Rotating shaft problem - Please help!

psansyspsansys Member Posts: 9
edited February 16 in Structures

Hi all,

I am given the task of FEA of a rotating shaft. Basically I have a belt driven shaft supported by two bearings on two ends. The structure on which the lower part of the bearing is attached is vibrating (using a rotating eccentric mass whose specs are unknown) and is connected to the ground using a number of strong springs. However, we know the amplitudes in x, y and z directions and frequency of vibration of the structure.

My intention is to find the critical speed of the shaft , and to locate the weak points in the entire assembly.

So far, I tried with a simplified model as attached below:

Following are the inputs I have provided:


  1. Geometry : stepped shaft, face split at the two ends to provide bearing connection
  2. Connections :Ground to body bearing at both ends selecting the split faces (purple color in the above image)
  3. Cylindrical support with all axial, radial and tangential directions fixed. 
  4. Both end faces fixed 
  5. Center of the end faces with remote displacement (this worked with static structural but in model it gave a warning "Participation factors may not be accurate if Remote displacement is applied as constraint using deformable behavior. Please use rigid behavior")Rotational velocity 0.21 rad/s (shaft is supposed to rotate at 2 rpm) [ I read in some previous discussions that rot. vel. in modal affects the resonant frequencies through gyroscopic effects. However I got no change in the frequency values for even a rot. vel. up to 10000 rad/s. Is it because I have not given any damping input, if so where would the input placeholder be?] 
  6. In Analysis settings : Damped - Yes , Coriolis effect - On, Campbell diagram - Off. Is the methodology correct? I am getting frequencies > 1250 Hz 

For Static Structural: 

  • 1 ,2,4,5,6 repeated 
  • Standard earth gravity for weight effect 
  • Number of steps = 1 , step end time = 120 sec (because I thought to complete at least one rotation since the speed is 2 rpm) 
  • Getting very low deformations ( ~ 0.165 micro meter ) and 0,24 MPa max. stress (these seems reasonable considering the material and geometry) 


  1. Am I doing the right steps? 
  2. If not, kindly guide _/\_ 
  3. How to simulate the effects of the sinusoidally vibrating base (single speed)? (I checked the harmonic analyses section which left me more confused as it was supposed to give a range of frequencies and a single phase angle - whereas my x , y and z vibrations differed with each other in phase)  
  4. What about the belt drive ? should I add a moment for that condition? Or does the rotational velocity already consider the moment applied? 
  5. I want to estimate the fatigue life of the components/ assembly as well. 
  6. What all information can I extract t be useful for my scenario? 


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