I have written a post in my blog about Design Optimization (both sizing & shaping) using SOLID EDGE ST8 SIMULATION, here you are the link (both videos & text are written in Spanish, but you can always use Google Translator): https://iberisa.wordpress.com/2015/12/18/optimization-with-solidedge-st8-simulation/
Design Optimization is a powerful finite element analysis tool (and a hidden jewel for many users!!) available in SIMULATION since ST6 (July 2013!!) that used correctly could bring excellent & brilliant results for the designer. The background engine is the design optimization module of NX NASTRAN (SOL200).
Design optimization in Solid Edge Simulation ST8 refines the results of a structural or thermal analysis of a part, sheet metal, or assembly model by changing the study geometry. For example, you can:
Solve a linear static study, and then use the Optimize command to optimize the geometry for stress, displacement, or factor of safety.
Solve a steady state heat transfer study, and then optimize it to minimize heat dissipation.
Solve a buckling study, and then find the maximum buckling load factor.
Solve a modal study, and then optimize it for a maximum or minimum resonant frequency.
The OPTIMIZATION module of SOLID EDGE ST8 SIMULATION predicts how a design withstands loading conditions as one or more variables are evaluated across a range of values. The optimum design is one that meets all specified requirements but with a minimum expense of certain factors such as weight, surface area, volume, stress, and cost. The optimum design is usually one that is as effective as possible.
Optimization is useful when:
Some features in the design can be changed and this can be done automatically.
An analysis program can determine the merit of the design. In principle, any quantity that can be calculated from the design can be used as a criterion during optimization.
The best values for some of the design variables are not obvious. For example, you believe that you have the correct design, but you would like to validate it before proceeding.
It is better to use optimization earlier in the product design process than later. As designs become more complex, they become more difficult to evaluate.
I encourage to all of you to use the Optimization module of SIMULATION in a regular basis in all your designs, the benefits are impressing!. And if you have any problem please post here and it will be a pleasure to be of help!.
I would like to make on optimisation of mass. Unfortunately, when I click on "new optimisation" and then "goal", the physical properties do not appear.. I don't understand why. I affected the material "steel" to all the parts of my assembly...Do you have an idea where it can come from ? I found nothing on Youtube and solidedge forum and there is no explanation in the help about that...
I am waiting for your answer,
Revise the material properties of the part, it seems they are undefined. Change the material and see if you are successful running the optimization analysis. If not progress, post your model here and I will take a look to it.
I would like to reduce the mass of a structure made of several sheet metal.
The idea would be to define the materialthickness of my sheet metal as my design variable in order to make it vary from 2mm to 6mm.
The problem is that the thickness of a sheet metal is automatically defined as a VAR variabe ( and not a DIM). So I can't use it for my optimisation.
Would you have a suggestion to change that ?
I don't have any problems using sheet metal thickness or bend radius as a variable. See the attached video if it is of any help.
Do you even see sheet metal thickness in your variable table or are you just unable to use it as a variable in your optimization?