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1) SolidWorks simulation and shell Shell elements. 2) Intentional gap between contacts

Question asked by Nikhil Phatak on Jan 20, 2015
Latest reply on Jan 30, 2015 by Jared Conway

Dear Friends,

I am trying to run static simulation on a pipeline with shell elements with some flanges ,clamps and supports that are treated as solids.


1) My problem starts with a simple bonded contact between two connected pipes(both shell)  which are initially touching without a gap which i think should be bonded with a global bonded contact.But even i add a local contact set between them (By selecting the outer edges of two pipes / or tangent outer faces..because shell is defined on outer face) the contact fails.(which i figured out by using soft springs and inertia relief)...

......somehow for same set of pre-processing even if i slightly modify these contacts at one pipe joint (edge to edge, edge to face or face to face) contacts at different pipe joint fails and the contact which was failing previously is now seen as bonded. 


2) Another thing is , I define a shell by outer face of a Pipe with certain thickness and by aligning this outer face as a shell's top face which also shows me a correct colored preview (aligned with a thickness). But when i actually mesh the model exactly reverse happens and i manually flip the shell elements.( i am wondering why i need to flip the shell elements after meshing  if i am defining them correctly)


3) I am trying to simulate a gap between clamp's inner face and a pipe's outer face(Both are concentric initially)Please refer image attached. I have added no penetration contact between them and clamp is having some imposed displacements on it which will try to make them off center.My intention is there will be no stresses on pipe till clamp touches the pipe and after that whatever of imposed displacement left will actually produce a stress on the pipe.( I thought of a bearing connector but in reality it is free to move) the real question is compare to pipes overall length this gap is small so what i am thinking is static solver can solve it. when i solve it separately with a single pipe it gives me good results .But as soon as i combine it with the assembly equilibrium is not achieved.

(** gap is not too small such that it will be ignored is greater than 0.5% of global element size that's what i got from the help.but not too large to go in large displacement mode compared to overall pipes length and deflections.


I think i typed too much and sorry for the rough images. Kindly advice and thanks in advance.