Professors Jose Luis Olazagoitia and Francisco Badea from the Research Group on Vehicle Engineering of the Antonio de Nebrija University (GREEN) and Jesus Ángel Pérez from the University of Oviedo have published the article Validation of Alternative Beam T-Junction Fem Models for Complex Tubular Structures  in the Journal of Materials published by MDPI. The publication, which is open access, has been published in the international journal with an impact index of 3.478, placing it in the first quartile (Q1) of Metallurgy & Metallurgical Engineering.

The finite element analysis of tubular structures is typically based on models constructed employing beam-type elements. This modeling technique provides a quick and computationally efficient option for calculation. Nevertheless, it shows a series of limitations related to the simplicity of this type of element, among which the inability of accounting for the stiffness behavior at the joint level is of notable importance when modeling complex tubular structures. Despite these limitations, the alternative of simulating complex tubular structures with shell- or volume-type elements is highly costly due to the complexity of the modeling process and the computational requirements. Previous research has proposed alternative beam models that improve the estimations when modeling these structures. These research validations were limited to simple models. This paper presents a validation process utilizing a previously developed beam T-junction model in a complex tubular structure, intended to be representative for buses’ and coaches’ upper structures. Results obtained reveal that the accuracy of beam element type models can be significantly improved with the adequate implementation of elastic elements to account for the real junction stiffness. 

The research, carried out in collaboration between the Nebrija University and the University of Oviedo, was conducted in the field of validation of finite element models in complex structures through advanced joint models. The work has been supported and funded by the Nebrija-Santander Global Chair.

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