72769 - Computational Mechanics

Academic Year 2023/2024

Learning outcomes

The course is an introduction to computational mechanics of solids and structures. The goal of the course is to provide the students with the fundamental concepts and operating tools to solve current structural problems using computer technology.

Course contents

Requirements/Prior knowledge

Fluent spoken English is a necessary pre-requisite: all lectures and tutorials, and all study material will be in English.

Course Contents


1. Introduction

1.1 Strong and weak forms of the governing equations

1.2 The Galerkin method

2. The finite element method for static linear elasticity

2.1 Derivation and implementation of a basic 2D finite element code

2.2 Generalization of finite element procedures for linear elasticity: interpolation and numerical integration in 1D, 2D and 3D

2.3 Structural elements for finite element analysis

2.4 Analysis of the finite element method


3. The finite element method in structural dynamics

3.1 Fundamentals of structural dynamics

3.2 Natural frequency analysis

3.3 Integration methods for transient problems

3.4 Nonlinear dynamics of structures


Lecture slides and notes (available on the web site https://virtuale.unibo.it/ )

- Introduction to Finite Element Methods, C. Felippa , University of Colorado at Boulder, Chs 1-3, 2010, http://www.colorado.edu/engineering/CAS/courses.d/IFEM.d/Home.html

- Thomas J.R. Huges. The Finite Element Method. Dover Publications.

- Chopra, A. K. Dynamics of structures. Pearson Education.

During the lectures, some reading assignments will be made from selected papers in the published literature.

Teaching methods

The course content will be entirely covered by the lectures. The course includes some laboratory sessions, which will cover the practical aspects of the lectures. The instructors will tutor the students.

Assessment methods

A final oral examination is planned, based on questions intended to assess the knowledge and understanding of the topics covered by the course. Furthermore, the student should present and discuss the solutions of some homework assignments (generally 4) and a final project.

To obtain a passing grade, students are required to at least demonstrate a knowledge of the key concepts of the subject and some ability for critical application.

A failing grade will be awarded if the student shows knowledge gaps in key-concepts of the subject and/or logic failures in the analysis of the subject.

Teaching tools

The teaching tools are the projector and the PC.

Office hours

See the website of Stefano de Miranda

See the website of Stefano Mariani