Vector form intrinsic finite element is a recently developed and promising numerical method for the analysis of complicated structural behavior. Taking the cable-link element as example, the framework of the vector form intrinsic finite element is explained first. Based on this, a constant strain triangle element is introduced, and relevant required equations are deduced. Subsequently, the vector form intrinsic finite element is successfully applied to carry out form-finding of shells generated from physical models, such as hanging models, tension models, and pneumatic models. In addition, the resulting geometries are analyzed with finite element method, thus demonstrating that a dominant membrane stress distribution arises when the shell is subjected to gravitational loading.
- physical models
- shell structures
- structural analysis
- vector form intrinsic finite element