Information about the module

In the module "Lightweight Construction", the essential structural-mechanical basics for the calculation of typical structural elements of lightweight construction are laid. In addition to some general aspects of lightweight construction, particular emphasis is placed on the load-bearing behavior of the beam and the associated calculation of stiffnesses, stresses and deformations. In particular, thin-walled cross-sections typical for lightweight construction are investigated. Finally, the structural-mechanical behavior of shear fields is extended, thus broadening the horizon to include plane structures.


General data about the module 
Study program

B.Sc. Aerospace engineering

B.Sc. Mathematical Engineering

Module number 1219
Trimester Winter trimester (5th Bachelor trimester)
Work load

150h total, thereof

          60h presence time

          90h self-study


3 TWS lecture

2 TWS excercise

Qualification goals
  1. Students will be able to classify the significance of lightweight construction in technical problems with regard to purpose, savings potential and economy in a contemporary manner.
  2. Students will be able to distinguish between lightweight material and lightweight form construction and recognize the necessity of combining both lightweight construction principles.
  3. The students acquire the ability to calculate the stresses on beam structures with thin-walled cross-sections with the aid of the fundamentals taught, to evaluate these and to make necessary changes in the design.
  4. Students will gain an overview of calculation methods for determining the deformation of beam structures. After analyzing and classifying the problem, they are able to select a suitable solution method and apply it confidently.
  5. Students will be able to design lightweight structures in terms of strength and stiffness. They are able to confidently assess the results of complex numerical calculation methods such as the FEM.



The Lightweight Design module focuses on analytical methods for the computational assessment of thin-walled structures in terms of strength and stiffness.

  • Basic principles of lightweight construction: lightweight material construction, lightweight mold construction, lightweight construction parameters
  • Review of the fundamentals of statics and strength of materials, basic equations of engineering mechanics: Equilibrium, geometric relationships, material law
  • Stressing of thin-walled beams: deformation approaches, stresses due to normal force, bending and temperature stresses, stresses due to shear force, shear center, stresses due to torsional stress (St. Venant's torsion, arch force torsion)
  • Deformation of thin-walled beams: solution of differential equations, transfer matrices, deformation quantity (finite element method) and force quantity methods
  • Shear field beams: rectangular, parallelogram and trapezoidal fields, shear wall beams, general shear field beams