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The Essentials of Finite Element Modeling and Adaptive Refinement by John O. Dow

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CHAPTER 5

MODELING INEFFICIENCY IN IRREGULAR ISOPARAMETRIC ELEMENTS

5.1 INTRODUCTION

The isoparametric procedure must currently be considered the standard approach for forming finite element stiffness matrices. However, the isoparametric approach is now obsolete. This is due to deficiencies in the formulation process that exist because of numerical shortcuts that were introduced in the 1960s to compensate for the limited computer capabilities that were available at that time. These computational shortcuts are no longer needed because computer capabilities have improved and the strain gradient approach for forming stiffness matrices has since been developed.

At the heart of the isoparametric method is the mapping that takes the actual geometry ...

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