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Multibody System Modeling of Flexible Twist Beam Axles in Car Suspension Systems

[+] Author Affiliations
Tariq Z. Sinokrot, William C. Prescott

LMS International, Coralville, IA

Maurizio Nembrini, Alessandro Toso

LMS International, Leuven, Belgium

Paper No. IMECE2011-62680, pp. 169-178; 10 pages
  • ASME 2011 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 9: Transportation Systems; Safety Engineering, Risk Analysis and Reliability Methods; Applied Stochastic Optimization, Uncertainty and Probability
  • Denver, Colorado, USA, November 11–17, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5495-2
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


Dynamic simulation techniques that are based on Multibody system approaches have become an important topic in studying the performance of various mechanical components that comprise an automotive system. One of the challenging issues in such studies is the ability to properly account for the flexibility of certain parts in the system. One example where this is important is the design of twist beam axles in car suspension systems where twisting deformations are present. These deformations are geometrically nonlinear and require a special handling. In this paper two multibody system approaches that are commonly used in overcoming such problem are examined. The first method is a sub-structuring technique that is based on the popular method of component mode synthesis. This method is based on dividing the flexible component into sub-structures, in which, the linear elastic structural theory is sufficient to describe the deformation of each sub-structure. Using this method the deformation of the beam is described using the mode shapes of vibration of each sub-structure. The equations of motion, in this case, are written in terms of the system’s generalized coordinates and modal participation factors. In the second method a Multibody System (MBS) solver and an external nonlinear Finite Element Analysis (FEA) solver are coupled together in a co-simulation manner. The nonlinear FEA solver, in this case, is used in modeling the deformation of the twist beam. The forces due to the nonlinear deformations of the flexible beam are communicated to the MBS solver at certain attachment points where the flexible body is attached to the rest of the multibody system. The displacements and velocities of these attachment points are calculated by the MBS solver and are communicated back to the nonlinear FEA solver to advance the simulation. The two methods described above will be reviewed in this paper and an example of a twist beam axle in a car suspension system model will be examined twice, once using the sub-structuring method, and once using the co-simulation method. The numerical results obtained using both methods will be analyzed and compared.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME



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