LS-DY­NA is a gen­er­al-pur­pose fi­nite el­e­ment pro­gram ca­pa­ble of sim­u­lat­ing com­plex re­al world prob­lems. It is used by the au­to­mo­bile, aero­space, con­struc­tion, mil­i­tary, man­u­fac­tur­ing, and bio­engi­neer­ing in­dus­tries. LS-DY­NA is op­ti­mized for shared and dis­trib­uted mem­o­ry Unix, Lin­ux, and Win­dows based, plat­forms, and it is ful­ly QA’d by LSTC. The code’s ori­gins lie in high­ly non­lin­ear, tran­sient dy­nam­ic fi­nite el­e­ment analy­sis us­ing ex­plic­it time in­te­gra­tion.

“Non­lin­ear” means at least one (and some­times all) of the fol­low­ing com­pli­ca­tions:

  • Chang­ing bound­ary con­di­tions (such as con­tact be­tween parts that changes over time)
  • Large de­for­ma­tions (for ex­am­ple the crum­pling of sheet met­al parts)
  • Non­lin­ear ma­te­ri­als that do not ex­hib­it ide­al­ly elas­tic be­hav­ior (for ex­am­ple ther­mo­plas­tic poly­mers)

“Tran­sient dy­nam­ic” means an­a­lyz­ing high speed, short du­ra­tion events where in­er­tial forces are im­por­tant. Typ­i­cal us­es in­clude:

  • Au­to­mo­tive crash (de­for­ma­tion of chas­sis, airbag in­fla­tion, seat­belt ten­sion­ing)
  • Ex­plo­sions (un­der­wa­ter Naval mine, shaped charges)
  • Man­u­fac­tur­ing (sheet met­al stamp­ing)

LS-DY­NA’s po­ten­tial ap­pli­ca­tions are nu­mer­ous and can be tai­lored to many fields. In a giv­en sim­u­la­tion, any of LS-DY­NA’s many fea­tures can be com­bined to mod­el a wide range of phys­i­cal events. An ex­am­ple of a sim­u­la­tion, which in­volves a unique com­bi­na­tion of fea­tures, is the NASA JPL Mars Pathfind­er land­ing sim­u­la­tion which sim­u­lat­ed the space probe’s use of airbags to aid in its land­ing. LS-DY­NA is one of the most flex­i­ble fi­nite el­e­ment analy­sis soft­ware pack­ages avail­able.

LS-DY­NA con­sists of a sin­gle ex­e­cutable file and is en­tire­ly com­mand line dri­ven. There­fore all that is re­quired to run LS-DY­NA is a com­mand shell, the ex­e­cutable, an in­put file, and enough free disk space to run the cal­cu­la­tion. All in­put files are in sim­ple ASCII for­mat and thus can be pre­pared us­ing any text ed­i­tor. In­put files can al­so be pre­pared with the in­stant aid of a graph­i­cal pre­proces­sor.

There are many third par­ty soft­ware prod­ucts avail­able for pre­pro­cess­ing LS-DY­NA in­put files. LSTC al­so de­vel­ops its own pre­proces­sor, LS-Pre­Post, which is freely dis­trib­uted and runs with­out a li­cense. Li­censees of LS-DY­NA au­to­mat­i­cal­ly have ac­cess to all of the pro­gram’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties, from sim­ple lin­ear sta­t­ic me­chan­i­cal analy­sis up to ad­vanced ther­mal and flow solv­ing meth­ods. Fur­ther­more, they have full use of LS-OPT, a stand­alone de­sign op­ti­miza­tion and prob­a­bilis­tic analy­sis pack­age with an in­ter­face to LS-DY­NA.


LS-DY­NA’s analy­sis ca­pa­bil­i­ties in­clude:

  • Full 2D & 3D ca­pa­bil­i­ties
  • Non­lin­ear dy­nam­ics
  • Rigid body dy­nam­ics
  • Qua­si-sta­t­ic sim­u­la­tions
  • Nor­mal modes
  • Lin­ear sta­t­ics
  • Ther­mal analy­sis
  • Flu­id analy­sis
    • Euler­ian ca­pa­bil­i­ties
    • ALE (Ar­bi­trary La­grangian-Euler­ian)
    • FSI (Flu­id-Struc­ture In­ter­ac­tion)
    • Navier-Stokes flu­ids
    • Com­press­ible flu­id solver, CESE (Con­ser­va­tion El­e­ment & So­lu­tion El­e­ment)
  • FEM-rigid mul­ti-body dy­nam­ics cou­pling (MADY­MO, Cal3D)
  • Un­der­wa­ter shock
  • Fail­ure analy­sis
  • Crack prop­a­ga­tion
  • Re­al-time acoustics
  • Im­plic­it spring­back
  • Mul­ti-physics cou­pling
  • Struc­tur­al-ther­mal cou­pling
  • Adap­tive remesh­ing
  • SPH (Smoothed Par­ti­cle Hy­dro­dy­nam­ics)
  • EFG (El­e­ment Free Galerkin)
  • Ra­di­a­tion trans­port
  • EM (Elec­tro­mag­net­ism)

Material Library

LS-DY­NA’s ma­te­r­i­al li­brary in­cludes:

  • Met­als
  • Plas­tics
  • Glass
  • Foams
  • Fab­rics
  • Elas­tomers
  • Hon­ey­combs
  • Con­crete & soils
  • Vis­cous flu­ids
  • User-de­fined ma­te­ri­als

Element Library

LS-DY­NA’s el­e­ment li­brary in­cludes:

  • Beams (stan­dard, truss­es, dis­crete, ca­bles, and welds) (with over 10 beam el­e­ment for­mu­la­tions)
  • Dis­crete El­e­ments (springs and dampers)
  • Lumped in­er­tias
  • Lumped mass­es
  • Ac­celerom­e­ters
  • Sen­sors
  • Seat­belts
    • Pre­ten­sion­ers
    • Re­trac­tors
    • Sliprings
  • Shells (3, 4, 6, and 8-node in­clud­ing 3D shells, mem­branes, 2D plane stress, plane strain, and ax­isym­met­ric solids) (with over 25 shell el­e­ment for­mu­la­tions)
  • Solids (4 and 10-node tetra­he­drons, 6-node pen­ta­he­drons, and 8-node hexa­he­drons) (with over 20 sol­id el­e­ment for­mu­la­tions)
  • SPH El­e­ments
  • Thick Shells (8-node)

Contact Algorithms

LS-DY­NA’s con­tact al­go­rithms in­clude:

  • Flex­i­ble body con­tact
  • Flex­i­ble body to rigid body con­tact
  • Rigid body to rigid body con­tact
  • Edge-to-edge con­tact
  • Erod­ing con­tact
  • Tied sur­faces
  • CAD sur­faces
  • Rigid walls
  • Draw beads

Supported Platforms


Proc­ces­sor Op­er­at­ing Sys­tem
AMD Opteron, EPYC Lin­ux
CRAY XD1 Lin­ux
HP PA-8X00 HP-UX 11.11 and above
HP IA-64 HP-UX 11.22 and above
HP Opteron Lin­ux CP4000/­XC
IBM Pow­er 4/­5 and 8 Lin­ux, AIX
IN­TEL IA64 Lin­ux
IN­TEL Xeon Lin­ux
Win­dows 64 bit
NEC SX6 Su­per-UX
SGI Mips IR­IX 6.5 X
SGI IA64 SUSE 9 w/­Propack 4
Red­Hat w/­Propack 3
SUN Sparc 5.8 and above
SUN x86-64 5.8 and above
Ven­dor O/­S HPC In­tere­con­nect MPI Soft­ware
AMD Opteron, EPYC Lin­ux In­fini­Band (Sil­ver­Storm), Myri­Com,
Path­Scale In­fini­Path
IBM Pow­er 4/­5 and 8 Lin­ux, AIX
IN­TEL IA32 Lin­ux, Win­dows In­fini­Band (Voltaire), Myri­Com Open MPI, MPICH,
IN­TEL IA64 Lin­ux Open MPI, MPICH,
IN­TEL Xeon Lin­ux x86-64
Win­dows 64
In­fini­Band (Top­spin, Voltaire), Myri­Com,
Path­Scale In­fini­Path
NEC SX6 Su­per-UX
SGI Mips IR­IX 6.5 X NU­MA­link MPT
SGI IA64 SUSE 9 w/­Propack4
Red­Hat w/­Propack 3
In­fini­Band (Voltaire)
SUN Sparc 5.8 and above HPC Tool
SUN x86-64 5.8 and above LAM/­MPI