How can I set up a simulation?


What are the steps involved in running a simulation (or analysis) in nTop?


Simulations are a powerful tool, enabling you to use the results directly in your design by utilizing fields. From simple to complex, simulations follow a basic format. The image below represents the minimum setup for a simulation to run. 


The Finite Element (FE) Mesh is a volume mesh that adds integration points to each element within the mesh (either linearly or quadratically). A simulation needs at least one FE Mesh. 

The FE Model adds Material information by adding FE Components and Connectors. The most simple FE Model will have an FE Component that has an FE Mesh and a Material Attribute, with no Connectors. 

Boundary Conditions (BCs) can be thought of as the environment your part is in. They include Forces, Displacement Restraints, Heat Generation, Pressure, and more. You will typically need a minimum of two BCs to run a simulation. To use a BC, you need to be able to select the area it is acting upon by using the boundary selection tools. 

After setting up these elements, you can run an Analysis. There is a choice of Static, Buckling, Modal, Thermal Analysis, and Nonlinear Thermal Analysis. Each analysis type utilizes these basic parts, with slight differences in addition.  

Once a simulation has run, the results can be utilized in a variety of ways. The results can be extracted as Point Maps and then converted into a Field to be fed back into the model. The results can also be exported to another program for further analysis.

More on this topic:


 analysis mesh simulation static boundary design fe model finite element condition thermal modal buckling bc analyze 
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