Finite Element Analysis - Practical Introduction


Course dates 2020
22, 23 and 24 September 2020 – Gent (BE)
Course duration
3 consecutive days
Gent (BE)
1.400 euro (excl. VAT) when registered before 30 days prior to start of the course
1.595 euro (excl. VAT) when registered after 30 days prior to start of the course

Learn to efficiently use the Finite Element Method

In recent years Finite Element Analysis has become a widely accepted analysis tool in the industry. The Finite Element Method is a powerful technique to solve complex structural problems. The technological progress of both software and hardware allows us today to analyse complex models that seemed impossible only a few years ago.

Designers and engineers who want to get started with FEA or companies who want to use this tool for innovative designs and to optimise their products, are confronted with a steep learning curve. This practical introduction course aims at accelerating the learning process and allows companies to have a faster return on investment in soft- and hardware.

What will you learn in this FEA course?

Students are familiarised with the background of the FEA method via simple real-life examples, using a minimum of theory. The strengths and weaknesses of different FEM techniques are discussed. Practical considerations on applying loads, defining constraints and simplifying structural details are extensively discussed by means of many practical examples.

A wide range of element types, solutions, meshing methods and processor options exists which need to be dealt with. The course guides the student in this matter using many common examples and shows how these can be used in practice.

Apart from setting up the mathematical model, it is vital to correctly interpret and validate the obtained analysis results. A validation process is taught that strongly improves the confidence in the results and has as objective to produce conservative, reliable and qualified results.

This course offers an excellent manual on how to efficiently start a FEM analysis and how to bring it to a successful conclusion. A clear insight in the objective of every analysis is of crucial importance and a road map to achieve this is laid out to the students.

Who should attend the course?

This course aims at designers and engineers who want to learn how to apply FEM techniques to efficiently and accurately solve their practical analysis problems. The course material presented is completely software independent, making the course accessible to current or future users of any available commercial FEA software. This course is a must for all engineers who focus on the use of Finite Element Analysis as a reliable tool for structural stiffness and strength calculations.

Companies migrating towards using FEA technology to improve their product performance, or want to investigate why their prototypes fail, or want to decrease product development time, will immediately benefit from this course.

Content of the course

  • History and background of the Finite Element Method
  • Refreshing of fundamental strength of material concepts
    • The Force vs. Displacement method
    • Description of simple element stiffness matrices
    • Classification of material stresses
  • Mesh nodes and degrees of freedom
  • Overview of different element types and mesh methods
    • 0D, 1D, 2D and 3D elements
    • Linear vs. quadratic elements
    • Mesh types and areas of concern for meshing
  • Defining healthy analysis models
    • Element deformations
    • Convergence control
    • Solver and preprocessor control
    • Stress concentrations and singularities
  • Boundary conditions
    • Boundary conditions methods
    • Real life boundary conditions
    • Poisson effect
    • Linear contact
  • Loading types
  • Multi-point constraints (MPC)
    • What are they and what are they used for?
    • Flexible and stiff constraints
  • Simplifying the analysis model
    • Defeaturing
    • Symmetry, anti-symmetry, axi-symmetry, plane stress, plane strain
  • Insight in the analysis goal
    • Obtaining a clear comprehension of the analysis goal
    • Setting up the framework of the considered structural problem
  • Material models
  • Equivalent stress and failure criteria
  • Review of the results
    • Force equilibrium
    • Free Body Diagram
    • Methods to verify results
    • Which stress types to use?
    • Mohr's Circle
    • Postprocessor verification and the danger of stress result averaging
  • Introduction to more advanced solution types
    • Nonlinear analysis
    • Nonlinear contact
    • Linear and nonlinear buckling analysis
    • Dynamic and modal analysis
    • Thermal analysis