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Computer Assisted Tool For Analysis Of Structural Components In Engineering Technology

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Web-Based Instruction

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.314.1 - 8.314.8



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Paper Authors

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Mufazzal Arif

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Mitchel Keil

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Jorge Rodriguez

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Alamgir Choudhury

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3550

Computer Assisted Tools for Stress Analysis of Structural Components in Engineering Technology

Alamgir Choudhury, Jorge Rodriguez, Mufazzal Arif and Mitchel Keil

Western Michigan University


A computer based module for stress analysis has been developed to enhance student learning in the field of mechanical design and analysis. The tool is comprised of programmed templates containing an open-ended structure for the stress analysis of structural and mechanical components. Using the templates, students are able to formulate their problems and develop their own equation sequences. To reduce the need for programming and increase the flexibility of the learning tool, commercial symbolic- manipulation software (e.g. Mathcad) is utilized for the calculations performed in the module. The module is available either as an application module or on the web for the students of specific courses in the subject area. The tool allows for faster solution of a problem, experimentation with the effect of various parameters of a problem on its solution, and graphical visualization. It is expected to generate greater student interest in the subject, resulting in better understanding of the underlying theories and principles. Additionally, it will enhance computer skills for solving technical problems, as sought by the industry and required by program accrediting agencies.

1. Introduction

Stress analysis is an integral part of the undergraduate mechanical design courses in both engineering and engineering technology programs. In the design analysis area of engineering programs students are taught the fundamental concepts related to stresses in mechanical components and their innovative applications. Students utilize their learning to formulate problems and analyze stresses for creative design purposes. On the other hand in technology programs, the focus is on utilizing efficient techniques for analysis of an existing designs to address a specific problem, and modify or improve the design. Therefore, the emphasis is mainly on mastering the routine techniques rather than creative solution of a problem. But, without the theoretical foundation, such techniques alone cannot ensure successful completion of a task. From experience it is found that in Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Arif, M., & Keil, M., & Rodriguez, J., & Choudhury, A. (2003, June), Computer Assisted Tool For Analysis Of Structural Components In Engineering Technology Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12177

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