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Technology Update

Sample Problem: Collapsed Fuel Container The nonlinear stabilization technique can be used in a wide
Sample Problem:
Collapsed Fuel Container
The nonlinear stabilization technique
can be used in a wide range of unstable
problems, including some that would
be difficult to solve with conventional
FEA methods.
Figure 1. Fuel container
example geometry and
boundary conditions

Understanding Nonlinear Stabilization Features

Enhancements in ANSYS Mechanical handle nonlinear problems such as buckling, structural wrinkling and other large-deformation analysis in which material behavior becomes unstable.

By Roxana Cisloiu and Jin Wang ANSYS, Inc. Development

In large-deformation analysis, two major problems can cause convergence difficulties and reduce simulation accuracy (especially in static analysis with implicit solvers): mesh distortion and structural instability. A special nonlinear technique called rezoning was released in ANSYS 10.0 for the first of these problems, allowing users to repair the distorted mesh (limited to 2-D for now) and continue the simula- tion. In addition, a nonlinear stabilization technique developed as an enhancement in ANSYS 11.0 allows for state-of-the-art simulations of unstable nonlinear problems such as post-buckling, snap-through, structural wrinkling and other analysis in which materials become unstable.

Numerical Damping for Large Deformations

An unstable structure usually is characterized by a load-displacement curve in which the deformations

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can become very large during a small load increment. The newly developed tool in version 11.0 deals with such instabilities by providing a numerical damping scheme invoked by the STABILIZE command, which activates or de-activates stabilization from one load step to another or after a multiframe restart during a load step. The stabilization feature can be thought of as adding an artificial damper or dashpot element at each node of an element for which this feature is available. Stabilization is achieved by reducing the large displacement of the node by adding to the force equilibrium equations a damping force (stabilization force) proportional to the pseudo-velocity of the node. Since it is usually difficult to predetermine the stability of a structure, it is more efficient and accurate to run the nonlinear analysis without stabilization while saving the restart files. Then, if the analysis fails to converge due to instabilities, the stabilization can be

ANSYS Solutions | Volume 7, Issue 5 2006

Figure 2. Final deformation at which ANSYS diverges without stabilization activated during a restart analysis

Figure 2. Final deformation at which ANSYS diverges without stabilization

activated during a restart analysis from any substep except the last converged one. If the behavior of a problem is known to lose stability very soon after the

load application, then the stabilization can be turned on at the beginning of the analysis. The stabilization force can be controlled via an energy dissipation ratio (STABILIZE,,ENERGY) or

a damping factor (STABILIZE,,DAMPING). ANSYS

provides the user with the option of applying the stabilization force by keeping the damping factor unchanged during each substep of a load step (STABILIZE,CONSTANT,) or by gradually reducing

it to zero at the end of the load step (STABILIZE,

REDUCED,). The specific value that has to be applied

to achieve both convergence and correct deformation patterns is determined through a trial-and-error process.

Accuracy of the Analysis

Since artificial stabilization forces are introduced into the problem, users are advised always to check the accuracy of results obtained with this technique. This can be done in the following ways:

Compare the stabilization energy to the potential energy. The stabilization energy should be much less than the potential energy for an acceptable result.

If the previous condition is not satisfied, the user can further compare the stabilization forces to the applied loads and reaction forces. An acceptable result requires that these forces be much smaller than the others. Such a case can occur when an elastic system is loaded

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can occur when an elastic system is loaded www.ansys.com Figure 3. Final deformation obtained using the

Figure 3. Final deformation obtained using the new nonlinear stabilization tool in ANSYS 11.0

first and then unloaded significantly, resulting in a small elemental potential energy but large stabilization energy.

When the above conditions are not fulfilled, the results still might be valid if a large part of an elastic structure undergoes rigid body motion, as in a snap-through simulation. But the results have to be used extra carefully.

Sample Problems

The nonlinear stabilization technique can be used in a wide range of unstable problems. It is illustrated here

in several examples (Figures 1 through 8) that could

not have been solved otherwise in a practical manner with conventional FEA methods.

Collapsed Fuel Container

The model (Figures 1, 2 and 3) represents half of a five-liter fuel container modeled with SHELL181

elements with reduced integration as well as two pairs

of contact elements defined on both the inside and

outside surfaces of the bottle. The material considered

is elastic, and applied boundary conditions and forces

are shown in Figure 1. The initial simulation without stabilization diverges at time 0.38 and no significant deformation is visible, as can be seen in Figure 2.

A restart analysis is performed from the substep

before the last converged one with stabilization turned on with the constant option and controlled by a damping factor of 1.5. Using stabilization, the analysis can be carried out up to the point at which the bottle is almost fully collapsed, as shown in Figure 3.

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Technology Update

Sample Problem: Local Pipe Buckling

34 Technology Update Sample Problem: Local Pipe Buckling Figure 4. Pipe geometry and boundary conditions Figure

Figure 4. Pipe geometry and boundary conditions

Buckling Figure 4. Pipe geometry and boundary conditions Figure 5. Equivalent stress at the last converged

Figure 5. Equivalent stress at the last converged substep without stabilization

stress at the last converged substep without stabilization Figure 6. Final equivalent stress obtained with

Figure 6. Final equivalent stress obtained with stabilization

Local Pipe Buckling

This model (Figures 4, 5 and 6) represents a thin- walled pipe modeled with SOLID186 elements that is subjected to a large, pure bending deformation. The material is chosen as elasto-plastic with a TB,BISO definition. The geometry of the model, boundary conditions and applied pressures are shown in Figure 4. The initial analysis is run without stabiliza- tion and diverges at time 0.75 due to the instabilities developed as a result of the local buckling of the pipe. As can be noted in Figure 5, this stage shows very little

deformation compared to the initial configuration, and buckling is not yet initiated. Therefore, the analysis is restarted at time 0.62 and stabilization is turned on with the constant option, and a specified energy value of 0.04 is used. The model is solved to completion. The final deformation obtained with stabilization is shown in Figure 6.

Wrinkled Thin Membrane

The choice of this example (Figures 7 and 8) to test the performance of the stabilization feature was motivated

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ANSYS Solutions | Volume 7, Issue 5 2006

by two reasons: the challenges that any finite element software faces when simulating the development of the out-of-plane deformations in thin-film membranes and the availability of experimental data for compari- son in published literature (Alexander Tessler, David W. Sleight and John T. Wang, “Nonlinear Shell Modeling of Thin Membranes with Emphasis on Structural Wrinkling,” 44th AIAA/ASME/ASCE/AHS/ASC Struc- tures, Structural Dynamics, and Materials Conference, Norfolk, Virginia, AIAA 2003-1931, April 7 – 10, 2003, pp. 11). The model represents a square thin membrane (Mylar ® polyester film) modeled with 100x100 SHELL181 elements. The model is clamped along the bottom edge and subjected to an in-plane shear loading along the top edge, as shown in Figure 7. Because there is no mechanism that can initiate the out-of-plane, buckled deformation, a well-known procedure is used that consists of imposing pseudo- random imperfections at each node in the out-of- plane direction. The imperfection magnitudes are dependent on the membrane thickness and are very small so that they do not influence the final deformed configuration. The imperfections, material data and geometry employed are the same as in the above referenced literature. Since the structural instabilities are initiated soon after the load application, the stabilization feature is activated from the beginning with the constant option and an energy value of 0.5. The out-of-plane deformations, as shown in Figure 8, were found in close agreement with results available in the literature in terms of number of wrinkles, their orientation and amplitudes.

Summary

The new nonlinear stabilization technique shows significant potential for use in solving many of today’s formidable tasks such as post-buckling and other shell, beam and solid structures with instabilities. The novel stabilization technique proves to be a very powerful tool with very few limitations, and it can be used together with nearly any other nonlinear solution technique (except arc-length method). The addition of nonlinear stabilization together with the recently introduced rezoning feature has greatly amplified the power of ANSYS nonlinear capabilities. It has proven itself as an important step in the advancement of simulating complex engineering processes.

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Sample Problem: Wrinkled Thin Membrane

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www.ansys.com Sample Problem: Wrinkled Thin Membrane 3 5 Figure 7. Square thin-film membrane example geometry and

Figure 7. Square thin-film membrane example geometry and loading

7. Square thin-film membrane example geometry and loading Figure 8. Out-of-plane deformations ANSYS Solutions | Volume

Figure 8. Out-of-plane deformations

ANSYS Solutions | Volume 7, Issue 5 2006