Course code TBM250

TBM250 The Finite Element Method

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Showing course contents for the educational year 2018 - 2019 .

Course responsible: Marit Irene Kvittem
Teachers: Tor Anders Nygaard, Kent Anders Björnfot
ECTS credits: 10
Faculty: Faculty of Science and Technology
Teaching language: NO
(NO=norsk, EN=Engelsk)
Limits of class size:
Teaching exam periods:
This course starts in the August block. This course has teaching/evaluation in August block and the Autumn parallel
Course frequency: Annually
First time: Study year 2008-2009
Preferential right:


1.            students who have the course as mandatory in their study plan

2.            students on the following study programmes: M-BA, M-IØ og M-MPP

3.            students with most ECTS credits

It there are not enough slots in group one the students will be ranked by their ECTS credits.

Students taking the course for the first time have lab priority.

Course contents:
Central topics are: Terminology, direct method for element matrices, compatibility, equilibrium, system matrices and boundary conditions. Galerkin method and interpolation functions. Derivation of structural dynamics matrices for beam elements. Solution algorithms. Solution of simple problems by hand and programming. Use of commercial software packages. Beam elements, plate/shell elements and volume elements. Boundary conditions and symmetry. Convergence criteria. Sources of errors and singularities. A number of compulsory problems must be solved in order to pass the course.
Learning outcome:
Having passed the course, the students will have gained basic understanding of how to use the Finite-Element-Method (FEM) in solving practical problems. This class also provides training in problem solving using commercial FEM- software packages.
Learning activities:
The course is based on a combination of lectures, demonstrations and exercises.
Teaching support:
The subject teachers are available in connection with lectures and exercises in the computer lab. Exercises are carried out under the guidance of both the subject teacher and with assistance from others at the department.

The lecture notes cover the main aspects of the class. Recommended, but not compulsory supporting literature: Cook. et al: Concepts and Applications of Finite Element Analysis. ISBN10 0471356050.

Note that supporting litterature has changed since the previous year. The following list refers to chapters in Huebner et al: The finite element method for engineers (John Wiley and Sons, inc), ISBN 0-471-37078-9. Revised litterature list will be made available at the beginning of the course.

Introduction. Matrix algebra. Appendiks A, Ch 2.4, 2.5 Direct method applied to static beam systems. 1, 2.1, except triangular element, 2.2.4, 2.3 - 2.3.3 Boundary conditions 2.3.4 Math review, integration 1D og 2D. Notes Galerkins method for derivation of element equations. Ch 4 except variational methods in 4.2.2, ch 4.2.3 Elements and interpolation functions, with emphasis on cubic Hermite polynoms 5.1 - 5.8.1 Derivation of matrices for beam elements by the Galerkin method. Notes (not treated in book). Elasticity problems, 6.1 - 6.2.2. Structural dynamics, 6.7.1. Derivation of mass matrices for beam elements by the Galerkin method. Notes (not treated in book) Eigen frequencies 6.7.2. Examples Transient response by modal superposition 6.7.3. Structural damping (notes). Examples Symmetry, boundary conditions, grid generation, errors and singularities 10.1 - 10.6.5 Additional material is handed out throughout the class.

MATH111, MATH112, MATH113, FYS101, FYS102, FYS110, TBM120, INF120.
Recommended prerequisites:
Mandatory activity:
Compulsory exercises/problems.
Failed/Pass, based on exercises/compulsory problems. To pass the course, all compulsory problems have to be submitted  before the deadlines and approved.
Nominal workload:
Lectures with self-tuition and homework, approx. 120 hours. Exercises and homework, approx. 180 hours.
Entrance requirements:
Special requirements in Science
Type of course:
August block: 2 hours lectures per day, 4 hours exercises per day. Autumn semester: 2 hours lectures per week, 4 hours exercises per week.
The course is compulsory for Masters degree students in Mechanical Engineering as well as Industrial Economics with graduate courses in Machine- and Product Development (M-MP and IØ-MP-profile).
The external examiner has many years of professional experience, using the Finite Element Method in product development and design, and gives feedback on current developments and needs. The course outline as well as results are reviewed annually. The course is updated according to current international research. Criteria and procedures for assessment of student performance are described in a document following the examination assessment.
Examination details: Continuous exam: Bestått / Ikke bestått