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The strain energy of a structural member comprises of the separate energies from axial loading, bending moments and shear and torsion stresses of the structure beams. Stiffness of the overall structure is optimized by selecting the undeformed structure's nodal co-ordinates.
Braun (2006) claims that elastic structure deformation when under a certain load reduces the maximum potential strain energy as per the virtual work principles. The deformed structures strain energy relies mostly on the load applied as well as on the structural design of the whole body. With prescription of the elastic properties of the structural members, the topology and the load exerted on the structure, the strain energy of the structure under particular load becomes a function of the nodal co-ordinates of the undeformed structure. To enhance the rigidity of the structure the nodes can be relocated in a particular way to reduce or minimize the strain energy.
Material or configurational forces which maintain the shape of a particular structure are achieved through deriving the strain energy regarding the nodal coordinates. These forces when released make the structure take a shape with less or minimized strain energy thus the structure gets more rigidity. Some nodes require to be fixed because of constructional purposes for the optimization of the process. The support and applied loads locations can not be altered.
The analysis of strain gauges gives a significant benefit to functional structures by directly assessing the state of resistance and movement of a particular structure in the mechanical environment where it runs. ...
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