Structural Analysis of a Washing Machine through its Loading Cases (Mechanical Project)

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This project is focused in the determination of different loading cases and the application of their results to the optimization of two parts of a washing machine, the tripod and the front cover.

The first step in this report is to obtain a numerical model of a washing machine. It includes the assembly in a mechanical software program (Abaqus), and the assignment of the specific boundary conditions and material properties for the problem. Simulation parameters such as mesh size; types of elements, and number of iterations used in the calculations will also be decided.

A study of the different loading cases is carried out with the intention of having a general view of the problem and selecting four specific cases for its application to the reconstruction of the aimed parts (tripod and front cover). This study includes the calculation of the worst relative angle between the tripod and the resultant force for two opposite loads inside the drum. This angle results to be 35º between the arm and the direction of the resultant force.

Through the application of these different loading conditions to this model, the mechanical behaviour of the parts will be obtained and this information will be used in the reconstruction. By mechanical behaviour it is meant to know the maximum level of stress (tension, compression and shear), and deformation (displacement and strain).

Once it is well known which are the most suffering points of the tripod and in the front cover, several different new shapes are created. The parameters considered in this reconstruction were the decrease of volume, the reduction of the level of stress and the deformations. Two of these shapes are chosen and tested in the numerical model, as a checkout.
Source: University of Skövde
Author: Abril López, Raimundo | Huertas Molina, Pablo | González Zuheros, Rocío

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