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Numerical Simulation Of The Assembling Of Tensegrity Domes


XXVI Iberian Latin-American Congress on Computational Methods in Engineering – CILAMCE 2005

Guarapari - ES – Brasil, 19-21 de outubro de 2005




This work outlines a research on tensegrity structures, currently under development at the Department of Structural and Foundation Engineering of the Polytechnic School of the University of São Paulo. A methodology is proposed to simulate de erection of tensegrity cable-domes, which can conveniently represented by a set of nonlinear, geometrically exact truss and cable elements, together with some of their specializations, in particular, a kind of truss element capable of sustaining a constant normal load (in tension or compression), and a cable element capable of representing ideal or non-ideal sliding between the cable and other objects. These elements have been implemented in the PEFSYS finite element code. Then the paper reviews some alternative methods of simulation, as presented in literature. The proposed methodology was applied to the simulation of the assembling sequence of some tensegrity simplexes and of a large cable dome. The paper discusses the main aspects of the simulations performed, investigating some possible operational problems, as the influence of the non-synchronous actuation of hydraulic jacks on geometry and force distribution among the structure components.


Keywords: tensegrity structures, cable domes, assembling processes, numerical simulation