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Mechanics of Deformable Structures: Part 2

Study the foundational mechanical engineering subject “Strength of Materials”. In this course you will learn to analyze multi-axial states of stress and strain, selecting “objective” failure criteria, and to predict linear elastic structural response using energy methods.

Mechanics of Deformable Structures: Part 2
This course is archived
Future dates to be announced
Estimated 8 weeks
10–12 hours per week
Instructor-led on a course schedule
Optional upgrade available

About this course

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In this course: (1) you will learn to model the multi-axial stress-strain response of isotropic linear elastic material due to combined loads (axial, torsional, bending); (2) you will learn to obtain objective measures of the severity of the loading conditions to prevent failure; (3) you will learn to use energy methods to efficiently predict the structural response of statically determinate and statically indeterminate structures.

This course will give you a foundation to predict and prevent structural failure and will introduce you to energy methods, which form one basis for numerical techniques (like the Finite Element Method) to solve complex mechanics problems

This is the third course in a 3-part series. In this series you will learn how mechanical engineers can use analytical methods and “back of the envelope” calculations to predict structural behavior. The three courses in the series are:

Part 1 – 2.01x: Elements of Structures. (Elastic response of Structural Elements: bars, shafts, beams).

Part 2 – 2.02.1x Mechanics of Deformable Structures: Part 1. (Assemblages of Elastic, Elastic-Plastic, and Viscoelastic Structural Elements).

Part 3 – 2.02.2x Mechanics of Deformable Structures: Part 2. (Multi-axial Loading and Deformation. Energy Methods).

These courses are based on the first subject in solid mechanics for MIT Mechanical Engineering students. Join them and learn to rely on the notions of equilibrium, geometric compatibility, and constitutive material response to ensure that your structures will perform their specified mechanical function without failing.

At a glance

  • Institution: MITx
  • Subject: Engineering
  • Level: Intermediate
  • Prerequisites:

    Multivariable Calculus

    (Derivatives, Integrals (1D, 2D))

    Physics: Classical Mechanics

    (Vectors, Forces, Torques, Newton’s Laws)


    (axial loading, torsion, bending in linear elastic structures)

  • Language: English
  • Video Transcript: English

What you'll learn

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  • Hooke’s law for isotropic linear elastic materials and homogeneous problems in linear elasticity. Pressure vessels. Superposition of loading conditions.
  • Traction on a face. Stress transformation. Principal stress components. Stress and strain invariants. Tresca and Mises yield criteria.
  • Elastic strain energy. Castigliano methods. Potential energy formulations. Approximate solutions and the Rayleigh Ritz method

Unit 0: Review of Prerequisites. Integration of field variables. Introduction to MATLAB. Review of 2.01x: structural elements in axial loading, torsion, bending. Review of 2.02.1x: equilibrium and compatibility in 2D elastic assemblages.

Unit 1: Multi-axial stress and strain. The (nominal) stress tensor, the (small) strain tensor. Hooke’s law for linear isotropic elastic materials. Plane stress. Pressure vessels: components of stress and strain in cylindrical coordinates. Stress and strain states from superposition of loading conditions and kinematic constraints: applications to homogeneous states, pressure vessels, bars, shafts, beams.

Unit 2: Failure theories. Cauchy Result: traction vector. Stress and strain transformation and principal components of stress and strain. Principal directions and invariants. Design limits on multiaxial stress: design against fracture for brittle materials and design against plastic yielding for ductile materials (Tresca, Mises).

Quiz 1 (on Units 1 and 2)

Unit 3: Elastic Strain Energy and Castigliano’s theorems. Elastic strain energy; complementary energy. Castigliano’s second theorem to solve for kinematic degrees of freedom. Applications to assemblages of structural elements in axial loading, torsion and bending.

Unit 4: Minimum Potential Energy methods. Total potential energy of loaded structure. Equilibrium conditions. Applications to statically indeterminate trusses. Approximate solutions. Trial functions and the Rayleigh Ritz method. Applications to structural assemblages with bars, beams and shafts.

Quiz 2 (on Units 3 and 4)

About the instructors

Frequently Asked Questions

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Q: Is this course similar to a residential course at MIT?

A: Yes, the three course series covers the same material taught in the MIT residential course 2.001: Mechanics and Materials I (the first core course in mechanical engineering typically taken the first semester of sophomore year)

Q: Will we continue to use MATLAB as we did in 2.01x?

A: Yes

Q: Is it necessary to take 2.01x before enrolling in 2.02.2x?

A: Preferably yes. We assume that the learners are familiar with elementary solutions for linear elastic structural elements in axial loading, torsion and bending. We will provide a review of pertinent 2.01x material in Unit 0.

Q: Is it necessary to take 2.02.1x before enrolling in 2.02.2x?

A: Not strictly necessary. We will review pertinent 2.02.1x material in Unit 0 (Equilibrium and compatibility for 2D assemblages and trusses). No knowledge of thermo-elastic, elastic-plastic and viscoelastic material behavior is necessary for 2.02.2x.

Who can take this course?

Unfortunately, learners residing in one or more of the following countries or regions will not be able to register for this course: Iran, Cuba and the Crimea region of Ukraine. While edX has sought licenses from the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) to offer our courses to learners in these countries and regions, the licenses we have received are not broad enough to allow us to offer this course in all locations. edX truly regrets that U.S. sanctions prevent us from offering all of our courses to everyone, no matter where they live.

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