Modifying the Simulation Geometry on 3DEXPERIENCE Platform

Article by TriMech Solutions, LLC updated April 5, 2023


When setting up a simulation for geometry build using other 3DEXPERIENCE modeling apps or imported from external applications such as SOLIDWORKS, you cannot directly modify that geometry. Depending upon analysis objectives, you may want to suppress or exclude geometric features such as small fillets or holes so that the mesh generation process ignores such features. Imported geometry might have small gaps or incomplete geometry that must be repaired before the model can be used for meshing. The Simulation Model preparation app included with the Structural Mechanics Engineer role allows you to prepare the geometry for meshing. This native app allows users to defeature or repair geometry, idealize for simplifying geometry and even create new features such as projected curves, points etc. for better mesh quality.

modifying simulation geometry

The action bar for Structural Model Creation app consists of:

  • Check and Repair Section
  • Defeature Section
  • Idealize Section
  • Create Section
  • Composite Section (only available with Composite Analysis engineer role)
  • Display Section

action bar for Structural Model Creation app

Check and Repair allows you to evaluate the geometry to find regions to repair, heal geometry by joining surfaces etc.  Defeature enables you to simplify the model prior to mesh generation by removing features not relevant for analysis.  Idealize includes mid-surface extraction, split volume or surfaces, trim tool, lids to close gaps and make the model watertight. New geometry such as axis system, points, surfaces can be created and new containers to gather geometric features can be defined using the Create option in model preparation app. The Display tab lets you manipulate the view to see different portions of the model.  You can display model volumes according to applicable meshing techniques.

When you need to modify the structure of a design for use in simulation, the target shape is what you are modifying. When switching from another simulation app to Simulation Model Preparation app, you choose the target shape that you are going to modify. If there is only one editable shape (either a 3D shape or an abstraction shape), the app opens with that shape selected. For any other case, you must select a shape or create an abstraction shape that references the shape that you need to modify.

Abstraction shape is very useful when you need to make changes to the geometry.  Since you cannot change the original geometry directly, you first create an abstraction shape. It is just a container into which you can create a dependent copy of the original geometry.

Abstraction shape changing

Abstraction shape allows you to make geometric modifications required for simulation without impacting original design geometry and easily update simulation models to reflect changes in the design geometry.

If you create an abstraction shape with a product as the reference, the abstraction shape created is an empty container. You must then copy one or more 3D shapes into it.  This is very useful when simulating thin components with varying thickness.

An abstraction shape is defined as containing surfaces of the component and the shell section is defined with thickness directly referenced from the solid body. The image below shows the same thickness defined from the abstraction shape containing surfaces extracted from a solid body.

shell section in SOLIDWORKSthickness defined from the abstraction shape containing surfaces extracted from a solid body

3DEXPERIENCE platform provides different approaches in a collaborative environment to control and handle design change for simulation models.  As discussed above, the Structural model preparation app is one of them to improve simulation productivity to drive product innovation.

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TriMech Solutions, LLC

TriMech provides thousands of engineering teams with 3D design and rapid prototyping solutions that work hand-in-hand, from sketch to manufacturing. Javelin became a subsidiary of TriMech Solutions LLC in 2021.