AN INTERACTIVE COMPUTER GRAPHICS FINITE ELEMENT MODELING AND EVALUATION PROGRAM 790995
The Engineering Analysis Department of Chevrolet has been using finite element techniques for 10 years. The early model building techniques were primitive, cumbersome, and error prone. In 1973, an interactive graphics computer program called IMAGE (Interactive Modeling Augmented by Graphics Evaluation) was developed to facilitate finite element modeling and analysis. By 1976, the department was asked to apply finite element techniques to structural automotive parts that IMAGE could not handle. The need for an improved version of IMAGE was obvious.
The IMAGE II system was designed to be the state-of-the-art, flexible, low cost and easy to use. The IMAGE II system can easily interface to several analysis programs. Presently, IMAGE II is interfaced with the McNeal-Schwendler version of NASTRAN and SATURN, an in house finite element analysis routine. NASTRAN is used for static and dynamic problems, while SATURN is used only for static problems. The finite element library has one, two, and three dimensional elements. The data base is open ended and new element types can be easily added.
This paper will describe the hardware and software that compose the IMAGE II system. Furthermore, the capabilities of the system will be demonstrated by outlining the different steps: inputting the geometry, modeling the elements, adding forces and constraints, and analyzing the results. Examples will be used to clarify the various steps of the IMAGE II system.