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Active Member
10 Posts
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Registered: ‎04-02-2013

Simulating Peak Load of an Assembly?

121 Views, 1 Replies
08-06-2013 11:00 AM

Hi all,

I'd like to use FEA as a way to predict the maximum a structural assembly can take before failure. In our lab, we build setups that involve steel beams, connectors, and bolts. We apply a download to an area of the assembly, and we monitor load vs. crosshead displacement. Eventually, the assembly will reach some peak load and buckle and begin to lose load. Is there a way that I can use FEA to predict this peak load? For example, if we test an assembly and the peak load is 50 kips, I'd like to build this model in CAD and test in FEA to determine the theoretical 'peak load'.

I'm currently running Autodesk Simulation Mechanical 2014 through the non-linear MES solver. 

Any tricks or ideas to determine this?


*Expert Elite*
596 Posts
129 Kudos
Registered: ‎08-30-2012

Re: Simulating Peak Load of an Assembly?

08-06-2013 01:08 PM in reply to: mdowns8357

Hi M,


You need to decide what constitutes "failure", and then monitor the results to see when that occurs. Hypothetically, the software will run the calculations to levels of stress and displacement that are physically impossible.


Based on your previous posts, I assume that the structure does exceed the yield limit. In this case, MES is your only solution option.


John Holtz, PE
Mechanical Engineer
Pittsburgh, PA

Simulation Mechanical user since Dec 1997