>
Simulation > Viewing Analysis Results > Plotting Results > Stress Plot PropertyManager > **Principal Stresses Definition**

Introduction

Administration

User Interface

SolidWorks Fundamentals

Moving from 2D to 3D

Assemblies

CircuitWorks

Configurations

SolidWorks Costing

Design Checker

Design Studies in SolidWorks

Detailing and Drawings

DFMXpress

DriveWorksXpress

FloXpress

Import and Export

Model Display

Mold Design

Motion Studies

Parts and Features

Routing

Sheet Metal

Simulation

Welcome to SolidWorks Simulation Help

Accessing and Using Help

Legal Notices

SolidWorks Simulation Reference

SolidWorks Simulation Fundamentals

Analysis Background

Simulation Options

Simulation Studies

Submodeling Studies

Design Studies

2D Simplification Studies

Composite Shells

Loads and Restraints

Background on Meshing

Meshing with Contact

Simulation Materials

Parameters

Analysis Library Features

Viewing Analysis Results

Plotting Results

Acceleration Plot PropertyManager

Beam Diagrams PropertyManager

Design Insight PropertyManager

Displacement Plot PropertyManager

Fatigue Plot PropertyManager

Strain Plot PropertyManager

Strain Energy Density Plot PropertyManager

Stress Plot PropertyManager

Stress Components

Beam Stress Components

Principal Stresses Definition

Plotting Principal Stresses

Stress Averaging Across Common Part Boundaries

Thermal Plot PropertyManager

Velocity Plot PropertyManager

Listing Results

Graphing Results

Processing Result Plots

Compare Test Data

Simulation Data Sensors

Probing Result Plots

Study Reports

Factor of Safety Check

SimulationXpress

Sketching

Sustainability Products

SolidWorks Utilities

Tolerancing

TolAnalyst

Toolbox

Weldments

Workgroup PDM

Troubleshooting

Glossary

The state of stresses at a point is completely defined by normal and shear stress components in reference to an orthogonal coordinate system XYZ. In general, the values of the stress components change if the coordinate system is rotated.

At a certain orientation (X’Y’Z’), all shear stresses vanish and the state of stresses is completely defined by 3 normal stress components.

These 3 normal stress components are referred to as principal stresses and the corresponding reference axes (X’Y’Z’) are referred to as principal axes.

Figure 1 | Figure 2 |

At certain orientation of the material element shown in Figure 1, the shear stress components vanish, and stresses reduce to pure normal stresses as shown in Figure 2.

You can plot all 3 components at once. The principal stresses at a node or element center are represented by an ellipsoid. The 3 radii of the ellipsoid represent the magnitudes of the 3 principal stresses. The direction of the stress (tension/compression) is represented by arrows. The color code is based on the von Mises stress values, a scalar quantity.

If the three principal stresses have the same magnitude, the ellipsoid becomes a sphere (Figure 3). If one of the principal stresses is zero, the ellipsoid becomes a planar ellipse (Figure 4). In the case of simple uniaxial stress, the ellipsoid becomes a line.

Figure 3. Three equal principal stresses in tension. The ellipsoid becomes a sphere. | Figure 4. One of the principal stresses is very small. |

Related SolidWorks Forum Content

x

Never show this message again

We have detected you are using a browser version older than Internet Explorer 7. For optimized display, we suggest upgrading your browser to Internet Explorer 7 or newer.

x

Web Help Content Version: SolidWorks 2013 SP05

The search functionality within the web help is in a beta test phase and you may experience periodic delays or interruptions in its performance. These are the normal and ordinary features of a beta test and shall not under any circumstances give rise to any liability on the part of DS SolidWorks or its licensors. The topics within the Web-based help are not beta topics; they document SolidWorks 2013 SP05.

To disable Web help from within SolidWorks and use local help instead, click **Help > Use SolidWorks Web Help**.

To report problems encountered with the Web help interface and search, contact your local support representative. To provide feedback on individual help topics, use the “Feedback on this topic” link on the individual topic page.