Technical Knowledgebase

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Joints represent points of connection between structural members. Joints are automatically created at the ends of line objects (frames, cables, tendons, links) and at the corners of area and solid objects. Joints may also be added manually to capture localized behavior, or to simulate restraint supports. Constraint conditions are also applied to joints to establish correlation among their displacement DOF.

Joints are fundamental to numerical solution in that stresses and strains are resolved according to joint displacement. First, an object-based model is created by drawing structural objects which are connected by joints and subjected to loading.

CSI Software then generates a finite-element model according to structural geometry and individual-member properties. Users have additional control over mesh refinement and intersecting-object connections. The FEM model then provides for analysis, and results are reported in terms of the object-based model.

Element mass and distributed loading are automatically transferred to joint locations during analysis. Users may assign additional mass to joints. During dynamic analysis, users should also assign mass moment of inertia (MMI) to joints such that inertial forces correlate with joint Acceleration. MMI formulation is presented in the

CSI Analysis Reference Manual (page 41), and guidelines for dynamic-analysis acceleration are presented in the Time-history output-acceleration accuracy article.

Articles

Tutorials

TitleDescriptionProgram
Complicated joint patternsGuidelines for creating complicated joint patterns using interactive database editing.SAP2000
Joint renumberingThe process for renumbering structural joints is outlined in this tutorial.SAP2000
Joint-pattern first stepsThis tutorial provides an introduction to the assignment of joint patterns.SAP2000
Modeling a pin connection between crossing membersModify joints and apply constraints such that a pin connection allows crossing members to translate freely.SAP2000
Radial point loadApplication of point loads in the radial direction using the Advanced Joint Coordinate Axes feature.SAP2000

Test Problems

TitleDescriptionProgram
Frame to shell connectionsThis tutorial describes the application of connections between frame and shell elements.SAP2000
Modeling segmental-bridge joint openingsThe modeling and response of joint openings, simulated using gap link elements, between shell segments of a post-tensioned bridge deck.CSiBridge