTRIA3, CTRIA6, CTRIAR).


2D axisymmetric element edges (CTRAX3, CQUADX4, CTRAX6, CQUADX8).
Polygon edges.
Note If you select polygon edges to define the source or target element edges, the software applies the glue to the 2D elements associated with those
edges.

With the Edge-to-Edge Gluing command:

The elements whose edges you are gluing must be nearly tangent along that edge. For example, you cannot glue the edges of two elements that
are perpendicular.
With 2D axisymmetric elements, the element can be defined in either the XY or XZ plane.

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Supported analysis types
You can use the Edge-to-Edge Gluing command to define glue at selected edges in all NX Nastran solutions except SOL 601 and 701.

Defining the source and target edges with Simulation Regions


To glue an edge to another edge, you must first define the source and target regions for the glue definition. A region is a collection of element edges in a
section of the model where you expect gluing or contact to occur. You use the Simulation Region command to define the regions affected by the glue
condition.
With the Edge-to-Edge Gluing command, you can select the edges of 2D elements to define the source and target edges.
When you solve your model, NX Nastran generates glue elements between the defined source and target regions. Glue elements are stiff springs that
connect and constrain the edges and surfaces. NX Nastran always uses a weld-like formulation to create the connection. This corresponds to the
GLUETYPE=2 option on the BGPARM bulk data entry.
Using a Glue Parameters modeling object to control the glue algorithm
If you include an Edge-to-Edge Gluing simulation object in your solution, you can use the options in the Glue Parameters dialog box to locally override NX
Nastran's global glue parameters. These options correspond to the fields on the BGPARM bulk data entry.

Note Only the Penalty Factor and Penalty Factor Units options in theGlue Parameters dialog box are applicable to Edge-to-Edge Gluing definitions. NX
Nastran ignores all other options.

For more information, see Glue Parameters overview.

Associated NX Nastran syntax


When you solve or export your model:

The options in the Edge-to-Edge Gluing dialog box define a BGSET bulk data entry in your NX Nastran input file.
The options in the Region dialog box define a BEDGE bulk data entry for the source (edge) and target (edge) regions.
Requesting force results for edge-to-edge glue
You can use the options on the Glue Result tab in the Structural Output Requests dialog box to request force results when you solution contains an Edge-
to-Edge Gluing condition. The options on the Glue Result tab correspond to the NX Nastran BGRESULTS case control command.
Note that:

NX Nastran does not output glue tractions.

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The glue force unit for axisymmetric elements is force/radian. This unit is consistent with the applied and reaction force unit for these elements.
Shell, plane stress, and plane strain elements use force units.
Additional information
For more information, see:

BGSET and BEDGE in the NX Nastran Quick Reference Guide


Gluing Elements in the NX Nastran Users Guide
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with NX Nastran as the specified solver environment and structural or axisymmetric structural as the
analysis type
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationEdge-to-Edge Gluing
Simulation Right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectEdge-to-Edge Gluing
Navigator

13.8 Edge-to-Surface Gluing (NX Nastran)


Use the Edge-to-Surface Gluing simulation object to connect an edge to a surface to prevent relative motion in all directions. An NX Nastran glue
connection is a simple and effective method to join dissimilar meshes.

Note The nodes on the glued edges and surfaces do not need to be coincident.

The glue connection correctly transfers displacement and loads, which results in an accurate strain and stress condition at the interface.

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When you solve your model, NX Nastran internally generates glue elements between the specified edge and surface. Glue
elements are stiff springs that connect and constrain the edges and surfaces. NX Nastran always uses a weld-like formulation to
create the connection. This corresponds to the GLUETYPE=2 option on the BGPARM bulk data entry.

Defining the source and target regions with a Simulation Region


To glue an edge to a surface, you must first define the source and target regions for the glue definition. A region is a collection
of element edges or free faces in a section of the model where you expect gluing or contact to occur. You use the Simulation Region command to define
the regions affected by the glue condition.

You can select the edges of the following types of 2D elements to define the edge for the source region: CTRIA3, CTRIA6, CTRIAR, CQUAD4,
CQUAD8, and CQUADR.
You can select either 2D elements (CTRIA3, CTRIA6, CTRIAR, CQUAD4, CQUAD8, and CQUADR) or the faces of certain 3D elements (CHEXA,
CPENTA, CPYRAM, and CTETRA) to define the surface for the target region.
Supported analysis types
The Edge-to-Surface Gluing command is available in all structural NX Nastran solution sequences except for SOL 601 and 701. It is not supported in
axisymmetric solutions.

Using a Glue Parameters modeling object to control the glue algorithm


If you include an Edge-to-Surface Gluing simulation object in your solution, you can use the options in the Glue Parameters dialog box to locally override
NX Nastran's global glue parameters. These options correspond to the fields on the BGPARM bulk data entry. You can also use the Edge-to-Surface Glue
Stiffness Distribution on Glued Surface option to change how the glue stiffness is distributed on the surface being glued.

Note Only the Penalty Factor and Penalty Factor Units options in theGlue Parameters dialog box are applicable to Edge-to-Surface Gluing definitions.
NX Nastran ignores all other options.

For more information, see Glue Parameters overview and Controlling the stiffness of edge-to-surface glue (NX Nastran)..

Associated NX Nastran syntax


When you solve or export your model:

The options in the Edge-to-Surface Gluing dialog box define a BGSET bulk data entry in your NX Nastran input file.
The options in the Region dialog box define a BLSEG bulk data entry for the source (edge) region and a BSURF or BSURFS entry for the target
(surface) region.

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Additional information For more information, see:
BGSET, BLSEG, and BSURF or BSURFS in the NX Nastran Quick Reference Guide
Gluing Elements in the NX Nastran Users Guide
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with NX Nastran as the specified solver environment and structural as the analysis
type
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationEdge-to-Surface Gluing
Simulation Right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectEdge-to-Surface Gluing
Navigator

13.8.1 Controlling the stiffness of edge-to-surface glue (NX Nastran)


You can use the Edge-to-Surface Glue Stiffness Distribution on Glued Surface option in the Glue Parameters-Linear Global dialog box to change how the
edge-to-surface glue stiffness is distributed on the surface being glued. This option corresponds to the ESOPT field for the BGPARM bulk data entry.
Shell element theory does not account for changes in shell thickness or normal strains that are perpendicular to the plane of the shell element. The Edge-
to-Surface Glue Stiffness Distribution on Glued Surface option lets you choose to handle the linking of the zero normal strains. These strains exist in the
shell element associated with the edge to the surface being glued.
In the graphic below, the blue line represents the shell element associated with the edge, and the green line represents the surface being glued.

Option Description Example

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Strains Are Not The strains in the plane of the surface being glued in the direction perpendicular to the edge are not constrained
Constrained by the glue stiffness.

Strains Are The strains in the plane of the surface being glued on the area corresponding to the shell element thickness (t/2)
Constrained in the direction perpendicular to the edge, are constrained by the glue stiffness. This is the glue stiffness behavior
that existed before NX Nastran 8.5.

The following example illustrates the differences between the Edge-to-Surface Glue Stiffness Distribution on Glued Surface
option. This example includes an equal compressive pressure load on the top and bottom of the solid elements. Here, the
edges of elements in the 2D mesh (shown in blue) are glued to the faces of the elements in the 3D mesh (shown in green).

Option Description Example


Strains Are Not The deformations in the solid mesh demonstrate that the glue stiffness did not prevent local strain
Constrained at the glue interface.

Strains Are Constrained The deformations in the solid mesh demonstrate that the glue stiffness did prevent local strain at
the glue interface.

Additional information
For more information, see:

BGSET, BLSEG, and BSURF or BSURFS in the NX Nastran Quick Reference Guide
Gluing Elements in the NX Nastran Users Guide
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with NX Nastran as the specified solver environment and structural as the analysis type

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Toolbar
Advanced SimulationEdge-to-Surface Gluing
Simulation Navigator Right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectEdge-to-Surface Gluing

13.8.2 Define edge-to-surface gluing


1. On the Advanced Simulation toolbar, from the Simulation Object Type list, select Edge-to-Surface Gluing .
2. In the Edge-to-Surface Gluing dialog box, in the Source Region group, select the edge region, or click Create Region to create a new edge
region.
3. In the Target Region group, select the surface region, or click Create Region to create a new surface region.
4. In the Linear Settings Group, enter a Search Distance value between the edge and the face. You can adjust this value to control the portions of
the region to be glued.
5. (Optional) To create a set of additional glue parameters that include the glue formulation, penalty factor units, and penalty factor, select a glue
parameters modeling object in the Override Parameters list box, or click Create Modeling Object.

13.9 Surface Based Coupling (Abaqus)


What is it?

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When you are working with Abaqus as your solver, you can use the Surface Based Coupling command to create a coupling between a reference node and a
group of nodes called the coupling nodes. You can create a Surface Based Coupling to constrain a group of nodes to the rigid body motion of a single
node. For example, you can use a *KINEMATIC type of Surface Based Coupling to define a twisting motion without constraining the radial motion.
With Surface Based Coupling, you select a reference node and use a Region to define the surface that contains the nodes that you want to couple. The
software automatically selects the appropriate coupling nodes on that surface based on that Region and an optional Influence Radius.

Choosing the type of coupling to create


You can use the Coupling Type option in the Surface Based Coupling dialog box to control the type of coupling constraint the software creates.

Select *KINEMATIC to create kinematic constraints that eliminate degrees-of-freedom at the coupling nodes. This constrains the motion of the
coupling nodes to the rigid body motion of the reference node.
Note You should not apply any additional constraints or boundary conditions to the coupling nodes involved in a *KINEMATIC coupling constraint.

Select *DISTRIBUTING to constrain the motion of the coupling nodes to the translation and rotation of the reference node. The constraint
distributes loads so that the resultants of the forces (and moments) at the coupling nodes are equivalent to the forces and moments at the reference
node. With the *DISTRIBUTING option, you can control the default weight distribution at the coupling nodes.
For more information, see Distributing coupling elements in the Abaqus Theory Manual.
Defining a reference node and a surface
In a Surface Based Coupling definition, you must select a reference node and the surface on which the coupling nodes are located.

You can select only one node as the reference node. The reference node is effectively the control point for the constraint. For a *KINEMATIC type
of Surface Based Coupling constraint, the reference node has both translational and rotational degrees-of-freedom.
You use a Region to define the surface on which the coupling nodes are located. In Abaqus, you can use either an element-based surface or node-
based surface to define that surface. In NX, when you create a region to use in a Tie Surface definition, you can select either Node or Element from
the Surface Definition Type list in the New Region dialog box.
Specifying a region of influence
By default, Abaqus uses all the nodes on the specified surface as the coupling nodes. You can also limit the coupling to only those nodes that lie within a
spherical region, centered on the reference node, on that surface. You can use the Influence Radius option in the Surface Based Coupling dialog box to
specify the radius the software uses to define the influence region.
For more information on defining a region of influence, see Specifying a region of influence in the Coupling constraints topic in the Abaqus Analysis User's
Guide.

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Note A *DISTRIBUTING type of coupling constraint must include at least two coupling nodes.

Specifying a coupling method for *DISTRIBUTING couplings


With *DISTRIBUTING type couplings, you can use the Coupling Method option to control how the software couples the motion of the reference node to
the average motion of the coupling nodes.

Select Continuum to couple the translation and rotation of the reference node to the average translation of the coupling nodes. This constraint
distributes the forces and moments at the reference node as a coupling node-force distribution only. No moments are distributed at the coupling
nodes.
Select Structural to couple the translation and rotation of the reference node to the translation and rotation of the coupling nodes. This
constraint distributes the forces and moments at the reference node as a coupling node-force and moment distribution.
For more information, see:

Defining the surface coupling method in the Coupling constraints article in the Abaqus Analysis User's Guide.
Distributing coupling elements in the Abaqus Theory Manual.
Selecting a weighting method for *DISTRIBUTING couplings
With a *DISTRIBUTING coupling, you can use the Weighting Method list to specify an optional weighting method to modify the default weight distribution
at the coupling nodes. With the Uniform weighting method, the software sets all weight factors uniformly to a value of 1.0. Other weighting methods
allow you to monotonically decrease the weighting factor for a coupling node with its radial distance from the reference node.
For more information, see Weighting methods in the Coupling constraints article in the Abaqus Analysis User's Guide.

Associated Abaqus keywords


When you export or solve your model, the software uses the options you specify in the Surface Based Coupling dialog box to define the *COUPLING
keyword and either the *KINEMATIC or *DISTRIBUTED keyword in your Abaqus input file. For more information, see Coupling constraints in the Abaqus
Analysis User's Manual and *COUPLING,*KINEMATIC, or *DISTRIBUTING in the Abaqus Keywords Reference Manual.

Where do I find it?


Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with Abaqus as the specified solver
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationSurface Based Coupling

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Simulation Navigator Under the active solution, right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectSurface Based Coupling

13.10 Surface-to-Surface Contact (NX Nastran, Abaqus, ANSYS)


Video
This video demonstrates how to define surface-to-surface contact.

Surface-to-Surface Contact lets you define contact between two surfaces.


These solvers and solution types support Surface-to-Surface Contact:

Solver Supported Solution Types

NX SOL 101 Linear Statics (Global Constraints and Subcase Constraints)


Nastran
SOL 103 Real Eigenvalues and SOL 103-Response Simulation
SOL 105 Linear Buckling
SOL 107 Direct Complex Eigenvalues
SOL 110 Modal Complex Eigenvalues
SOL 111 Modal Frequency Response

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Solver Supported Solution Types

SOL 112 Modal Transient Response


SOL 200 Design Optimization
SOL 601,106 Advanced Nonlinear Statics and 601, 129
SOL 701 Explicit Advanced Nonlinear Analysis

ANSYS Linear Statics


Nonlinear Statics
Thermal
For more information, see Structural Contact (ANSYS) and Thermal Contact (ANSYS).

Abaqus Structural General Analysis

Note For Abaqus Thermal-Heat Transfer type analyses, you can use the Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance command to
model conductive heat transfer between proximate or contacting surfaces. See Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance
(Abaqus) for more information.

LS-DYNA General Impact


Defining the contacting surfaces
You can either specify the contacting surfaces manually, or you can have the software automatically determine which pairs of faces come in contact with
each other.

To manually specify source and target surfaces in the contact definition, you can select an existing Simulation Region or create a new one. For
more information, see Working with reusable regions for contact and glue definitions.
To have the software automatically determine the contacting surfaces, you can use the Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box to specify the
criteria the software uses to search for surfaces. For more information, see Automatic face pairing
Additional contact parameters available for Nastran analyses

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If you are working with Nastran as your solver, you can create a Contact Parameters modeling object to define additional parameters to control the
contact algorithm. A Contact Parameters modeling object corresponds to the Nastran BCTPARM bulk data entry. You then use the Contact Parameters
option on the Case Control page of the Create Solution or Edit Solution dialog box to include the Contact Parameters modeling object in your solution.
For more information, see:

Contact ParametersLinear Global dialog box


BCTPARM in the NX Nastran Quick Reference Guide
Contact for Linear Solutions in the NX Nastran User's Guide
Additional contact parameters available for Abaqus analyses
If you are working with Abaqus as your solver:

You can create a Contact Pair modeling object to define additional parameters to control the contact algorithm for each solution step. A Contact
Pair modeling object corresponds to the Abaqus *CONTACT PAIR keyword. You then use the Contact Pair option in the Surface-to-Surface Contact
dialog box to apply those parameters to the contact definition.
You can also change the friction properties of contact pair interactions, and change the friction definition for each solution step. Use the Abaqus
Change Friction Definition modeling object to define friction.
For more information, see Contact Pairs (Abaqus), *CONTACT PAIR in the Abaqus Keywords Reference Manual, or Contact interaction analysis: overview in
the Abaqus Analysis User's Manual.

Surface-to-Surface Contact compared to Surface Contact Mesh


When the solution is set to the Nastran solution type SOL 101, there are two commands for defining surface contact:

Surface-to-Surface Contact, when a Simulation file is active,


Surface Contact Mesh, a legacy command, when a FEM file is active,
You should use Surface-to-Surface Contact to define contact between two surfaces. Unlike Surface-to-Surface Contact, Surface Contact Mesh generates
contact (or gap) elements between the two surfaces See Surface Contact Mesh for more information.

Where do I find it?


Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with NX Nastran, Abaqus, or ANSYS as the specified solver

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Toolbar
Advanced SimulationSurface-to-Surface Contact
Simulation Navigator Under the active solution, right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectSurface-to-Surface Contact

13.10.1 Define surface-to-surface contact


You define surface-to-surface contact by creating face pairs. You can define face pairs for surface-to-surface contact automatically or manually.

Define contact regions automatically

1. From the Advanced Simulation toolbar, select Surface-to-Surface Contact from the Simulation Object Type list.
2. In the Surface to Surface Contact dialog box, select Automatic Pairing from the Type list.

3. In the Automatic Face Pair Creation group, click Create Face Pairs .
4. In the Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box:
o (Optional) Specify a Face Pair Search Subset.
o Select a Grouping Option.
o Preview the face pairs, and if necessary, modify the distance tolerance to generate more or fewer pairs.
For more information, see Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box.
5. Click OK to return to the Create Surface-to-Surface Contact dialog box.

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6. In the Properties group, enter any solver-specific properties for the contact between these face pairs and click OK.
Define contact regions manually

1. From the Advanced Simulation toolbar, select Surface-to-Surface Contact from the Simulation Object Type list.
2. In the Surface to Surface Contact dialog box, select Manual from the Type list.
3. In the Source Region group, select the first set of surfaces or element faces.
4. In the Target Region group, select the second set of surfaces and element faces.
5. In the Properties group, enter any solver-specific properties for the contact between these face pairs and click OK.

13.11 Structural Contact (ANSYS)


In the ANSYS environment, you can use the Structural Contact command to analyze structural contact between surfaces and edges in ANSYS structural
analyses.
In NX, you use the Structural Contact dialog box to define the contacting surfaces, either manually or automatically. When you export or solve your ANSYS
input file, ANSYS automatically creates the necessary contact and target elements.

Contact surface and target elements are created automatically


ANSYS uses special surface elements and target elements to define the contacting and target faces in a contact analysis.

Contact elements (CONTA172, CONTA174, CONTA175, and CONTA177) overlay the existing 2D or 3D structural elements. The contact elements are
those elements which are potentially in contact with the target surface.
Target elements (TARGE169 and TARGE170) overlay the existing 2D or 3D structural elements on the specified target surface in the contact
definition.
Defining source and target surfaces for contact
In the ANSYS environment in NX:

You must specify both a source and a target region for contact. You cannot analyze contact with a free thermal surface (contact without a target
surface).
Both the source and target regions must be deformable. In NX, you cannot analyze contact with a rigid target surface and pilot nodes.
Type of contact is determined by the geometry selected

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The type of contact you define is determined by the type of geometry you specify for the source and target regions.

If you select Manual from the Type list in the Structural Contact dialog box, you use Simulation Regions to define the source and target
geometry. With the Manual option, the type of geometry that you specify in each Simulation Region determines the type of contact. You can define:
o Surface-to-surface contact (CONTA174/TARGE170 pair).
o Line-to-surface contact (CONTA177/TARGE170 pair).
o Point-to-surface contact (CONTA175/TARGE170 pair).
o Line-to-line contact using the edges of planar elements (CONTA172/TARGE169 pair).
o Point-to-line contact using the edges of planar elements (CONTA175/TARGE169 pair).
Note With line-to-line and point-to-line thermal contact, you should use PLANE182 or PLANE183 elements as the underlying structural elements.

Note Although you can create and export these different types of contact in NX, currently onlyt surface-to-surface (CONTA174/TARGE170) is supported
for import into NX.

If you select Automatic Pairing from the Type list in the Structural Contact dialog box, the software only searches for appropriate source and
target surfaces. Therefore, only surface-to-surface contact (CONTA174/TARGE170 pair) is supported with Automatic Pairing.
Defining the properties and options that control the contact analysis
In the Structural Contact dialog box, after you define the contacting surfaces, you must define:

A CONTA174 ET modeling object that controls how ANSYS performs the contact analysis.
A CONTA174 Real Constants modeling object that controls the contact properties used in the analysis.
Note The CONTA174 ET and CONTA174 Real Constants modeling objects apply to all ANSYS contact elements, not just CONTA174 elements.

Controlling the contact algorithm through contact element keyopts


In ANSYS, KEYOPT(1) for contact elements controls whether the contact is structural or thermal. In ANSYS Structural environment in NX , when you use the
Structural Contact command to define contact between surfaces, KEYOPT(1) is automatically set to 0 (structural contact) when you export or solve your
ANSYS input file. You cannot control the setting of KEYOPT(1) in the NX user interface.
In the CONTA174 ET dialog box, you can specify the values for the other CONTA172, CONTA174, and CONTA175 KEYOPTs. For example, you can control:

27
The points during the analysis at which ANSYS updates the contact stiffness.
The type of contact, such as rough or sliding.
Whether to include the effects of shell thickness in the contact analysis.
Defining contact properties
After you use the Structural Contact dialog box to define the contacting surfaces, you can use the CONTA174 Real Constants dialog box to specify
options that control the contact behavior, such as:

The penetration tolerance factor.


The limits on the amount of allowable initial penetration.
The amount of allowable elastic slip.
Additional information For more information, see:
The ANSYS Contact Technology Guide.
CONTA174 in the ANSYS Elements Reference.
Set the Real Constants and Element KEYOPTS in the Surface-to-Surface Contact chapter of the ANSYS Contact Technology Guide.
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with ANSYS as the specified solver and Structural as the specified analysis type
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationStructural Contact
Simulation Navigator Under the active solution, right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectStructural Contact

13.12 Surface-to-Surface Contact (LS-DYNA)


In the LS-DYNA environment, use the Surface-to-Surface Contact to model contact interfaces between two contacting surfaces or to model self contact.
In NX, you can use the Surface-to-Surface Contact dialog box to model the following different types of LS-DYNA contact:

Automatic general contact (*CONTACT_AUTOMATIC_GENERAL)

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Automatic surface-to-surface contact (*CONTACT_AUTOMATIC_SURFACE_TO_SURFACE)
Automatic single surface contact (*CONTACT_AUTOMATIC_SINGLE_SURFACE)
Tied surface-to-surface contact (*CONTACT_TIE_SURFACE_TO_SURFACE)
Tied surface-to-surface offset (*CONTACT_TIE_SURFACE_TO_SURFACE_OFFSET)
Understanding automatic contact
If you select Automatic General Contact from the Type list, you can either specifically designate the master and slave surfaces, or you can have the
software evaluate the entire model.

You can use a Simulation Region to explicitly define the master and slave surfaces to analyze for contact. You can use Simulation Regions to
define the master surface, the slave surface, or both the master and slave surfaces. For more information, see Working with reusable regions for
contact and glue definitions.
If the region you select is very complex, you can use the Include all Slave Nodes in a Box or Include all Master Segments in a Box options to further
limit the area that LS-DYNA analyzes for contact. If you select one or both of these options, you can exclude all nodes and elements in the region that
lie outside of a rectangle that you specify.
You can choose not to limit the contact analysis to specified Simulation Regions. If you do not specify a Simulation Region to define the master
or slave surfaces, LS-DYNA will calculate contact each time it detects that either surfaces or bodies overlap while the model is in motion.
Note This can be very computationally expensive.

You can also use the Automatic General Contact type to have the software evaluate whether the specified slave surface contacts itself. Select the Self
Contact check box to indicate that you want LS-DYNA to evaluate whether contact occurs within the Slave region (a Master region is not required).
With automatic general contact:

The contacts are non-oriented, which means that LS-DYNA can detect penetration coming from either side of a 2D element.
LS-DYNA determines the contact surfaces by projecting normally from the 2D elements mid-plane a distance that is equal to one half of the
contact thickness.
LS-DYNA places a limit on the maximum penetration depth that is allowed before a slave node is released and its contact forces are set to zero.
This helps prevent large contact forces from developing should a slave node pass through a 2D elements mid-plane.
Understanding tied contact

29
With LS-DYNA, tied contact is very similar to automatic general contact, however once the software detects contact between the master and the slave
surfaces, it ties those two surfaces together.
If you select Tied Surface Contact from the Type list, you must specifically designate a Simulation Region to define the master and slave surfaces. For
more information, see Working with reusable regions for contact and glue definitions.
With Tied Surface Contact, you can use the Contact Type option to control the contact formulation that LS-DYNA uses to evaluate the surfaces.

Select TIED_SURFACE_TO_SURFACE to use a constraint-type formulation.


Select TIED_SURFACE_TO_SURFACE_OFFSET to use a penalty-based formulation. With this option, the force and moment resultants are
transferred to discrete spring elements between the slave nodes and master segments.
Defining additional contact properties for automatic and tied contact
You can use the Contact Card 2 Card 3 and Contact Card A Card B modeling objects to define additional properties for an LS-DYNA contact analysis.

Use the options in the Contact Card 2 Card 3 dialog box to define additional, required contact properties, such as the static coefficient of friction
and the amount of allowable small penetration used by the contact algorithm.
Use the options in the Contact Card A Card B dialog box to define additional, optional contact properties, such as the scale factor used for
constraint forces and the search depth used in the automatic contact types.
You can also use the Controls modeling object to control contact properties. The options in the Controls dialog box correspond to the LS-DYNA
*CONTACT_CONTROL keyword.
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with LS-DYNA as the specified solver
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationSimulation Object Type Drop-down list Surface-to-Surface Contact
Simulation Navigator Under the active solution, right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectSurface-to-Surface Contact

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13.13 Surface-to-Surface Gluing (NX Nastran)
Create a Surface-to-Surface Gluing simulation object to connect two surfaces to prevent relative motion in all directions.
To glue two surfaces, you must first define the regions where you want to create glue elements (stiff springs that connect and constrain the surfaces). A
region is a collection of element free faces in a section of the model where you expect gluing (or contact) to occur. These regions can be created using
shell elements and using free faces of solid elements. Select a source region and target region in the Simulation model. In the Surface-to-Surface Gluing
dialog box, enter the parameters to define the contact between these two surfaces.
When you solve or export your model, the options in the Surface-to-Surface Gluing dialog box define an BGSET bulk data entry in your NX Nastran input
file. For more information, see Surface-to-Surface Gluing in the NX Nastran User's Guide.

Supported analysis types


Surface-to-Surface Gluing is available for all structural NX Nastran solution sequences except for SOL 701. It is not supported in axisymmetric solutions.

Using a Glue Parameters modeling object to control the glue algorithm


If you include a Surface-to-Surface Gluing simulation object in your solution, you can use the options in the Glue Parameters dialog box to adjust NX
Nastran's glue algorithm. See Defining parameters for NX Nastran glue conditions for more information.

Where do I find it?


To create a Surface-to-Surface Gluing simulation object, do one of the following:

In the Simulation Navigator, right-click Simulation Object Container and choose New Simulation ObjectSurface-to-Surface Gluing.
In the Simulation Navigator, under a solution, right-click Simulation Objects and choose New Simulation ObjectSurface-to-Surface Gluing.

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar, click Surface-to-Surface Gluing

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13.13.1 Define surface-to-surface gluing
You define surface-to-surface gluing regions by creating face pairs. You can define face pairs for surface-to-surface gluing automatically or manually.

Define gluing regions automatically

1. From the Advanced Simulation toolbar, select Surface-to-Surface Gluing from the Simulation Object Type list.
2. In the Surface to Surface Gluing dialog box, select Automatic Pairing from the Type list.

3. In the Automatic Face Pair Creation group, click Create Face Pairs .
4. In the Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box:
o (Optional) Specify a Face Pair Search Subset. O Select a Grouping Option.
o Preview the face pairs, and if necessary, modify the distance tolerance to generate more or fewer pairs.
For more information, see Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box.
5. Click OK to return to the Surface-to-Surface Gluing dialog box.
6. In the Linear Settings group, enter any solver-specific properties for the contact between these face pairs and click OK.
Define gluing regions manually

1. From the Advanced Simulation toolbar, select Surface-to-Surface Gluing from the Simulation Object Type list.
2. In the Surface to Surface Gluing dialog box, select Manual from the Type list.
3. In the Source Region group, select the first set of surfaces or element faces.
4. In the Target Region group, select the second set of surfaces and element faces.
5. In the Linear Settings group, enter any solver-specific properties for the contact between these face pairs and click OK.

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13.14 Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance (Abaqus)
When you are working with Abaqus as your solver and Thermal-Heat Transfer as your analysis type, you can use the Surface-to-Surface Thermal
Conductance command to model conductive heat transfer between proximate or contacting surfaces.
In the Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance dialog box, you can use the Conductance Dependency options to model the conductive heat transfer as
a function of:

The clearance between the contacting surfaces (Clearance option).


The contact pressure at the interface between the contacting surfaces (Pressure option).
Both the clearance and the contact pressure (Clearance and Pressure option).
In Advanced Simulation, you use fields to define how the heat transfer varies with the clearance and/or contact pressure. For more information, see
Fields.
When you export or solve your model, the software uses the options you specify in the Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance dialog box to define the
*GAP CONDUCTANCE keyword in your Abaqus input file. For more information, see Thermal Contact Properties in the Abaqus Analysis User's Manual and
*GAP CONDUCTANCE in the Abaqus Keywords Reference Manual.

Where do I find it?

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar, click Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance .

13.14.1 Define thermal conductance between surfaces


You define surface-to-surface thermal conductance by creating face pairs. You can define face pairs for surface-to-surface contact automatically or
manually.

Define thermal conductance regions automatically

1. From the Advanced Simulation toolbar, select Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance from the Simulation Object Type list.
2. In the Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance dialog box, select Automatic Pairing from the Type list.

3. In the Automatic Face Pair Creation group, click Create Face Pairs .

33
4. In the Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box:
o (Optional) Specify a Face Pair Search Subset.
o Select a Grouping Option.
o Preview the face pairs, and if necessary, modify the distance tolerance to generate more or fewer pairs.
For more information, see Create Automatic Face Pairs dialog box.
5. Click OK to return to the Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance dialog box.
6. In the Conductance Dependency group, specify whether you want to model the conductive heat transfer as a function of clearance, pressure, or
clearance and pressure.
7. Specify the field or fields to define the conductance dependency. For more information, see Fields.
8. Click OK.
Define thermal conductance regions manually

1. From the Advanced Simulation toolbar, select Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance from the Simulation Object Type list.
2. In the Surface-to-Surface Thermal Conductance dialog box, select Manual from the Type list.
3. In the Source Region group, select the first set of surfaces or element faces.
4. In the Target Region group, select the second set of surfaces or element faces.
5. In the Conductance Dependency group, specify whether you want to model the conductive heat transfer as a function of clearance, pressure, or
clearance and pressure.
6. Specify the field or fields to define the conductance dependency. See Fields for more information.
7. Click OK.

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13.15 Thermal Contact (ANSYS)
In the ANSYS environment, you can use the Thermal Contact command to define thermal contact conduction between contacting surfaces in ANSYS
thermal analyses.
In NX, you use the Thermal Contact dialog box to define the contacting surfaces, either manually or automatically. When you export or solve your ANSYS
input file, ANSYS automatically creates the necessary contact and target elements.

Contact surface and target elements are created automatically


ANSYS uses special surface elements and target elements to define the contacting and target faces in a contact analysis.

Contact elements (CONTA172, CONTA174, CONTA175, and CONTA177) overlay the existing 2D or 3D structural elements. The contact elements are
those elements which are potentially in contact with the target surface.
Target elements (TARGE169 and TARGE170) overlay the existing 2D or 3D structural elements on the specified target surface in the contact
definition.
Defining source and target surfaces for contact
In the ANSYS environment in NX:

You must specify both a source and a target region for contact. You cannot analyze contact with a free thermal surface (contact without a target
surface).
Both the source and target regions must be deformable. In NX, you cannot analyze contact with a rigid target surface and pilot nodes.
Type of contact is determined by the geometry selected
The type of contact you define is determined by the type of geometry you specify for the source and target regions.

If you select Manual from the Type list in the Thermal Contact dialog box, you use Simulation Regions to define the source and target geometry.
With the Manual option, the type of geometry that you specify in each Simulation Region determines the type of contact. You can define:
o Surface-to-surface contact (CONTA174/TARGE170 pair).

35
o Point-to-surface contact (CONTA175/TARGE170 pair).
o Line-to-line contact using the edges of planar elements (CONTA172/TARGE169 pair).
o Point-to-line contact using the edges of planar elements (CONTA175/TARGE169 pair).
Note With line-to-line and point-to-line thermal contact, you should use PLANE182 or PLANE183 elements as the underlying structural elements.

Note Although you can create and export these different types of contact in NX, currently onlyt surface-to-surface (CONTA174/TARGE170) is supported
for import into NX.

If you select Automatic Pairing from the Type list in the Thermal Contact dialog box, the software only searches for appropriate source and
target surfaces. Therefore, only surface-to-surface contact (CONTA174/TARGE170 pair) is supported with Automatic Pairing.
Defining the properties and options that control the contact analysis
In the Thermal Contact dialog box, after you define the contacting surfaces, you must define:

A CONTA174 ET modeling object that controls how ANSYS performs the contact analysis.
A CONTA174 Real Constants modeling object that controls the thermal contact properties used in the analysis.
Note The CONTA174 ET and CONTA174 Real Constants modeling objects apply to all ANSYS contact elements, not just CONTA174 elements.

Controlling the contact algorithm through contact element keyopts


In ANSYS, KEYOPT(1) for contact elements controls whether the contact is structural or thermal. In ANSYS Thermal environment in NX , when you use the
Thermal Contact command to define thermal contact between surfaces, KEYOPT(1) is automatically set to 2 (thermal contact) when you export or solve
your ANSYS input file. You cannot control the setting of KEYOPT(1) in the NX user interface.
In the CONTA174 ET dialog box, you can specify the values for the other CONTA172, CONTA174, and CONTA175 KEYOPTs. For example, you can control:

The points during the analysis at which ANSYS updates the contact stiffness.
The type of contact, such as rough or sliding.
Whether to include the effects of shell thickness in the contact analysis.
Defining thermal contact properties
After you use the Thermal Contact dialog box to define the contacting surfaces, you can use the CONTA174 Real Constants dialog box to define the
required thermal contact properties. You must define:

36
Thermal contact conductance (TCC), which allows you to take into account the conductive heat transfer between the contact and target
surfaces.
Note Currently, NX only supports a constant Thermal contact conductance value. You cannot vary the Thermal contact conductance with temperature,
pressure, or time.

The Stefan-Boltzmann constant (SBCT, which you can use to model radiative heat transfer. If you do not specify a value for the Stefan-
Boltzmann constant, the radiation effect is excluded from the thermal contact calculations.
The Radiation view factor (RDVF), which you can use to define the radiation view factor for near field radiation.
Additional information
13.16 Tying surfaces together to prevent relative motion (Abaqus)
When you are working with Abaqus as your solver, you can use the Tie Surface command to tie two separate surfaces together so that there is no relative
motion between them. You can use Tie Surface to make the translational and rotational motion equal for a pair of surfaces. You can use Tie Surface to tie
selected surfaces even if the meshes on those surfaces are dissimilar.

Defining the master and slave surfaces in a tie constraint


With Tie Surface, you use simulation Regions to define the master and slave surfaces in the tie constraint. In Abaqus, you can use either an element-
based surface or node-based surface as the master or slave surface. In NX, when you create a region to use in a Tie Surface definition, you can select
either Node or Element from the Surface Definition Type list in the New Region dialog box.
The characteristics of the tie formulation depend on whether you create the Tie Surface constraint on node-based or element-based master and slave
surfaces.

Selecting the appropriate tie formulation


You use the Type list in the Options section of the Tie Surface dialog box to specify the tie formulation Abaqus uses to create the constraint.

With the Surface to Surface formulation, Abaqus generates the tie coefficients such that stress accuracy is optimized for the surface pairs.
Generally, the Surface to Surface formulation avoids stress noise at tied interfaces.
Note If you select the Surface to Surface formulation, you should use element-based regions to define the master and slave surfaces in the tie
constraint. If you use a node-based region to define either the master or the slave surface, Abaqus uses the Node to Surface formulation instead.

37
With the Node to Surface formulation, Abaqus generates the tie coefficients according to interpolation functions at the points where slave nodes
project onto the master surface. With the Node to Surface formulation, master surfaces must not contain any complex intersections, such as T-type
intersections.
For more information, see:

Tie Surface dialog box (Abaqus)


Defining the surfaces to be constrained in the Mesh Tie Constraints article in the Abaqus Analysis User's Guide.
The surface-based tie constraint formulation in the Mesh Tie Constraints article in the Abaqus Analysis User's Guide.
Adjusting the surfaces
The Adjust option in the Tie Surface dialog box controls whether Abaqus automatically repositions the nodes on the slave surface to be tied in the initial
configuration. Abaqus accomplishes this without causing strain to resolve gaps such that the surfaces are just touching. Abaqus performs all adjustments
such that the master and slave surfaces are never pushed apart; they only come closer together as a result of the adjustments.
In general, you should allow the automatic adjustments to occur, especially if neither the master nor the slave surface has rotations. For more
information see Adjusting the surfaces and considering offsets in the Mesh Tie Constraints article in the Abaqus Analysis User's Guide.

Associated Abaqus keywords


When you export or solve your model, the software uses the options you specify in the Tie Surface dialog box to define the *TIE keyword in your Abaqus
input file. For more information, see Mesh tie constraints in the Abaqus Analysis User's Manual and *TIE in the Abaqus Keywords Reference Manual.

Where do I find it?


Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with Abaqus as the specified solver
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationTie Surface
Simulation Navigator Under the active solution, right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectTie Surface
For more information, see:
Thermal Contact in the ANSYS Contact Technology Guide.
CONTA174 in the ANSYS Elements Reference.

38
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation file with ANSYS as the specified solver and Thermal as the specified analysis type
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationThermal Contact
Simulation Navigator Under the active solution, right-click Simulation ObjectsNew Simulation ObjectThermal Contact

13.17 Removing elements and contact pairs (Abaqus)


During an Abaqus structural analysis, you may need to add or remove portions of a structure from the finite element model. Use the Element Removal
simulation object to selectively remove elements from one or more steps in the analysis. In subsequent steps, you can use the Element Removal
command to reactivate elements, either with or without strain. You can use this simulation object only in General Analysis type steps.

The Element Removal simulation object writes the *MODEL CHANGE keyword to your Abaqus input file.
The ability to deactivate and reactivate elements is useful, for example, for analyzing excavation and construction of tunnels.
For more information, see:

Element Removal dialog box (Abaqus)


*MODEL CHANGE in the Abaqus Keywords Users Manual
Element and contact pair removal and reactivation in the Abaqus Analysis Users Manual
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite An active Simulation with Abaqus as the specified solver and General Analysis as the Solution Type
Toolbar
Advanced SimulationElement Removal
Simulation Navigator Right-click the Simulation Objects node under a step, and choose New Simulation ObjectElement Removal

39
13.18 Defining options for Nastran contact and glue analyses
In the Nastran environment, when you include contact or glue conditions in your solution, you can use several different types of modeling objects to
define options that to control those conditions.

Contact Parameters (BCTPARM bulk data entry)


Glue Parameters (BGPARM bulk data entry)
Once you create a modeling object, you can reference that modeling object from any applicable solution.

13.18.1 Specifying parameters for NX Nastran contact analyses


The type of Contact Parameters modeling object you define depends upon whether you are creating a linear or an advanced nonlinear solution.

Contact Parameters for linear solutions


The two types of contact parameters modeling objects for linear solutions allow you to specify additional options to control the contact algorithm the
software uses in NX Nastran SOL 101, 103, 111, and 112 analyses. These options correspond to the fields on the NX Nastran BCTPARM bulk data entry.

Create a Contact ParametersLinear Global modeling object to define surface-to-surface contact parameters for all contact definitions in a given
solution. You use the Global Contact Parameters option on the Case Control page of the Solution dialog box to assign a Contact ParametersLinear
Global modeling object to the solution.

40
Create a Contact ParametersLinear Pair Override modeling object to locally override a subset of the global contact parameters for a given
surface-to-surface contact definition. The parameters you can adjust locally include Penalty Normal Direction and Initial Penetration/Gap. You use
the Local Contact Pair Parameters option in the Surface-to-Surface Contact dialog box to assign a Contact ParametersLinear Pair Override object
to a contact definition. This allows you to selectively change the values of certain parameters on a contact pair-by-contact pair basis.
Contact Parameters for advanced nonlinear solutions
You can use a Contact Parameters Advanced Nonlinear modeling object to define parameters, such as the contact algorithm, when you create a
Surface-to-Surface Contact simulation object in an NX Nastran advanced nonlinear analysis (SOL 601, 106, SOL 601, 129, or SOL 701).
When you solve your model, the software uses the Contact Parameters Advanced Nonlinear modeling object to create an NX Nastran BCTPARA bulk
data entry in your NX Nastran input file.

Where do I find it?

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar , click Modeling Objects and then choose the appropriate type of Contact Parameters object from the
Type list.
Choose InsertModeling Objects and then choose the appropriate type of Contact Parameters object from the Type list.

13.18.2 Defining parameters for NX Nastran glue conditions


The two types of glue parameters modeling objects allow you to specify additional options to adjust the NX Nastran glue algorithm. These options
correspond to the fields on the NX Nastran BGPARM bulk data entry. For example, you can control the number and distribution of glue elements the
software creates. This affects the overall accuracy of the glue solution.

Create a Glue ParametersLinear Global modeling object to control the behavior of the glue algorithm for all Surface-to-Surface Gluing or Edge-
to-Surface Gluing definitions in a given solution. You use the Global Glue Parameters option on the Case Control page of the Solution dialog box to
assign a Contact ParametersLinear Global modeling object to your solution.
Create a Glue ParametersLinear Pair Override modeling object to locally override a subset of the global glue parameters for a given glue
definition. You use the Create Modeling Object (Override Parameters) option in the Surface-to-Surface Gluing or Edge-to-Surface Gluing dialog box
to assign the override modeling object to a glue definition. This allows you to selective change the values of certain parameters in selected pairs of
glued surfaces, or pairs of edges and surfaces.

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For more information, see Surface-to-Surface Gluing (NX Nastran) as well as Surface-to-Surface and Edge-to-Surface Gluing in the NX Nastran User's
Guide.

Understanding the glue algorithms


The Alternate Glue Formulation lets you control the glue algorithm that NX Nastran uses when you solve your model.

With the Weld-Like Connection option, the software uses a weld-like glue algorithm.
With the Normal and Tangential Springs option, the software uses a spring-like glue algorithm
A surface-to-surface or edge-to-surface glue condition on non-coincident shell or solid faces can introduce artificial rotational energy into the solution.
Generally, the problem occurs because the spring-like glue elements do not transfer moments at the glue interface when glued faces are non-coincident
and/or when loads are not normal to the glued faces. This is particularly noticeable in a normal mode solution when modes are found that contain an
artificial rotational energy due to the glue condition. The Weld-Like Connection algorithm eliminates this artificial rotational energy.
In most cases, the new weld-like glue algorithm represents the connection stiffness more accurately than the spring-like glue algorithm because it
transfers moments at the glue interface.
For more information, see Surface-to-Surface and Edge-to-Surface Gluing in the NX Nastran User's Guide and BGPARM in the NX Nastran Quick Reference
Guide.

Where do I find it?

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar, click Modeling Objects and then choose Glue ParametersLinear Global or Glue ParametersLinear
Pair Override from the Type menu.
Choose InsertModeling Objects and then choose Glue ParametersLinear Global or Glue ParametersLinear Pair Override from the Type
menu.

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13.18.3 Previewing Nastran contact and glue element locations
When you solve a model that contains either contact or glue conditions, NX Nastran internally creates contact or glue elements using the contact or glue
regions and search distance that you define. Although these contact or glue elements may become inactive as NX Nastran iterates, it can be helpful to
understand where those elements are created.
You can use the Export a Preview Bulk Data File option in the Contact Parameters-Linear Global and Glue Parameters-Linear Global dialog boxes to
write out a bulk data file that contains dummy:

Shell element entries for face locations.


PLOTEL entries for edge locations.
GRID, property, and material bulk data entries.
When the software writes the preview output depends on whether you are previewing contact or clue conditions:

For contact conditions, the software writes the preview output when it evaluates the initial, open contact condition. This occurs before any
loading is applied to the model.
For glue conditions, the software writes the preview output when it creates the glue elements. This occurs before any loading is applied to the
model.
When you import the preview file into NX, the software uses these dummy entities to display the source and target locations for contact and glue
conditions. In the following simple example, (1) shows the original model in which the red mesh is enforced vertically into the green mesh. (2) shows how
the preview appears when you import the file into NX.

Note The colors shown in (2) were manually modified in NX after the preview file was imported.

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All contact elements begin with an active status. But the end of the solution, some contact elements may become inactive because they did not
participate in the converged solution. To view the locations of the final, active contact elements, you can use the options on the Contact Result tab in
the Structural Output Request modeling object dialog box to request the output of contact tractions. After you solve the solution, you can view the
contact tractions in the OP2 file in NX Post Processing. The following graphic shows an example of those contact tractions.

NX Nastran uses the following naming convention for the preview files:
<input_file_name>_cnt_preview<subcaseid>_<contactsetid>.dat
<input_file_name>_glue_preview<subcaseid>_<gluesetid>.dat

For example, if an input file named test.dat includes a subcase numbered 101 and a glue condition numbered 201, then the name of the resulting preview
file is:
test_glue_preview_101_201.dat

The Export a Preview Bulk Data File option corresponds to the PREVIEW field for the BCTPARM and BGPARM bulk data entries.

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Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisites A Simulation file is the displayed part and the work part, NX Nastran is the specified solver, and Structural or Axisymmetric
Structural is the specified analysis type
Command Finder
Modeling Objects
Location in dialog TypeContact Parameters-Linear Global or Glue Parameters-Linear Global
box

13.19 Defining options for Abaqus contact and glue analyses


In the Abaqus environment, when you include contact or glue conditions in your solution, you can use several types of modeling objects to define options
that to control those conditions:

Abaqus Change Friction Definition (*FRICTION keyword)


For more information, see Modifying Abaqus friction properties between steps.
Contact Parameters (*CONTACT PAIR, *SURFACE INTERACTION, *SURFACE BEHAVIOR, AND *FRICTION keywords)
For more information, see Contact Pairs (Abaqus).
Abaqus Contact Step Control Parameters (*CONTACT CONTROLS keyword)

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For more information, see Contact Step Controls (Abaqus).
Once you create a modeling object, you can reference that modeling object from any applicable solution

13.19.1 Modifying Abaqus friction properties between steps


In a multi-step Abaqus solution, you can change the friction properties of contact pair interactions and change the friction definition for each solution
step.
Use the Abaqus Change Friction Definition modeling object to change the friction properties of contact pair interactions. You can define:

Surface interaction (the contact pairs)


Amplitude
Friction parameters
Abaqus Change Friction Definition corresponds to the parameters for the *CHANGE FRICTION and *FRICTION keywords.
From the Solution Step dialog box, you can change the friction definition for each solution step.

Where do I find it?


To change the friction properties of contact pair interactions:

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar, click Modeling Objects and then choose Abaqus Change Friction Definition from the Type menu.

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Choose InsertModeling Objects and then choose Abaqus Change Friction Definition from the Type menu.
To change the friction definition at a solution step:

On the Solution Step dialog box, click the Change Friction tab, then click Create Change Friction Create

13.19.1.1 Change the value of friction properties in a solution step


You can define a Surface-to-Surface Contact condition in a solution step and then include it in other solution steps. When you create Surface-to-Surface
Contact condition, you can define a contact pair. The contact pair definition includes friction parameters. You can change the friction parameters for the
contact pair at any solution step. To change the friction parameters, you create a new Abaqus Change Friction Definition modeling object.
1. With an Abaqus solution active, create contact at a solution step, using any of the contact types. Include a contact pair for the contact.
For more information, see Contact Pairs (Abaqus).
2. (Optional) Assign contact to other solution steps.
3. To override the friction parameters for the contact pair at a solution step, right-click the solution step and choose Edit.
4. In the Solution Step dialog box, click the Change Friction tab.

5. Click Create Change Friction .


6. In the Modeling Objects Manager dialog box, click Create.
7. In the Abaqus Change Friction Definition dialog box, select the contact pair that you want to change from the Surface Interaction list.
8. Enter new Friction settings for the contact pair.
9. Click OK.
10. In the Modeling Objects Manager dialog box, select the Abaqus Change Friction Definition modeling object from the list, and click Add to List.
Optionally, you can add other Abaqus Change Friction Definition modeling objects to the list for this step.
11. Click Close.

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In the Solution Step dialog box, the number next to Change Friction is updated to reflect the number of Abaqus Change Friction Definition
modeling objects that are assigned to this solution step.

13.19.2 Contact Pairs (Abaqus)


When you define a Surface-to-Surface Contact simulation object for an Abaqus structural analysis, you can create a Contact Pair modeling object to
define properties for the pairs of surfaces that may contact or interact during the analysis. For example, options in the Contact Pair dialog box let you
control:

Friction properties.
Surface interaction properties.
The options in the Contact Pair dialog box correspond to parameters for the ABAQUS *CONTACT PAIR, *SURFACE INTERACTION, *SURFACE BEHAVIOR, AND
*FRICTION keywords. For more information, see the ABAQUS Keywords Reference Manual and Mechanical contact properties in the ABAQUS Analysis
Reference Manual.
For more information on surface-to-surface contact, see Surface-to-Surface Contact (NX Nastran, Abaqus, ANSYS).

Where do I find it?

On the Advanced Simulation toolbar , click Modeling Objects and then choose Contact Pair from the Type menu.
Choose InsertModeling Objects and then choose Contact Pair from the Type list.

In the Surface-to-Surface Contact dialog box, click Create Modeling Object for the Contact Pair option

13.19.3 Contact Step Controls (Abaqus)


Use the Abaqus Contact Step Controls Parameters modeling object to define additional solution controls for models that include contact between
bodies. These additional controls allow you to control automatic stabilization of rigid body motions in contact problems that use viscous damping. For
example, you can control:

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The damping coefficient to use at the contact interface.
The fraction of the damping that remains at the end of the step. The clearance at which the damping becomes zero.
Once you create a Abaqus Contact Step Controls Parameters modeling object, you can use the Controls option in the Contact Controls group in the
Solution Step dialog box to include those options in the solution step.

Select Apply specific controls to select the Abaqus Contact Step Controls Parameters modeling object to reference in the solution step. When
you export or solve your model, NX writes out the *CONTACT CONTROLS keyword.
Select Retain controls from previous step if you want to use the specified contact controls from the previous solution step. When you export or
solve your model, NX does not write out the *CONTACT CONTROLS keyword.
Select Reset all controls to default values to reset all contact controls to their default values. When you export or solve your model, NX writes
out the *CONTACT CONTROLS, RESET keyword.
Where do I find it?
Application Advanced Simulation
Prerequisite A FEM or Simulation file active with Abaqus as the specified solver

Toolbar
Advanced SimulationModeling Objects Abaqus Contact Step Controls Parameters
Menu InsertModeling ObjectsAbaqus Contact Step Controls Parameters

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