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Presentation on

C. K. PITHAWALA COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING

AND TECHNOLOGY, SURAT
Finite Element Method (FEM) And Finite Difference Method (FDM) Introduction And Difference
PREPARED BY:
Name
1. Ms. KRISHNA MODI
2. Mr. HITESH RANA
3. Mr. AVADHESH H. VYAS

Enrollment No.
(150090709009)
(150090709017)
(150090709018)

Subject : Finite Element Methods ( RP )

M.E., 2nd Semester, Machine Design,
GTU, Surat, Gujarat.

GUIDED BY:
Prof. SHRADHDHA R. MEHTA

CKPCET, SURAT.

AGENDA
Introduction
Case :1

Case :2

Introduction

Introduction

Results & Discussion

Methods of Solution

Application of Boundary condition

Results
Conclusion

INTRODUCTION
The FE method is a technique in which a given domain is represented as a collection of
simple domains, called finite elements, so that it is possible to construct the approximate
functions needed in a vibrational or weighted residual approximation of the solution of a
problem over each element.

Basic Features of FEM

Division of whole domain into sub-domains.
Derivation of approximate function.
Assembly of elements.

Introduction [1]

Steps of FEM
Step 1: Discretization of Domain
Step 2: Derivation of Element Equation
It involves three steps:
1. Construct the weighted residual or weak
form of G.D.E.
2. Assume the form of approximate solution
over a typical finite element
3. Derive the finite element equation using
approximate solution
Step 3: Assemble all the elements
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Introduction [1]

What is FDM?
In FDM, the derivatives appearing in the differential equation and the boundary
conditions are replaced by their finite difference approximations.
Finite Difference Approximations of Various Derivatives
If y(x) and its derivatives are single valued continuous functions of x then by Taylors
expansion

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Introduction [1]

First order approximation

Forward Difference
Backward Difference

Central Difference

Second order approximation

Central Difference

Introduction [1]

For example
is the governing equation of the continuum shown below.

Introduction [1]

Standard 5-point formula

Diagonal 5-point formula
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Introduction [1]

Jacobis Method

Gauss- Seidal Method

The accuracy of the calculations depends on the mesh-size i.e. smaller the mesh size, better
the accuracy. But if h is too small, it may increase the round off error.
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Introduction [1]

Boundary Conditions
Fixed or Dirichlet Boundary Condition
Derivative or Neumann Boundary Condition
Mixed Boundary Conditions

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Introduction [1]

FEM VS FDM

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Introduction

FEM

FDM

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Introduction

:1

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Introduction
FRONTAL CRASH SIMULATION
COLUMNS USING FEM

Case :1
OF

VEHICLES

AGAINST

LIGHTING

There are a lot of utility poles, lighting columns and signposts in streets. These may cause
many severe and fatal crashes that result in vehicles colliding with lighting columns such
as street columns and street traffic lights. It is not matter that the accidents occur between
vehicle and vehicle or vehicles and any objects like lighting columns. It is found that the
existing lighting columns are fabricated from a material of higher yield strength steel. The
characteristics of this material have higher static strength and lower absorbing impact
energy.
This means that the vehicle must absorb the remaining kinetic energy from the crash.
The resulted high impact forces on such small area of the car to lead to high risk of injury
as well as endangering the lives of the vehicle occupants.
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Case :1

In order that the occupants of the vehicle to survive a crash of this nature, it is necessary
that the vehicle must be able to absorb the energy created during the impact which already
achieved in modern design cars. Although modern cars are designed with composite
materials that absorb most of the developed energy resulted from the impact, yet the
risk of injury is still high.

A new design of lighting columns that would dramatically sustain the impact energy has
been proposed. The suggested design is aimed at reducing the internal energy that the
vehicle absorbs during impact is a demand.

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Introduction

Case :1

In this paper, Abaqus explicit code is used to numerically simulate frontal crash of
vehicle with lighting columns. The vehicle is assumed to move in right angle against the
lighting column.

The shape of the road, straight or curved road is not considered in this study. Main
parameters influencing maximal deceleration value are found to be column shell
thickness, outer diameter and material properties.

Therefore, lighting columns with different materials and shell thicknesses are
investigated. The resulted accelerations, deformed energies and predicted contact forces
after impact are calculated. The results of the analyses are graphically presented and the
predicted trend is found to be generally satisfied.
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Introduction

Case :1

The applied FEM simulation encompasses a number of individual problems, which

should be given appropriate attention. These problems are:
a) The selection of a mesh & type of element, which should be fine enough, especially at
frontal contact areas to get accurate results & to represent real simulation during impact.
b) Totally about 6000 elements have been generated in the entire model where the smallest
size of the element is about 0.01 m in the front contact area (bumberradiatorshood and
front doors). Coarse mesh may applied for areas located far from collision region to
reduce CPU time.
c) ABAQUS/Explicit Version 6.9-4 code is used to simulate the impact of vehicles with
lighting columns. The vehicle and lighting columns are modeled using four nodes, thin
shell double curved elements (S4R). The contact surface during collision, elements
based surfaces are applied to define contact region.
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Case :1

The present column (rigid) has a material yield strength steel of 355 N/mm2 with
isotropic hardening to a strength of 490 N/mm2 at plastic strain of 0.025.

However, the vehicle is free to move in right angle with a translational velocity along the
X-axis equal to 14 m/s. The velocity is applied at all nodes of the vehicle. Point masses
are assumed to represent masses of mechanical and transmission components. The
vehicle gross weight is taken 980 kg.

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FEM

Result & discussion

Case :1

The present lighting column has a length of 8 m and its diameters at base and top are 200
mm and 10 mm respectively, while the shell thickness (ts) is 4 mm.

Figure 1 : FE model of the present lighting column

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Case :1

Figure 2 : Deformation history of the lighting column with the new material

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Case :1

ts= 4mm

t = 4mm

t = 3mm

t = 2mm

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Case :1

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Case :1

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Conclusion & future scope

Case :1

The present rigid lighting column with high yield strength of material absorbs little
impact energy, in turn high injury risk is expected.
The lighting column fabricated from the new material decelerates the vehicle and absorbs
higher impact energy, in turn increasing the safety of vehicle occupant.
The peak of the acceleration value is happened at a time less than that expected. This
limitation is because the model lacks some of the details of the additional material parts
in the interior of the vehicle.
Lighting columns with internal stiffening systems have to be further investigated.
The validation of this study has to be checked in the future with real crash colliding test.
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:2

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Introduction

Case :2

A COMPARISON OF A FINITE ELEMENT METHOD AND A FINITE

DIFFERENCE METHOD FOR TRANSIENT SIMULATION OF A GAS PIPELINE
Transient flow of gas through a pipeline is given by a linear partial differential equation
of diffusion type. Finite difference and finite element methods are selected for solving this
equation.
For the finite element method linear and cubic interpolating polynomials are used.
Investigations are carried out for the single pipeline.
The calculations are made using a PRIME 9950 computer. The computation times and
accuracy are determined for every method.
Comparison between analyzed methods are carried out, taking as a criterion of comparison
the accuracy of the results and computation time.

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Mathematical Modeling of Flow

Case :2

Assumptions:
the flow is one-dimensional
the cross-sectional area changes slowly along the path of the stream of gas
the radius of curvature of the pipe is large compared with the diameter
the shapes of velocity and temperature profiles are approximately constant along the
pipe

The complex governing equation is given as:

A p
M
=

c 2 t
x
p w 2 4 f

Fp sin = ( w) + ( w2 )
x
2 D
t
x
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(1)

Case :2

Where, p = p(x, t) = average gas pressure (averaged over cross-sectional area) in

pipe, Pa
M = M(x, t) = average mass flow (averaged over cross-sectional area)
in pipe, kg/s
A = cross-sectional area, m^2
c = speed of sound in gas, m/s
= (x, t) = average gas density (averaged over cross-sectional area) in pipe,
kg/m^3
w = w(x, t) = average gas velocity (averaged over cross-sectional

area) in

pipe, m/s
f = friction co-efficient
D = hydraulic mean diameter, m
F = net body force per unit mass
= angle between the horizontal and direction x
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Math. Modeling

Case :2

when boundary conditions do not change rapidly or the capacity of the pipe is relatively
large, the transient flow through the horizontal pipe can be represented by equations of the
form

A p
M
=

c 2 t
x

(2)

Taking into account,

M = wA = Q = s Qs & p = c 2

(3)

Eq. (2) reduces to,

c Q
p
= 2 s s
t
A x
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2 f s2 c 2Qs2
p
=
x
A2 Dp

(4)
Math. Modeling

Case :2

After performing transformations (see Ref. 4), we obtain the biquadratic model

(5)

Now, after mathematical manipulation of eq. (4), we get,

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(6)

Math. Modeling

Methods of Solution

Case :2

Methods of solution of transient flow equations for single pipe

Finite difference method
Using finite difference method eq. 5 & 6
can be written as,
k+1

Pnk +1 Pnk
Pnk+11 2 Pnk +1 + Pnk++11
=
t
(x) 2
(7)

k
n-1

n+1

Fig.1 Implicit scheme, unrestricted stability

,
,

!"5\$
!"6\$

The finite difference (FD) schemes discussed above are based on the evaluation of pressures
at specified discrete mesh points in the pipe space-time domain. The pressure profile at points
not on the mesh is not considered.
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Case :2
Finite element method
In the finite element (FE) technique, the pipe domain is viewed as an assembly (or sum)
of small pipe sections or elements joined by nodes at their common boundaries. Over
each element, the pressure profile is approximated as a linear combination of selected
trial functions and nodal pressures.
To derive the pipe (FE) equations, we write the pressure profile over each element as,
N

p ( x, t ) = wij ( x) pi (t )
i =1

where

&

and '& denote pressure and trial functions associated with node i. N is the

number of nodes along x. Trial functions can be chosen in the form of linear or higherorder polynomials. However, there is a tradeoff between computational efficiency and
order of the trial functions used for spatial discretization.
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Methods

Case :2

Applying the Galerkin weighted residuals method to equation (6) on an element-byelement basis requires that

2 p ( x, t )
p ( x, t ) j

a
1
wi ( )d = 0
1 2
t
1

In a similar manner, the Galerkin method has been applied to equation (5) For
discretization purposes, the pipe is divided into as many elements as necessary to form an
FE mesh.

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Methods

Case :2

Initial and Boundary Condition

Initial conditions are determined on the basis of the pipe state at the moment preceding the
start time of the simulation. Let us assume that the initial moment is t = 0. Thus Q = f(x),
the initial flow, and p(x, 0) = h(x), the initial pressure profile. It was assumed that Q =
Boundary conditions are determined by the way in which the pipe is supplied and loaded.
For discussion purposes assume that the pipe section under investigation was supplied
from a compressor station at x = 0 and fed at x = L by a receiver having a load Q(t), a
discrete period function with a discrete step At = 2h, the time interval being t = [0, 24h]
It was assumed that by introducing appropriate changes of the capacity of the compressor
station, the value of the pressure at the beginning of the pipe may be kept invariant. Thus,
p(0, t) = constant
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Q (L,t) = f(t)

Result

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Case :2

Case :2

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Result

Case :2

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Result

Case :2

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Result

Conclusion

Case :2

The results in Table I relate to equations (5) and (6). A comparison of computation times
between FE and FD difference shows a considerable advantage for FD method in each case.
Computation time increases for higher-order interpolation functions. In the event that
higher accuracy is of concern, the Galerkin cubic finite element may be used at the expense
of increased computational costs.
Analyzing the results (Figures 3-10), we see that the maximum difference methods do not
exceed 0.06 MPa. Taking into account errors of measurement devices and simplifications of
the mathematical model of transient flow, we can neglect these differences.

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Reference
[1] Finite Element Method: A Mathematical Approach by Dr. Chaitanya K. Desai
[2] Yehia A. Abdel-Nasser, Frontal crash simulation of vehicles against lighting columns
using FEM, Alexandria Engineering Journal (2013) 52, 295299.
[3] Andrzej J. Osiadacz, Mohamed Yedroudj, A comparison of a finite element method
and a finite difference method for transient simulation of a gas pipeline, Appl. Math.
Modelling, 1989, Vol. 13.

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