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Re: Femap Basics 2 - Geometry Import and Preparation


Hi there,


One of my colleagues was saying today that imported geometries cause a lot of trouble in the FEMAP. I have used different FEA softwares before but am new to FEMAP. Should I be modeling the part in FEMAP or can import these models from CAD softwares like Solidworks? I am finding modeling part really time consuming in FEMAP. Or do we have any free extensive tutorial series available from where we can pratice our skills to get comfortable with the GUI of the software? 


Thank you in advance. 


Best Regards,


Re: Femap Basics 2 - Geometry Import and Preparation

Siemens Phenom Siemens Phenom
Siemens Phenom

Imported geometries can cause a problem if the designer has taken shortcuts such as patching in surfaces, etc.


Femap has multiple tools to clean geometry.  Many of these are shown at the following location:


1) The Geometry > Solid > Cleanup command.  I recommend that this command be run after importing any geometry.  In many cases, it can remove small, unwanted features such as slivers.


2) The Mesh > Geometry Preperation command.  This command identifies features in the selected geometry that can cause poor mesh quality and with user control, can combine and/or eliminate that geometry.


3) The Meshing Toolbox.  The Feature Locator tool identifies small features and in combination with the Feature Removal toolset, you can control the combination and removal of small features that cause meshing problems.


If possible, import native geometry.  For some CAD systems where direct translators are available, use Parasolid export if available, then STEP.

Best Regards,
Chip Fricke
Principal Applications Engineer - Femap Product Development

Re: Femap Basics 2 - Geometry Import and Preparation

Solution Partner Phenom Solution Partner Phenom
Solution Partner Phenom

Dear Waqas,

FEMAP is really, really powerful in meshing capabilities and in editing & creation geometry, is not a CAD system, yes, but once you understand the philosophy of FEMAP with direct editing you will realize the fast you can be. Also please note FEMAP is for FEA users, not CAD users: you need to know by advanced the analysis requirements & element(s) type you will use in your FEM model, then the target geometry is automatically set, for instance:

  • If you plan to mesh with 2-D SHELL CQUAD4 elements then midsurface extraction capabilities starting from a CAD solid model should be important, please note in FEMAP you have a menu & commands dedicated exclusively to midsurface creation: GEOMETRY > MIDSURFACE
  • Also, if you plan to mesh with 1-D CBEAM elements the API SOLID CENTERLINE FINDER is novel, take a look here:
  • The Non-ManifoldAdd sheet body entity in FEMAP is great, for shell meshing of complex steel ship hull structures is very powerful for Surface T-Joints creation.
  • The features of the MESHING TOOLBOX in both geometry editing & meshing are impressing as well, as pointed Chip.

In summary, a good knowledge of the capabilities of the Finite Element Library is critical to use correctly FEMAP (or any FEA system), if you plan to run a Modal Frequency Dynamic Analysis (SOL112) all questions related to 3-D Solid CAD geometry & meshing with 3-D Solid CTETRA 10-nodes elements are out, here the model size is critical because the results output size could be of GBytes, then the selection of efficient 1-D, 2-D & 3-D elements is very important, and in consequence the type of geometry creation.

Yes, the best FEA software is the best you know, and in FEMAP is true, the FEMAP guys are making a good job, I encourage you all to let know to FEMAP developers your needs & suggestions to improve the software, I do it usually and always I get impressed, they are genius, thanks!.

Best regards,

Please note FEMAP geometry engine is PARASOLID-based, like NX, SolidEdge, etc.. then if you run a CAD system that is Parasolid based as well then the most efficient way to transfer any geometry is using Parasolid (*.X_T) files. The next one is STEP, and the last resource IGES, but only for surfaces & wireframe geometry.

Blas Molero Hidalgo, Ingeniero Industrial, Director
Blog Femap-NX Nastran: