Ply-Based Shell Modeling

Ply-based modeling.

Ply-based modeling provides an FEA methodology which is consistent with the composite manufacturing process. The ply-based modeling entities replace, and can generate, typical solver zone-based composite properties.

A valid ply-based model contains the following entities:
Typically, one laminate per physical part is defined. Primarily, laminates contain the stack of plies. Additionally, laminates specify symmetry and repeats of plies within a laminate, along with information that can manipulate the ABD matrices.
Plies define the material, thickness, orientation (from reference on element/property material direction), shape (Elements, or element sets if FEA-based. Lines, surfaces or solids if geometry-based), and ply type (the material product of the ply).
Template Property
If user profile is OptiStruct, a PCOMPP is used. If another user profile is selected, a standard zone-based composite shell property is used. The property defines typical solver specific attributes like offset and non-structural mass. Layer information does not need to be entered. It is automatically populated from the defined plies and laminate.
Consider the following composite part which is made up of 1 laminate, 7 plies and 1 template property:

Figure 1.

Ply-based models can optionally be used to generate zone-based shell models, continuum shell, and solid models.