Computers & Structures
Space structures, such as the Space Station solar arrays, must be extremely light-weight, flexible structures. Accurate prediction of the natural frequencies and mode shapes is essential for determining the structural adequacy of components, and designing a controls system. The tension pre-load in the 'blanket' of photovoltaic solar collectors, and the free/free boundary conditions of a structure in space, causes serious reservations on the use of standard finite element techniques of solution. In particular, a phenomenon known as 'grounding', or false stiffening, of the stiffness matrix occurs during rigid body rotation. This paper examines the grounding phenomenon in detail. Numerous stiffness matrices developed by others are examined for rigid body rotation capability, and found lacking. A force imbalance inherent in the formulations examined is the likely cause of the grounding problem, suggesting the need for a directed force formulation.
Bosela, P. A., Fertis, D. G., and Shaker, F. J. (1992). "Grounding of space structures." Computers and Structures, 45(1), 143-153.
NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Computers & Structures. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Computers & Structures, 45, 1, (09-17-1992); 10.1016/0045-7949(92)90351-Y