SOLIDWORKS, Simulation, 3D CAD, Tech Tips

How To Avoid Frustrating Errors in SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation

By Heather Sutton on July 22, 2019

You’re working away in SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation when you run into this message, “Fluid volume recognition has failed because the model currently is not watertight.” Ugh. It can really put a cramp in your workflow. Even the tiniest holes keep SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation from detecting your fluid region making it impossible to run a study. Luckily, you don’t have to scrap your work and start over. Since SOLIDWORKS 2013, there’s a tool that makes it extremely easy to locate these frustrating gaps and holes in internal studies. It’s called Leak Tracking and it shows you exactly where the problem areas are so you can finish setting up your model for an internal flow study.

How To Use the Leak Tracking Tool

To use the leak tracking tool all you need is an inside face and an outside face. By selecting these two faces, Flow Simulation will automatically trace the path from the internal region to the external region, clearly showing where the leaks are in your model. Before analyzing, you may sometimes need to change the geometry and to close gaps between entities in the model. This tool allows you to locate gaps and holes.

To locate the gaps:

  1. Click Leak Tracking on the Flow Simulation Main toolbar or select Tools > Flow Simulation > Tools > Leak Tracking. The Leak Tracking pane appears at the bottom of the screen. Also, you can open the Leak Tracking dialog from the Check Geometry pane by clicking Leak Tracking. 

    2. Select the outer and inner faces of the component under test:

    • In the graphics area select outer, (or inner) faces of the component under the test. The selected faces appear in the Start Face.
    • In the graphics area select the inner (or outer) faces of the component under the test. The selected faces appear in the End Face
    • Note: If the Start and End selected faces belong to the disconnected components, the connecting route will also not be detected. That’s why it is recommended to select Start and End faces belonging to the same component where possible.
  1. Click Find Connection to test the model and detect a gap. You can interrupt the process by clicking Stop. If a gap (or a hole) is detected, the path connecting the outer and inner faces will be highlighted and in the Track Faces list you will see the list of the faces connected by the highlighted path. To highlight the faces along the path connecting the outer and inner faces, select the detected faces in the list by turns.
  2. To close the model's openings by lids, open Create Lids dialog by clicking Open Create Lids.
  3. To ensure that the geometry is ready for analysis, open Check Geometry tool by clicking Open Check Geometry.

To see this in action, check out the video below where we show you how to perform an internal analysis on the fluid area using the Wizard tool.

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