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Weldments and FEA

Question asked by Michael Feeney on Apr 6, 2011
Latest reply on Apr 7, 2011 by Kevin De Smet

Hello All,


I am running natural frequency analysis on a tube frame structure for my thesis. I have been using ABAQUS, but I wanted to compare the results with SolidWorks (not to mention SolidWorks models, in general, look prettier). I was curious if anyone had input on the following:


Here is one of the ABAQUS models:



The figure on the top is the whole tripod viewed in the undeformed state. The simulation has been run and you can see the frequency in the bottom text to be 214.38 Hz. The bottom figure is a close up of the joining members.


Here is my SolidWorks model:



The top figure is the whole model and the bottom figure is a zoomed view of the node weldment connection. As can be seen the frequencies from ABAQUS and SolidWorks are roughly the same.


In ABAQUS, the user simple draws a wire frame and then applies a beam profile to the frame members. Apparently ABAQUS allows material interference. In Solidworks, I used the weldment feature, but I had to modify the design slightly. Notice at the ends of the tripod legs they don't come to a single point, but rather 4 spaced points. I had to do this because the weldment feature didn't allow that type of geometry. Furthermore, at the upper section area where I zoomed in, that's how the weldment treated the geometry. I'm curious how I can explain this in my paper. Is this just a visual error and both programs are treating the members the same way? How do these end connections effect the system?


Also here is the physical model I made from brass tubing and solder. I have to validate software with experimental results of course!