Bistable characteristics of thick-walled axisymmetric domes

Amit Madhukar, Daniel Perlitz, Michael Grigola, Donghai Gai, K. Jimmy Hsia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We apply a finite element analysis to examine the stability of spherical, thick-walled domes undergoing large deformation. We identify three energetic states, mono-stable, bi-stable, and pseudo-bi-stable that uniquely characterize the behavior of the dome during deformation. An empirical relation is developed using finite element simulations relating the stability of the dome to pertinent geometric parameters like height, length and thickness, which is verified experimentally. Using this relation, similar domes can be designed to have desired stability characteristics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2590-2597
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Solids and Structures
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Arc-length method
  • Bistable structure
  • Finite element method
  • Thick-walled structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


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