A Program Architecture for Interactive Nonlinear Dynamic Analysis of Structures

by G. R. Miller, Univ of Washington, Seattle, United States,
M. D. Rucki, Univ of Washington, Seattle, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Computing in Civil and Building Engineering


This paper discusses a general object-oriented architecture for use in nonlinear dynamic structural finite element analyses. In light of the special issues surrounding such analyses, the system has been designed with the following goals in mind: to allow flexibility in algorithm selection, implementation, and distribution; to be well-suited for parallel implementation; and to function well in an interactive environment with respect to model development, modification and visualization. The system employs several key components to achieve these goals: coordinate-free geometry; iterative techniques for solving systems of equations; and an element-by-element implementation strategy. The system uses the conceptual metaphor of an environment of interacting objects. The objects are drawn from both analytical and experimental applications, and include nodes, elements, constraints, materials, constitutive laws, generalized degrees-of-freedom, time-dependent loads, recording devices and assemblages. Each object class is intended to be comprehensible at a high level of abstraction in order to make both the operation and modification/extension of the system relatively intuitive.

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