Engineering

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ECMM155 - Computational Structural Analysis (2015)

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MODULE TITLEComputational Structural Analysis CREDIT VALUE15
MODULE CODEECMM155 MODULE CONVENERDr Prakash Kripakaran (Coordinator)
DURATION: TERM 1 2 3
DURATION: WEEKS 3
Number of Students Taking Module (anticipated) 20
DESCRIPTION - summary of the module content

This module opens the black box of numerical procedures such as finite element analysis (FEA) to take you through the steps of numerical modelling so that when you use such software you understand what it is doing. You will appreciate that more complex models aren’t necessarily better, that solution methods, particularly the way that elements are constructed mathematically cannot be exact representations of reality and that FEA solutions should always be checked against simple ‘back of the envelope’ calculations.

AIMS - intentions of the module

The module aims to demystify numerical tools such as finite element software, so that you will have a mix of confidence and scepticism - confidence that you understand the process and scepticism in not trusting software without simple cross-checks.  You will be able to emulate sophisticated FEA software using simple, but totally transparent MATLAB equivalents.

INTENDED LEARNING OUTCOMES (ILOs) (see assessment section below for how ILOs will be assessed)

On successful completion of this module you should be able to:

Module Specific Skills and Knowledge

1. Model a variety of structures (beams, 2D plane elements, frames, shells, 3D solids) using FEA software (e.g. OASYS)
2. Program transparent scripts (e.g. using MATLAB) for analysing simple structures (truss, frames etc.)
3. Choose appropriate form of analysis in finite element software (i.e., selection of element type, mesh resolution, explicit/implicit techniques etc.)

Discipline Specific Skills and Knowledge

4. Demonstrate the conceptual understanding of theory and application of FEA techniques required to evaluate critically  results from FEA simulations and to assess accuracy and limitations
5. Interpret results from typical software used for numerical analysis of structural systems.

Personal and Key Transferable / Employment Skills and Knowledge

6. Show a mixture of confidence and scepticism demonstrating mature approach to numerical solutions
7. Have a comprehensive understanding of FEA concepts to be able to choose an appropriate numerical technique to model a particular engineering problem.

 

SYLLABUS PLAN - summary of the structure and academic content of the module

FEA from first principles

  • Introduce theory behind FEA (virtual work, global and local stiffness matrices)
  • Discretisation and shape functions
  • Numerical integration
  • Basic line elements (for truss and frames)
  • Program element library for solving simple structures using MATLAB
  • Comparison with results from analytical techniques for structural analysis

FEA for planar and continuum structures

  • Plane stress/plane strain scenarios
  • Linear and quadratic elements
  • Isoperimetric elements for 3D solids
  • Plates and shells
  • Modelling considerations and interpretation of results

FEA for analysing dynamic behaviour of structures

  • Modes and frequencies
  • Component mode synthesis
  • Implicit/explicit techniques
LEARNING AND TEACHING
LEARNING ACTIVITIES AND TEACHING METHODS (given in hours of study time)
Scheduled Learning & Teaching Activities 35.00 Guided Independent Study 115.00 Placement / Study Abroad 0.00
DETAILS OF LEARNING ACTIVITIES AND TEACHING METHODS
Category Hours of study time Description
Scheduled learning & teaching activities 20 Lectures on the syllabus topics including relating to prior knowledge on structural analysis taught in ECMM149, and to design principles taught in ECMM150. 
Scheduled learning & teaching activities 15 Tutorials in class for hands-on activity on problems and aspects of FEA theory, and sessions in computer room to show how to program FEA concepts through development of an element library, and to illustrate issues related to modelling including meshing, element choice and convergence.
Guided independent study 115 Lecture notes and recommended reading sections in texts; modelling problems in FEA software; Material will be made available for online access via ELE

 

ASSESSMENT
FORMATIVE ASSESSMENT - for feedback and development purposes; does not count towards module grade
Form of Assessment Size of Assessment (e.g. duration/length) ILOs Assessed Feedback Method
There will be opportunities to reflect on and review work undertaken towards assessed Coursework.     Discussion within Tutorials
       
       
       
       

 

SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT (% of credit)
Coursework 30 Written Exams 70 Practical Exams
DETAILS OF SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT
Form of Assessment % of Credit Size of Assessment (e.g. duration/length) ILOs Assessed Feedback Method
Coursework 15 4 hours 1,2,4,6 Marked and returned
Coursework 15 4 hours 1,3,4-7 Marked and returned
Examination 70 2 hours 1-7 Mark returned
         
         

 

DETAILS OF RE-ASSESSMENT (where required by referral or deferral)
Original Form of Assessment Form of Re-assessment ILOs Re-assessed Time Scale for Re-assessment
All above Examination All August Ref/Def period
       
       

 

RE-ASSESSMENT NOTES

All referred/deferred assessments will be by written exam

RESOURCES
INDICATIVE LEARNING RESOURCES - The following list is offered as an indication of the type & level of
information that you are expected to consult. Further guidance will be provided by the Module Convener

Basic reading:

 

ELE: http://vle.exeter.ac.uk/

 

Web based and Electronic Resources:

 

Other Resources:

Hughes T.J.R. (2003) The Finite Element Method, Dover Publications. ISBN: 9780486411811

Zienkiewicz O.C. and Taylor R. (2013) The Finite Element Method, Butterworth Heinemann. ISBN: 9781856176309

Reading list for this module:

Type Author Title Edition Publisher Year ISBN Search
Set Cook; R.D. et al Concepts and Applications of Finite Element Analysis 4th Wiley 2002 [Library]
CREDIT VALUE 15 ECTS VALUE 7.5
PRE-REQUISITE MODULES None
CO-REQUISITE MODULES None
NQF LEVEL (FHEQ) 7 AVAILABLE AS DISTANCE LEARNING No
ORIGIN DATE Tuesday 07 October 2014 LAST REVISION DATE Thursday 28 May 2015
KEY WORDS SEARCH Finite element, numerical modelling, discretisation meshing, plane stress, strain isoperimetric, stiffness matrix