Engineering with Computers

, Volume 30, Issue 4, pp 689–701 | Cite as

Automatic dimensional reduction and meshing of stiffened thin-wall structures

  • Declan C. Nolan
  • Chris M. Tierney
  • Cecil G. Armstrong
  • Trevor T. RobinsonEmail author
  • Jonathan E. Makem
Original Article


The creation of idealised, dimensionally reduced meshes for preliminary design and optimisation remains a time-consuming, manual task. A dimensionally reduced model is ideal for assessing design changes through modification of element properties without the need to create a new geometry or mesh. In this paper, a novel approach for automating the creation of mixed dimensional meshes is presented. The input to the process is a solid model which has been decomposed into a non-manifold assembly of smaller volumes with different meshing significance. Associativity between the original solid model and the dimensionally reduced equivalent is maintained. The approach is validated by means of a free-free modal analysis on an output mesh of a gas turbine engine component of industrial complexity. Extensions and enhancements to this work are also discussed.


Dimensional reduction Idealisation Meshing CAD CAE CAD–CAE integration Mixed dimensional modelling 



The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Communitys Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement no. 234344 ( The authors would like to thank the various partners for their support throughout the course of the work.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Declan C. Nolan
    • 1
  • Chris M. Tierney
    • 1
  • Cecil G. Armstrong
    • 1
  • Trevor T. Robinson
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jonathan E. Makem
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Mechanical and Aerospace EngineeringQueen’s University BelfastBelfastUK

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