COMPARISON OF SOME VARIANTS OF THE FINITE STRIP METHOD FOR ANALYSIS OF COMPLEX SHELL STRUCTURES
The subject of this paper is to explore and evaluate the semi-analytical, analytical and numerical versions of the finite strip method (FSM) for static, dynamic and stability analyses of complex thin-walled structures. Many of bridge superstructures, some roof and floor structures, reservoirs, channels, tunnels, subways, layered shells and plates etc. can be analysed by this method. In both semi-analytical and analytical variants beam eigenvalue vibration or stability functions, orthogonal polynomials, products of these functions are used as longitudinal functions of the unknowns. In the numerical FSM spline longitudinal displacement functions are implemented. In the semi-analytical and numerical FSM conventional transverse shape functions for displacements are used. In the analytical FSM the accurate function of the strip normal displacement and the plane stress function are applied. These three basic variants of the FSM are compared in quality and quantity in view to the following: basic ideas, modelling, unknowns, DOF, a kind and order of the strips, longitudinal and transverse displacement and stress functions, compatibility requirements, boundary conditions, ways for obtaining of the strip stiffness and load matrices, a kind and size of the structure stiffness matrix and its band width, mesh density, necessary number of terms in length, accuracy and convergence of the stresses and displacements, approaches for refining results, input and output data, computer resources used, application area, closeness to other methods, options for future development. Numerical example is presented. Advantages and shortcomings are pointed. Conclusions are given.
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