nTopology 3.17 - What's New?

Version 3.17

nTopology 3.17 is here! We are introducing a new system for navigating and solving errors. If you have an error in your workflow, an error icon appears at the top right of the Notebook. Clicking on this opens up an Error Log that shows you all of the errors in your Notebook. Clicking on an error in the log navigates you to the block where the error is occurring. This release also features a built-in custom block, Mirror Body, to mirror implicit bodies. As with every release, nTopology’s dedicated support team is ready to answer your questions. Please visit support.ntopology.com to gain access to helpful tutorials and support articles.

Error Enhancements

We made several enhancements to navigating and solving errors within your workflows. These new enhancements include:

  • An Error Log at the top right-hand corner of the Notebook
    • An error icon appears at the top of the Notebook whenever there is an error. Click on that icon to display the error log and then click on an error to navigate to the block.
  • Improved error messaging
  • A red overlay to make blocks that have errors stand out from blocks without errors
  • Updated icons and colors for warnings and errors
  • Floating icons: If there is an error in a collapsed block or section, click on the floating error icon to expand the block or section and go to the error.

Error Log at the top of the Notebook and corresponding Error messages.



Mirror Body

This new built-in custom block makes it easier to mirror your implicit body.

  • Name: Mirror Body
    • Location: Modeling > Operations
    • Description: Mirrors an Implicit Body about a plane.
    • Input # 1: Body
      • Type: Implicit Body
      • Description: Implicit Body to mirror.
    • Input # 2: Plane
      • Type: Plane
      • Description: Plane about which to mirror the Implicit Body.

Original lattice (gray) and mirrored lattice (blue).


Usage Improvements

  • Overloaded blocks using dropdown inputs can switch overloads once a dropdown option is selected.
  • We improved how meshes are stored and saved within nTop files. When saving nTop files with meshes, the resulting nTop file is approximately 2-3x smaller, depending on the mesh. The time it takes to save the file has also been reduced, as well as the time to load the file.
    • To take advantage of this improvement for existing files, you can open the nTop file in 3.17, trigger a change such as adding a block, removing it, and then saving the file.

Block Updates

  • Import Part block now supports the Autodesk Inventor Assembly file format (.IAM) and Creo Assembly file format (.ASM) as an eligible input type.
  • There are two updates for the CAD Body from Mesh block:
    • We renamed the CAD Body from Mesh block to CAD Body from Quad Mesh. This change was made to reduce confusion around which type of mesh the block accepts.
    • We promoted the CAD Body from Mesh Beta block into production as version 1.1.0 of the existing CAD Body from Mesh block (now CAD Body from Quad Mesh). V1.1.0 is faster, supports periodic surfaces, does not require a refinement level input, produces fewer CAD faces, and can handle a variety of edge-cases that the previous version could not.

The output from the CAD Body from Quad Mesh V1.0.0 block. The block Properties shows 7452 faces.


Output from the CAD Body from Quad Mesh V1.1.0 block. Note that there are now two CAD faces.


Bug Fixes

  • We fixed an issue where converting a cell map input into an optional input was causing nTopology to unexpectedly exit.
  • We fixed a bug that was placing the bounding box of a slice stack in the wrong location when using the optional frame input in the Slice Body block.
  • We fixed a bug where an unknown error was displayed when an acceleration load was applied to a geometry with multiple components in a Topology Optimization block, causing the optimization not to run.
  • We fixed an issue where the Topology Optimization block would display a wrong error message and not run when the Boundary by Body block is used with multiple load cases.
  • The Static Analysis block has been updated in version 3.17 to properly display principal stresses, strain and reaction force results for solid element models. Prior to this release, principal stresses and strain results are calculated by averaging element values causing some inaccuracies. Now, stress and strain results are calculated using the average of nodal values to produce accurate results. In addition, solid element models with applied force on nodes would produce reaction force results that included the applied forces. The applied forces have now been removed from the reaction forces results. To implement these fixes and confirm you are getting accurate principal stresses, strain and reaction force results for solid element models in version 3.17 onwards, we recommend to re-run the static analysis block.
  • We fixed a memory leak in the Slice Body and Slice Body to B&W Image Stack blocks. The leak causing nTopology to unexpectedly exit in some cases.


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