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Foundation :: Finite Element Analysis :: NASTRAN


Nasa Structural Analysis System

NASTRAN graphic

source code available SOURCE CODE AVAILABLE

NASTRAN, the NASA Structural Analysis System, is a powerful general purpose finite element analysis (FEA) program for use in computer-aided engineering. NASTRAN is a standard in the structural analysis field, providing the engineer with a wide range of modeling and analysis capabilities. Development of NASTRAN was initiated in the mid-1960's by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to provide an FEA capability for its aerospace research projects. Over the years, NASA has actively maintained and improved NASTRAN such that it remains a state-of-the-art structural analysis system.

We now have a NASTRAN forum!

This is the place for NASTRAN users to post questions and help each other out. Click here or select the Forums link on the left.
NASTRAN applications include almost every kind of structure and construction. Structural and modeling elements are provided for the specific representation of the more common types of structural building blocks including rods, beams, shear panels, plates, and shells of revolution. More general types of building blocks can be treated by combining these simple elements or by using the "general" element capability. The substructuring capability allows different sections of a structure to be modeled jointly after having already been modeled separately.

NASTRAN permits the effects of control systems, aerodynamic transfer functions, and other nonstructural features to be incorporated into the solution of the structural problem. Among other analysis capabilities, NASTRAN can handle:
  • static response to concentrated and distributed loads, thermal expansion, and enforced deformations,

  • dynamic response to transient and steady-state sinusoidal loads, and random excitation,

  • complex eigenvalue determination for vibration analysis, dynamic stability analysis,

  • and elastic stability analysis.

NASTRAN also has a limited capability for the solution of nonlinear problems, including piecewise linear analysis of nonlinear static response and transient analysis of nonlinear dynamic response. Users may develop their own analysis capabilities by using the Direct Matrix Abstraction Programming (DMAP) language to direct NASTRAN in the solution of general matrix problems.

Two types of NASTRAN licenses are available for some destination platforms. Source Code licenses, which are available for all supported platforms, include the source code, executables, demonstration problems and a four-volume set of documentation which includes the Programmer's Manual. Executable Code Only licenses are also available. See the abstract for NASTRAN/XE. The individual volumes of the four-volume set of documentation for NASTRAN are also available separately.
NASTRAN carries the following NASA case numbers:
Case number Platform Type
COS-10057 SGI-IRIX Source
COS-10064 Sun Solaris Source
COS-10066 DEC Alpha OSF/1 Source
COS-10054 HP9000 Executable
COS-10061 IBM RS/6000 Executable
COS-10065 Sun Solaris Executable
COS-10067 DEC Alpha OSF/1 Executable

NASTRAN was originally released as part of the COSMIC collection.

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