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Frame structures in Finite Element Analysis

Example FEA model frame structure with topside

Strength check of beam members and beam connections.

Modeling each connection in detail can be a very time consuming job. Model your FE model with simple beam elements en check direct the frame structure beams and its connections according to international standards. Use the FEMDS add-on and read the results into FEMAP or ANSYS. This is the preferred way.

Generally no need for detailed FE models

In the past, lots of tests were performed to investigate the strength of closed hollow sections (CHS). Also for the strength of connections of CHS to CHS literature is available. Why don't use it and safe pretious engineering time by modelling a simple beam model, extract the beam end loads and moments and calculate the unity checks?

For the connection there is some hassle though.  This concerns the analysis how the load is transferred through the connection. A distinction is made between T/Y, K and/or cross connection joints. When branch members transmit part of their load as T/Y, K and or cross connections, the adequacy of the connections shall be determined by interpolation on the proportion of the available strength of each in total.  This differs per loadcase and can't be adequately done by hand. The FEMDS software solves this for the user.

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