Structural Analysis on a Disc Brake and Brake pad Assembly

A brake assembly is one of the components in any automobile that undergoes frequent stress and strain. In this project, a disc brake and a brake pad is designed, assembled, and analyzed for the stresses experienced by the system gradually.


The components and specifications used are:

Components designed Material is chosen Software used
Disc rotor Cast iron SolidWorks
Brake pad Steel SolidWorks


Model Dimensions:


We designed a disc rotor of 320mm diameter which is commonly used in automobiles. The brake pads and the brake rotor was given a gap of 0.2mm initially.

Case Setup

Software used – SpaceClaim in ANSYS 19.2

In order to check the behavior of the assembly throughout its motion, a transient structural module was used. Appropriate joints and contacts were defined in the assembly to simulate the rotation of the disc brake. A coefficient of friction of 0.4[1]  was used between cast iron and steel.  A rotational velocity of 5 rad/s was given to the rotor. Displacements of 0.1mm were applied in each step for a total of 4 steps.


On simulating the models, the following phenomena were observed,

Equivalent stress: As the brakes come in contact with the disc rotor, the rotor decreases in speed. Since a constant rotational velocity is given to the rotor, the brake pads experience stress. The disc rotor was set to Rigid behavior in ANSYS so no stresses will be considered on it. The maximum value of equivalent stress was obtained to be 3814.6 MPa.


Fig 3: Equivalent stress contour in the brake pads.

Frictional Stress: The brake pads experience stress every time the driver applies brakes. In this simulation, the frictional stresses acting on the assembly were plotted in the contours when the brakes were being applied. Further application of the brakes would result in more stress being developed.



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