Articles by: Mersedeh Zandvakili

Using thermal resistance to model thermal condition of touching faces

If you have been using SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional or Premium for your thermal analysis, you probably have asked yourself, what is the best way to model the thermal resistance condition between two touching faces? SOLIDWORKS allows you to specify resistance to touching faces to simulate imperfect thermal conduction between parts. In reality two parts coming in contact with each other will not have a perfect contact due to factors such as surface roughness and tolerances and therefore, there will be air pockets trapped between the part which will affect the overall thermal coefficient. Even if these effects are negligible, most of the time, the parts are bonded together with a thermal adhesive or thermal glue which has a different conductance coefficient that is not negligible. The effects of this middle layer, can be inserted into your model with defining a local contact set of “Thermal resistance”. The thermal resistance coefficient…

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How to define a Thermostat in a SOLIDWORKS Simulation Study

Did you know you can set up a thermostat directly in your SOLIDWORKS Simulation Transient Study which will turn the heat power on/off based on the temperature? The thermostat (transient) feature monitors the temperature of a specified vertex or point on your model to turn the heat power on/off. It basically includes a point temperature sensor and a on/off feedback control like most of thermostats. Defining a thermostat To access this function, from your simulation tree, right click on thermal loads in the simulation study tree and click Heat Power. You can also access this command from the menu bar Simulation > Loads/Fixtures > Heat Power. After completing heat power specifications, check the option of thermostat (transient) at the bottom of the Heat Power property manager. The first selection in the transient section, is a point on the model when the thermostat is being installed. Then minimum and maximum cut…

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How to Use Symmetry in SOLIDWORKS Simulation to Reduce the number of Fixtures?

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Symmetry

Did you know you can use symmetry in SOLIDWORKS Simulation to reduce the number of fixtures required to stabilize your model? Using symmetry in simulation will not only simplify your model (and therefore drastically improve run time), but it eliminates the need to apply additional fixtures and this will result in even more accurate results. Let’s look at the example below. A hub has been shrunk fitted into a rim and due to the shrink fit, the model is experiencing internal stresses. Since there are no external loads, the model is self-equilibrated, however, we still need to constrain the model in X, Y, and Z directions to account for mesh asymmetry, numerical errors, or solver errors that may result in unrealistic displacements. One way to do this is to select an entity on each of the bodies (one on hub and one on rim) and apply fixtures to them. This…

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Stabilize SOLIDWORKS Simulation Studies with Soft Spring and Inertial Relief

SOLIDWORKS Simulation offers two techniques for stabilizing self-equilibrated models: Soft Springs or Inertial Relief. In a self-equiblibrated model, all of the applied loads are inherently balanced which means that we don’t expect the model to be unstable in any direction (or move away in any direction). For example, in the picture below, the model is exposed to an elevated temperature from original room temperature (25 degrees of Celsius) at zero strain. This is the only source of load in the model and therefore, this is a self-equilibrated model. Although we don’t expect the model to move away in any directions, we need to make sure that the model is fully constrained in x, y, and z directions. This is because the finite element method, does not recognize the fact that the model is inherently balanced and any small inaccuracy, numerical error, or mesh asymmetry may cause the model to displace…

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Why you should run Interference Detection before a SOLIDWORKS Simulation Study

SOLIDWORKS interference

Before running any SOLIDWORKS simulation study, you need to make sure there is no interference between different components of a multibody part or an assembly. This can be done using the SOLIDWORKS interference detection tool available under Evaluate > Interference Detection. If any volumetric interference is found within the model, it needs to be fixed prior to creating your simulation study. The only exception of this rule is for shrink fit problems. If you are creating a shrink fit study, the shrink fit faces can have volumetric interference since after the shrink fit contact is applied, these faces will come in contact to be coincident either by expanding or shrinking (therefore, there is not actually a volumetric interference in this case). That is the reason for the internal stresses created due to the shrink fit contact. After checking for volumetric interference, you want to check for coincident faces by checking…

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SOLIDWORKS Save, Backup, and Auto-recover Options

Have you ever lost work simply because you forgot to save your changes? Have you ever changed your design and couldn’t redo the changes to a previous model, so you had to start over? Then let me show you how to guarantee you are keeping your designs safe by setting up SOLIDWORKS save, backup and auto-recover settings in your system options. SOLIDWORKS has multiple settings for backing up your files. These settings can be accessed easily from Tools > Options > System Options > Backup/Recover. SOLIDWORKS Auto-recover Options In the first section, Auto-recover, you can set a time frequency for saving auto-recover files for your current document and the location that these files are saved. This will save a .SWAR (SOLIDWORKS auto-recovery) file to the location that you specify. If you experience a crash and SOLIDWORKS closes, the next time you open SOLIDWORKS, the task pane shows you the auto-recovered…

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SOLIDWORKS Spell Checker

SOLIDWORKS spell checker

SOLIDWORKS can check the spelling of the words in your document notes, dimension text, and drawing title block using a central dictionary. The Spell Checker is available with Microsoft Word 2000 or later. If a wrong spelling is found using the Spell Checker tool, you can replace the word using entries from Microsoft Word dictionary and SOLIDWORKS dictionary (swengineering.dic). In order to check the spelling, go to Tools > Spelling: The Spell Checker highlights the misspelled words and offers some alternative suggestions for these words. You can Ignore the misspelled words, Change them to the new suggested words, or Add them to swengineering.dic user dictionary. You can also specify a different central library location by clicking on More Options > Dictionaries > Add a new dictionary. If you want to check for spelling in a sheet format, you need to be in Edit Sheet Format mode by right-clicking the drawing sheet and click Edit Sheet Format. Also the…

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Why am I unable to obtain a license for SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard?

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Examples

Complimentary seats of SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard are included with SOLIDWORKS Professional or Premium Network License that is on active SOLIDWORKS Subscription Service. But in order to use them you need to reactivate your SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard license every year. Once you activate your network license manager after purchasing your licenses, permanent licenses like SOLIDWORKS do not need reactivation until the server is upgraded or moved to a different location. However, complimentary seats of SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard are not permanent and are based on active subscriptions, therefore they need to be renewed annually. To reactivate your network license manager please follow the steps in the image below with the SOLIDWORKS SolidNetWork License Manager: Following this process will refresh the activation information for SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard. This process requires an active Internet connection for the SNL Manager Server software and should take only a few minutes to complete. You can also use the email…

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