SimulationXpress is a built-in, first-pass design verification tool created to quickly and easily put a single-body part through a structural study in SOLIDWORKS. This great tool is included with every license of SOLIDWORKS, after an easy activation and allows the user to do simple stress analysis simulation studies without the need to purchase an additional SOLIDWORKS Simulation package. In this blog post, we take a look at the top five features that make SOLIDWORKS SimulationXpress the tool you should be using with any part that you design.
To access your SimulationXpress tool in SOLIDWORKS go to Tools > Xpress Products > SimulationXpress:
Free Online Simulation Training Included
One of the hardest things about using a new simulation program is learning what buttons you need to click in order to get the study to solve correctly. Luckily, SOLIDWORKS has an embedded link that takes you right from the SimulationXpress Wizard into the free online Simulation Fundamentals course.
This e-Learning module will take you through how to run a successful SimulationXpress study step by step. By walking through the course and completing the attached exercises, you’ll be able to go from simulation zero to simulation hero!
Optimization Studies Right In SOLIDWORKS
Once you have walked through the learning course and completed your first SimulationXpress study, you’ll see that the part you’ve painstakingly been designing fails under the prescribed loading. I guess it’s back to the drawing board, right? Wrong! When you finish the design study, the Xpress Wizard gives you the option to run an optimization study right away. The tool gives you the option to select your variable. For example, the dimensions that you want to vary, the constraint, possibly keeping the factor of safety above 3 and finally the goals of the optimization study, such as keeping the overall mass of your part within a certain range. When the optimization study is run, SOLIDWORKS will step through different iterations of your variables, while keeping your constraints in check, in order to satisfy your goal.
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Internally Generate Reports and eDrawings
There is no need to run the same study multiple times when you manually change a couple of dimensions and hope everything works out. By using your included SOLIDWORKS SimulationXpress tool, you can take out all the guesswork and ensure that the desired result is achieved.
After creating a part, performing the first past static test on it, and possibly modifying the design, we still have the need of sharing our work with people whether they be an engineering head, CEO or a curious passerby. For the designer who ran this study, the results are obvious. However, to anyone else, it may not be intuitive to navigate the software to find what they are looking for. Luckily, SimulationXpress gives the user the ability to export directly to an HTML report or to eDrawings for easier viewing. In as few steps as giving the report a name and file location, a full HTML report can be exported to Microsoft Word with the relevant part information such as material properties, loading and fixtures and even the stress and displacement plots. The same can be said for eDrawings: as simple as supplying a name and location, an eDrawings file is created with all the relevant plots and information embedded.
Export Animations Directly as .AVI
One of the more versatile tools within SimulationXpress is the ability to export the animations directly from SOLIDWORKS in the .AVI format. It’s great that an HTML report can tell a supervisor that the part you’re testing only deforms half of a millimeter or that there is unexpected deformation at a certain bend, but wouldn’t it be easier to show them as well?
All it takes is to view the animation and then save it directly from the animation property manager! This is going to output an .AVI file that can be viewed with any current media player. SOLIDWORKS even gives you the option to open and view the file in a media player immediately after saving. Communicating your designs has never been easier.
Test Radical Design Changes Without Prototyping or Running Other Simulations
The biggest benefit to using any package of SOLIDWORKS Simulation is that your company can save time and money all throughout the concurrent design process. Rather than having to design a part, prototype it, test it and waste time going through this process every single time a design is changed, you can use Simulation studies to cut that process down. It really can be as simple as: design the part, test it in SimulationXpress and verify your results. This is especially beneficial when you or your team are making very radical design changes. Specifically in SimulationXpress, the design team gains the ability to run first-pass studies without having to send the part off to a simulation team. You can test any design change that is made without having to rely on someone else to test it for you. SOLIDWORKS SimulationXpress is the tool every part designer needs to use to maximize their modeling efficiency.
If you are interested in a more robust simulation package you can reach out to TriMech to discuss the available tools for all your design verification needs!
Now that you know all you can do with SimulationXpress, if you’re looking to explore more advanced simulation tools, watch our on-demand webinar, Get to Know SOLIDWORKS Simulation.