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A study of mesh sensitivity for crash simulations: comparison of manually and batch meshed models

Most of the modern simulation techniques require a mesh on which the mathematical model, describing the physical process, is discretized. It could be a volume mesh for a CFD analysis or a surface mesh for structural investigations. The characteristics of the underlying mesh have a strong impact on the results of the numerical simulation. In this study, the sensitivity of crash simulation results with respect to the properties of the underlying mesh is discussed in more details. The chassis of a commercial vehicle, consisting of 21 parts, is meshed manually by an expert and automatically by the BatchMesher included in the HyperWorks 7.0 environment. The longitudinal beams are discretized with different element sizes and the resulting models of the chassis are used in a front crash simulation with LS-Dyna. The effects of element size on the simulation results, e.g. variations in internal energy, in cross section forces and in buckling modes, are presented and discussed. For the hand-meshed as well as the batch-meshed models, the convergence behaviour of the solution is investigated.

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