A load case defines how load patterns are applied (statically or dynamically), how the structure responds (linearly or nonlinearly), and how analysis is performed (through modal analysis, direct integration, etc.). For each analysis to be performed, a load case is defined. Each load case may apply a single load pattern or a combination of load patterns. An unlimited number of load cases may be defined, then any set of load cases may be selected for analysis. Once analysis has run, load-case results may be selectively deleted or compiled for output reports.
Specifications for each load case include:
- Case name – A unique name is applied to each individual load case to index analysis results (displacements, stresses, etc.), create load combinations, and possibly correlate with dependent load cases.
- Applied loading – Load patterns are applied to the structure. In some instances, however, load patterns are not applicable.
- Analysis type – Analysis type includes the method (static, response spectrum, buckling, etc.) and the formulation (linear, nonlinear, etc.).