MECH ENG 7074 - Structural Design & Solid Mechanics

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2015

Solid Mechanics: Concepts of stress and strain, elasticity, plasticity, viscoelasticity and creep, elementary solutions of theory of elasticity and plasticity, Fracture Mechanics, Advanced Finite Element (FE) modelling; Experimental techniques. Structural Design: Open-ended design; Link between design and construction, Engineering calculations and drawings; Groupwork; Quality assurance strategies including verification.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code MECH ENG 7074
    Course Structural Design & Solid Mechanics
    Coordinating Unit School of Mechanical Engineering
    Term Semester 1
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 4 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Assumed Knowledge Level II APPLIED MATHS courses and MECH ENG 2002
    Course Description Solid Mechanics: Concepts of stress and strain, elasticity, plasticity, viscoelasticity and creep, elementary solutions of theory of elasticity and plasticity, Fracture Mechanics, Advanced Finite Element (FE) modelling; Experimental techniques.

    Structural Design: Open-ended design; Link between design and construction, Engineering calculations and drawings; Groupwork; Quality assurance strategies including verification.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Professor Andrei Kotousov

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes

    The primary aim of the course is to provide students with the basic skills and knowledge required to analyse displacement field, stress, strain and failure in deformable solids using analytical solutions and the Finite Element Method. The course develops an understanding of the mechanics of complex practical situations through the establishment and solution of appropriate boundary value problems. It will also give students an overview of important structural engineering design philosophies. The course forms a foundation to allow more effective interactions with civil and structural engineers during their professional careers. Students will carry out design tasks, supported by quality assurance and verification strategies associated with risk management as used in industry.

    At the completion of the course, students should:

    1 Have a good understanding the theory, concepts, principles and governing equations of solid mechanics;
    2 Be gaining the physical intuition necessary to idealize a complicated practical problem;
    3 Possess the contemporary analytical, experimental and computational tools needed to solve the idealized problem;
    4 Have acquired the independent judgment required to interpret the results of these solutions;
    5 Be able to use these solutions to guide a corresponding design, manufacture, or failure analysis;
    6 Further develop interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication skills working on group assignments;
    7 Be able to learn independently new solutions, principles and methods, read and understand professional articles on the subject.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1-7
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 1-7
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 1-7
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 1-7
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 1-7
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 1-7
    A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 1-7
    An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 1-7
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources

    Course notes – these are essential and required.

    No textbook is required for this course.

    Recommended Resources

    Recommended Reading for Solid Mechanics part:

    • Ugural, A.C. and Fenster, S.K. Advanced Strength and Applied Elasticity, Pearson Education Inc. 1995.
    • Cook, R.D. and Young, W.C., Advanced Mechanics of Materials, Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1999.
    • Bower, A.F., Advanced Mechanics of Solids at Brown University, US (web-based lecture notes).
    • Bickford, W.B. Advanced Mechanics of Materials, Addison Wesley Longman, Inc., 1988.
    • Curtis, H.D. Fundamentals of Aircraft Structural Analysis, McGraw-Hill, 2002.
    • Moaveni, S. Finite element analysis: theory and application with ANSYS, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2008.
    • Timoshenko, S.P. and Goodier, J.N. Theory of Elasticity, 1981 (Well written, and contains lots of useful solutions to elastic boundary value problems, but the book does not cover plasticity or finite element analysis).
    • Lai W., Rubin D. and Krempl, E. An Introduction to Continuum Mechanics, 3rd Edition, Butterworth-Heinemann, 1995.
    • Gould, P.L. Introduction to Linear Elasticity, Springer-Verlag New York Inc, 1983.
    • Budynas, R.G. Advanced Strength and Applied Stress Analysis, McGraw-Hill, 1999.
    • Den Hartog, J.P. Advanced Strength of Materials, Dover Publishing, 1996.
    • Barber, J.R., Elasticity, (A modern and well-written introduction to linear elasticity).
    • Saada, A.S. Elasticity Theory and Applications, Pergamon Press Inc, 1974.
    • Malvern, L.E. Introduction to the Mechanics of Continuous Media, (recommended for advanced students only).

    Recommended Reading for Structural Design part:

    • Engineering Mechanics: Statics by R.C. Hibbeler, Twelfth Edition in SI Units, Prentice Hall.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes

    Lectures are supported by problem-solving tutorials developing material covered in lectures, FE tutorials and Lab classes.


    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The required time commitment is 52 hours attendance at lectures and tutorials, approximately 50 hours of revising course material and 40 hours completing assignments and FE project.

    Learning Activities Summary

    Part I. Solid Mechanics

    1. Course organization and policies
    2. Prerequisites
    3. Finite Element Project
    1. Stress at a point
    2. Principal stresses and principal directions
    3. Equilibrium equations
    4. Stress transformation equations
    1. Strain-displacement equations
    2. Normal, shear and volumetric strain
    3. Compatibility equations
    1. Stress-Strain curve
    2. Strain hardening, plasticity and visco-elasticity
    3. Generalized Hooke's law
    4. Interpretation of elastic constants
    5. Solid Mechanics in Engineering Design
    6. Examples
    1. Fundamental principles of analysis
    2. General solution for axisymmetric problems
    3. Shrink-fit theory and compound cylinders
    4. Spinning disks
    6. PLASTICITY (10 %)
    1. Elementary models of the theory of plasticity
    2. Plasticity action in pressurized cylinder
    3. Residual stresses
    4. Plasticity action in spinning disks
    1. Crack tip fields
    2. Linear Fracture Mechanics
    3. Fracture Toughness
    4. Fracture-Safe design concept
    OTHER ADVANCED TOPICS (Time permitting)

    CATCHUP AND REVISION (Time permitting)

    Part II. Structural Design



    3. VERIFICATION (2%)

    4. TRUSS DESIGN (30%)

    1. Design specification
    2. Open-ended design
    3. Demand (applied loading)
    4. Capacity (material and structural resistance)
    5. Dead and live loading
    6. Load factors
    7. Conceptual, preliminary and final design
    8. Design efficiency and optimisation (iterative process)
    9. Engineering drawings


    Specific Course Requirements


  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary

    The Final exam will be scheduled in week 15 or 16.

    Solid Mechanics Part worth 50% of the course assessment

    All assignments are due by 5pm on the due date. Details of each task are tabulated below.

    Assessment task Weighting, % Description Due Learning objectives
    (See 2.1 above)
    Assignment 1 3 Stress-Strain Friday, week 5 1 – 5
    Assignment 2 3 Elasticity Friday, week 9 1 – 5
    Assignment 3 3 Plasticity and FE Friday, week 11 1 – 5
    FE Tutorials 1 Report Friday, week 12 3
    Lab Classes 1 Report Friday, week 12 3
    Quizzes 4 Test on all parts Weeks 1 – 12 1 – 5
    Final Exam 35 Open book Exam period 1 – 7

    Structural Design Part worth 50% of the course assessment

    All assessment tasks (except the final exam) require groupwork, the same mark will be allocated to all group members and will be based on group output only. Group processes are not assessed explicitly in this course. All members in a group are expected to contribute equally to the overall task. In cases of unequal contributions to groupwork, students should complete a self-and-peer assessment form.

    Assessment task Weighting, % Description Due Learning objectives
    (See 2.1 above)
    Assignment 1 1 QA report Friday, week 3 2 – 7
    Assignment 2 9 Truss report Friday, week 7 2 – 7
    Assignment 3 0.5 Truss verification Friday, week 8 2 – 7
    Assignment 4 3 RC design Friday, week 11 2 – 7
    Assignment 5 1.5 Truss testing Friday, week 12 2 – 7
    Final Exam 35 Open book Exam period 2 – 5
    Assessment Related Requirements

    Compulsory attendance at FE tutorials and Lab classes, minimum result required for FE and Lab classes is 50%.

    Assessment Detail

    Solid Mechanics part

    Assignments 1 - 3

    There are problem-solving exercises. These problems will be discussed in class in detail before the due date. Example problems with full worked solutions will be considered in class and the solutions of the assignment’s problem will be available on MyUni.

    FE Tutorials Report

    This is an individually written assignment on the FE modelling part of the course and will involve problem-solving exercises. The timetable for FE tutorials will be available on MyUni in the beginning of semester.

    Lab Classes Report

    This is a group assignment on the experimental study part of the course. The timetable for the lab classes will be available on MyUni in the beginning of semester.


    Quizzes are individual in-class assignments and this includes problem-solving exercises to be completed in normally 45 min with full worked solutions to be available on MyUni.

    Structural Design part

    All assessment tasks (except the final exam) require groupwork. The objective is to provide students with the experience of working in groups to undertake open-ended design tasks. These types of problems reflect the challenges presented to engineers in industry, whereby efficient designs must be supported by rigorous quality assurance strategies in order to mitigate risk. The truss design involves conceptual, preliminary and final design procedures. This is supported by the preparation of engineering calculations and drawings, along with the construction and testing of a model truss to determine the robustness of the design. The aim is to minimise the strength-to-weight ratio of the structure to maximise efficiency. The reinforced concrete design involves design calculations and an investigation into the multi-disciplinary aspects of the design and construction of a real-life building. All aspects of the course include quality assurance strategies including self and peer-checking, and verification.


    Solid Mechanics part

    Quiz will be collected at the end of tutorial.

    All other assignments must be submitted as a hard copy accompanied by an assessment cover sheet available from S116 or near the assignment submission area. These must be placed the labelled box located on level 2 of Engineering South Building.

    Late assignments will be penalised 10% per day. Extensions for assignments and reports will only be given in exceptional circumstances and a case for this with supporting documentation can be made in writing after a lecture or via email. Hard copy assignments will be assessed and returned in 2 weeks of the due date. There will be no opportunities for re-submission of work of unacceptable standard.

    Structural Design part

    Assessment tasks (except the final exam) must be submitted as a hard copy accompanied by a signed assessment cover sheet. These must be placed in the labelled mail box adjacent to room N136, Engineering North (i.e. front office of the School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering).

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

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