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# NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT

ANALYSIS

SCRIPT OF LECTURES

Faculty of Mechanical Engineering,
Technical University of Koice, Slovakia

HS Wismar, June 2011
2 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

CONTENTS
1. Structural nonlinearities....................................................................... 4
1.1 Introduction.......................................................................................4
1.2 Types of structural nonlinearities......................................................5
1.3 Concept of time curves .....................................................................5
2. Geometrically nonlinear finite element analysis ................................. 7
2.1 Large displacement and small strain behavior ..................................7
2.2 Incremental - iterative solutions......................................................12
2.2.1 Incremental method........................................................... 14
2.2.2 Newton-Raphson method.................................................. 15
2.2.3 Modified Newton-Raphson method.................................. 16
2.2.4 Quasi-Newton methods..................................................... 17
2.3 Linear stability analysis ..................................................................17
2.4 Large displacement and large strain behavior.................................18
2.4.1 Total Lagrangian formulation ........................................... 19
2.4.2 Updated Lagrangian formulation...................................... 19
3. Material nonlinearities ....................................................................... 20
3.1 Introduction.....................................................................................20
3.2 Nonlinear elasticity models.............................................................20
3.3 Elastoplastic material model ...........................................................22
3.3.1 Yielding criterion .............................................................. 22
3.3.2 Post yielding behavior....................................................... 24
3.3.3 Constitutional equations of elastoplastic material............. 26
3.3.4 Integration of constitutive equations................................. 28
3.3.4.1 Generalised trapezoidal rule................................................ 29
3.3.4.2 Generalised mid point rule.................................................. 29
3.3.5 Numerical procedures ....................................................... 30
Appendix............................................................................................................ 32
Nonlinear analyses with COSMOS/M program..........................................33
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 3
1.1 Properties of finite elements................................................ 33
1.2 Nonlinear analysis setup...................................................... 36
1.3 Time curves and time parameters........................................ 42
1.4 Restart possibilities.............................................................. 47
Examples of COSMOS/M program use ..................................................... 48
1.5 Compressed slender beam................................................... 48
1.6 Thick-walled pipe subjected to internal pressure ................ 51
1.7 Deformation of a thin-walled tank ...................................... 55

4 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
1. STRUCTURAL NONLINEARITIES
1.1 Introduction
Solution of many engineering problems is based on linear approximations. In
structural analyses, these approximations are represented by consideration that
displacements are small and can be neglected in equilibrium
equations,
the strain is proportional to the stress (linear Hookean material
model),
loads are conservative, independent on displacements,
Consequently, in the Finite Element Analysis (FEA) the set of equations,
describing the structural behavior is then linear
, F d K = (1.1)
where K is the stiffness matrix of the structure, d is the nodal displacements vector
and F is the external nodal force vector. Characteristics of solution of this linear
problem is that
the displacements are proportional to the loads,
the stiffness of the structure is independent on the value of the
In reality, behavior of structures is nonlinear, but divergences from linear
response are usually small and may be neglected in most practical problems.
On other hand, solution of many engineering problems needs abandonment of
linear approximations. For example, displacements of slender structures (like crane
towers, masts etc.) may be so large that changes of the structure shape (or
configuration changes) cannot be neglected. Many materials behave nonlinearly or
linear material model cannot be used if stress exceeds some value. Moreover,
loads may change their orientations according to displacements and supports may
phenomena are included in a FEA, the set of equilibrium equations becomes
nonlinear and instead of set of linear equations (1.1) we obtain a set of nonlinear
algebraic equations
. ) ( F d R = (1.2)
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 5
1.2 Types of structural nonlinearities
Structural nonlinearities can be specified as
1. Geometrical nonlinearities: The effect of large displacements on
the overall geometric configuration of the structure.
2. Material nonlinearities: Material behavior is nonlinear. Possible
material models are:
a) nonlinear elastic,
b) elastoplastic,
c) viscoelastic,
d) viscoplastic.
3. Boundary nonlinearities, i.e. displacement dependent boundary
conditions. The most frequent boundary nonlinearities are
encountered in contact problems.

Consequences of nonlinear structural behavior that have to be recognized are:
a) The principle of superposition cannot be applied. Thus, for
example, the results of several load cases cannot be combined.
Results of the nonlinear analysis cannot be scaled.
b) Only one load case can be handled at a time.
important. Especially, plastic deformations depend on a manner
increments in nonlinear FE analysis.
d) The structural behavior can be markedly non-proportional to the
e) The initial state of stress (e.g. residual stresses from heat
treatment, welding, cold forming etc.) may be important.
1.3 Concept of time curves
For nonlinear static analysis, the loads are applied in incremental steps using time
curves. The time variable represents a pseudo time, which denotes the intensity
of the applied loads at certain step.
For nonlinear dynamic analysis and nonlinear static analysis with time-
dependent material properties,
1
time represents the real time associated with the

1
i.e. analysis of creep and relaxation problems by use of viscoelastic or viscoplastic material
models.
6 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
As an example, time curves of forces F
1
and F
2
displayed in Figure 1.1. Values of forces at any time are defined as

( )
1 1 1
f t F = and ( )
2 2 2
f t F =

where f
1
and f
2
are input values of forces and
1
and
1
functions of time t.

Figure 1.1: Example of time curves

The choice of time step size depends on several factors such as the level of
nonlinearities
2
of the problem and the solution procedure. Generally, sufficiently
small steps are necessary to simulate nonlinear response of a structure with
satisfactory accuracy. On the other hand, large number of too small time steps
uselessly increases consumption of CPU time. Computer programs are usually
equipped with an adaptive automatic stepping algorithm to facilitate the analysis
and to reduce the solution time demands.

2
Highly nonlinear problems need smaller load increments.
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 7
2. GEOMETRICALLY NONLINEAR
FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
2.1 Large displacement and small strain behavior
To examine geometrically nonlinear behavior we will start with an example. We
assume large displacement, but small rotation and, what is the most important,
small strain. The structure is very simple only one bar truss as is shown in Figure
2.1. At the beginning, when the force P is zero, the axial force N in the bar is zero
too and bar has its initial length L
0
.

Figure 2.1: Example of nonlinear structure single bar truss

Using the free body diagram shown in Figure 2.1 the equilibrium equation is
0 sin = P N
and after substituting L u h ) ( sin + =
. 0 =
+
P
L
u h
N (2.1)
Assume that material is linearly elastic with Youngs modulus E. The
assumption of small strains means here that changes of the bar cross sectional area
A can be neglected. Then axial force in the bar is

8 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

0
A E N = (2.2)

where A
0
is the initial cross sectional area and is the engineering strain defined
as
0
0
L
L L
= . (2.3)
As lengths are given as
2 2
0
h a L + = and
2 2
) ( u h a L + + = (2.4)
the expression for strain is getting rather complicated. We can overcame this
problem by introducing Greens strain defined as
2
0
2
0
2
2L
L L
G

= (2.5)
which for our problem becomes
2
0 0 0
2
1
|
|

\
|
+ =
L
u
L
u
L
h
G
. (2.6)
Use of this new measure of strain is possible because we can define strain
arbitrarily. The only condition is that the strain measure must be objective, which
means that is have to be independent on choice of coordinate system and
insensitive to a rigid body movement. From equations (2.3) and (2.5), it follows
that
|
|

\
|
+

=
=
|
|

\
|
+
+
=
+
=
+
=

=
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
2
0
2
0
2
2
2
1
1 1
2
1
2
1
2 2
L
L
L
L L
L
L L
L
L L
L
L L
L
L L
L
L L
G

or
2
2
1
+ =
G
. (2.7)
Noting that the constitution equation was measured as
E
A
N
= =
0
(2.8)
the same constitutive equation when using Greens strain should be

NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 9
G G G
G
E
E E

2
1
1
2
1
2
+
=
+
= = . (2.9)
This means that we should use value
) 2 / 1 ( 1+
=

E
E
instead of E in the constitution equation. Fortunately, we can ignore this
complication

now because for small engineering strain is the difference between
engineering and Greens strain negligible.
then
G
= 0,002 + 0,50,002
2
= 0,002002. This means that difference is only 0,1%
i.e. a value that can be usually neglected. Assuming that strain is small, we can
write
G
E and according to equation (2.6)
|

\
|
+ =
2
2
0
0
2
1
u u h
L
A E
N . (2.10)
Substituting (2.10) to equilibrium equation (2.1) and assuming that for small strain
is
0
L L gives the equilibrium equation
( ) . 2 3
2
2 2 3
3
0
0
P u h u h u
L
A E
= + + 2.11)
Obviously, the equation is nonlinear with respect to displacement u. That means
that relation between load P and displacement u is represented not by a straight
line as it is when changes of configuration are neglected but by a curve. This
nonlinear characteristic for E = 2,110
5
MPa, A
0
= 100 mm
2
, a = 200 mm and
h = 20 mm is shown in Figure 2.2.

-1000
-500
0
500
1000
1500
2000
2500
-10 -5 0 5 10
u [mm]
P [N]

Figure 2.2: Geometrically nonlinear behavior of a single bar truss
10 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
There is another possibility to obtain equation of equilibrium (2.1) or (2.11).
From principle of virtual displacements, it follows that when the structure is in
equilibrium, virtual works of internal and external forces are equal for every
kinematic admissible set of virtual displacements. For our structure with one
degree of freedom, only one virtual displacement u is possible and principle of
virtual displacements has a form
u P V
V
G
=

d (2.12)
where
G
is virtual strain corresponding to virtual displacement u . The virtual
strain can be expressed from equation (2.6) as
.
2
1
d
d
d
d
2
0
2
0 0 0
u
L
u h
u
L
u
L
u
L
h
u
u
u
G
G

+
=
(
(

|
|

\
|
+ = = (2.13)
It is assumed in principle of virtual displacements that virtual displacement is
infinitesimal and hence the stress ) / ( A N = remains unchanged. Noting that
and
G
are constant over the whole volume V in this case and assuming that
changes of the volume can be neglected due to small strain, i.e.
0 0 0
L A V V = ,
equation (2.12) becomes
u P L A u
L
u h
A
N
=
+
0
2
0
0

and from this equation it follows that
P
L
u h
N =
+
0
.
This is the same equation as the equation of equilibrium (2.1). After substituting
for N from (2.10) the equation (2.11) will be received again.

Utilization of principle of virtual displacements (PVD) is a convenient way to
obtain conditions of equilibrium for complex structures. For general three-
dimensional case we have three components of displacement u, v, w and six
components of Greens strain
(
(

\
|

+
|

\
|

+
|

\
|

=
2 2 2
2
1
x
w
x
v
x
u
x
u
x
,
(
(

|
|

\
|

+
|
|

\
|

+
|
|

\
|

=
2 2 2
2
1
y
w
y
v
y
u
y
v
y
,
(
(

\
|

+
|

\
|

+
|

\
|

=
2 2 2
2
1
z
w
z
v
z
u
z
w
x
, (2.14)
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 11

y
w
x
w
y
v
x
v
y
u
x
u
x
v
y
u
xy

= ,

z
w
x
w
z
v
x
v
z
u
x
u
x
w
z
u
xz

= ,

z
w
y
w
z
v
y
v
z
u
y
u
y
w
z
v
yz

= .
In finite element method are displacement interpolated within the finite
elements as
i
i
i
u N u

= ,
i
i
i
v N v

= ,
i
i
i
w N w

= , (2.15)
where u
i
, v
i
, w
i
are nodal displacements and N
i
are shape functions. Substituting
these equations into expressions of Greens strain components, we obtain
d B B )
2
1
(
N L
+ = . (2.16)
In matrix equation (2.16)

=
xy
xz
yz
z
y
x

, (2.17)
and d is matrix of nodal displacements. Matrix
L
B is the usual small displacement
matrix and matrix
N
B reflects the fact that Greens strain is a nonlinear function of
displacements. Elements of this matrix are linear functions of nodal displacements
d. It might be shown that virtual strain corresponding to the virtual nodal
displacements d is
. ) ( d B d B B = + =
N L
(2.18)
According to the principle of virtual displacements, virtual work of internal
forces must be equal to virtual work of external forces if the structure is in
equilibrium. This is represented by the equation
F d
T
V
T
V

= d (2.19)
where F is matrix of nodal forces.
We suppose linear relation between stress and strain components, hence
D =
where D is matrix of material elastic constants.
12 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
Substituting (2.18) into (2.19) gives
F d B d
T T
V
T
V

= d (2.20)
for any kinematic admissible set of virtual displacements d . Then
F B
T

=
V
V d . (2.21)
The last equation is a matrix representation of a set of nonlinear algebraic
equations for unknown nodal displacements d.
F d R = ) ( . (2.22)
2.2 Incremental-iterative solutions
We have seen that assumption of large displacements leads to nonlinear equation
of equilibrium (2.1) or (2.11) for a simple bar truss example. Generally, in finite
element analysis we have a set of nonlinear equations (2.22).
Let us start with the bar-truss example. The equation of equilibrium (2.1) or (2.11)
can be written in a form
P u R = ) ( (2.23)
where
( ). 2 3
2
) (
2 2 3
3
0
0
u h u h u
L
A E
L
u h
N u R + + =
+
= (2.24)
represents a component of internal force.
The basic step to solve the nonlinear equation (2.24) is a linear approximation
for small increment of force and corresponding increment of displacement.
Assume that for a prescribed value of force P we managed to find (e.g. by error
and trial method) a displacement u satisfying the equation (2.23). Internal force
) d ( u u R + for new external force ) d (
1
P P P + can be approximated by the linear
function
u
u
R
u R u u R
u
d
d
d
) ( ) d (
|

\
|
+ = +
and approximate condition of equilibrium is
P P u
u
R
u R
u
d d
d
d
) ( + =
|

\
|
+ .
Assuming equation (2.23) gives
P u
u
R
u
d d
d
d
=
|

\
|
(2.25)
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 13
or
P u u K
T
d d ) ( = (2.26)
where
u
T
u
R
K
|

\
|
=
d
d
(2.27)
is called the tangent stiffness. For the particular case of the bar-truss, tangent
stiffness can be easily found as
u
N
L
h u
N
L
h u
u
K
T
d
d
d
d
0 0
|
|

\
| +
+
|
|

\
| +
= .
Using the equation (2.10) gives
0 0
d
d
L
h u
L
EA
u
N +
=
from which

K K K K
u T
+ + =
0
(2.28)
where
2
0 0
0
|
|

\
|
=
L
h
L
A E
K is the linear stiffness

2
0
2
0
2
|
|

\
|
(
(

\
|
+ =
L
h
h
u
h
u
L
A E
K
u
is the initial displacement stiffness

0
L
N
K =

## is the initial stress stiffness.

The linear stiffness, which is independent on displacement, is familiar from
small displacement structural analysis. The initial displacement stiffness reflects
the effect of displacement on stiffness
3
. The initial stress stiffness reflects the fact
that there is an axial force in the bar prior to load increment.
In like manner, we can precede in a general case described by the equation
(2.21) or (2.22) and derive
d K d R d d R d ) ( ) d (
T
+ = +
and
F d K d d =
T
(2.29)
where

3
e.g. it can be seen from the diagram in Figure 2.2 that for compressive load P stiffness decreases
and for tensional force P increases.
14 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
d
R
K

=
T

is the tangent stiffness matrix. We can also find out that

K K K K + + =
u T 0
. (2.30)
where
T
K is linear stiffness matrix,
u
K is initial displacement stiffness matrix and

## K is initial stress stiffness matrix.

Introduction of tangent stiffness matrix is crucial for solution of nonlinear
equations (2.22). The most widely used methods are briefly introduced in the
following text:

2.2.1 Incremental method
The load is divided into a set of small increments
i
F . Increments of displacements
i
d are calculated from the set of linear simultaneous equations

i i
i
T
F d K =
) 1 (
.31)
and an updated solution is obtained as
.
1 i i i
d d d + =

32)

Figure 2.3: Incremental method
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 15
The procedure is shown in Figure 2.3. It is obvious that solution error, i.e.
difference from exact solution gradually cumulates. To reduce error, large number
of small incremental steps has to be done that is inefficient. On the other hand,
division of loading process into sufficiently small increments is necessary to model
load path dependent behavior of a structure. Dependence of response on a manner
deformation and with friction. In these problems, incremental method is usually
combined with one of following methods.

2.2.2 Newton-Raphson method
Suppose that initial displacements
0
d are known. The first guess of nodal
displacements for load F is calculated by solving set of linear algebraic equations
F d K =
1
) 0 (
T
(2.33)
where
) (
0
) 0 (
d K K
T T
=
is tangent stiffness matrix calculated for initial displacements.
As the displacements
1
d are most probably not accurate, the equilibrium
equation (2.22) is not satisfied and
F d R ) (
1

that means there are unbalanced (or residual) nodal forces
. ) (
1 1
F d R r = (2.34)
By computing new tangential stiffness matrix
) (
1 ) 1 (
d K K
T T
=
and solving new set of algebraic linear equations
1 1
) 1 (
r d K =
T
(2.35)
we will obtain an improved solution
1 1 2
d d d + = . (2.36)
If 0 F d R r = ) (
2 2
the procedure is repeated until the sufficiently accurate
solution is obtained. The iterations are schematically shown in Figure 2.4.
This method, known as Newton-Raphson
4
method (NR) is often combined with
incremental method as displayed in Figure 2.5.

4
Joseph Raphson (1648-1715) was an English mathematician, a Fellow of the Royal Society of
London and friend of Newton.
16 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Figure 2.4: Standard Newton-Raphson (NR) method.

Figure 2.5: Combination of Newton-Raphson and incremental methods.

2.2.3 Modified Newton-Raphson method
The standard Newton-Raphson method, although effective in many cases, needs
the solution of the set of linear equations (2.35) which is time demanding for large
systems. Modified Newton-Raphson method (MNR) differs from standard NR
algorithm in that the stiffness matrix is only updated occasionally. In the example
shown in Figure 2.6, the tangential stiffness matrix is formed and decomposed at
the beginning and used throughout the iterations. Advantage of the method is in
saving computer time, because factorization of the tangent stiffness matrix is
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 17
performed only once for the load increment. On the other hand, number of
iterations needed is usually larger.

Figure 2.6: Modified Newton-Raphson(MNR) method.

2.2.4 Quasi-Newton methods
There exist many other methods for solution of the set of nonlinear algebraic
equations, so called quasi-Newton methods. The most popular among them is
Broyden Fletcher Goldfarb Shanno (BFGS) method.

2.3 Linear stability analysis
Theoretically, below a certain critical load a structure is in position of stable
equilibrium, whilst above that load the equilibrium may be unstable. Unstable
equilibrium means that though the structure is in equilibrium, any arbitrary small
disturbance will cause loss of this equilibrium. In many practical problems, the
displacements are small for load less than critical and behavior of the structure can
be considered as a linear function of applied load. The typical example is Euler
strut buckling, Figure 2.7.
For axial force N that is less than critical, the strut is in stabile equilibrium. This
equilibrium is possible if a lateral load P then deflects the strut as well. If the
18 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
If the force N is greater than critical, the strut can remain (theoretically) straight
but its equilibrium is unstable, any small lateral load will cause deflection
increasing until the collapse
5
.

Figure 2.7: Buckling of a strut

For load less than critical small longitudinal (in plane) and lateral displacements
allow the initial displacement stiffness matrix K
u
to be ignored. The equilibrium
equation can be written as
P d N K K = + )] ( [
0
(2.37)
The elastic critical (buckling) load is given by the lowest value of load parameter
for which d 0 when the lateral load P = 0. Physically this means that
equilibrium is possible with very small lateral displacements in the absence of any
lateral load. In mathematical sense, we have to solve the eigenvalue problem
0 d N K K = + )] ( [
0
(2.38)
where is the eigenvalue and d is the corresponding eigenvector.
It should be noted that due to assumptions accepted the solution represents itself
only an estimation of the upper bound of the structure load capacity.
2.4 Large displacement and large strain behavior
When strain is large, it is inadmissible to neglect shape and volume changes of a
structure. For example, in the simple bar example we have to introduce current
cross sectional A instead of initial A
0
and current length L instead of initial length
L
0
in the equations (2.10) and (2.11).
Accordingly, integration in the equation (2.19) expressing the principle of
virtual displacements has to be taken over the current volume. This brings
problems, as the current volume is unknown, because it depends on displacements
that are unknown too and must be calculated first. To solve this problem, it is
necessary to introduce a transformation so that integrals are taken over known
volume. Two possible ways are briefly described bellow:

5
In reality, unstable equilibrium is due to initial imperfections (e.g. eccentricity of force N, initial
curvature of the strut etc.) impossible, but estimation of critical load may be useful in many cases.
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 19
2.4.1 Total Lagrangian formulation
In a Total Lagrangian (TL) formulation all integrals are calculated with respect to
the initial undeformed configuration of the structure
F d
T
V
P
T
G
V

=
0
d (2.39)
where V
0
is the initial volume. Due to transformation, new measure for stress so
called second Piola-Kirchhoff stress tensor
P
has to be introduced with Greens
strain tensor
G
.

2.4.2 Updated Lagrangian formulation
In an Updated Lagrangian (UL) formulation, a known deformed configuration i is
taken as an initial state for subsequent configuration (i+1) and this is continually
updated as the calculation proceeds
( ) F d
T
V
C
i T
A
i
V

=
+ +
0
d
) 1 ( ) 1 (
(2.40)
In the left side of the equation (2.40),
C
is Cauchy stress tensor and
A
is Almansi
strain tensor respectively. Notation
(i+1)

A
and
(i+1)

C
means that the strain and
stress are in configuration (i+1). Integration is done over volume V
i
that is in
current configuration i.
Use of different measures for stress and strain in TL and UL formulation
follows condition that virtual work of internal forces must be the same irrespective
of the volume over which is integration taken
6
.

6
That means that stress and strain measures must be work conjugate.
20 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
3. MATERIAL NONLINEARITIES
3.1 Introduction
Linear elastic FE analysis is based on linear constitutive stress-strain equations
D = (3.1)
in which the terms of material matrix D are expressed as functions of constant
values of modulus of elasticity and Poissons ratio. The constant D matrix leads to
a constant stiffness matrix K, which is for strain-displacement relationship
d B = (3.2)
given by
V
T
V
d B D B K

= (3.3)
Departure from linear elasticity implies that the linear elastic constitutive
equations are no longer valid, as the material matrix is no longer constant. The
non-constant material matrix D represents nonlinear constitutive equations
corresponding to the adopted nonlinear material model. Consequently, the
conditions of equilibrium derived in FEM from principle of virtual displacements
are nonlinear like equations (2.21) and (2.22). Solution of these equations is based
on the same methods as in geometrically nonlinear case. Usually it is necessary to
divide load into increments and perform equilibrium iterations (e.g. by MNR or
NR method) for each increment. Moreover, for each load increment there must be
performed stress iterations, as the material matrix is function of strain. The strain is
unknown a priori and will be computed only.
Material nonlinearities are often combined with geometrical and/or boundary
nonlinearities.
3.2 Nonlinear elasticity models
Nonlinear elastic behavior of materials can be formulated in several ways. The
simplest is total formulation, where the stress and strains are defined in terms of
the secant modulus of elasticity E
s
, see Figure 3.1,
. ) (
s
E = (3.4)
In hypo-elastic formulation, the relationship between the increments of stress
and strain are defined by the tangential modulus of elasticity E
t

d ) ( d
t
E = (3.5)
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 21
The nonlinear elastic material law can also be formulated in terms of
hyperelastic formulation, which assumes the existence of strain energy density
function U and the corresponding complementary energy density function U

such
that

d
dU
= and

d
d

=
U
(3.6)
The hyperelastic material model is usually used for rubber-like materials
7
.

Figure 3.1: Nonlinear elasticity model.

Material models for multiaxial states of stress are usually based on
generalization of one-dimensional concepts. For example, in a hyperelastic
formulation components of stress tensor are computed as

=
U
(3.7)
that means
x
x
U

= ,
y
y
U

= ,
xy
xy
U

= etc.

Figure 3.2: Strain energy density functions U and U

7
An example is the Mooney-Rivlin material model used for modelling rubber-like materials.
22 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
For any nonlinear elastic material model, it is possible to define relation
between stress and strain increments as
D d d
T
= (3.8)
where matrix D
T
is function of strains . Consequently, a set of equilibrium
equations we receive in FEM is nonlinear and must be solved by use of any
method (e.g. NR) described above.

3.3 Elastoplastic material model
3.3.1 Yielding criterion
Experiments indicate that linear elastic model is acceptable only within a limited
range of stress. As an example, the stress-strain curve from tension test of steel
specimen is shown in Figure 3.3. Until the yield stress represented by point A (in
the given case
y
= 280 MPa) the deformations are elastic and stress-strain relation
may be described as = E . When the stress level exceeds the yield stress, an
elastoplastic constitutive law governs the relationship between increments of stress
and strain.
Due to lack of information,
8
approximate stress-strain curves are usually used in
analysis. Bilinear approximation defined by yield stress, modulus of elasticity E
and tangential modulus E
T
is shown in Figure 3.4. If E
T
= 0, material model is
elastic-perfectly plastic. If E
T
0 material model assumes strain hardening.

0
50
100
150
200
250
300
350
400
450
0.00 0.02 0.04 0.06 0.08 0.10 0.12

[
M
P
a
]
A

Figure 3.3: Typical stress-strain curve for mild steel

It should be noted that curves in Figures 3.3 and 3.4 are for tensile behavior. It
is usually assumed that similar curves for compressive behavior are applicable if
there has been no history of plastic deformation.

8
In a design process, the real material curve is usually unknown, only basic values like yield stress
etc. are available. Moreover, the material properties slightly differ by different supplies.
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 23

Figure 3.4: Elastoplastic model with linear strain hardening

The indication of yielding under multiaxial conditions in metals is obtained
from experiments usually conducted on cylindrical samples subjected to combined
axial load and torque. Experiments suggest that there is no significant difference in
behavior of metals in tension or compression and no volume change associated
with yielding and no effect of mean stress level on yielding can be assumed.
In a mathematical description, onset of yielding may be represented by a scalar
function termed the yield function F. The yield function is written in a form, which

0 < F for elastic and 0 = F for plastic deformation. (3.9)

In engineering practice, two following conditions for yielding are most
frequently used:

Von Mises yield criterion
0 2 ) ( ) ( ) (
2
1 3
2
3 2
2
1 1
= + + =
y
F (3.10)
where
1
,
2
and

3
are principal stresses. Thus, yield occurs when the
effective stress
eff
reaches the yield stress value
y

y eff
= + + =
2
1 3
2
3 2
2
1 1
) ( ) ( ) (
2
1
. (3.11)

Tresca yield criterion
| || || | 0 ) ( ) ( ) (
2 2
1 3
2 2
3 2
2 2
2 1
= =
y y y
F . (3.12)

The largest difference between these two classical yield criteria is about 15%
for the pure shear stress state. For other stress states is the difference less. Hence,
both criteria are frequently considered as equivalent in engineering practice.
Any yield condition that is function of stress tensor components and material
parameters
24 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

0 ) , ( = F (3.13)
defines a yield surface in principal stress space, see Figure 3.5. Stress points that
lie inside the yield surface are associated with elastic stress states whereas those
that lie on the surface represent plastic stress states. No stress point can be outside
the yield surface.

Figure 3.5: Yield surface

3.3.2 Post yielding behavior
The fundamental assumption in describing post-yielding behavior is the
decomposition of the total strain increment into an elastic (recoverable) part and a
plastic (irreversible) part. For uniaxial stress state is, according to Figure 3.6
E
E
e
T
=
=

d
d
,
d
d
(3.14)
and plastic strain increment is then
d d d d
T
T e p
E E
E E
= = . (3.15)

Figure 3.2: Decomposition of the total strain increment
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 25

By analogy, in multiaxial stress state the total strains we decompose into elastic
and plastic parts too
p e
+ = (3.16)
deformation that can result in a modification of the shape and/or position of the
yield surface.
For a perfectly plastic material, the yield surface remains unchanged during
plastic deformation. For a strain hardening material, plastic deformation produces
a change in shape and position of the yield surface. This means that initial yield
surface is gradually replaced by the subsequent yield surfaces. A modified yield
function is adopted which has a form such as
0 ) , , ( = K F
p
. (3.17)
This yield function depends on the stresses but also the plastic strains and a
hardening parameter K. The way in which the plastic strains modify the yield
function is defined by hardening rules:

Figure 3.7: Isotropic hardening.

1. An isotropic hardening law implies that the yield surface increases in
Schematic representation of isotropic hardening for uniaxial and biaxial
stress state is shown in Figure 3.7.

2. In kinematic hardening, the original yield surface is translated to a new
position in stress space with no change of its shape and size as shown in
Figure 3.8. Kinematic hardening has paramount importance in
modelling cyclic behavior.

26 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
3. The combination of the two principal hardening laws leads to a mixed
hardening law, where the initial yield surface both expands and
translates as a consequence of plastic flow.

Figure 3.8: Kinematic hardening.

3.3.3 Constitutional equations of elastoplastic material
The yield criterion says whether plastic deformation will occur but says nothing
about the plastic behavior of a material after onset of plastic deformations. This is
defined by so-called flow rule in which is the rate and the direction of plastic
strains is related to the stress state and the stress rate. This relation can be
expressed as
ij
p
ij
Q

= d d (3.17)
or in matrix form as

=
Q
p
d d (3.18)
where d is a scalar value (to be determined) and Q is a scalar valued function of
stress components called plastic potential.
For metals, the so-called associated flow rule, in which the plastic potential
surface coincides with the yield surface, i.e.
F Q =

can be adapted to model plastic flow. For some other materials, non-associated
flow rule in which F Q has to be used to model plastic flow adequately. In the
following text we will deal with associated flow rule

=
F
p
d d (3.19)
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 27
Consider a uniaxial stress state first. The plastic behavior of material is
described as
d d
T
E = (3.20)
where E
T
is constant for a bilinear material as obvious from the equations (3.14)
and (3.15).
In a multiaxial stress state, we can formulate a similar constitutive equation
D d d
T
= (3.21)
where tangential material matrix D
T
can be derived from known stress tensor ,
strain tensor and constitutive matrix D from equation (3.1) in following way:
The first step is strain decomposition into elastic d
e
and plastic part d
p

p e
d d d + = . (3.22)
From constitutive law it follows that
e
D d d =
hence
( )
p
D d d d = . (3.24)
From associated plastic flow rule, it follows that
d d d a

=
F
p
(3.25)
where
|

\
|

a
F
. (3.26)

Using equations (3.24) and (3.25) we obtain
( ) d d d a D = . (3.27)
The stress point must lie in yield surface
9
and hence the following consistency
conditions must be fulfilled
0 d d d = |

\
|

+
|

\
|

=
p
T
p
T
F F
F

(3.29)
or with respect to equations (3.25) and (3.25)
0 d d d = |

\
|

+ = a

a
T
p
T
F
F .
After substituting from equation (3.27) we obtain

9
note that yield surface may change according to hardening rule
28 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
( ) 0 d d d d = |

\
|

+ = a

a D a
T
p
T
F
F
or
( ) 0 d d d d = = A F
T
a D a (3.30)
where scalar quantity A is defined as
a

T
p
F
A |

\
|

= . (3.31)
Now, we can derive parameter d from equation (3.29)
a D a
D a
T
T
A+
=
d
d (3.32)
and substituting this expression for d into equation (3.28) we finally obtain

a D a
D aa D
D d d
|
|

\
|
+
=
T
T
A
. (3.33)
When compare the last equation with equation (3.21) we can see that
a D a
D a a D
D D
T
T
T
A+
= . (3.34)
Note that material matrix D is symmetric, i.e. D D =
T
, hence matrix D
T
is
symmetric as well.

3.3.4 Integration of constitutive equations
We have derived that for infinitesimal increments of stress and strain it holds
D d d
T
= .
In FE analysis we need to work with finite increments and for which is
the relation above approximate only, so if we use relation
D =
T

for large increments of stress and strain, an error occurs as stress + in
subsequent step will not satisfy constitutive law and consistency condition. Hence,
we need to integrate over the increment of pseudo-time

=
t
d
where, according to equation (3.24)
( )
p
D d d d = .
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 29
It is important to note that if plastic flow is present, the
T
D changes during
increment t and as a result, the ratio between total and plastic strain changes too.
To obtain correct results, various stress increment integration schemes that
differs in the degree of approximation have been developed. Frequently used are
the following schemes:

3.3.4.1 Generalized trapezoidal rule
Consider that we know stress
n
, total strain
n
and plastic strain
p
n
at time step
n. Then at step n+1
( )
p
n
n n n n n
1
1 1 1
+
+ + +
+ = + = D (3.35)

( ) | |
1
1
1
+
+
+ =
n n
p
n
a a (3.36)

0
1
=
+ n
F (3.37)

3.3.4.2 Generalized mid point rule

( )
p
n
n n n n n
1
1 1 1
+
+ + +
+ = + = D (3.35)

+
+
=
n
p
n
a
1
(3.36)

0 =
+ n
F (3.37)

In both rules, is a parameter ranging from 0 to 1.
For 0 = we obtain explicit forward Euler integration scheme. Advantage of
this algorithm is in its simplicity; disadvantage is that it is conditionally stable
only. That means that step increment has to be smaller than some critical value to
avoid instability of the solution.
For 1 = we obtain implicit backward Euler integration scheme
( )
p
n
n n
1
1 1
+
+ +
= D

1
1
+
+
=
n
p
n
a

( ) 0 ,
1 1 1
= =
+ + + n n n
F F

30 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
It is obvious that in difference with forward scheme, we deal with values
defined at the end of the increment, which are unknown at start of it. Hence, the
procedure is of an iterative nature. This means that at beginning of the increment,
the trial stress is estimated by assuming elastic deformation and computed values
are then checked whether consistency condition and constitutional equation are
satisfied. If not, the process is repeated with improved values until the conditions
are satisfied.

3.3.5 Numerical procedures
The tangential material matrix D
T
is used to form a tangential stiffness matrix K
T
.
When the tangential stiffness matrix is defined, the displacement increment is
obtained for a known load increment
F d K =
T
(3.22)
As load and displacement increments are final, not infinitesimal, displacements
obtained by solution of this set of linear algebraic equation will be approximate
only. That means, conditions of equilibrium of internal and external nodal forces
will not be satisfied and iterative process is necessary. Any of methods mentioned
above may be used.
The problem that arises now is the fundamental problem in computational
elastoplasticity - not only equilibrium equations but also constitutive equations of
material must be satisfied. That means that within the each equilibrium iteration
step check of stress state and iterations to find elastic and plastic part of strains at
every integration point must be included. The iteration process continues until
both, equilibrium conditions and constitutive equations are satisfied
simultaneously. The converged solution at the end of load increment is then used
at the start of new load increment.

NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 31
REFERENCES
[1] Hinton, E: Introduction to Nonlinear Finite Element Analysis. NAFEMS,
Glasgow 1992
[2] Crisfield, M. A.: Non-linear Finite Element Analysis of Solids and Structures.
John Wiley & Sons 1991
[3] Bittnar, Z., ejnoha, J.: Numerick metody mechaniky (Numerical methods of
mechanics). VUT, Praha 1992
[4] Okrouhlk, M., Hshl, C., Pleek, J., Ptk, S., Nadrchal, J.: Mechanika
poddajnch tles, numerick matematika a superpotae (Mechanic of solids,
numerical mathematics and supercomputers). Czech Academy of Science,
Prague 1997.
[5] Okrouhlk, M.: Implementation of Nonlinear Continuum Mechanics in Finite
Element Codes. Institute of Thermodynamics, Prague 1995.
[6] Hinton, E., Ezatt, M., H.: Fundamental Tests for Two and Three Dimensional,
Small Strain, Elastoplastic Finite Element Analysis. NAFEMS, Glasgow 1987.
[7] Electronic documentation of program COSMOS/M, version 2.95. SRAC, Los
Angeles 2005, www,cosmosm.com.
[8] Falzon, B., G., Hitchings, D.: An Introduction to Modeling Buckling and
Collapse. NAFEMS, Glasgow 2006
[9] Eurocode 3: Design of steel structures - Part 1-1: General rules and rules for
buildings. CEN, Brussels 2005.

32 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

APPENDIX
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 33
A 1. NONLINEAR ANALYSES WITH
COSMOS/M PROGRAM
Properties of finite elements
For nonlinear analyses it is necessary to compute tangential stiffness matrices of
individual elements. This possibility is available only for some elements according
to Table 1.

Table 1: Properties of finite elements
Material model Element
Name
Element Description GNL
Le Ne Pl Ve He
TRUSS2D Plane truss

TRUSS3D Space truss

BEAM2D Plane beam

BEAM3D Space beam

SPRING Axial an/or torsional spring

PLANE2D
4 to 8 node plane stress, plane
strain, axisymmetric element

TRIANG
3 to 6 node plane stress, plane
strain, axisymmetric triangular
element

SHELL3 3-node triangular thin shell

SHELL3T 3-node triangular thick shell

SHELL6 6-node triangular thin shell

SHELL6 6-node triangular thick shell

SHELL3L 3-node triangular composite shell

SHELL4L
shell

SOLID 8 to 20 node hexahedron

TETRA4 4-node tetrahedron

TETRA10 10-node tetrahedron

GAP Contact element with friction
MASS Concentrated mass

GNL Geometric nonlinearities
Le Linear elastic material
Ne Nonlinearly elastic material
Pl Elastic-plastic material
Ve Viscoelastic material
He Hyper elastic material

34 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Nonlinear properties of individual elements should be defined in element
options. For example, steps needed for specification of SOLID element properties
are shown in Figure 4 and subsequent figures.

Figure 4: Definition of finite element group

Figure 5: Element specification

Figure 6: Option 1 of the SOLID element
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 35

Figure 7: Definition of material model

Figure 8: Definition of geometric nonlinearity

36 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Figure 9: Listing of element groups element group 1 defines a linear element
SOLID; element group 2 defines geometric and material nonlinear element.

Nonlinear analysis setup
Parameters of nonlinear analysis are specified from MENU ANALYSIS /
NONLINEAR, see Figure 10. Individual items in this menu have following use:
1. Solution Control definition of method of solution of system of
nonlinear equations. Possible values are in Figure 11.
2. Integration Options definition of method of solution for dynamic
problems, see Figure 12.
3. Auto Step Option if is set ON, the program automatically selects
optimal size of time increments according to convergence in previous
time steps, see Figure 13.
4. Base Motion Parameter and Damping Coefficient applicable for
dynamic problems only.
5. Print Options specification what will be written in output file
name of problem.OUT. The advisable is to oppress printing of large files
that are difficult to read. Recommended is to use setup according to
Figure 14.
6. Plot Options specification for which steps will program store results.
Normally, if nothing is specified, results are stored for the last
successfully accomplished step only. If there is need to store more
results to plot and list, these steps have to be specified as shown Figure
15.
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 37
7. Response Options specification for which nodes will program store
results to plot nodal values as displacements and reactions, see Figure
16. This specification is useful if we do not need results for all nodes. If
a plot option is specified for all steps, this option is not necessary.

38 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Figure 12: Integration method for solution of dynamic problems specification

Figure 13: Auto step definition minimum acceptable time increment is set to
10
-6
, maximum allowed time increment is 1,5 and maximum number of trials to
select proper time increment is limited to 5.

NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 39

Figure 14: Output file specification

Figure 15: Specification that results will be stored for steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8,
9, 10 and then for steps 12, 14, 16, 18 and 20

40 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Figure 16: Specification of nodes to plot graphs

8. Nonlinear Analysis Options detailed specification of analysis.
Default setup, which is appropriate for most nonlinear static problems is
in Figure 17.
9. Run Nonlinear Analysis start of computations.

For other items of the NONLINEAR menu refer to the program COSMOS/M
documentation.

NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 41

Figure 17: Specification of nonlinear analysis default values of parameters

42 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
Time curves and time parameters
At least one time curve has to be specified for nonlinear analysis. Time curves
can be defined from menu Loads BC , see Figure 18 and subsequent figures.

or from icons in left panel

Figure 18: Start of definition of time curves

Figure 19: Time curve definition 1
st
step
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 43

Figure 20: Time curve definition 2
nd
step (in this example, definition of the
time curve number 1 is prepared)

Figure 21: Time curve definition 3
rd
first point
10

Figure 22: Definition of points of the time curve

10
start point number higher than 1 we use in a case that curve is defined and we want to add some
points
44 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

To plot a time curve, commands from menu DISPLAY can be selected as
shown in figure and subsequent figures.

Figure 23: Commands to prepare a plot of a time curve

NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 45

Figure 24: Commands to plot a time curve

Figure 25: Graph of the time curve number 1 as defined in Figure 22
46 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Note that after definition, the time curve became active. This means that
boundary conditions defined subsequently will be associated with it. To deactivate
a time curve or to switch activation to another one, the commands according to
Figure 26 should be used.

Figure 26: Making a time curve active (or not active)
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 47
Restart possibilities
Nonlinear analyses are time demanding. This is a reason that there is a
possibility to continue in computation after stop of program. For this so called
restart of computation the parameter RESTART, see Figure 27 have to be set to 1.
If set to 0, computation will start from beginning.

Figure 27: Restart options

48 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
A 2. EXAMPLES OF COSMOS/M USE
Compressed slender beam
Problem description: Slender elastic beam is compressed by force F and laterally
loaded by a small force P. The forces increase according to time curves
11
TC 1 and
TC 2. Force P = 200 N is associated with the curve TC 1 and force F = 100000 N
with the curve TC 2
12
. Dimensions of the beam are L = 1600 mm, a = 80 mm and
t = 3 mm. Modulus of elasticity is E = 2,110
5
MPa.

Fig. 1: Compressed beam

0
0.2
0.4
0.6
0.8
1
1.2
1.4
1.6
1.8
0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2 1.4 1.6 1.8 2
TC 1
TC 2

Fig. 2: Time curves

11
The time is now only a parameter controlling the loading, because the problem is static.
12
Association with a time curve means that at every time the value of force is multiplied by
instantaneous value of time curve ordinate.
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 49

Modelling hints:
1. The BEAM2D element group is used to model beam. As the problem is
geometrically non-linear, finer finite element mesh must be used than for
a linear problem. Geometric nonlinearities are taken into account if option
6 for the element group BEAM2D is set to 1 (large displacement
formulation).
2. It is useful to perform linear and buckling analyses before the nonlinear
analysis. For comparison, the Euler critical force is given by
2
2
) 2 ( L
I E
F
z
cr

= .
For the dimensions and modulus of elasticity given above is
F
cr
= 185088,7 N.
3. Load should be divided into small increments and NR, or MNR iterations
of equilibrium should be used for each incremental step.
4. Finer load increments are necessary when F F
cr
.
5. Restart from the last successfully accomplished load increment can be
performed.

Commands:
(NOTE: C* means a comment only row with C* is not processed by the program)

C* 1. Geometry creation
VIEW,0,0,1,0
PT,1,0,0,0
CREXTR,1,1,1,Y,1600
CREXTR,2,2,1,Y,1600
C* 2. Defining material properties
MPROP,1,EX,2.1E5
C* 3. Defining elemnt group and beam section
EGROUP,1,BEAM2D,0,0,0,0,0,1,0,0
BMSECDEF,1,1,4,1,9,80,80,3,3,0,0,0,0,0
C* 4. Creating FE mesh
M_CR,1,2,1,2,5,1
NMERGE,1,12,1,1,0,0,0
NCOMPRESS,1,12
C* 5. Defining boundary conditions
C* 5.1 prescribed displacements
DPT,1,UX,0,3,2,
DPT,1,UY,0,1,1,
50 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
C* 5.2 defining force P
CURDEF,TIME,1,1,0,0,.1,1,10,1
FPT,2,FX,200,2,1
C* 5.3 force F
CURDEF,TIME,2,1,0,0,10,10,10
FPT,3,FY,-1E5,3,1
A_NONLINEAR,S,1,1,20,0.001,0,N,0,0,1E+010,0.001,0.01,0,1,0,0
NL_PLOT,1,100,1,0
C* 7. specification of load increments
TIMES,0,1.7,.1
C* 7. nonlinear analysis
R_NONLIN
C* restart from the last step
RESTART,1
TIMES,1.7,1.8,0.02
R_NONLIN
C*
RESTART,1
TIMES,1.8,1.82,0.005
R_NONLIN

Results: Typical nonlinear response is obvious from the graph (Figure 3) showing
beam deflection at the middle of span versus load parameter (time).

0
5
10
15
20
25
0 0,2 0,4 0,6 0,8 1 1,2 1,4 1,6 1,8 2
TIME
U
X

[
m
m
]

Fig. 3: Deflection versus time

NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 51
Thick-walled pipe subjected to internal pressure
Problem description: The long cylindrical pressure vessel is subjected to internal
pressure. Both ends are assumed fixed. Compute stress distribution during pressure
test and during normal operation. Assume small plastic deformations according to
bilinear material model if yield stress is
Y
= 260 MPa, modulus of elasticity is
E = 2,1.10
5
MPa and tangent modulus is E
T
= 100 MPa.

Fig. 4: Thick walled pipe

0
50
100
150
200
250
300
0 0.005 0.01 0.015 0.02 0.025 0.03
strain
s
t
r
e
s
s

Fig. 5: Bilinear material mode

Time curve reflects load history. During test is internal pressure increased to
1,2 nominal value, which is 120 MPa.

52 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Fig. 6: Load history time curve

Modelling hints:

1. Due to axial symmetry, only a part of the cylinder longitudinal section may be
modelled.
2. 8 node PLANE2D elements are used with option 5 set to Von Mises
kinematic hardening.
3. Load incrementation with NR iterations should be used.
4. Restart is used to change load (time) increment.

Fig. 7: FE mesh and boundary conditions

Commands:

C* GEOMETRY CREATION
VIEW,0,0,1,0
PT,1,45,0,0
CREXTR,1,1,1,X,35
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 53
SFEXTR,1,1,1,Y,10
C* DEFINING ELEMENT GROUP
EGROUP,1,PLANE2D,0,2,1,0,2,0,0,0
C* DEFINING MATERIAL PROPERTIES
MPROP,1,EX,2.1E5
MPROP,1,NUXY,.3
MPROP,1,ETAN,100
MPROP,1,SIGYLD,260
C* MESHING
M_SF,1,1,1,8,8,2,1,1
C* DEFINING BOUNDARY CONDITIONS
DCR,2,UY,0,1,1,
CURDEF,TIME,1,1,0,0,1,1.2,1.1,1.2,2,0,3,1
PCR,3,120,3,1,120,4
NL_CONTROL,0,1
NL_PRINT,0,0,0,0,0,0,0
NL_PLOT,1,50,1,0
C* TEST SIMULATON
TIMES,0,1,.2
R_NONLIN
C*
RESTART,1
TIMES,1,1.1,.1
R_NONLIN
TIMES,1.1,2,0.09
R_NONLIN
C*
TIMES,2,3,0.2
R_NONLIN
C*
NOTE: C* means comment only row with C* is not processed by the program

54 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS
Results: Note that
1. Linear analysis gives non-realistic values of stress (maximal von Mises stress
3. After test, residual stress is present in the cylinder. This redistribution of stress
is useful and desired.
4. Due to stress redistribution, only stress within elastic range is present during

NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 55
Deformation of a thin-walled tank
Problem description: Thin-walled pressure vessel tank is subjected to internal
pressure. Compute stress distribution according to linear and nonlinear static
analysis. In the nonlinear analysis, both geometrical and material nonlinearities
should be taken into account. Material is elastoplastic, the same as in previous
example (Figure 5). Nominal value of internal pressure is 0,6 MPa. Symmetric half
of the tank is shown in Figure 8. Diameter of the manhole cover (thickness of 25
mm) is 600 mm.

Fig. 8: Thin-walled tank

Modeling hints:

1. SHELL4T elements with options for large displacement, small plastic strain,
von Mises yield criterion and kinematic hardening are used.
2. Due to symmetry, only one eighth of the tank may be modelled.
3. Stresses are calculated in element co-ordinate systems. To receive compatible
co-ordinate systems curves are reoriented.
4. Element co-ordinate system of SHELL4T element is defined according to
Figure 9. The element x-axis goes from the first node to the second. The y-axis
lies in the plane defined by the first three nodes perpendicular to the x-axis
toward the fourth node. The z-axis completes a right-hand Cartesian system.
When meshing surfaces, element x-axes are parallel to the first surface curve
marked by asterisks in Figure 10. FE mesh is shown in Figure 11.
5. The automatic time stepping and restart options are used for nonlinear FE
analysis.

56 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Figure 9: Element co-ordinate system (ECS).
1
2
4
3
x
y
z
TOP FACE
BOTTOM FACE

Fig. 9: Element co-ordinate system (ECS)

Fig. 10: Orientation of shell elements

Fig. 11: Finite element mesh

NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 57

Figure 28: Example of inappropriate orientation of elements orientation of
elements on surface 1 differs from orientation of other elements
13

Figure 29: Orientation of surfaces identification

13
top faces of shell elements are red colour, bottom faces are blue
58 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Commands:

C*
C* 1. DEFINING GEOMETRY
C*
C* 1.1. creating points and curves
C*
VIEW,0,0,1,0
PT,1,0,0,0
PT,2,2900,0,0
PLANE,Z,0,1
CRPCIRCLE,1,2,1,2900,-80,1
PT,4,0,1700,0
C*
CREXTR,4,4,1,X,2450
C* 1.1.1 intersecting curves
CRINTCC,1,2,2,1,2,5E-005
C* 1.1.2 deleting useless curves
CRDEL,4,2,2
C* 1.1.3 creating fillet etc.
CRFILLET,4,1,3,400,1,0,1E-006
PT,10,-20,300,0
CREXTR,10,10,1,X,100
CRINTCC,1,5,5,1,0,5E-005
CRDEL,1,1,1
CRDEL,5,5,1
CREXTR,12,12,1,Y,-300
C* 1.1.4 changing orientation of curves 3 and 7 in order to receive
C* desired ECS orientation
CRREPAR,7,3,4
VIEW,-1,2,3,0
CRCOMPRESS,1,7
C*
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 59

C* 1.2 creating surfaces
C*
SFSWEEP,1,4,1,X,90,2
C*
C* 2. FE MESH DEFINITION
C* 2.1 defining element type and real constant sets
EGROUP,1,SHELL4T,1,0,0,1,2,1,0,0
RCONST,1,1,1,6,6,0,0,0,0,0
RCONST,1,2,1,6,25,0,0,0,0,0
C* 2.2 defining material properties
MPROP,1,EX,2.1E5,NUXY,.3,SIGYLD,260
MPROP,1,ETAN,100
C* 2.3 meshing
ACTSET,RC,1
M_SF,5,6,1,4,10,6,1.8,1
VIEW,-1.5,2,2,0
ACTSET,RC,2
MA_NUSF,7,8,1,4,4,6,0
MASFCH,7,8,1,Q,4,1,0.4,1
ACTSET,RC,1
M_SF,3,4,1,4,3,6,1,1
M_SF,1,2,1,4,10,6,2,1
NMERGE,1,400,1,1,0,0,0
NCOMPRESS,1,400
NCOMPRESS,1,330
ECOMPRESS,1,315
C* 2.4 checking real constants assignment
ACTECLR,1,RC,1
EPLOT,1,ELMAX,1
ACTECLR,0
C*
C* 3. DEFINING BOUNDARY CONDITIONS
C*
60 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

C* 3.1 displacements
SELPIC,CR,20,16,12,6,0
DCR,1,SY,0,CRMAX,1,
INITSEL,CR,1,1
SELPIC,CR,4,3,2,1,0
DCR,1,SZ,0,CRMAX,1,
INITSEL,ALL,1,1
DCR,8,SX,0,10,2,
CLS,1
C* 3.2 pressure
CURDEF,TIME,1,1,0,0,10,10
PSF,1,0.6,8,1,0.6,0.6,4
C*
C* 4. ANALYSIS
C* 4.1 preliminary linear static analysis
C* R_STAT
C*
NL_AUTOSTEP,1,.001,.1,5
NL_PLOT,1,20,1,0
NL_PRINT,0,0,0,0,0,0,0
A_NONLINEAR,S,1,1,20,0.001,0,N,0,1,1E+010,0.001,0.01,0,1,0,0
C* 4.3 running nonlinear analysis
TIMES,0,1,.1
R_NONLIN
C*
C* 4.4 continuing in NL analysis
RESTART,1
TIMES,1,1.5,.1
R_NONLIN
C*
C* 5. POSTPROCESSING
C* plotting stress, displacements and xy graphs.
C*
NOTE: C* means comment only row with C* is not processed by the program
NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS 61

Results:

1. Von Mises stress distribution for time step 16 (t = 1,5) on top faces of shell
elements is in . Von Mises stress distribution on bottom faces is in .
2. There are large differences between results of linear and nonlinear analysis. In
linear analysis, the von Mises stress is above the yield stress 260 MPa.
Difference between linear and nonlinear analysis results is a consequence of
different solution methods. While in the linear analysis is stress considered as
elastic and geometry of the tank is considered unchanged, in the nonlinear
analysis changes of the tank shape are taken into account together with
material nonlinearities.
3. Onset of plastic deformation is obvious from the graph in Fig. 12.

Figure 30: Von Mises stress distribution on top faces at t = 1,5.

62 NONLINEAR FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS

Figure 31: Von Mises stress distribution on bottom faces at t = 1,5.

0
40
80
120
160
200
240
280
0 0.3 0.6 0.9 1.2 1.5
time

[
M
P
a
]

Fig. 12: Course of equivalent von Mises stress in node 177