Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis Contents

Introduction.............................................................................................2 Installation Instructions: .......................................................................2 FRF Analysis of a Cross Member................................................................3 Description of the Problem ....................................................................3 The Analysis Model ...............................................................................4 Results.................................................................................................5 Further Work ........................................................................................5 Summary .............................................................................................6 Thermal Expansion Of Screw Shaft............................................................7 Description of the Problem ....................................................................7 The Analysis Model ...............................................................................8 Results.................................................................................................9 Further Work ........................................................................................9 Summary ........................................................................................... 10 Transient Analysis Of Gun Barrel ............................................................. 11 Description of the Problem .................................................................. 11 The Analysis Model ............................................................................. 12 Results............................................................................................... 13 Further Work ...................................................................................... 13 Summary ........................................................................................... 14 Force & Stress Analysis of Engine Mechanism .......................................... 15 Description of the Problem .................................................................. 15 The Analysis Model ............................................................................. 16 Results............................................................................................... 17 Further Work ...................................................................................... 17 Summary ........................................................................................... 18

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

Introduction
This material is best used after reading the book A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis. Access to HyperWorks software is not essential for you, the instructor. Of course, if you choose to solve the problem yourself before working with your students, you will need HyperMesh and OptiStruct. This book describes 4 assignment problems that highlight different applications of HyperWorks. Each problem is independent, and is complete in itself. Students may choose to do more than one, depending on their interest. To make best use of this material you will need a computer with a soundcard and speakers. Your computer should have a media-player programme (such as Windows Media Player) and an Internet Browser that supports JavaScript. The material can be copied to a server and accessed by clients. You can customize the HTML files to suit your requirements. After opening the file, doubleclick on any text to edit it. Use the save changes link on the left of your Browser window when you are finished.

Installation Instructions:
1. Copy the folders to your computer or to your server. If you are working on a server, it is a good idea to set the folders to “read only” to prevent inadvertent modifications. 2. The videos are best played in full-screen at a resolution of 1024 x 768. You may need to install the CamStudio Codec to view video on your computer. To do this, right-click on the file camcodec.inf and choose Install from the popup menu. You may need administrator privileges to do this. 3. Ensure that JavaScript is enabled on your browser. 4. Each folder contains one HTML file. Double-click on it to open the instructions. 5. Data files are provided as relevant – IGES files, HM files, etc. 6. In case you need support, contact your distributor or email edu.support@altair.india.com

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

FRF Analysis of a Cross Member
Areas covered:
• • • • • • •

Geometry abstraction for FE modeling Automatic mesh generation Application of FRF loads Design interpretations of FE results HyperMesh OptiStruct/Analysis HyperView

Software used:

Description of the Problem
Vibration response plays an important part in the design of vehicle frames. The range of excitation is usually specified by the vehicle designer for each sub-system. In this project, a cross-member has been proposed for a vehicle chassis. The purpose of the analysis is to evaluate the response of the component as the frequency is "swept" through the given range - from 0 to 1000 Hz. The starting point of the problem is the IGES file of the CAD assembly. A frequency-domain load is applied to simulate a frequencysweep: from 0 to 1000 Hz. The student should be encouraged to understand the modal-testing approach so that the importance of the various data is understood from a designer's perspective. The vibration characteristics of the assembled frame will be very different from that of the single component, of course, but the approach of setting requirements on individual components is essential at the preliminary design stage.

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

The Analysis Model
The model is characteristic of many sheetmetal parts: small radii, flanges, bends, etc. The element choice is easy - shell elements. A shell element represents the "neutral" surface of a thin shell. Except for a flat plate, the neutral surface is not at the center. The assignment discusses the relative benefits of generating elements on the inner surface, the outer surface or the mid-surface. The discussion highlights the fact that if thin-shell elements are justified, the difference is not important from a mechanics point of view. It is more important for convenience of modeling. When working with assemblies, considerable effort goes into extending or trimming surfaces to ensure that they meet! HyperMesh does a good job of mid-surface extraction. We will use it simply because it makes our meshing job easier, not because it is more accurate than meshing the inner or outer surfaces. Since the model is small, we will not need to worry much about the element size, though the student must, of course, ensure that the results are adequately accurate. The choice of appropriate units is also discussed. Analysis results and data are specified in cycles-per-unit-time. The use of SI units means we can work with Hz (cycles / second). The specifications call for an excitation between 0 and 1000 Hz. We use the Lanczos method to obtain mode shapes upto 3000 Hz. We use the modal-analysis method, where we approximate the transient behavior as a weighted sum of the mode shapes. The 4

Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

source of error lies in the choice of mode shapes, so to be safe we use mode shapes upto 3000 Hz - thrice the excitation range.

Results
Interpreting the results of the optimization requires a good understanding of the FRF approach. Since the frequency-domain and time-domain are entirely equivalent, the results can be viewed either as phase-magnitude plots (i.e. the frequency domain) or as animations or time-histories (i.e. the time domain). Depending on the output-control options, either or both can be generated by OptiStruct / Analysis.

Further Work
The assignment brings home the advantages of OptiStruct / Analysis: • • • • •
Excellent data import capabilities Quick, easy and convenient geometry abstraction Powerful mesh generation Easy control over the solution process convenient reporting options with easy viewing

Depending on their proficiency, students may want to research • • • • the use of optimization to improve response a comparison between the directanalysis method and the modalanalysis-method the sensitivity of the results to mesh size the sensitivity of results to the solution parameters: FREQ1 options, number of frequencies, etc.

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Student Project Summaries •

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

the response for multiple loads with a phase lag

Summary
By the end of this assignment, the student will know how to • import IGES files • use the Model Browser • zoom, pan and rotate • change colors of entities • control visibility of geometry • create collectors for materials, elements, forces and restraints • measure distances and the diameter of circles • generate mid-surfaces automatically • use QI meshing • find the centers of circles • use consistent units • check for different types of element-edges - free, shared, etc. • fill and stitch surfaces • use temp nodes • apply frequency-domain loads • use the modal-method for FRF analysis • plot stress contours • view deformed shapes • check for warnings using the text output files • view results in HyperView

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

Thermal Expansion Of Screw Shaft
Areas covered:
• • • • • • • • •

Geometry abstraction for FE modeling Hex mesh generation Application of temperature loads Use of symmetry boundary conditions Use of contact in FE analysis Design interpretations of FE results HyperMesh OptiStruct/Analysis HyperView

Software used:

Description of the Problem
Aircraft components go through stringent testing before they are accepted. The testing conditions are often more demanding than the anticipated deployment conditions. A design proposal has been received for a subassembly, and the task is to simulate its performance. The screw-shaft subassembly, which fits into a housing, is manufactured to very close tolerances. The dimensional accuracy is measured in 10s of microns. In the test chamber, the complete assembly is cooled to -40 degrees Kelvin and tested. It is subsequently raised to 135 degrees Kelvin and tested again. Will the sub-assembly function correctly? How will the gap in the groove behave?

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

Since the entire assembly is "soaked" in the testing-chamber to reach the uniform temperature, we do not need to perform a thermal analysis. Instead, we need to apply the temperature field and calculate the deformation of the components. In case there is interference, we can then use contact analysis to investigate stresses.

The Analysis Model
The model is characteristic of turned parts, displaying axial symmetry. The element choice is easy - solid elements While tetrahedral elements are easy to create, we will want to use hexahedral elements since the clearances are very fine. We will use three different facilities HyperMesh gives us to create the hexahedral mesh on the shaft and the plugs. We must, of course, ensure that the results are adequately accurate. A convergence study is very important, particularly since the curved faces of the grooves should be captured adequately accurately. We will want to use quite a fine mesh in our final analysis, so we should take advantage of symmetry. Since there are 4 plugs, we use quarter symmetry to reduce the model size. Since the differential expansion of the shaft and the plugs is the likely source of designproblems, the student should appreciate the importance of the reference temperature and the coefficient of thermal expansion. Automeshing can be used if we are willing to settle for tetras. HyperMesh makes it very easy to do this. Since we want hexahedral elements, however, we use a different approach. First, since the shaft has an axis of 8

Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

symmetry, we mesh one face with quadrilaterals and "spin" these to get hexas. Next, we focus on one of the plugs. We create a 2D mesh on one face, and use HyperMorph to map these to another face. Once we have this, the Linear Solid option generates hexas between the element sets. Finally, we "drag" elements along a line to generate the stubhandle on the plug. The "Position" option quickly lets us move an entire mesh from one position to another, completing our mesh.

Results
Interpreting the results of the optimization requires some care. In the initial analysis, we are trying to decide whether or not a more expensive contact analysis is required or not. So the focus is on the deformation pattern of the shaft and the plugs. If contact is necessary, a subsequent analysis with contact yields the actual deformation pattern.

Further Work
The assignment brings home the advantages of OptiStruct / Analysis: • • • • •
Excellent data import capabilities Quick, easy and convenient geometry abstraction Powerful mesh generation Easy control over the solution process convenient reporting options with easy viewing

You may choose to assign further investigations to your students based on their level of proficiency on CAD, the time available, etc.

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

Some of the areas that could include
• • • • the use of contact to assess stresses the use of spring supports on the exterior, to simulate the flexibility of the housing an investigation into the sensitivity to mesh size a study of possible alternate steel-alloys for the plugs

Summary
By the end of this assignment, the student will know how to • import IGES files • use the Model Browser • zoom, pan and rotate • change colors of entities • control visibility of geometry • create material collectors • create component collectors • create load collectors • create loadcases • measure distances • use consistent units • work with different types of edges - free, shared, etc. • fill and stitch surfaces • measure the diameter of circles • find the centers of circles • use temp nodes • use autocleanup to do all of the above • create restraints or SPCs • apply symmetry BCs • use HyperMorph to map elements to a geometry • use the Linear Solid option to generate hex elements • check for warnings using the text output files • view deformation plots and stress contours

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

Transient Analysis Of Gun Barrel
Areas covered:
• • • • • • •

Hexahedral Mesh Generation Direct-integration for short-time response Generation of plots for parametric studies Design interpretations of FE results HyperMesh OptiStruct/Analysis HyperView

Software used:

Description of the Problem
An artillery system is being designed to allow for four barrels, and the goal is to understand the impact of the firing order on the deflection of the barrel tips. When the shell leaves a barrel, the tip of the barrel experiences a disturbance. As a result, all 4 barrel tips vibrate. If the amplitude of the vibration has not died down before the next shell is fired, accuracy will suffer. Our design problem is to estimate the amplitudes of vibration of the barrel tips under different firing orders. if we number the barrels 1-2-3-4, several choices are available to the artillery designer: the order could be 1/2/3/4, or 1/3/2/4, etc. Since the gun is still at the design stage, the load characteristics are not frozen. The simulation should also cast light on the sensitivity of the proposed configuration and firing order to the amplitude-versus-time variation of the load. A Finite Element model is used, with the direct-integration approach, to carry out the simulation. A series of analyses will be carried out to generate graphs of the displacement characteristics of the barrel-tips under 11

Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

different firing orders, and under different amplitude-time variations of the impulse load.

The Analysis Model
We will want to carry out the analysis for a few second after the excitation has ceased. The graphs we obtain of amplitude vs. time can be used by the designer to estimate when it is safe to fire the next round. Beam elements would yield a very quick model, but the problem lies in connecting the baffle plates to the barrels. Shell elements are a possible choice for the baffles, but shells and solids are incompatible elements - shells have 6 dof / node while solids have 3. In a geometry like this, hexahedral elements are almost as easy to create as tetrahedra. Accordingly there is no justification to use the less-accurate tetras. Therefore we use hexahedral elements for all components. We take care to ensure that nodes match up at the junctions of the baffles and the barrels, since as per the assembly instructions the baffles are press-fitted. We assume perfect transmission of forces from the barrels to the baffles. We use the different facilities HyperMesh gives us - linear solid, ruled-surface meshing, etc.- to create the hexahedral mesh. First, for the barrels, we use the "ruled" option to generate elements between curves. We then use the linear-solid option to create hexas. Next, we copy elements from one barrel to another, filling all 4 with elements. When meshing the baffles, the elements on the barrels must match those on the holes in the baffles. This ensures continuity of forces.

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

Clamps at the specified locations are best represented by SPCs. The loads are a little more complicated. For the first analysis, we assume the load-vs-time curve is triangular: going from 0 to 200N in 1 second and falling back to 0 in the next second. We specify the curve using the TABLED1 card. The DAREA card specifies the amplitude of the excitation, and the TLOAD1 card puts the curve and the amplitude together. We then specify the time-integration method, by choosing delta-t, which is the time-step size and the number of time steps.

Results
Animated plots can be viewed, but graphs of amplitude vs. time are more useful in this case. The assignment shows how to evaluate results as time-history plots, and how to export these to files for use in subsequent reports.

Further Work
The assignment brings home the advantages of OptiStruct / Analysis: • • • • •
Excellent data import capabilities Quick, easy and convenient geometry abstraction Powerful mesh generation Easy control over the solution process convenient reporting options with easy viewing

You may choose to assign further investigations to your students based on their level of proficiency on CAD, the time available, etc. Some of the areas that could include

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Student Project Summaries • • • •

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

the use of spring supports at the base, to simulate the flexibility of the support system an investigation into the sensitivity to mesh size a study of possible alternate steel-alloys for the baffles an investigation into the response if perforated baffle plates are used, which is likely to be the case when the design evolves

Summary
By the end of this assignment, the student will know how to • import IGES files of assemblies into HyperMesh • use the Model Browser • zoom, pan and rotate • change colors of entities • delete unwanted imported data • control visibility of geometry • create material collectors • create and edit component collectors • create load collectors • create restraints or SPCs • measure distances • use consistent units • apply time-variant loads as (time,amplitude) • perform an analysis and obtain baseline results • check for warnings using the text output files

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Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

Force & Stress Analysis of Engine Mechanism
Areas covered:
• • • • • • •

Geometry Abstraction for FE modeling Automatic Mesh Generation Modeling for MBD Use of Component Mode Synthesis HyperMesh OptiStruct HyperView

Software used:

Description of the Problem
An assembly model for the engine of a model aircraft has been proposed. The designers want to know at what speed the engine can be run without the stress in the connecting rod exceeding the permissible stress for the material. This problem involves more than just an "FEA for stress analysis". Forces and restraints are not supplied. The designer has to estimate these and then perform the stress-analysis. The components move as a mechanism so the first task is to calculate the forces in the components as the engine reciprocates. These forces should then be used to calculate the dynamic stresses in the component of interest - the connecting rod. The first task involves a rigid-body analysis, while the second involves a flexible-body analysis. The approach taken in this assignment makes use of the capability of OptiStruct / Analysis to mix both forms of analysis using component-mode synthesis (CMS). The assignment explores the use of 15

Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

"bodies" and "joints" together with "elements".

The Analysis Model
The assignment involves continuum mechanics for stress analysis, and rigid body dynamics for calculation of forces. The latter does not require 3D geometry. The mass and inertial properties are adequate. However the availability of the 3D geometry makes it easier to understand the results of the analysis. Also, the use of CMS means that the "flexibility" as calculated by the finite element method can be used to calculate dynamic stresses easily. A "traditional" analysis would require that
• • the properties be calculated using a 3D model, typically a CAD model these properties be transferred to a motion-simulation tool that can perform "dynamic" analysis, not simple "kinematic" analysis the dynamic simulation be carried out and forces obtained as output forces be transferred to a Finite Element model the stress analysis be performed using the Finite Element model

• •

With the integrated approach, the various "transfers" of data are eliminated, making the process easier and faster and reducing scope for error. The modeling focus is on creation of joints and bodies. OptiStruct / Analysis requires that the two grids be used to define revolute and translational joints - one grid on each of the bodies. The grids that define the joints need to be on the axis of rotation, for a revolute joint. Since there may not be elements at the desired 16

Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

location, we make liberal use of "rigid" elements. This approach allows us to define the grids for the joints at locations that are correct from the point of view of the multibody solver. The use of "ground" bodies means we do not need any restraints on the FEA model. We provide an initial velocity to the piston, to simulate the effect of a "kick-start". Unlike an FEA solution, the time-integration scheme used by the MBD solver embedded inOptiStruct / Analysis calculates the stepsize for time-integration internally. Running OptiStruct/Analysis is easy, but errors can occur and can be diagnosed using the text otput file and the "fem" file

Results
The motion of the bodies is best interpreted using animations. These are different from the animated plots of a more "traditional" FEA. In this case, the deformations are large. HyperView allows us to view the animation, to superimpose stresses on the animated displays, and to plot graphs of forces at points of interest.

Further Work
The assignment brings home the advantages of OptiStruct / Analysis: • • • • •
Excellent data import capabilities Quick, easy and convenient geometry abstraction Powerful mesh generation Easy control over the solution process convenient reporting options with easy viewing

You may choose to assign further investigations to your students based on 17

Student Project Summaries

A Designer’s Guide To Finite Element Analysis

their level of proficiency on CAD, the time available, etc. Some of the areas that could include
• • • • the use of a higher-quality mesh application of a constant angular velocity motion to the crank use of the Flexible Body definition option (PFBODY) for the connecting rod an investigation of the variation of the stress in the connecting rod with changes in the rpm of the engine

Summary
By the end of this assignment, the student will know how to • import IGES files of assemblies into HyperMesh • use the Model Browser • zoom, pan and rotate • change colors of entities • control visibility of geometry • create material collectors • create component collectors • create load collectors • define units for the MBD solver • mix flexible and rigid bodies in the same model • create flexible bodies, rigid bodies and grounded bodies • apply initial motion to bodies • define revolute and translational joints • check for warnings using the text output files • view animated plots of stresses • view animated plots of the mechanism’s motion

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