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Old 03-17-2016, 07:12 PM   #1
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Does anyone use FEA regularly?

We started using FEA at work, and it's quite the learning curve. So much math, slowly coming back to me. We are using ADINA for dynamic nonlinear analysis.

What do you use? What has your experience been comparing it to real world scenarios?
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Old 03-17-2016, 07:42 PM   #2
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Old 03-17-2016, 08:10 PM   #3
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I used to do it for a living. Still do it from time to time.

Solidworks and Ansys were my go tos. It works well provided you know what you're doing. The biggest thing is defining material properties, especially when it comes to polymer materials as they have aging characteristics that the manufacturer won't account for. With metals it's fairly straight forward if you can get your boundary conditions right.
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Old 03-18-2016, 04:16 AM   #4
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yeah, what SamDoe1 said...
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Old 03-18-2016, 03:32 PM   #5
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I used to do it for a living. Still do it from time to time.

Solidworks and Ansys were my go tos. It works well provided you know what you're doing. The biggest thing is defining material properties, especially when it comes to polymer materials as they have aging characteristics that the manufacturer won't account for. With metals it's fairly straight forward if you can get your boundary conditions right.
Material properties are pretty difficult to get right especially with foams and plastics I have found. I also have a hard time with contact between organically shaped meshes, it has a tendency to do some weird things, and simulations take a long time.

What did you use Solidworks for? For CAD or the built in fea part of it?
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Old 03-18-2016, 03:36 PM   #6
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Old 03-18-2016, 04:16 PM   #7
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wut
finite element analysis
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Old 03-18-2016, 04:32 PM   #8
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finite element analysis
wut
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Old 03-18-2016, 05:15 PM   #9
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Old 03-18-2016, 05:36 PM   #10
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Yeah break down a complex object into simple shapes (finite elements). Since you know the equations for solving for stress and strain in the simple elements, you can iterate the calculation and come up with an overall approximation of the effects in the complex shape. The more small simple pieces you have, the more accurate the calculation is.
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Old 03-18-2016, 07:24 PM   #11
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We hire ph.d's to handle all of that. And they do an excellent job.
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Old 03-18-2016, 11:50 PM   #12
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You have PhDs running FEA software?
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:09 PM   #13
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Yes, many of them
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:17 PM   #14
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Do you guys just enjoy blowing money? Or are your models pushing the boundaries of what is possible with FEA?
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:31 PM   #15
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The level of theory required to setup simulations at their level is not taught in undergraduate. I don't think it's a waste of money at all, they are excellent at what they do.
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:36 PM   #16
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What are they modelling?
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:55 PM   #17
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A wide variety of testing that you would expect for consumer product design analysis.
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:59 PM   #18
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Meh, you should have like one Ph.D. training some capable undergrads.
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Old 03-19-2016, 01:05 PM   #19
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I probably won't be passing that feedback along to the teams, but I understand your sentiment. Things work a bit differently in what we do and what we expect out of people. In 99% of cases you might be right.
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Old 03-19-2016, 01:08 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kuksul08 View Post
Material properties are pretty difficult to get right especially with foams and plastics I have found. I also have a hard time with contact between organically shaped meshes, it has a tendency to do some weird things, and simulations take a long time.

What did you use Solidworks for? For CAD or the built in fea part of it?
Organics are a while different ball game. I haven't come across a software package that can do a good job with them. I spent a lot of time working on simulating blood, never got there. Foams and plastics are a challenge if you are getting into non linear situations which is pretty easy with those materials.

I used solidworks for both depending on the application. The built in simulation xpress is pretty terrible but the full version of it that we had a license for was pretty good for basic to moderate mechanical and basic fluid work. Ansys is a LOT better at both buy you pay dearly for it. One license is ~$75k plus all the yearly fees.





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We hire ph.d's to handle all of that. And they do an excellent job.

I'm sure they do but given your line if work, they're probably not needed. We had one phd level guy on my team whose sole job was modeling a complex nitinol mesh for a septal occluder. That's something that you don't get with undergrad but basic consumer level metals and plastics aren't that challenging.



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The level of theory required to setup simulations at their level is not taught in undergraduate. I don't think it's a waste of money at all, they are excellent at what they do.
Sure but whether their level is worthwhile or not is a different story. Either way, if the company will pay for them (they don't come cheap) then there's nothing wrong with having them around.
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