Hochschule Düsseldorf
University of Applied Sciences
Fachbereich Maschinenbau & Verfahrenstechnik
Faculty of Mechanical and Process Engineering

Basic Module - MSc PROgrammes

Course Convenor:    Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Martin Ruess


Introduction to the basic principles of the Finite Element Method for the solution of problems based on ordinary/partial differential equations (fe-analysis pipeline, fields of applications); derivation of the governing set of equations for various physical problems (thermal, elasticity, flow problems, etc., governing differential, integral and algebraic equations, method of weighted residuals, Galerkin formulation); element formulations (approximation spaces, algebraic & numerical properties), assembly, mesh generation, enforcement of constraints, solution methods and solution properties, accuracy and convergence measures/ properties, model errors, algorithmic aspects, modeling aspects and software implementation aspects for linear analyses. Modeling and solution of engineering problems with commercial software packages.

Competences / Learning Outcomes

The participants have

  • a solid understanding of and scientific insight to the fundamentals of the finite element method, including all aspects of the simulation pipeline. Moreover, they are familiar with numerical & algorithmic aspects of modern software tools.
  • the ability to
    • derive the set of equations governing physical field problems
    • develop, implement and test various types of finite elements
    • choose and assess the performance properties of finite elements
    • pre- and postprocess analysis-suited models and to assess the numerical results with regard to accuracy, reliability and computational performance

The participants are familiar with

  • the basic functionality of commercial finite element platforms
  • modeling issues and error sources of computational models
  • the basic aspects of verification and validation


Solid Programming Skills (Matlab|Java|C++), Foundations of Engineering Mathematics and Mechanics