Nonlinear Impact Analysis using Cloud-based Simulations

By Suman Sudhakaran on August 25, 2021

Structural Mechanics Engineer (SME) is a comprehensive structural simulation SaaS (software as a service) solution on the 3DEXPERIENCE cloud-based platform. Powered by the market leader, Abaqus solver (finite element analysis) technology, SME can solve sophisticated structural and dynamics problems with higher fidelity.

Why Structural Mechanics Engineer?

Designers and Engineers can unravel highly nonlinear problems that range from simple to complex physics with higher fidelity and efficiency. Applications include high-speed events such as drop tests, impacts or low-speed events such as large strain, blow-molding, etc.

Advanced Meshing Tools

SME offers advanced meshing tools and contact capabilities. A highly nonlinear impact test can be simulated more accurately in SME. For example, a drop test study for a plastic container in SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional could not capture the precise contact behavior at the hinge connection of the cap arm and container. Increasing mesh density to improve contact behavior led to increased run time for drop test in SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional.SOLIDWORKS Drop Test Analysis Using Simulation ProfessionalThe same analysis setup with finer mesh for the container and a brick mesh (hexahedral elements) for the rigid floor converged successfully in less than 40 minutes using Explicit Dynamic solver in SME. Contact definition included friction and the stresses in cap-arm were modeled more accurately.

SOLIDWORKS Drop Test Analysis Using Structural Mechanics Engineer

Nonlinear Dynamics Analysis

The image below shows an example of Dynamic Analysis for a stack of blocks dropped onto a rigid floor. A prescribing displacement to blocks located at the bottom of the stack resting against the floor initiated the collapse of the stack. Nonlinear dynamics analysis in SOLIDWORKS Simulation Premium converged successfully, however, contact interactions did not function as expected.

SOLIDWORKS Collapse of Blocks Simulation Using Nonlinear Dynamic Study

>> Another Example of Drop Test Analysis: The Cutting Edge of Design Series Part 9

Explicit Dynamics Solver

Here, we collapse the stack using the same setup when simulated using SME and captured a more realistic behavior. The study was set up using brick mesh for the entire model and the Explicit Dynamics Solver was utilized.

SOLIDWORKS Collapse of Blocks Simulation Using Structural Mechanics Engineer

Material Calibration

As with any Simulation software, results are only as accurate as inputs provided by the users. SME offers a Material Calibration tool to model accurate material behavior for analysis. This allows for fitting of nonlinear material curves via direct import of physical material test data. While you can always use SOLIDWORKS for geometry modifications, SME does include a Model Preparation App to help with de-featuring or model simplification for analysis purposes.SOLIDWORKS Material Calibration App in Structural Mechanics Engineeer

Workflow for an Analysis Task

SOLIDWORKS users can take advantage of these simulation apps on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform using the 3DEXPERIENCE Connector. A typical workflow for an analysis task is as shown below.SOLIDWORKS and SME Simulation Analysis WorkflowBy simulating on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, engineers and designers can break free of hardware constraints to scale and ramp up the development of innovative products in a collaborative environment. This ability to solve complex physics problems with more confidence and efficiency allows users to democratize simulation workflows.

Watch the full on-demand video below for examples of complex analysis with even higher fidelity.