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A Meshfree B-Spline Finite Element Formulation for Unilateral Contact Problems

[+] Author Affiliations
Alex Grishin

PADT, Tempe, AZ

Jami J. Shah

Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ

Paper No. DETC2011-47776, pp. 91-104; 14 pages
  • ASME 2011 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 2: 31st Computers and Information in Engineering Conference, Parts A and B
  • Washington, DC, USA, August 28–31, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5479-2
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


The integrated, accurate and robust analysis of unilateral structural contact problems at all scales is a prerequisite for a comprehensive CAE process which accommodates the design of assemblies. In addition, such an integration must reduce any manual intervention to a bare minimum. The current reliance on legacy mesh-based finite element software for such analysis instead leads to excessive manual mesh construction and modification. Although the adoption of a meshfree formulation would seem to hold the answer, the current state-of-the-art in node-based formulations suffers from a lack of stability and/or consistency for such applications. This investigation demonstrates that there exists a meshfree B-Spline formulation which is consistent, stable, and demonstrates accuracy comparable to that of mesh-based approaches for simple frictionless Hertzian problems in two dimensions. Together with the Solution Structure Method (SSM) of boundary condition enforcement, it is argued that this approach may provide a more robust finite element framework within existing CAE pipelines.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME



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