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SolidWorks Simulation Features

Solidworks Simulation Solvers.


FFE plus Solver.

Direct Sparse.
Intel direct sparse.
Large problem direct sparse.
Intel network sparse.

Meshing Capabilities in SolidWork Simulation.

1. Standard mesh.
2. Curvature based mesh.
3. Blended curvature based mesh.
For both draft and higher order elements.
Type of motors available in SolidWorks Motion analysis.

Constant Speed motor.

Distance motor.
Oscillating motor.
Segment motor.
Data point motor.
Expression motor.
Servo motor.

Buckling: A buckling study calculates a load factor multiplier for axial loads to predict when
the actual loads will cause sudden, large catastrophic transverse displacements. Slender
structures subject to mainly axial loads can fail due to buckling at load levels far lower
than those required to cause material failure.

Drop Test: Drop test studies evaluate the impact effect of dropping the design on a rigid floor.
You can specify the dropping distance or the velocity at the time of impact in addition to
gravity. The model supplies the mass, damping, and stiffness matrices in terms of the
displacements, and forces. The program solves a dynamic problem as a function of time
using explicit time integration methods. After the analysis is completed, you can plot
and graph the time history of the displacements, velocities, accelerations, strains, and

Dynamic Analysis: These types of study assume that the materials are linear and that the
loadings are either time-dependent, frequency dependent or defined by limiting spectra.
Mass and inertia effects are included and damping is available. The options in SW
Simulation are Drop Test (also known as Direct Time History Analysis), Modal Time
History Analysis (Mode Superposition Analysis), Harmonic Analysis (Harmonic Response
Analysis, and Random Vibration Analysis (Response Spectra Analysis). The last three
analysis types require a Frequency Analysis to be completed to supply the eigenvalues
(natural frequencies) and eigenvectors (mode shapes) needed as inputs.

Fatigue: Fatigue studies evaluate the consumed life of an object based on a very large
number of fatigue events (cycles). Repeated loading weakens materials over time even
when the induced stresses are low. The number of cycles required for failure depends
on the material and the stress fluctuations. Those data are provided by the material S-N
curve, which depicts the number of cycles that cause failure for different stress levels.

Frequency: A body tends to vibrate at natural, or resonant, frequencies. For each natural
frequency, the body takes a certain shape called the mode shape. Frequency analysis
calculates the natural frequencies and their associated mode shapes. The mode shapes
can be animated for each selected frequency.
Harmonic Analysis: Harmonic response analysis is a steady state solution due to harmonic
loads of known amplitude and frequency. That is, and
the linear system becomes
which is solved for and its associated strains and stresses.
Optimisation: Optimisation studies automate the search for a local optimum design based
on an initial geometric design and analysis state. Optimisation studies require the
definition of an objective, design variables, and behaviour constraints.
Modal Time History: This solves the matrix equations of motion, the assembled loadings,
modal transformation, to generalized-DOF; this gives diagonal matrix system which is
integrated analytically for a typical time step. When the time history is completed, the
physical displacements are recovered. The strains and stresses are obtained from the
displacements at each time.
Pressure Vessel Design: The results of multiple static studies are combined with the
desired load factors. This study combines the results algebraically using a linear
combination or the square root of the sum of the squares.
Random Vibration: The loads are described statistically by power spectral density (PSD)
functions. After running the study, you can plot root-mean-square (RMS) values, or PSD
results of stresses, displacements, velocities, etc. at a specific frequency or graph
results at specific locations versus frequency values.
Static: Static (or Stress) studies calculate displacements, reaction forces, strains, stresses,
failure criterion, a factor of safety, and error estimates. Available loading conditions
include point, line, surface, acceleration (volume) and thermal loads are available.
Elastic orthotropic materials are available.
Thermal: Thermal studies calculate temperatures, temperature gradients, heat flux, and total
heat flow based on internal heat generation, conduction, convection, contact resistance
and radiation conditions. Thermal orthotropic materials are available.
Transient Thermal: The time-dependent thermal study is defined by where M is the
specific heat matrix (also called the thermal mass matrix), K is the conduction and
convection matrix, and Q is the combined nodal heat flow vector due to internal
sources, convection, radiation, and given heat flux. Given the initial conditions, and
boundary conditions the system is time integrated for the model temperatures.

Nonlinear and other Capabilities


Angular acceleration


Orthotropic materials

Angular velocity


p-adaptive analyses

Assembly analysis


h-adaptive analyses

Body loads: gravity & centrifugal


Plot customization

Buckling load factors & modes


Prescribed nonzero restraints


Principal stresses

Connectors (Pin, bolt, etc.)

Contact analysis with friction


Probe and list-by-entity tools

Deformation plot


Publish eDrawings of results

Directional pressure and force


Reaction force results from plot


Directional restraints


Remote mass


Displacement plots


Restrain edges, faces & vertices


Dynamic section and iso-plots


Result graphs and listings


Edit material library


S-N Fatigue curves


Element results in plots


Strain and displacement analysis


Factor of safety calculation & plot


Stress analysis


Fatigue analysis and plots


Stress contour plots


Fixed restraints on faces


Stress error estimate


Force on edges, faces & vertices


Symmetry restraints


Frequency analyses


Temperature distribution


Heat flux results from plots


Temperature gradient plots


Heat sources


Temperature-dependent properties


Heat transfer analysis


Thermal contact resistance


Import SW Flow loads


Thermal stress analysis


Import SW Motion loads




Interference or shrink fit


Thin parts, sheet metal using shells


Large displacement analysis


Von Mises equivalent stress


Multibody part analysis




Nonlinear analysis


Optimization analysis






SOLIDWORKS Simulation - 2016

Blended Curvature-based Mesher

An alternate curvature-based Mesher is available. The new Mesher uses improved algorithms
that provide a high-quality surface mesh.

Automatic Bonding for Shells

The Global component contact algorithm is enhanced to detect non-touching edges of shells
within a maximum gap distance.

Bolts and Pins on the Same Part

Bolt and pin connectors can start and end on the same body.

Controlling Values and Display of Maxima and Minima on Contour Plots

You can control independently the maximum and minimum values of Simulation results in
contour plots (automatic or defined status). You can pick a colour that is different from the
default colour range to display results that fall outside the customized limits you define.

Detecting Under constrained Bodies

You can analyse the contacts and boundary conditions of bodies to verify that bodies are
sufficiently constrained. You can view animations of the model based on the active degrees of
freedom, and identify bodies that are under constrained before you run a simulation.

Display Results for Remote Mass and Remote Load

For linear dynamic studies, you can plot response graphs at the centre of gravity of a body that
is treated as a remote mass, or at a point where you apply a remote load or remote mass.

Equation-driven Results
You can create new Simulation result plots that are defined with equations using standard
mathematical functions of existing result variables.

Improved Solver Error Messages

Error messages issued by the solver are improved with a hyperlink that directs you to the right
solution article in the SOLIDWORKS Knowledge base.

Releasing Prescribed Displacements

You can activate and deactivate prescribed displacements at selected time steps in nonlinear

Report Publish Options

You can select the paper size to print a Simulation report.

Sectioning the Mesh

The mesh sectioning tool lets you section the mesh and view internal mesh elements in
Simulation studies.

SOLIDWORKS Simulation - 2017

Automatic Update of Beam Joints

When you make design changes to structural members that mesh with beam elements, you do
not need to recalculate the existing definitions of beam joints in a Simulation study. The
program automatically updates the beam joints when you switch to the Simulation study tab.

Converting a Static Study to a New Study

You can copy a static study to a new linear dynamic study or nonlinear study. Only supported
boundary conditions are transferred to the new study.

Detecting Stress Hot Spots

The Stress Hot Spot diagnostics tool detects regions of the model that exhibit the highest

Display Simulation Results in SOLIDWORKS Graphics Area

You can display SOLIDWORKS Simulation results in the SOLIDWORKS graphics area along with
other components in the model that are not part of the simulation.

Editing Multiple Contact Sets

You can select multiple contact sets in a single step to modify their common properties. You can
convert multiple contact sets to a common contact type that is different from their original

Improved Arc Length Control Method for Nonlinear Contact Analysis

You can analyse the buckling behaviour of any structure more accurately with the inclusion of
no penetration contacts between components that may come into contact during the analysis.

Intelligent Solver Switch

The software can automatically select the most robust solver for nonlinear studies.

Managing Dynamic Analysis Results

The management of large result files from Linear Dynamic Studies is improved.

Macro Recording in Simulation

You can record operations performed with the SOLIDWORKS Simulation user interface in a
macro script.

Mass Properties in Simulation

You can calculate mass properties of all or selected bodies included in a Simulation study.

Offloaded Simulation
You can offload running a simulation to another computer connected on your local network. By
offloading a simulation, you can continue working with SOLIDWORKS in the coordinator
computer executing parallel tasks.

Performance Improvements for SOLIDWORKS Simulation

Several improvements in the areas of graphics, meshing, and contact formulation enhance the
overall performance of the Simulation product.

Post Processing Improvements for SOLIDWORKS Simulation

Several improvements in post processing of results and plot viewing enhance productivity.

Probing Results at Selected Nodes

After you run a Simulation, you can probe results at nodes identified by their node number. The
nodes you select from List Result and Probe Result Property Managers are highlighted on the
model with their annotations.

Remote Loads and Mass for Beams

You can define remote loads, remote mass, and distributed mass over beams.

Self-dismissed Solver Messages

During a Simulation run, solver messages that prompt you with a choice of action automatically
time out.