Investigation of stress distribution in a dragline bucket using finite element analysis

Gölbaşı, Onur
Overburden stripping is one of the essential activities in open-cast mines before starting the ore production. Due to the economic advantages, dragline is a widely utilized machinery in the overburden excavation. These earthmovers carry out the earthmoving process with dragging, hoisting and dumping actions of the bucket. Dragline excavator’s efficiency is critically important, since poor performance of a dragline in the mine site directly affects the total efficiency of ore production. Therefore, productivity studies about dragline should be directed to decrease cycle time and increase payload, with avoiding catastrophic failure. In this regard, determination of stress distribution on the front-end components of dragline is meaningful to detect the external factors against dragline operation. In order to provide insight into the dragline bucket-formation interaction and stress distribution on the bucket, this research studies the simulation of horizontally moving dragline bucket where passive earth forces of the formation create resistance to the movement. Within the scope of simulation, (i) solid models of dragline bucket and the rigging mechanism were created in the Computer-Aided Drawing (CAD) environment, (ii) the model was transferred to the Finite-Element Analysis (FEA) software, (iii) two different case studies were simulated in the FEA virtual environment. One of the cases handled the stress investigation on the dragline bucket at the first interaction with the formation, while the other focused on the stress formations on a moving dragline bucket. Simulation results showed that overloading conditions occurred on bottom edges of the bucket lip for the first case, and drag hitch part and digging teeth for the second case. Moreover, a sensitivity analysis was carried out to measure the effects of formation specification changes on the stress values on the bucket. The analysis showed that stress values on the bucket elements were most sensitive to internal friction angle and least sensitive to density. Consequently, this thesis study discusses stress and deformation components on the dragline bucket during the interaction with formation. Since there is not enough number of research studies in the literature about the stress investigation on a moving dragline bucket, this thesis study is expected to provide benefit to understand the basis of dragline bucket actions.


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Citation Formats
O. Gölbaşı, “Investigation of stress distribution in a dragline bucket using finite element analysis,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2011.