Finite element method modeling of crankshaft axial impact measurements


  • Antti-Jussi Vuotikka Global Boiler Works Oy
  • Marko Jokinen Global Boiler Works Oy
  • Pasi Halla-aho Wärtsilä
  • Jukka Aho
  • Antti Mäntylä Wärtsilä
  • Tero Frondelius Wärtsilä, Oulun yliopisto


Impact, crankshaft, strain wave, data analysis, Explicit FEM, Wärtsilä


It has been recently discovered that there is a periodical axial impact phenomenon in a running engine crankshaft. Bending of the shaft causes significant extension of the crankshaft and impact to the engine block through the axial thrust bearing. The aim of this work is to study impact-induced energy fluctuations in a complex-shaped Wärtsilä sixteen vee 32 engine crankshaft by using an explicit finite element method (FEM) during the first 25 ms after impact. Using the FEM allows us to study real components used in industry, and analyze their dynamics in the transient phase. In conclusion, we found interesting results that can be used as guidelines for a full-scale crankshaft measurement instrumentation plan. The full-scale measurements will be performed later in the Wärtsilä Oy facility at Vaasa, Finland. The main finding is that a substantive amount of energy is trapped in the head region and the first two crank pins of the crankshaft, which can affect crankshaft durability regarding high-cycle fatigue.
Emeritusprofessori Tapio Salmen muistonumero




Vuotikka, A.-J., Jokinen, M., Halla-aho, P., Aho, J., Mäntylä, A., & Frondelius, T. (2020). Finite element method modeling of crankshaft axial impact measurements. Rakenteiden Mekaniikka, 53(2), 85–99.