Nonlinear Structural Analysis by Energy Search

by Robert H. Mallett,
Lucien A. Schmit, Jr.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Structural Division, 1967, Vol. 93, Issue 3, Pg. 221-234

Document Type: Journal Paper


A geometrically nonlinear model for a truss discrete element is cast in the form of a potential energy function. Representations of truss structures of arbitrary configuration are constructed by summing element potential energies. Exploiting the principle of minimum potential energy, structural behavior is predicted by numerical minimization of the total potential energy of the assembled structure. Selected example applications are included, demonstrating the effectiveness of the method in predicting large displacement behavior. Particular attention is given to elastic stability- ment behavior. Particular attention is given to elastic stability.

Subject Headings: Structural behavior | Nonlinear analysis | Trusses | Discrete element method | Elastic analysis | Geometrics | Arbitration | Displacement (mechanics)

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