There are number of ways in which one can formulate the properties of individual elements of the domain. Most commonly used approaches to formulate element matrices are: (1) direct approach, (2) variational approach, (3) energy approach and (4) weighted residual approach.

4.3.1 Direct Approach

As discussed earlier, the basic idea of finite element method was conceived from the physical procedure used in framed structural analysis and network analysis (pipe network and electric net work). It may be possible to choose elements in a way that leads to an exact representation of the problem in certain applications. Hence, element properties are derived from the fundamental physics and nature of the problem in ...

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