Computational modeling is a growing area of mechanical engineering that focuses on the use of numerical simulation to examine complex phenomena. Computational modeling includes work in finite element analysis, computational fluid dynamics, and multi-body dynamics modeling. Intrinsic to most of these modeling efforts are common elements including:

1. Assumptions that are made to reduce a problem to a solvable mathematical problem,

2. Formulation of a mathematical representation based on scientific principles,

3. Reduction of the mathematical representation through the removal of terms of small effect (neglected terms)

4. Collection and use of input data,

5. Algorithm development using numerical methods and discretization of the mathematical problem,

6. Implementation of the algorithm in computer code,

7. Creating representations of the model results,

8. External validation of the model, and

9. Dissemination of the model and model computer code.

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