MEC3019 : Structural Optimisation and Crashworthiness

Semester 1 Credit Value: 15
ECTS Credits: 8.0


To introduce advanced structural analysis and its use to both optimise structural performance (in terms of strength-weight ratio and production cost) and ensure safety, particularly in transport applications (light-weight, crashworthy vehicles and structures).

Outline Of Syllabus

- Introduction
- Response of structures and structural elements to static and dynamic loading, including impact.
- Composite materials as structural elements.
- Materials selection for low-cost, light-weight and high-performance applications.
- Cost, sustainability and dynamic response as drivers for structural optimization; examples of optimised structures.
- Definition of crashworthiness, legislative framework and required test regimes in various transport systems; examples of energy absorbing structures.
- Optimisation of transport structures, involving (i) development of outline designs, (ii) classical stress analysis, and (iii) study of performance, weight, and safety trade-offs.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion11:001:00Semester 1 examination.
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion215:0030:00Target non-timetable hours to complete coursework assignment submission
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion240:3012:00Recommended revision for exams, assuming prior regular independent study throughout teaching
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture122:0024:00Structured presentation of syllabus may include skills demonstration, formative feedback, etc
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching122:0024:00Practical seminars to support independent study and reinforce skills practise
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study159:0059:00Recommended regular personal study throughout teaching period to follow up taught classes
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures used to introduce concepts, theory and case studies. Practicals for teaching f.e. analysis and supporting coursework. Private study time to complete coursework exercise.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination901A50
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report1M25Individual report on coursework exercise (max 15 hours)
Report1M25Individual report on coursework exercises. (max 15 hours)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Coursework exercise used to assess ability to effectively carry out design, modelling and analysis; written exam to assess understanding of underpinning theory and occupational awareness.

For the purposes of professional body accreditation, in order to obtain a passing mark overall for this module (40%) at the first attempt the minimum acceptable mark for each of the assessment items specified below shall be 30%, with the maximum possible module overall mark where this is not the case being restricted to 35% (Undergraduate Progress Regulations 30):

(1) 50% Exam

(2) 50% Assignments

Reading Lists