The intention of this booklet is a brief but general introduction into the treatment of the Finite Element Method (FEM). The FEM has become the leading method in computer–oriented mechanics, so that many scientific branches have grown up besides over the last decades. Nevertheless, the FEM today is a question of economy. On the one hand its industrial application is forced to reduce product development costs and time, on the other hand a large number of commercial FEM codes and a still growing number of software for effective pre– and postprocessors are available in the meantime.
Due to that, today it is a quite challenging task to operate with all these different tools at the same time and to understand all handling and solution techniques developed over the last years. So, we want to help in getting a deeper insight into the main “interfaces” between the “customers of the FEM” and the codes itself by providing a totally open structured FE–code based on Matlab, which is a very powerful tool in operating with matrix based formulations. That idea and conditions forced us some years ago to initiate DAEdalon as a tool for general FE developments in research applications. In spite of still existing high sophisticated – mostly commercial – FE codes, the success and the acceptance of such a structured tool justify that decision afterwards more and more.
In the main focus are students of applied mechanics, mechanical and civil engineering sciences and interested CAx engineers doing their daily job and want to know what happens behind. For all of them, this book enables a self–study in doing and implementation of given or self developed algorithm within the wide field of the Finite Element Method. Thus, one can easily go into a training in basics of element and material formulations.