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Structural Mechanics & Thermal Stress Blog Posts

Barrel Hinge Analysis

April 9, 2013

We’ve all encountered hinges before; they are frequently used to connect different parts of mechanical assemblies in a way that allows them to move freely relative to one another, in a single degree of freedom. There are several different types of hinges, including everything from barrel hinges to friction hinges, with lots in between. Before incorporating a hinge into a mechanical assembly, you might want to get a sense of how it will hold up by performing a hinge analysis.

Structural Mechanics Tutorials: Adding Initial Strain and Thermal Stress

April 4, 2013

Back in January, I presented a video tutorial introducing the Structural Mechanics Module here on the blog. The video described the steps necessary to perform a static linear analysis on a bracket geometry. Now, to help you better understand the extra functionalities that exist within COMSOL Multiphysics and the Structural Mechanics Module, we are also creating additional tutorial videos of this bracket. The first two “mini-tutorials” to accompany the static linear analysis video focus on adding initial strain and thermal […]

Structural Analysis with Thin Elastic Layers

April 3, 2013

Some structural applications involve thin or high aspect ratio structures sandwiched between other relatively low aspect ratio structures. For example, if a piezoelectric transducer is glued on the surface of a mechanical system, the thickness of the adhesive layer is very small in comparison to the two structures it glues together. Numerical modeling of such a thin layer in two or three dimensions requires resolving it with an appropriate finite element mesh. This can result in a large concentration of […]

The Graphene Revolution: Part 2

March 27, 2013

In a previous blog entry I discussed some of the exotic properties of graphene. The fact that graphene consists of a single layer of atoms means the aspect ratio of any graphene-based structure may be very high. High aspect geometries present their own array of modeling challenges.

Infamous Failures of Fatigue

February 7, 2013

If you’ve studied structural mechanics you’re probably familiar with stories of planes falling out of the sky due to fatigue (no one wants to be the engineer who designed an airplane that crashed…). Jimmy Stewart made a famous movie about that, but different from the usual horror stories of fatigue is the accident in 1919 of a storage tank that burst in Boston, spilling molasses onto the streets at 35 mph (56 km/h). The Boston Molasses Disaster, as it’s referred […]

Video Tutorial: Introduction to the Structural Mechanics Module

January 24, 2013

The Structural Mechanics Module has numerous capabilities, enough for a video containing all of them to last days. This video demonstrates one of the many mechanical capabilities of COMSOL Multiphysics, by outlining a Static Linear Analysis. The chosen physics interface for this problem is Solid Mechanics, one of 13 physics interfaces in the Structural Mechanics Module. The video shows step-by-step how to set up the model of a bracket with a standard workflow (i.e. import the geometry, create global parameters […]

Industry: Continuum Blue Simulates Structural Mechanics

January 16, 2013

On January 10th, hundreds of people tuned in to hear COMSOL and Continuum Blue discuss Structural Mechanics simulations in certain industry applications. As promised in my previous blog post on multiphysics modeling webinars happening in 2013, here is a round-up of the event — including a video excerpt detailing three structural analysis examples presented by Continuum Blue.

Modeling a Pratt Truss Bridge

December 28, 2012

The simple design of a Pratt truss bridge makes it useful to hold everything from pedestrians to trains. While this type of bridge is easy to construct, engineers must make sure that it lasts and is safe to use. A bridge needs to hold its own weight, support the load placed upon it, and withstand frequencies generated by wind and earthquakes. To determine whether a Pratt truss bridge design can handle these factors, we turn to simulation.


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