Experimental study and numerical optimization of tensegrity domes – A case study
The paper deals with the design, experimental analysis and numerical optimization of tensegrity dome models. Two structures are analyzed – a Geiger system dome (preliminary dome), with PVC-U bars and PA6/PP/PET tendons and a Fuller system dome (target dome), with wooden bars and steel cables as tendons. All used materials are experimentally tested in terms of Young's modulus and yield stress values, the compressed bars are also tested for the limit length demarcating the elastic buckling from plastic failure. The data obtained in experiments is then implemented in SOFiSTiK commercial software FE model. The model’s geometrical parameters are considered uniform random variables. Geometrically and materially nonlinear analysis is carried out. Based on the obtained structural response (displacements), a Monte Carlo simulation – based approach is incorporated for both structural design point formulation and the SLS requirements fulfillment analysis. Finally, an attempt is made to erect the Fuller dome model in order to compare the numerical results of an experimentally–derived model with the in situ measurements of an actual structure.
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