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CAD 5132

Computer Aided Design III

Design and Analysis of a Simply


Supported Beam

Designed By: Amy Whitelaw

CRN 10236
December 8, 2015

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Table of Contents

List of Figures ............................................................................................................................................. 3


List of Tables and Charts.......................................................................................................................... 5
1. Intro and Justification .......................................................................................................................... 6
2. Conceptual Design ................................................................................................................................ 6
2.1

Purpose ....................................................................................................................................... 6

2.2

Specifications ............................................................................................................................. 7

2.3

Theory ......................................................................................................................................... 8

2.4

Finite Element Method ............................................................................................................. 9

2.5

Procedure ................................................................................................................................. 12

2.6

Beam 1 ....................................................................................................................................... 12

2.7

Beam 2 ....................................................................................................................................... 14

2.8

Beam 3 ....................................................................................................................................... 16

2.9

Summary of Results ................................................................................................................ 18

2.10

Discussion ............................................................................................................................. 18

3. Manufacturing ..................................................................................................................................... 19
3.1

Introduction ............................................................................................................................. 19

3.2

Purpose ..................................................................................................................................... 19

3.3

Procedure ................................................................................................................................. 19

3.4

Toolpaths .................................................................................................................................. 21

3.5

Verification ............................................................................................................................... 23

3.6

Discussion ................................................................................................................................. 24

4. Testing and Validation ....................................................................................................................... 25


4.1

Introduction ................................................................................................................................. 25

4.2

Purpose ..................................................................................................................................... 29

4.4

Data ............................................................................................................................................ 30

4.5

Test Results .............................................................................................................................. 31

4.6

Discussion ................................................................................................................................. 33

5. Conclusions .......................................................................................................................................... 34

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

List of Figures
Figure 1: Specifications of beam ................................................................................................................ 7
Figure 2: Beam Deflection Diagram ........................................................................................................... 8
Figure 3: Beam Deflection Equation ......................................................................................................... 8
Figure 4: Moment of Inertia for a Rectangular Cross Section .................................................................. 8
Figure 5: Bending Moment Equation ......................................................................................................... 8
Figure 6: Young's Modulus Equation ......................................................................................................... 8
Figure 7: Von Mises Stress Equation.......................................................................................................... 9
Figure 8:Un-Machined Beam .................................................................................................................... 10
Figure 9: Un-Machined Beam - Deflection ............................................................................................... 10
Figure 10: Un- Machined Beam - Stress................................................................................................... 11
Figure 11: Un-Machined Beam with Constraints .................................................................................... 11
Figure 12: Beam 1 ..................................................................................................................................... 12
Figure 13: Beam 1 - Deflection ................................................................................................................. 12
Figure 14: Beam 1 Stress ....................................................................................................................... 13
Figure 15: Close-up Image of Stress at Load point ................................................................................. 13
Figure 16: Bearing Stress .......................................................................................................................... 13
Figure 17: Beam 2 ..................................................................................................................................... 14
Figure 18: Beam 2 - Deflection ................................................................................................................. 14
Figure 19: Beam 2 Stress ....................................................................................................................... 15
Figure 20: Beam 3 ..................................................................................................................................... 16
Figure 21: Beam 3 Displacement .......................................................................................................... 16
Figure 22: Beam 3- Stress ......................................................................................................................... 17
Figure 23: CAM Setup File......................................................................................................................... 20
Figure 24: Conventional vs Climb Milling ............................................................................................... 20
Figure 25: Predrill Toolpath ..................................................................................................................... 21
Figure 26: Rough Milling Toolpath .......................................................................................................... 21
Figure 27: Finish Milling Toolpath ........................................................................................................... 22
Figure 28: Blank In-Process Workpiece .................................................................................................. 23
Figure 29: Finished In-Process Workpiece ............................................................................................. 23
Figure 30: Machined Beam ....................................................................................................................... 24
Figure 31: Beam with Strain Gauge Applied ........................................................................................... 25
Figure 32: Close up of Strain Gauge ......................................................................................................... 25
Figure 33: Cotton Swabs ........................................................................................................................... 26
Figure 34: Gauze Pads ............................................................................................................................... 26
Figure 35: Sandpaper ................................................................................................................................ 26
Figure 36: Three Types of Wire................................................................................................................ 27
Figure 37: M-Prep Conditioner ................................................................................................................ 27
Figure 38: M-Prep Neutralizer ................................................................................................................. 27
Figure 39: Tape .......................................................................................................................................... 27
Figure 40: Catalyst..................................................................................................................................... 28
Figure 41: Soldering Iron and Solder ...................................................................................................... 28

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Figure 42: Glue........................................................................................................................................... 28


Figure 43: Set up Strain Indicator ............................................................................................................... 29
Figure 44: Stress Testing ............................................................................................................................. 30
Figure 45: Sample Calculation for Stress ................................................................................................. 31
Figure 46: FEA Stress in Area of Stress Testing ........................................................................................... 33

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

List of Tables and Charts

Table 1: Hand Calculated Values ................................................................................................................ 9


Table 2: Hand and FEA Calculations .......................................................................................................... 9
Table 3: Summary of Results .................................................................................................................... 18
Table 4: Summary of Results as Percentages .......................................................................................... 18
Table 5: Manufacturing Times .................................................................................................................... 24
Table 6: Raw Data ...................................................................................................................................... 30
Table 7: Stress Calculations ...................................................................................................................... 31
Table 8: Strain vs Applied Load................................................................................................................ 31
Table 9: Deflection vs Applied Load......................................................................................................... 32
Table 10: Stress vs Applied Load ............................................................................................................. 32

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

1. Intro and Justification

The development of computer aided design, manufacturing, and engineering (CAD, CAM,
and CAE) has completely revolutionized the manufacturing industry. These technologies
can afford designers to be more creative with their designs, save time, and money. They
also allow data to be stored in easy to use software that can be sent all over the world to
allow for concurrent engineering.

It is very rare that a design will meet its specifications and criteria after the first iteration.
Before we had these technologies, every single design would have to be carefully designed
by an engineer meticulously hand drawn by an engineering technologist or draftsman,
handed off to a highly skilled machinist who would have to build the part or prototype with
looser tolerances than what is afforded by CAM systems, and then physically tested in labs
to see what it is truly capable of. This process could take hours, days, or even weeks and
would have to be repeated over and over until it is perfect. Now, with the help of CAD and
CAE, these iterations can be virtually modelled and tested until they meet specifications
before a prototype is even built and a prototype can be built in minutes when the design is
ready.

2. Conceptual Design
2.1

Purpose

This purpose of this project is to design a simply supported beam that meets given
specifications. Students are required to design the beam using CAD software (NX 10) and
then test the model using finite element analysis. Students must then use the CAM software
(NX 10) to create a CNC program to machine the part with. Then, the parts will be tested.
This gives students first-hand experience of the product design cycle for an engineered
product.

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

2.2

Specifications

The designed beam is a simply supported Aluminum 6061 beam. It has two supports
located .25 inches from each end and has a 500 lb force acting down from the centre. The
original beam that is supplied is 10in x 2 in x .25 in.

Figure 1: Specifications of beam

The beam:

cannot have stresses exceeding 10 000 psi at any point other than the load point
must not deflect more than .010 inches along the bottom surface
cannot exceed 60% of the original mass
must have an un-machined border width of .375 in
must have a minimum web thickness of .125 in
the minimum radii must be .145 in to allow for the smallest tool (.25 in diameter
end mill)
all machining must pass completely through the beam

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

2.3

Theory

It is important to have an understanding of how materials and structures deform. If a


design engineer knows the weakest and strongest areas of a structure, they can consider
those aspects and either remove or add material as necessary. In this particular design
problem, the Equations can be useful to calculate the stresses and displacement of the
beam as they aid in predicting the behaviour of the beam while it is under load.

Figure 2: Beam Deflection Diagram

3
500 9.53
=
= .00536
48 48 10000000 .16667
Figure 3: Beam Deflection Equation

3 . 25 23
=
=
= .166674
12
12

Figure 4: Moment of Inertia for a Rectangular Cross Section

1187.5 1
=
= 7125

. 16667

Figure 5: Bending Moment Equation

7125
=
= 10000000
. 0007125
Figure 6: Young's Modulus Equation

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam


Hand Calculations
Modulus of Elasticity: E
Moment of Inertia: I

Max Bending Moment:


Maximum Stress Due to Bending:

Max Deflection: ymax

Table 1: Hand Calculated Values

2.4

10 000 000 psi


.16667 in4

1187.5 lb-in
7125 psi

.00536 in

Finite Element Method

Von Mises Stress is commonly used by engineers and engineering technologists because it
considers multiple different forms of stress and the materials yield stress. When the part
is under simple tension and compression, the formula is as shown in Figure 7: Von Mises
Stress Equation.

Figure 7: Von Mises Stress Equation

Max Stress Due to


Bending:
Max Deflection: ymax

Hand Calculations

FEA Calculations

Percent Differences

7125 psi

6863.1 psi

3.67%

Table 2: Hand and FEA Calculations

.00536 in

.006 in

4.00%

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Table 2 shows the difference between FEA calculations and hand calculations. The
calculations are very close to each other.

It is expected that the highest stress points will occur at the load and support points. This is
because Stress = Force / Area. All of the force is occurring on those three points so they
will bear the brunt of stress. It is also expected that the stress will be high along the top and
bottom faces of the beam. This occurs because the top is under compression and the
bottom is under tension while the beam elastically deforms to suit the applied forces.
Figure 10 displays these stresses perfectly.
Deflection will also be the highest along the centre of the beam because that is where all of
the force is acting so the material is deforming specifically in that area. This is shown in
Figure 9.
It is important to refine the mesh to be smaller in the areas that show high stress. If the
mesh is too large, the progression between colours will be abrupt so the true stresses will
not be visible. The key is to refine the mesh to a point where there is a slow change
between colours.

Figure 8:Un-Machined Beam

Figure 9: Un-Machined Beam - Deflection

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Figure 10: Un- Machined Beam - Stress

Figure 11: Un-Machined Beam with Constraints

Figure 11 shows the constraints and load being applied to the blank beam. The red arrows
display the force and the blue crosses display the constraints. It is important to divide the
top and bottom faces so that an edge is present to assign these constraints and forces to.
The constraints along the bottom face are fixed in the Y and Z axes because when the
support is in place, those points will move side to side but will not move up and down or
back and forth. The constraint on the top face is fixed in the X axis because it will not move
side to side in that area. The force is also applied in that same area. This is unusual but
necessary as the downward force is what actually causes the lack of movement along the X
axis.

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

2.5

Procedure

Once a 3D model has been created, finite element analysis (FEA) can be performed. A
material must be assigned to the model so that the software can accurately factor in the
modulus of elasticity. We then add a mesh to the model. This breaks the model up into
tiny fragments that have individual stress points. The smaller the mesh; the more accurate
the data. The next step that must be taken is applying the force and constraints. Think
about the way the model will be supported in real life and apply constraints accordingly.
Use the same methodology for applying your forces, pressures, torque, et cetera. Once, the
mesh, forces, and constraints are in place, it is possible to solve for stress and displacement.
Observe the FEA and use the information to make careful adjustments to your model, and
then re solve until you have met your criteria.

2.6

Beam 1

Figure 12: Beam 1

Figure 13: Beam 1 - Deflection

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Figure 14: Beam 1 Stress

The beam in Figure 12 was one of my first iterations. I chose to use a three triangle truss
design for my beam. I looked at the webbing as force vectors and I wanted to direct the
force straight from the load point onto the supports. Figure 13 shows the deflection of this
beam under load and Figure 14 shows the stress. The area that contains the small holes
was completely blue in the stress analysis picture of the previous iteration, so I decided to
punch out holes. This created enormous stress concentrations inside of the holes and along
the inner webbings of the part. After this design, I eliminated the idea of drilling holes. In
this iteration, so I did not immediately put effort into lowering the deflection.

Figure 15: Close-up Image of Stress at Load point

The load point shows a pronounced V shape as displayed in Figure 15. The black portion of
this shows that the stress is above 10 000 psi. We must consider the force as if it is acting
on a line when considering the load point. Therefore we must consider the stress as a
bearing force over a deformed area. The formula in Figure 16 displays the calculation of the
stresses at the load point. This high stress elastically deforms the beam at these points.
=

500
=
= 20000
. 0252
Figure 16: Bearing Stress

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

2.7

Beam 2

Figure 17: Beam 2

Figure 18: Beam 2 - Deflection

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Figure 19: Beam 2 Stress

The beam shown in Figure 12, Figure 13, and Figure 14 is one of my intermediate iterations.
The only deflection areas being considered for this design are along the bottom face and
they are only exceeding the requirements by approximately 0.001 inches. The areas that
are high for deflection are coincident with the areas that are high for stress. The coincident
stress and displacement issues in between the supports leads me to focus my attention on
lowering the stress in that area and hopefully the deflection would come down as well.
There are very high stress values along the radii near the bottom corners so I decided to
also thicken the external walls in the next iteration in an attempt to bring the stress down
there as well.

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

2.8

Beam 3

Figure 20: Beam 3

Figure 21: Beam 3 Displacement

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Figure 22: Beam 3- Stress

The beam outlined in Figure 20, Figure 21 and Figure 22 is my final iteration. This beam
meets all of the criteria. The stress colouration is fairly even across the beam which shows
me that the design is acceptable. There are a few areas that are dark blue that I would like
to change, particularly the areas to the left and right of the middle triangle and between the
support points and the triangles. If the minimum allowable radii and un-machined border
width criteria were adjusted, material could be removed from those areas to optimize the
beam. The largest stress area is along the bottom outermost radii of the left and right
triangles. I added material to that area in order to bring down the stress.

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

2.9

Summary of Results

Trial

Largest Deflection
(in)

Maximum Stress
(psi)

Mass (Lbs)

0.006
0.011602
0.012091
0.009897

6863.117
14221
16028
9976

0.489705
0.287428
0.290863
0.293501

Un-Machined Beam
Beam1
Beam2
Beam3

Table 3: Summary of Results

Trial
Un-Machined Beam
Beam1
Beam2
Beam3

Percent
Differences from
Un-Machined:
Largest Deflection
(in)

Table 4: Summary of Results as Percentages

0.006
93.37%
101.52%
64.95%

Percent
Differences from
Un-Machined:
Maximum Stress
(psi)
6863.117
20.72%
133.54%
45.36%

Percent
Differences from
Un-Machined: Mass
(Lbs)
0.489705
-41.31%
-40.60%
-40.07%

2.10 Discussion
It is evident from observing Table 3 that my primary focus was on making sure that my
mass was below the criteria and then lowering the stress and deflection through
meticulous design. It is incredibly easy to meet the criteria for stress and deflection if you
do not immediately concern the mass, as the original beam already meets those criteria.
Beam 1 was one of my first attempts: the mass was way below the requirements, the
deflection was close, but the stress was far above where it needed to be. The next iterations
drastically brought the stress closer to where it needed to be, but did compromise the
deflection and mass. Finally, after many iterations, a successful beam was designed. It is
interesting to note that the beams in Figure 17: Beam 2 and Figure 20: Beam 3 are almost
identical in appearance but they have drastically different deflection and stress values. This
shows the advantages of FEA and tight tolerances.
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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

3. Manufacturing
3.1

Introduction

Numerically controlled (NC) machining was the precursor to computer numerically


controlled (CNC) machining. NC machining was controlled by feeding paper tape, called
NCtape, into the NC machine, and the machine would interpret the codes to produce a tool
path as well as cutting information such as coolant feed, speeds, feeds, and tool changes.
This cutting information is referred to as Cutting Location Source Files (CLSF). Now, there
are many software packaged from many price points that can create the required code for
toolpaths and cutting information. The software that was used to create the beam, NX 10, is
capable of producing CNC codes.

3.2

Purpose

Students are required to use the CAM software package of NX10 to create tool paths that
will be processes by a CNC mill to machine the simply supported beam. The purpose of
machining is to create a beam that can be tested and analyzed in real life. This allows
students to compare FEA testing with reality. Knowing the limitations of CAD and CAM will
help us become better designers.

3.3

Procedure

Once a completed and functional beam has been modelled in 3D space, create a
manufacturing file and add the beam to it. It is important to add a table, and all necessary
components of the clamping device to the file, shown as the red areas in

Figure 23. This is a crucial step because it ensures that the toolpath does not collide with

any integral parts of the milling machine. Note that drill bits and end mills that accurately
represent real life tools should be selected in order for the toolpath to reflect reality. When
assigning tools, remember to consider the limiting factors. The limiting factor for this
particular design would be the smallest corner radius of the pockets. An end mill must be
selected that can accommodate this.

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Figure 23: CAM Setup File

It is important to determine whether climb or conventional milling will be applied to the


rough and finish milling operations. Conventional milling is shown in Figure 24 on the left
hand side. This type of milling is used when milling cast or hardened material because it
cuts underneath the very hard surface, however, due to poor chip removal, it does not
produce a good surface finish. Climb milling is shown on the right of Figure 24. This milling
strategy is used most often. It is easiest on the tool, expels chips well, and produces a good
surface finish. For machining the beam, climb milling is most suitable.

Figure 24: Conventional vs Climb Milling

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

3.4

Toolpaths

It is important to pre drill a hole in the center of each pocket using a drill bit with a larger
diameter than the end mill before milling begins. This allows the end mill to cut in one
direction. The red dashed line in Figure 25 displays the toolpath generated by NX10.

Figure 25: Predrill Toolpath

After the holes are drilled, a roughing operation must be employed to remove the bulk of
the material. The largest reasonable end mill should be selected for this operation as larger
mills can cut more. The white spiral pattern in Figure 26 displays the toolpath for the rough
milling operation.

Figure 26: Rough Milling Toolpath

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

The next step is a finish milling operation. A small tool must be selected to cut the smallest
features and to give a better surface finish. Rough and finish milling use different feed rates.
The finish milling operation uses a lower feed rate in order to achieve a smoother surface
finish. The tool path in Figure 27 displays the profile pattern that finish milling follows.

Figure 27: Finish Milling Toolpath

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

3.5

Verification

NX 10 has a feature within its manufacturing environment that displays what is called an
In-Process Workpiece (IPW). This allows you to see what the workpiece looks like at the
current machining operation. Figure 28 shows IPW of the initial 6in x 2in x .25in blank
stock. Figure 29 shows the final product after all of the virtual machining has been
completed.

Figure 28: Blank In-Process Workpiece

Figure 29: Finished In-Process Workpiece

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

3.6

Discussion

Machining this beam, Figure 30, using a manually operated mill would require a highly
skilled machinist. In contrast, students with little to no experience can use CAM software to
export CNC codes and have a highly accurate beam in less than half hour. The estimated
time and actual times for manufacturing are shown in Table 5. The software gave a relatively
close approximation of machining time.
Manufacturing Times
Operation

NX 10

Actual

Drilling
Roughing
Finishing

21 sec
5 min 39 sec
5 min 14 sec

46 sec
8 min 19 sec
7 min 52 sec

Totals:

11 min 14 sec
Table 5: Manufacturing Times

16 min 57 sec

Figure 30: Machined Beam

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

4. Testing and Validation


4.1 Introduction

Testing of the beam requires applying a strain gauge to the beam, wiring it to a strain tester
and applying a force to the beam. The applied strain gauge with soldered wires is displayed
in Figure 31 and Figure 32. The required materials are: a clean surface, cotton swabs
(Figure 33), gauze pads (Figure 34), sand paper (Figure 35), 3 wires(Figure 36), a strain
gauge , a two contact strain relief (Figure 32), M-Prep conditioner (Figure 37), M-prep
neutralizer (Figure 38), tape (Figure 39), catalyst (Figure 40), glue (Figure 42), solder , and
a soldering iron ( Figure 41). In order to attach the strain gauge and strain relief, the beam
must be thoroughly cleaned using sandpaper, conditioner, gauze pads, cotton swabs and
neutralizer. After it is clean, the strain gauge and strain reliefs are glued using the catalyst,
glue and tape. The wires are then soldered onto the gauge and relief.

Figure 31: Beam with Strain Gauge Applied

Figure 32: Close up of Strain Gauge

25

Figure 33: Cotton Swabs

Figure 34: Gauze Pads

Figure 35: Sandpaper

Figure 36: Three Types of Wire


Figure 37: M-Prep Conditioner

Figure 39: Tape

Figure 38: M-Prep Neutralizer

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Figure 40: Catalyst

Figure 42: Glue

Figure 41: Soldering Iron and Solder

28

4.2

Purpose

The purpose of testing the beams is to compare the results from the FEA testing with how
the beam would behave in reality.

Students are required to use the CAM software package of NX10 to create tool paths that
will be processes by a CNC mill to machine the simply supported beam. The purpose of
machining is to create a beam that can be tested and analyzed in real life. This allows
students to compare FEA testing with reality. Knowing the limitations of CAD and CAM will
help us become better designers.

4.3

Procedure

Strain gauges must be applied to the beams and then the beams will get wired up to a strain
indicator. The beam is cleaned with the conditioner, sandpaper, gauze, and cotton swabs
and then the acid from the conditioner is neutralized with the neutralizer and wiped away.
The catalyst is applied, after a minute, the glue is applied and the gauge and contact relief
are put on and held down by the tape. The beam is left this way for a few minutes, the tape
is removed and it is ready for soldering. The black and white wire are intertwined and
soldered to one contact, and the red wire is soldered to the other open contact.

Figure 43: Set up Strain Indicator

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Adjust the knobs and dials of the strain indicator and dial indicator so that they read zero.

Next, screw the white wire to the white knob, the red wire to the red knob and the black
wire to the black knob. The strain indicator should look like Figure 43. Place the beam onto
the stress tester, ensure that it is square and centered perfectly because any discrepancy
can give a false result. Add the weights one at a time, recording the measurements as you
go. The set up will look like Figure 44.

Figure 44: Stress Testing

4.4

Data

Force (lbf)

Deflection (in)

Strain (in/in)

160
270
380
500

0.001
0.004
0.00575
0.008

138
310
484
690

Force (lbf)

Deflection (in)

Strain (in/in)

160
270
380
500

0.001
0.004
0.00575
0.008

138
310
484
690

Table 6 is the raw data collected from strain testing the beam.

Table 6: Raw Data

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

4.5

Test Results

The following calculation in Figure 45 shows how to solve for stress using Youngs modulus
and the strain reading.
=

(160 ): = (138 106 ) (10 106 )


= 1380

Figure 45: Sample Calculation for Stress

A completed list of stresses can be found in Table 7. A graphical representation of this data
can be found in Table 8, Table 9, and Table 10.
Force (lbf)

Deflection (in)

Strain (in/in)

Stress (psi)

160
270
380
500

0.001
0.004
0.00575
0.008

138
310
484
690

1380
3100
4840
6900

Table 7: Stress Calculations

Strain vs Applied Load


Strain (in/in)

800
600
400
200
0
0

100

200

300

400

500

600

Applied Load (lbf)


Table 8: Strain vs Applied Load

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

Deflection vs Applied Load

Delefcion (in)

0.01
0.008
0.006
0.004
0.002
0
0

Applied Load (lbf)


Table 9: Deflection vs Applied Load

Stress (psi)

Stress vs Applied Load


8000
7000
6000
5000
4000
3000
2000
1000
0
0

100

200

300

400

500

600

Applied Load (lbf)


Table 10: Stress vs Applied Load

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Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

4.6

Discussion

The software package did a very good job at estimating the stress in the area of stress
testing. Figure 46 shows all of the stress in that area, as well as pointing out the maximum
stress which is of value to us. The comparisons for these values is displayed in Table 11.
There is only a .77% difference between the FEA and calculated results which I find very
impressive. Since the FEA and calculated values agree so closely at this part, it can be
concluded that the FEA will be accurate for most other areas of the beam, with the
exception of the areas directly around the load points.
Stress
Calculated
FEA Analysis
Percent Difference

6900 psi
6953.4 psi
0.77%

Table 11: Calculated vs FEA Stress

Figure 46: FEA Stress in Area of Stress Testing

33

Design and Analysis of a Simply Supported Beam

5. Conclusions

Computer aided engineering is an astounding resource. The possibilities for design are
almost limitless. This project is an excellent example of how CAD, CAM and CAE software
have completely changed the design process. Students were expected to design a simply
supported beam that met given criteria. Computer software, such as NX 10, is an
invaluable tool. It allows designers to brainstorm, model, test, and virtually manufacture
parts to very high accuracy as shown in section 4.5. Technologies such as these can give
designers and companies the opportunity to be innovative and cost effective.

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