A study of quadrilateral plate bending elements with ‘reduced’ integration



The accuracy of certain thick plate elements when used in the context of thin plate problems can be improved by the use of reduced integration of the stiffness matrices. A series of numerical experiments on five different quadrilateral thick plate elements demonstrates the use of reduced integration and indicates the main reason for its success. This is the relaxation of a constraint on the shear strains. It is shown that the performance of a nine-noded Lagrangian element is near optimal.