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5 January 1984 Uses And Abuses Of The Finite Element Method
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Proceedings Volume 0450, Structural Mechanics of Optical Systems I; (1984)
Event: 1983 Cambridge Symposium, 1983, Cambridge, United States
Almost three decades of advances in theory and software together with the development of large-scale mainframe computers have put the finite element method at the fingertips of the structures design/analysis engineer. Ten of those years have included mechanization and automation of the design process, a trend which continues today. The ability to rapidly design complex structures is the positive result of this trend. However, there is also a negative aspect, viz: structures engineers can lose sight of the facts that the finite element model is only a model and that it may exclude the most significant mechanical characteristics of the real structure. This paper is based on the authors' experience with both theory and applications. Numerous examples are drawn upon to illustrate both the utility of the finite element method and its propensity, when abused, to produce numbers which look plausible but are actually wrong. The paper concludes with some guidelines for finite element modelling of structural systems and details.
© (1984) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Oscar Orringer and Pin Tong "Uses And Abuses Of The Finite Element Method", Proc. SPIE 0450, Structural Mechanics of Optical Systems I, (5 January 1984);

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