Three-Dimensional Solid Finite Element Contact Model for Rotordynamic Analysis: Experiment and Simulation Academic Article uri icon


  • Abstract Conventional rotordynamic analyses generally treat the rotor as a continuous body without considering effect of clamped joints. However, in modern rotating machines, rotors are often assembled with multiple complex-shaped parts and joints, which may significantly affect rotordynamic behavior. Several authors have proposed methods for implementing contact effects in rotordynamic analysis, but a more general modeling method for handling arbitrary contact geometries with various levels of surface roughness is needed. The present paper suggests a new contact model for rotordynamic analysis of an assembled rotor-bearing system with multiple parts connected by multiple joints. A contact element formulation is presented using solid finite elements and statistics-based contact theories. A test arrangement was developed to validate the proposed contact model for varying interface surface roughness and preloads. An iterative computation algorithm is introduced to solve the implicit relation between contact stiffness and stress distribution. Prediction results, using the contact model, are compared with measured natural frequencies for multiple configurations of a test rotor assembly. A case study is performed for an overhung type rotor-bearing system to investigate the effect of contact interfaces, between an overhung impeller and a rotor shaft, on critical speeds.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Oh, J., Kim, B. J., & Palazzolo, A.

citation count

  • 5

complete list of authors

  • Oh, Joseph||Kim, Baik Jin||Palazzolo, Alan

publication date

  • June 2021