CASE STUDY – Mechanical Engineering Design and Drafting Services

Finite Element Analysis to Locate & Analyse
Fracture in a Universal Joint

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Case Study Highlights

Finite Element Analysis to Locate & Analyse Fracture in a Universal Joint

The Client

Industry :  Agriculture Purpose Vehicle Manufacturer Location : Asia

The Objective:

Predicting fracture locations in universal joint and modifying design accordingly using FEA.

The Solution:

A CAD model for simulation was developed and boundary conditions in the form of loads were applied to the universal joint model. The analysis revealed regions with critical stresses, predicting the possibility of fracture.

Design modification was suggested based on analysis results to overcome fracture issue, which was confirmed with subsequent structural analysis.

The Challenges:

  • Developing accurate CAD model for universal joint with required features to record complete physical behavior during simulation

  • Determining and applying suitable boundary conditions to capture accurate stress strain information

  • Suggesting design modifications based on material knowledge, physics behavior and FEA results

One of the leading special purpose vehicle manufacturers approached Hi-Tech to obtain design solution for their existing universal joint model. Due to frequent static fractures in the existing universal joint design, the manufacturer suffered from costly downtime and needed corrective measures to prevent fracture conditions. They also needed our engineering team to work on design modification part to improve the design.

Universal Joint FEA

The Solution:

An assembly of the parts was created using Pro/E & the assembled model was imported to ANSYS for analysis. The analysis was done by using different boundary conditions and selecting the SOLID-92 tetrahedral element. The stress, strain and deformation on the ANSYS model of universal joint were checked for varying loading conditions. The analysis revealed that the maximum stress was occurring at both the yokes of universal joint at the middle span. The beginning location of crack corresponds to the point of highest stress. A modification of the design, by a slight increase in dimension was suggested after analyzing the parameters for different boundary conditions.


  • The finite element analysis revealed the exact location where the maximum stress and the maximum deformation were occurring in the part.

  • The client was able to examine the exact crack propagation by the point of highest stress.

  • The downtime and associated costs in physical tests and design modifications reduced considerably.

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