• Eduardo W. V. Chaves
Part of the Lecture Notes on Numerical Methods in Engineering and Sciences book series (LNNMES)


When an external force is acting on a body, the atoms or molecules that make up the continuum are affected and undergo a position change to achieve balance. Resistance to this movement depends on the characteristics of the atoms or molecules that make up the continuum. Internal resistance to movement is called internal force, and can be interpreted as the average of the interatomic forces of a handful of atoms, thereby characterizing internal force as a macroscopic variable. The internal force at each material point (particle) of the continuum is represented by the traction vector field (force per unit area), which is the starting point to establish the stress state at a material point.


Versus Versus Versus Internal Force Reference Configuration Current Configuration Cauchy Stress Tensor 
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Copyright information

© International Center for Numerical Methods in Engineering (CIMNE) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eduardo W. V. Chaves
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Civil EngineeringUniversity of Castilla-La ManchaCiudad RealSpain

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