ExcelFEM_ 3D (for Excel 2003)



Static structural analysis of 3D linear elastic frames and trusses. Computes the static deflections, reactions, internal element forces using direct stiffness methods.

A newer version of this document solves larger frames but only works with Excel 2007 and Excel 2010. This version is not being further developed.

Nodal Points
Nodal Loads
Point Load
Moment Load
Distributed Load
Member Forces
Support Reactions
DEVELOPMENT PLANS (later in 2011)
β Effect
The effect of gravity
thermal load
middle point deflection
new "MEMBER LOADS" menu
Dynamic Analysis
Flowchart for the step by step information
Units system
Load cases & combinations
Distributed Moment load
Cross - Section Designer
Material Strength Calculation

Calculation Reference
Finite Element Analysis
Frame Analysis

Calculation Preview

28 Mar 2011
Last Modified
07 Sep 2011
File Size:
2,681.50 Kb
File Version:
File Author:
Turan Babacan

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Comments: 20
scottr99 12 years ago
Hi Babacan.
Can you currently account for non-linear geometry (stress stiffening) or be able to use a stress-strain curve to describe material? If not, will it be coming sometime in the future? Thank you, Scott.
InfoJunkie65 13 years ago
John and Turan thankyou for the Excel 2003 version. Faster than I am.
Last night I managed to find 2D version, that I was sent in 2003 format last year: I had similar problems last year. Took a closer look and learnt some new techniques for using charts.
Interesting approaches for the workbook. Splits, multiple worksheets, and different pictures on each worksheet, giving impression that buttons have been pressed, rather than actually using buttons. {Roughly what computer does anyhow, swapping images in and out of RAM.}
Good workbook for students to study.
I will have to study further. I tried a continuous span beam as a simple example, but something went wrong.
Without VBA expanding the model and updating the charts could be a lot of extra work. But most frames are only a few members so probably no real need to.
Lots of potential to integrate with other workbooks. Calculate dimension and geometry, wind loads. Then grab results and check members and connections. All within a single workbook, with a few defining input parameters.
Thats what I like about excel bring everything together in the one place, and format own reports. Start with simple beams and columns, then get stuck when comes to frames. So far I have settled for using rigid frame formula, or generating files for export. Either format file in worksheet and copy/paste to text file, or use VBA to write file. Or there is COM automation with Multiframe. But using an external frame analysis program slows things down. Also far too expensive to integrate into applications for point-of-sale assessment of simple sheds and carports. So have been modifying in-house 2D plane frame program to mesh into Excel using VBA.
But this workbook suggests potential to go to 3D without VBA, and check more complex frames. Often cropping columns from standard frames, and requiring carry beams.
Though I have along way to go before got anything with all the necessary traps and error detection.
The potential of Excel increases daily. Keep up the good work.
JohnDoyle[Admin] 13 years ago
InfoJunkie65 a present from Turan ExcelFEM.xls v1.5 Excel 2003 compatible!
BABACAN 13 years ago
Turan has solved the Excel 2003 problem!
MMINVERSE() function in Excel 2003 must be less than 56 x 56 = 3136 cells.
Now repaired.
BABACAN 13 years ago
Turan as asked me to upload the latest version. The worksheets looks more and more elegant with each new version and I can see that Turan is working on the addition of plate elements and solid element which will be another quantum leap forward. Some comments have alerted him to the problem running the calculation in Excel 2003 (it only works in Excel 2007 and Excel 2010). He has tried to make this version work in Excel 2003 but I have done a few tests and I had problems running it on my copy of Excel 2003 :(.
JohnDoyle[Admin] 13 years ago
InfoJunkie65 I was about to email you my Excel 2003 version of ExcelSTA3D.xlsx but I noticed that the latest version of ExcelSTA3D.xlsx uses more than Excel 2003's maximum number of columns (256 or IV) . This is no problem for Excel 2007 and 2010 but when Excel 2003 tries to access columns beyond the 256th rows it returns a #REF error. This is most likely to be the problem. So I am afraid it look like ExcelSTA3D.xlsx will not work in Excel 2003. I think you will find that the 2D version called ExcelSta2D will work in Excel 2003 which some consolation. Personally I think ExcelSTA3D.xlsx alone makes a compelling argument to upgrade to Excel 2010.
InfoJunkie65 13 years ago
Re-installed formatconverter, unloaded add-ins, and still unable to open.
First get dialogue saying converting. Then large dialogue indicating differences,implies differences are specific to workbook. But could just be general differences between versions. I am using 2003.
It then says fails to open: whilst expect a fail to convert message. Also checked read only status: it wasn't. But did find security block because came from other computer. I removed that. Still won't open. File size appears correct.
The video indicates some good techniques in the workbook, and I am assuming most applicable across most versions of Excel. So would be good to take a closer look at.
InfoJunkie65 13 years ago
Thanks John. Will check if got current version of formatconverter. If still doesn't open then will try download again.
Will do tomorrow when in office and have faster connection.
JohnDoyle[Admin] 13 years ago
I have used it perfectly well with Excel 2003 using the Free Microsoft Compatibility Pack (so the xlsx file can be read by Excel 2003). The file is an xlsx file produced by Excel 2007 & 2010 so there are bound to be small issues regarding the compatibility of colours however these are very minor compared to the usefulness of the worksheet! I have had it for a month now and I'm still amazed at Turan's innovative approach.
InfoJunkie65 13 years ago
Converter identified several incompatibilities with Excel 2003: more columns, colours, conditional formatting. Then failed to open file.
But that's ok! Only wanted to take a look at the technqiues used on the charts, not actually use.
rahulmenon 13 years ago
Amazing work!! I used it and tested it with Patran and Femap, Damn the results were so accurate, GREAT JOB !!
BABACAN 13 years ago
Turan has just updated his fine spreadsheet again.
crystalinv 13 years ago
this is unimaginable. a very complex finite element method implemented not with ANSYS, STAAD.PRO, SAP2000, ROBOT etc. but with MS EXCEL. keep up the good Turan. you are indeed the spreadsheet king...
BABACAN 13 years ago
Turan has just sent through the latest copy which shows members in tension in red and members in compression in blue. It keeps getting better and better!
chrispegg 13 years ago
Simply brilliant.
JohnDoyle[Admin] 13 years ago
gfs_se it sounds like you may have an internet connection problem. I have just downloaded the file and opened it with no errors in Excel 2010. It is a great calculation so may I suggest you try again? I can email it to you if you have further problems. The file should download as ExcelFEM.xlsx as you have noticed (the filename changed when it was upissued to version 1.1 but I did not want to change the download URL as the link is in the latest newsletter).
BABACAN 13 years ago
Given that I am already a big fan of your phenomenal spreadsheet I don't want to appear 'picky'. I wondered if there was a way of introducing spar elements (tension/compression only elements) along with the beam elements? This would be occasionally useful. Thanks again Turan.
gfs_se 13 years ago
The file does not seem to download properly. It opened as a blank worksheet, after excel posted a message that it had to fix problems. I am using Excel 2010. Do I need to open this in an older version. Also the file name that downloads is not the same as the name on the website. It downloaded as ExcelFEM.xlsx [Repaired].
BABACAN 13 years ago
Turan has just sent in V1.1 of the Excel FE worksheet and its even sweeter than version 1.0. He has also hinted that version 1.20 will soon be available which will show member axial loads, shear forces and bending moments. Keep up the great work Turan!
JohnDoyle[Admin] 13 years ago
This is a really impressive amazing spreadsheet. I take my hat off to you here it is probably the cleverest spreadsheet I have ever come across. It is perfectly executed and serves as a tremendous showcase of just what can be achieved with Excel.