Specifying contact controls in an Abaqus/Explicit analysis

You can specify contact controls for surface-to-surface contact and self-contact interactions in an Abaqus/Explicit analysis. For more information, see Contact controls for contact pairs in Abaqus/Explicit.


Contact controls are intended for advanced users. The default settings of these controls are appropriate for most analyses. Using nondefault values of these controls may greatly increase the computational time of the analysis or produce inaccurate results.

Related Topics
Contact controls editors
Customizing contact controls
In Other Guides
About contact pairs in Abaqus/Explicit
Contact formulations for contact pairs in Abaqus/Explicit
Common difficulties associated with contact modeling using contact pairs in Abaqus/Explicit
  1. From the main menu bar, select InteractionContact ControlsCreate.

  2. In the Create Contact Controls dialog box that appears, do the following:

    • Name the contact controls.

    • Select Abaqus/Explicit contact controls as the type of contact controls.

  3. Click Continue to close the Create Contact Controls dialog box.

    The Edit Contact Controls dialog box appears.

  4. By default, the maximum number of increments between global contact searches is 4 for self-contact interactions and 100 for surface-to-surface contact interactions. If you want to specify the maximum number of increments between global searches, toggle on Specify max number of increments in the Global Search Frequency portion of the editor and enter a value.

  5. By default, Abaqus/Explicit uses techniques for local contact searches (local tracking) that use a minimum amount of computational time. If you have difficulty enforcing the appropriate contact conditions, you can toggle off Fast local tracking to use a more conservative local contact search. This setting applies only for surface-to-surface contact interactions.

  6. In the Penalty stiffness scaling factor field, enter a value for the factor by which Abaqus/Explicit will scale the default penalty stiffness to obtain the stiffnesses used for the penalty contact pairs. The default value is 1.

  7. In the Warp check increment field, enter the number of increments between checks for highly warped facets on master surfaces. The default value is 20. More frequent checks will cause a slight increase in computational time.

  8. In the Angle criteria for highly warped facet (degrees) field, enter a value for the out-of-plane warping angle (in degrees) at which Abaqus/Explicit will consider a facet to be highly warped. The out-of-plane warping angle is defined as the amount of variation of the surface normal over a facet. The default value is 20°.

  9. Click OK to create the contact controls and to close the editor.