Elaboration of Degrees of Freedom in NASTRAN/PATRAN by comparing “Rod” and “Beam” elements
Keywords:NASTRAN/PATRAN , “Rod” and “Beam” elements, Degree of Freedom
PATRAN is a software that can be a pre-processor for NASTRAN Finite Element software and it can also be used as a stand-alone Finite Element software that produces the same results as NASTRAN as illustrated in the PATRAN verification manual. In PATRAN, the geometry of line elements is defined as 2, 3, or 4 node Bar Elements. Various line elements can be assigned to the Bars. Two of such line elements are “Rod” and “Beam” elements. Each element type has various degrees of freedom and if forces and/or moments are applied to degrees of freedom that do not apply to the element, they are ignored. However, PATRAN issues no warning that forces and/or moments are present that do not apply to the element being used and consequently are ignored in the Finite Element computations. Consequently, if care is not exercised regarding the Degree of Freedom of the elements in a model, wrong results are obtained without any error messages generated by the software. Examples in this article illustrate cases where wrong results are obtained through improper use of the software.
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