Agastiya RV, Application Engineer – Simulation Oct 11th, 2021


It is an automated process for studying different types of design scenarios for an assembly / a component. This study is of two modes, Evaluate and Optimization study.

In evaluate mode of study, several geometrical and/or simulation parameters are varied, and the obtained results are then compared with each other or with the benchmark if available, whereas in optimization mode, the user can get an optimized design for your requirements through series of iterations with multiple parameters and constraints such as Stress, Strain, Displacement, Mass etc.,

You can work on several problems by using a design study. You can:

  • Define multiple variables using any simulation parameter or driving global variable.
  • Define multiple constraints using sensors.
  • Define multiple goals using sensors.
  • Analyze models without simulation results. For example, you can minimize the mass of an assembly with the variables, density, and model dimensions, and with the constraint, volume.
  • Evaluate design choices by defining a parameter that sets bodies to use different materials as a variable.

Typical design study tab interface

Variables: The inputs can be Model Dimension, Global Variable, Simulation parameters and Material properties.

Constraints: The inputs can be from Simulation data (Stress, Displacement, Frequency, Temperature, etc.,), Mass Properties, Dimension, Measurement and Costing data.

Goals: There are targets. The inputs for this are same as constraints. This data is required only for Optimization mode design study.

Example for Evaluation Design Study:

In the following example, the designer wants to understand the natural frequency and modes if there is a change in the geometry. To perform this analysis, the angle between two ribs is varied in a pulley. These angles were provided manually in the variables. For the constraints, the five natural frequencies are considered from the Frequency analysis.

Evaluation Design Study

The above picture is the setup for the evaluation design study.

Evaluation Design Study

The above picture shows the results view of the study. As the angle is decreased, the natural frequencies are increasing. One of the reasons for the raise in frequency is addition of mass to the pulley as the number of ribs are increased.

In this way, the designer can quickly analyze the various designs in a short duration and can obtain the component design with that design variable. Also, the designer can export these results to Excel in the form of .csv file from SOLIDWORKS Simulation.

Results of Evaluation Design Study:

Results of Evaluation Design Study

Results of Evaluation Design Study

From the above two pictures, it is observed that the one of the Scenarios is selected and the respective design of the component is getting displayed. In one of the figures, the angle is 120 deg and hence, there are three ribs on the pulley whereas the other picture has 6 ribs as the angle stated is 60 deg.

Example for Design Study Optimization:

In this example, the designer is trying to reduce the material volume for a cantilever bracket. To perform this study, the designer has provided with certain constraints and the goal to minimize the material volume.

The constraints are as follows, the maximum resultant displacement is 0.21 mm, maximum stress is 300 MPa and has a frequency range in 260 Hz to 400 Hz, and the goal is set to minimize the volume of the material.

Design Study Optimization

The above picture is the setup for the optimization design study.

Design Study Optimization

In the results view, the designer will observe three color codes. The red color column indicates that, one of the constraints criteria has been failed. The black color columns indicate that there are no problems with that designs and green color indicates the optimal i.e., optimized design for the given criteria.

The advantage of this study is all these iterations are not only solved but also can be created on one click with this part dimensions for the further work. Also, all these results can be exported to Excel in .csv format for numerical evaluation.

Shape optimization results:

Shape optimization results

Shape optimization results

From the above two pictures, it is very clear seen that, in the optimal design the material usage is very minimal and yet provides the performance in all the required design criteria whereas the other design with high material volume has failed in two criteria URES (Resultant displacement) and Stress values.
In this manner, the design study option is very handy for the design engineers and saves lot of time, energy and costs to the designer and organization.

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AUTHOR: Agastiya RV, Application Engineer – Simulation

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