1
Introduction to
STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS USING
FINITE ELEMENT PROGRAMS
Introduction
Computer programs can simplify the analysis of
complex structures
The primary computer method of analysis uses “finite
elements”
Finite elements break down the structure into discrete
(i.e. finite) elements
Finite Element Model

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2
Introduction
Finite elements can be used for static and dynamic
analyses of many types of structures
Finite
Element
Model
Showing Dynamic
Response (Mode 18)
Introduction
Finite elements can represent:
A
i
l l
d l
t
(i
t
l
t )
•
Axial load elements (i.e. truss elements)
•
Beam elements that resist moments, shear and
axial loads (i.e. frame elements)
•
Plate and shell elements (used to model
continuous structures such as walls)