Simulation: Factor of Safety Plots – Highlighting the Areas of Concern

Article by Scott Durksen, CSWE updated October 24, 2013

The default Factor of Safety (FOS) plot would show the distribution of values over the entire model with a colour chart.  Typically you would modify the colour chart to have the Minimum value as your required FOS.  The regions in red are the areas of concern.  However depending on the range of the colour chart values, the red colour may be appear on are regions that satisfy the FOS requirement.  As you can see in the example below, the red regions could be interpreted as anywhere from 0 to 10.  Yet the factor of safety requirement is 3.5.

Factor of Safety Distribution

When you generate a Factor of Safety plot, the third screen (upon clicking the next arrow) gives the option of a “Factor of safety distribution” or “Areas below factor of safety”.  If you choose the second option and enter your required FOS, a plot is given that clearly shows the regions that are below the criterion.

Define Factor of Safety PlotAreas below FOS

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Scott Durksen, CSWE

Scott is a SOLIDWORKS Elite Applications Engineer and is based in our Dartmouth, Nova Scotia office.