Simulation of thin-walled members with arbitrary-shaped cross-sections for static and dynamic analyses

A. H.A. Abdelrahman, Siwei Liu, Yao Peng Liu, Siu Lai Chan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The main objective of this paper is to validate a finite-element (FE) modeling protocol to simulate thin-walled members for static and dynamic analyses. Arbitrary-shaped cross-sections, including open, closed, and multicellular sections can be efficiently modeled for further advanced study. The framework is thoroughly validated and verified using the existing analytical and closed-form solutions, as well as experimental results available in literature. This work is motivated by the higher accuracy of the shell FE-based modeling to capture the local and global complex behaviors of thin-walled members with asymmetric sections. Higher computational expenses, however, are required for such sophisticated shell finite element models (SFEM). Accordingly, a framework hosted in MATLAB and implementing the python scripting technique in ABAQUS, is developed, which includes eigen buckling, static nonlinear, modal frequency and dynamic time-history analyses. For a more modeling convenience, various parameters are incorporated such as imperfections, residual stresses, material definitions, element choice, meshing control, and boundary conditions. Several examples are provided to illustrate the application of the proposed framework, and to prove the robustness and accuracy of the generated FE models. This paper concludes with the efficiency of implementing SFEMs for simulating thin-walled members; thereby, establishing a more accurate and advanced structural analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2050128
JournalInternational Journal of Structural Stability and Dynamics
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2020


  • Finite shell elements
  • dynamic
  • nonlinear analysis
  • static
  • thin-walled members
  • vibration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


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