# An Engineering-Problem-Based Short Experiment Project on Finite Element Method for Undergraduate Students

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## Abstract

**:**

## 1. Introduction

## 2. Overview of the Finite Element Experiment

#### 2.1. Teaching Objectives of this Course

- Students are required to have a good understanding of the basic principles of finite element, the construction of shape functions, the selection of element types, and various numerical methods and to be able to use computer programs and finite element software to realize large-scale finite element calculation.
- Students should carry out effective experimental research and have the basic ability to solve complex problems in practical engineering.

#### 2.2. The Process of Experiment

_{Z}is the coefficient of bending cross-section, d is the shaft diameter, and l0 is the length of the rocker arm, l

_{0}= 0.445 m.

#### 2.3. Evaluation Approaches

- Simplify the mechanics model and calculate the stress and strain using theoretical mechanics. (2.5 points)
- 2.5 points: Calculate the right answer on your own using theoretical mechanics.
- 1.25 points: Calculate the right answer under the guidance of the teacher using theoretical mechanics.

- 1)
- Standardization of equipment operation (25 points)
- 25 points: Do the experiment independently.
- 22.5 points: Complete the experiment under the guidance of the teacher.
- 18.5 points: Complete the experiment with the help of the teacher.
- 12.5 points: Master the experimental method but do not get the correct testing results.

- 2)
- Selection of the experimental method (10 points)
- 10 points: Complete two basic measurement circuits.
- 5 points: Complete one basic measurement circuits.
- +1.25 points: Using strain flowmetry.

- 1)
- Capability of problem analysis (10 points)
- 10 points: Establish a finite element model of the experiment object that is accurate and effective.
- 8.5 points: Establish a finite element model of the experiment object that can be identified in the finite element software.
- 7.5 points: Establish a finite element model of the experiment object that cannot be identified in the finite element software.
- 6 points: Use the finite element software and get reasonable results with the help of the teacher.

- 2)
- Use modern information technology and tools (12.5 points)
- 12.5 points: Perform an analysis using the finite element software and obtain reasonable results.
- 9 points: Perform an analysis using the finite element software and obtain reasonable results by adjusting.
- 7.5 points: Use the finite element software and obtain reasonable results with the guidance of the teacher.
- 6 points: Use the finite element software and obtain reasonable results with the help of the teacher.

- 1)
- Structure optimization (12.5 points)
- 12.5 points: Apply the basic principles and methods of mathematics, natural science, and engineering science to rationally optimize the experimental object according to the test and analysis results and give feasible suggestions and finite element analysis verification.
- 9 points: Apply the basic principles and methods of mathematics, natural science and engineering science; based on the test and analysis results, optimize the experimental object.
- 6 points: Under the guidance of teachers, apply the basic principles and methods of mathematics, natural science, and engineering science according to the test and analysis results and optimize the experimental object.

- 2)
- Temperature influence (6.5 points)
- 6.5 points: In the experimental report, the results were compared, and the temperature influence is summarized correctly.
- 5.2 points: In the experimental report, the results were compared, and how the temperature should affect the result is summarized.

- 3)
- Result analysis (21 points)
- 21 points: In the experimental report, the finite element results and the test results can be compared and analyzed. The reason for the difference between the finite element and the test results is properly summarized.
- 19 points: In the experimental report, the finite element results and the test results can be compared and analyzed. Part of the reason for the finite element and the test results is properly summarized.
- 17 points: In the experimental report, the finite element results and the test results can be simply compared and analyzed.

#### 2.4. The Teaching Method

## 3. Evaluation and Student Feedback

#### 3.1. Direct Evaluation Method

#### 3.2. Indirect Evaluation Method

## 4. Conclusions

## Author Contributions

## Funding

## Conflicts of Interest

## References

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**Figure 3.**(

**a**) The overall score distribution in 2017. (

**b**) The score distribution of Objective 1 in 2017. (

**c**) The score distribution of Objective 2 in 2017.

**Figure 4.**(

**a**) The overall score distribution in 2018. (

**b**) The score distribution of Objective 1 in 2018. (

**c**) The score distribution of Objective 2 in 2018.

The Stress in the Vertical Direction | Major Principal Stress | ||
---|---|---|---|

Theoretical Calculation Value (MPa) | 1.621 | FEM Calculation Value (MPa) | 1.621 |

Test Value (MPa) | 1.651 | Test Value (MPa) | 1.675 |

Error (%) | 1.85 | Error (%) | 3.33 |

Experimental Procedure | Experimental Content | Time | |
---|---|---|---|

1 | Preview | Preview the method of stress-strain measurement, stress calculation method and finite element analysis software operation procedure. | 30 min |

2 | Introduce | Introduce the basic principles and methods of stress measurement and the principle of finite element analysis | 20 min |

3 | Interaction | Question and interact with the students in the difficulty of the experiment. | 10 min |

4 | Operation | Students survey and map the experiment components; Test the steps of the experiment; | 3 hrs |

5 | Analysis | The analysis of the experimental subject. | 3 hrs |

6 | Report submitting | Students analyze the experimental results and submit reports and instructors review the reports | 1hr |

Step | Content | Course Objectives |
---|---|---|

1: Structural mechanics analysis | 1. Get the abstract structure 2. Calculate the stress and strain using theoretical mechanics | 1 |

2: Experimental test | 1. Link the experiment data collection system 2. Install strain adapters and strain sensors 3. Operate the experiment software | 2 |

3: The structure analysis by FE software | 1. Abstract the three-dimension models 2. Mesh the models 3. Determine the boundary conditions and load 4. Calculate the numerical result | 1 |

4: The result analysis and structure optimization | 1. Compare the results of the three methods 2. Optimize the structure design | 2 |

Variable | Topic | Agreement Level | ||||
---|---|---|---|---|---|---|

5 | 4 | 3 | 2 | 1 | ||

Objective 1 | ● I think that, through the experimental class, it is possible to achieve finite element calculation using the computer program. | 0.66 | 0.16 | 0.15 | 0.02 | 0.02 |

● I am able to accurately and efficiently build a finite element model of the test subject. | 0.54 | 0.20 | 0.18 | 0.07 | 0.02 | |

● I can get reasonable results from the stress analysis of the experimental model through finite element analysis. | 0.59 | 0.21 | 0.13 | 0.05 | 0.02 | |

Objective 2 | ● I was able to select the appropriate circuit from the given stress-strain measurement circuit for measurement. | 0.46 | 0.28 | 0.18 | 0.07 | 0.02 |

● I am able to standardize the installation of measuring sensors. | 0.26 | 0.28 | 0.25 | 0.00 | 0.05 | |

● I can standardize the experimental circuit. | 0.44 | 0.34 | 0.16 | 0.03 | 0.02 | |

● I can standardize the measurement of accurate and reliable experimental values. | 0.39 | 0.39 | 0.15 | 0.03 | 0.03 | |

● I was able to compare the experimental results with the finite element results and analyze the reasons for the gap. | 0.49 | 0.30 | 0.16 | 0.03 | 0.02 | |

● Based on the test and analysis results, I can reasonably optimize the experimental objects and give feasible suggestions and finite element analysis verification. | 0.44 | 0.33 | 0.16 | 0.03 | 0.03 |

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**MDPI and ACS Style**

Guo, Y.; Yang, L.; Chen, X.; Yang, L.
An Engineering-Problem-Based Short Experiment Project on Finite Element Method for Undergraduate Students. *Educ. Sci.* **2020**, *10*, 45.
https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10020045

**AMA Style**

Guo Y, Yang L, Chen X, Yang L.
An Engineering-Problem-Based Short Experiment Project on Finite Element Method for Undergraduate Students. *Education Sciences*. 2020; 10(2):45.
https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10020045

**Chicago/Turabian Style**

Guo, Yanjie, Lijuan Yang, Xuefeng Chen, and Lei Yang.
2020. "An Engineering-Problem-Based Short Experiment Project on Finite Element Method for Undergraduate Students" *Education Sciences* 10, no. 2: 45.
https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci10020045