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Static structural finite-element analysis of tower crane based on FEM

Zhang Yang, Zhao Jianzhi

qingdao harbour vocational and technical college
qingdao, china
Yao Junjun
port oI qingdao
qingdao, china
Abstract: Finite-element analysis is an effective numerical
simulation method to analyse and calculate the complex
structure. This paper Introduced the basic theory of
finite-element analysis, and chose the QTZ630 tower crane as
as the analysis object, using the finite-element analysis
software ANSYS10.0 to realize the finite-element analysis of
whole machine, then gave the reasonable explanation to the
analysis results.
Keywords: finite element method; tower crane;
finite-element analysis.
Modern desi gn m ethods ha ve s ome excl usive
requirements o n th e design o I m achine p roducts which
include t he development Ir om st atic desi gn t o dy namic
design Irom ro utine design to reliab ility d esign.
Particularly on th e design oI large m echanical structure
using the static design Irom the beginning has reached the
areas i n w hich t he dy namic desi gn has bee n a dopted
broadly namely the dyn amic stren gth prob lem o I
mechanical products has been the main problem in intensity
Dynamic load oI t ower cranes and t heir parts are large
in gen eralbesidesit is easier to bring ab out Iatigue
damage iI th e load is Irequent. So, to avoid the damage in
the tower cran es, it is n ecessary to carry out the
Iinite-element analysis in t he tower cran es to ensure some
dynamic perI ormance i n t he working process oI t he t ower
cranes. I n t his way, sci entiIic guidance ca n be put on t he
design .production and use oI t he towe r cra nes Irom
theoretical and pratical sidethus the economy and use oI
security could be improved that may contribute a lot to the
construction i ndustry a nd e ven t he development o I t he
whole national economy|1|.
Finite-element anal ysis ca n be divided i nto t he
Iollowing steps |2|
The discretization oI the structure:
Scattering a e ngineering structure t o a c omputation
model composed oI sorts oI el ementsthis step is called
element subdi vision. Elements are c onnected by elem ent
node with each other ,the settingsproperties and number
oI the element node should be decided by the nature oI the
problemnecessity Ior describe the shape shiIt Iorm and
the progress oI calculating.
Select the displacement mode
The key oI the Iinite-element analysis is to select a
proper displacement Iunction in this stepnot only does
it operate easi lybut also can approa ch the smooth
partmeanwhileconvergence oI Ireedoms oI element
and the solution can be realized. The polynomial can
meet th e re quirement oI t he d isplacement I unction.
Using t he nodal displacement to express t he
expression oI the disp lacement oI any poi nt in the
elementthe matrix Iorm is:
^ ` > @^ `
f N G
Among above:
^ ` f is the displacement array oI any point in t he
^ `
G is the displacement array oI element node.
> @ N is shape Iunction ,it`s element is the Iunction
oI position coordinate.
1) Analyze t he m echanical prope rtiy oI t he
Displacement Iunction c an be ana lyzed in
mechanical propert iy aIter bei ng chosenit mainly
contains three parts
1According to the displacement expression1
using geometric equat ion t o deri ve t he e xpression by
which the nodal displacement expresses the element
^ ` > @^ `
Among above
^ ` H is th e stra in array oI a ny po int i n th e
> @ B is element strain matrix.
2According to the strain expression2using
constitutive equation to derive the expression by which
978-1-4244-9600-6/11/$26.00 2011 IEEE

the nodal displacement expresses the element strain.
> @ > @^ ` > @> @^ ` D D B V H G
Among above
> @ V is the stress matrix oI any point in the element,
> @ D is elastic matrix related to the material.
3 Using v ariation principle to estab lish th e
expression b etween th e nodal I orce on t he nod e an d the
nodal di splacement namelythe ele ment equ ilibrium
^ ` > @ > @
e e
> @ > @ > @> @
e T
K B D B dxdydz
Among above
> @
K is the element stiIIness matrix
^ `
F is equivalent nodal Iorce
2) Gathering all t he element equilibrium equation t o
establish the equilibrium equation oI the whole
Through bringing together the stiIIness matrix oI every
node a nd e quivalent n odal Iorce m atrix i nto t he whole
stiIIness m atrix and to tal lo ad array the equ ilibrium
equations oI the whole structure can be establishe d.
Assuming the displacement oI the adjacent elements on the
common no dethe who le equilibrium equat ions ca n b e
obtained as Iollow
> @^ ` > @ K F G
3) Solve the displacement oI unknown node
The unknown displacement can be obtained by solving
the simultaneous equ ation6.During solv ing t he lin ear
equationit`s characteristic should be considered to choose
the proper calculation method.
4) Calculate the element stress
AIter ev ery ele ment stiIIness m atrix eq uation i s
conIirmed the whole s tiIIness e quations can be
establishedthen import the boundary conditions to obtain
the nodal displacement by solvi ng e very sim ultaneous
equationthusthe internal Iorce and deIormation can be
3.1 Basic parameters
The concrete study object oI the paper is QTZ630 tower
cranethis tower cran e is upper carriage rotation jack up
tower cranemain perIormance parameters are as table 1
Table 1 the capability parameter
Name Value Unit
Rated liIting moment 630 KN.M
maximum liIting capacity 6000 KG
maximum working
50 M
LiIt height Independ
ence 40.5
2rope 8.4/40/80 M LiIt speed
4rope 4. 2/20/40 M
Rotation speed 0.61 r/min
Radius changing speed 21/42 r/min
Balance weight 12500 KG
Considering t he practical serv ice cond itionthis
paper c hooses t he da ngerous w orking c ondition i n
which the maximum amplitude is 50mliIting capacity
is 1200kg as t he calculation working condition to carry
out Static structural Iinite-element analysis oI QTZ 630
tower crane.
3.2 Finite element method analysis model
The tower crane uses the material oI which the
elasticity EX210GPaPoisson's ratio
7800kg/m .The Iin ite element model o I t he to wer
crane is shown in picture 1in which the QTZ630 tower
crane is scattered in to m ore th an 800 b eam e lements
and 278 nodes.

Picture 1, Finite element model oI QTZ630 tower crane

3.3 Process the boundary conditions
3.3.1 Process the restrai
The tower body is co nnected to th e Io undation b y
anchor boltsso considering that the bottom can bear
the b ending m oment and r estraint 4 nod es and 6
Ireedom degr ees,the pi n shaIt l ink bet ween t he mast
sections oI t he cra ne body can be regarded as ri gid
connection,the connection between the tower hat and
the pivoting su pport is con solidation,the conn ection
between t he pivoting s upport and t he t ower body i s
consolidation,both the connection between the liIting
beam an d th e p ivoting supp ort an d th e conn ection
between the pivoting support and t he balance beam are
hinge jo ints,Hoisting points on th e 4 draw bars are al l
regarded as hinge joints.
3.3.2 Process the load
According to thedesign speciIications oI tower crane
GB/T13752.1992during the analysis and calculation oI
the tower crane the selI loadliIting capacityrotation
startbrake inertia load and wind load should be considered
in ev ery calcu lation working cond ition. Kinds oI
calculation loa d and c oeIIicients oI the tower c rane a re
given as Iollow. |3-5|.
I. SelI load Pg
SelI load is gravity oI the metal structuremechanism
power or electric devices oI the t ower cra ne the
acceleration oI gravity ca n be applied to the st ructure by
applying th e density to the m aterial which ca n be
calculated by the ANSYS program.
II. liIting capacity and the liIting capacity coeIIicient

During t he practical worki ng pr ogress oI the tower
crane the liI ting load disap pears I rom the ground
suddenlysimultaneouslythe liItin g lo ad wou ld bring
about s trike to th e t ower cranethe st rike can m ake
additional dynamic loads to the structure oI the tower crane.
In the design speciIications oI tower cranethe inIluence oI
the dynamic loads is realized by multiplying the liIting load
by the dynamic load coeIIicient oI the liIting load which is
larger t han 1.The m ethod t o select t he c oeIIicient i s a s
when 0.02m/s
M 1.05 7
when `0.02m/s
M 1.05 8
Among a bove is th e liIting sp eed. Whe n
analyzing the structural st atic Io rce oI tower cran ethe
liIting lo ad wh ich is in t he way o I con centrated Iorce
should be applied on t he moving trolley on average t o the
contact point belonging to the crane jib
III. Wind load
Wind load is the load that emerges when the wind acts
on the rod pieces oI the crane jib. The pressure load which
is equivalent to the wind load oI each bar is loade d on the
stoss side oI rod pieces. The calculation oI the working
wind l oad oI the rod pieces s hould be re Iered t o t he
relevant regu lations in design speci Iications o I tower
w w w
Among above
is wind pressure coeIIicientselect 1.25, C
is calculation wind pressureselect 250Pa. P
For the rod pieces in Iront row A is the windward area
perpendicular t o t he wind directionFor the rod pieces in
backt rowA.
IV. Wind load oI liIting load
According to the d esign sp eciIicationswhen the
windward area oI the liIting items can not be ensured
the wind loads that act on t he items are calculated as 3
percent oI the rated liIting capacityand act on the items
horizontally i n t he direction t hat does bad t o t he
combination oI the loadswhile its value can not be
larger than 500Nso the wind load oI load is equivalent
to 3 `liIting lo adthe liItin g lo ad oI wind lo ad is
applied on ave rage to the Iour contact points betwee n
the wheels oI the trolley and the liIting beams.
V. Rotation inertia loa ds ca used by structure
and concentrated mass
The horizontal inertia loads caused by t he selI lo ad
oI t he liIting beam struct ure and luIIing m echanism
trolley liIting lo ad inIluen ce th e who le angu lar
acceleration which goes around the tower central shaIt.
3.4 The calculation result and analysis oI the Ii nite
According to the above boundary conditionon the
condition that the accuracy oI analysis can be ensured
to sim pliIy th e an alysis in t he sta tic structural
Iinite-element analysis oI t ower cra ne st ructurethe
wind load and inertia load can be ignoredbesidesthe
balance loa d can be sim ulated by conce ntrated loa d.
The result is obtained as IollowIigure234 give the
Iinite element model oI the QTZ630 tower crane whose
working condition is dan gerous u nder whi ch the
maximum ran ge i s 50mliIting l oad is 12 00kg
acceleration oI gravity is 9.8N/kgaIter being loaded
also the displacement distributing condition and stress
distributing con dition are given. Con sidering t hat th e
mass oI each part is diIIerent when modelingdiIIerent
densities should be a pplied to each partor el sethe
result oI t he static stru ctural an alysis will b e quite
diIIerent when th e density o I the liItin g beam is
7800kg/m the calculation result is given in the Iigure
5,6it can be used in comparative analysis.

Figure 2, Finite element model oI QTZ630 tower crane
aIter being loaded

Under above working conditionthe calculation result
oI the correct model is

Figure 6, Stress distributing condition oI QTZ630 tower crane
As shown in Iigure 5,6when the liIting beam has
the same densi tythe di splacement oI t he boom poi nt
under th e same wo rking co ndition reaches n early 1
meterwhich o bviously goes agai nst t he Iact while
little change has ta ken place bet ween the two stre ss
distribution co ndition this shows t hat stress is
insensitive t o t he density oI t he liIting beam which as
well meets the theory oI material mechanics viewed
Irom the side it certainly proves that the Iinite element
model oI the tower cra ne is correct and lay a so lid
Ioundation Ior the latter model analysis. Because once a
Iailure m odel is estab lishedthe resu lt oI the model
analysis will be not exact.
Figure 3, Displacement distributing condition oI the QTZ630 tower crane

Finite-element an alysis is a i mportant d esign
procedures a mong t he m odern design procedures
through th e Ii nite-element a nalysisthe s ecurity and
reliability oI t he design proposal can be veriIied. This
paper t akes t he t ower c rane as t he st udy objectand
obtains th e result o I th e stress d istribution cond ition
under th e dangerous wo rking cond itionthe resu lt
shows t hat t he desi gn proposal m eets t he re quest I or
Figure 4, Stress distributing condition oI QTZ630 tower crane
As shown in Iigure 3,4when the tower crane is under
the working condition that the maximum range is 50mthe
liIting cap acity is 120 0kgthe maximum displacement is
344.21mm and on the boom pointthis agrees to the Iact.
The maximum stress is 117MPawhile the allowable stress
oI the metal material Q235 oI the tower crane is 175 Mpa
it can be known t hat this t ower cra ne m eets the desi gn
requirement oI t he speciIicationand some m aterial is
saved by the tower crane,
Under the same working co nditionthe calculation
result oI the model in which each part oI the liIting beam
has the same mass is:
|1| Tong Jiang. dy namic str ucture analysis and r esearch oI Tower
crane |D| . Shandong Univer sity oI Science and Technology

|2| Qiang Feng. Multi-objective Optimization oI Boom Ior Flat-top
Tower Crane Ai ming at Dyna mic PerIormance |D|. SouthWest
Jiaotong University2008.
|3| Qiang Yin, Shijia o Chen, M an zhong Ji. M odel Analysis oI
Tower Crane S tructure Based on A NSYS | J|. JOURNAL OF
|4| Shudong Xu. The application oI Iinite ele ment technology at
structure anal ysis oI Tower cran e | J|. C ONSTRUCTION
|5| GB/T13752.1992Design rules Ior tower cranes|S|. Bei Jing
China S tate Bure au oI Quality an d Technical Supervision
Figure 5, Displacement distributing condition oI the QTZ630 tower crane