Finite element analysis of welded tubular connections
This thesis presents a nonlinear Finite Element analysis of welded tubular connections, addressing several areas of recent interest in the field. A comprehensive study of multiplanar axially loaded T-DT joints in both CHS and RHS was undertaken to add to the available knowledge and interest/ activity in the field of multiplanar connections. Sections of this study are supported by earlier experimental work undertaken at Nottingham (not by the author) and from a combination of these and FE results, a series of design rules to supplement the current IIW planar design formulae developed. Analysis of the effect of brace angle on the difference between axially loaded T and Y joints was undertaken to resolve differences between current codes of practice. Finally an analysis of a family of partial overlapped RHS K joints was undertaken to ascertain the effects of boundary conditions, brace angle, β ratio, reversal of loading and hidden weld on the ultimate capacity and performance of such joints. All of the FE work was undertaken using ABAQUS, including both geometric and material non-linearity. Recommendations for further work are made.