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Autodesk ®

Inventor ™

Professional 2008

Dynamic Simulation and


Stress Analysis
Autodesk Official Training Courseware
(AOTC)

46206-050008-1700A
August 2007
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Contents
Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xi

Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1


Lesson: Dynamic Simulation Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
About Dynamic Simulation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Dynamic Simulation Interface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Creating Dynamic Simulations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Exercise: Review a Cam Valve Simulation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
About Stress Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Stress Analysis User Interface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
Performing a Stress Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
Exercise: Perform a Basic Stress Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Chapter Summary. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27

Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29


Lesson: Creating Joints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30
About Joints. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
Joint Types . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
Guidelines for Creating Joints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
Creating Joints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
About Redundancy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52
Repairing Redundant Models . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56
Exercise: Create Joints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57
Exercise: Create a Nonredundant Model . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65
Lesson: Environmental Constraints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75
Setting Initial Positions of Joints. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76
Applying Joint Torques . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77
Applying Imposed Motion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78
Applying External Forces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 79
Applying Friction and Gravity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80
About the Input Grapher. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82
Using the Input Grapher . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84
Exercise: Define Environmental Constraints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 86

v
Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 96
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 96
Running Simulations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 97
About the Output Grapher. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100
Using the Output Grapher . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102
Reviewing and Analyzing Simulation Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105
Exercise: Calculate the Driving Torque of the Wiper Assembly . . . . . . 107
Chapter Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110

Chapter 3: Stress Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111


Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 112
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 112
About Loads . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113
Types of Loads . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115
About Constraints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122
Types of Constraints . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124
Exercise: Create Loads and Constraints. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127
Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 129
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 129
Setting Up and Running the Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 130
Revising Models and Stress Analysis. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 132
Reviewing and Interpreting Analysis Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 134
Animating and Reporting Analysis Results. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 138
Performing a Convergence Study . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 142
Stress Analysis Files. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 144
Exercise: Determine Enforced Displacement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 147
Exercise: Perform an In-Place Analysis. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 151
Lesson: Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with Stress Analysis. . . . . . . . 156
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 156
About Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with Stress Analysis. . . . . 157
Exporting Motion Loads to Stress Analysis. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 159
Exercise: Simulate and Analyze a Glass Lever Mechanism . . . . . . . . . . . 161
Chapter Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 166

Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 167


Lesson: Solving Design Problems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 168
Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 168
Design Problem 1: Calculate the Stress on a Wheelie Bar . . . . . . . . . . . 170
Design Problem 2: Calculate the Maximum Acceleration
of a Cross Subassembly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 174
Design Problem 3: Validate the Robustness of an Arm Linkage. . . . . . 179
Design Problem 4: Create a Cam Part from Motion Outputs. . . . . . . . . 184
Design Problem 5: Size a Spring for a Bike Suspension. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 190
Chapter Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 196

vi ■ Contents
Appendix A: Additional Support and Resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 197
Courseware from Autodesk . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 198
Autodesk Services & Support. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 200
Autodesk Subscription. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 200
Autodesk Consulting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 200
Autodesk Partners . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 201
Autodesk Authorized Training Centers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 201
Autodesk Certification . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 202
Useful Links . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 202

Contents ■ vii
viii ■ Contents
Acknowledgements

The Autodesk Official Training Courseware (AOTC) team wishes to thank everyone who
participated in the development of this project, with special acknowledgement to the
authoring contributions and subject matter expertise of Ron Myers and CrWare, LP.
CrWare, LP began publishing courseware for Autodesk Inventor in 2001. Since that time,
the company has grown to include full-time authors and subject matter experts, each with
a unique set of industry experiences and talents that enables CrWare to create content that
is both accurate and relevant to meet the learning needs of its readers and customers.
The company’s Founder and General Partner, Ron Myers, has been using Autodesk
products since 1989. During that time, Ron Myers worked in all disciplines of drafting and
design, until 1996 when he began a career as an Applications Engineer, Instructor, and
Author. Ron Myers has been creating courseware and other training material for Autodesk
since 1996 and has written and created training material for AutoCAD, Autodesk Inventor,
AutoCAD Mechanical, Mechanical Desktop, and Autodesk Impression.

Acknowledgements ■ ix
x ■ Acknowledgements
Introduction
Welcome to the Autodesk Inventor Professional 2008: Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis Autodesk
Official Training Courseware (AOTC), training courseware for use in Authorized Training Center (ATC®)
locations, corporate training settings, and other classroom settings.
Although this courseware is designed for instructor-led courses, you can also use it for self-paced
learning. The courseware encourages self-learning through the use of the Autodesk® Inventor™
Professional 2008 Help system.
This introduction covers the following topics:
■ Course objectives

Prerequisites

Using this courseware
■ CD contents

Completing the exercises

Installing the exercise data files from the CD
■ Projects

Notes, tips, and warnings

Feedback

This courseware is complementary to the software documentation. For detailed explanations of


features and functionality, refer to the Help system in the software.

Course Objectives
After completing this course, you will be able to:

Describe the Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis environments and the major components of
the user interface, and describe and create dynamic simulations and stress analysis results.

Create a dynamic simulation of a mechanism using joints and environmental constraints, and
eliminate redundancy in the design.
■ Use the Stress Analysis environment to determine stress, deformation, and natural frequencies
on parts.

Solve engineering and design problems using Dynamic Simulation and/or Stress Analysis.

xi
Prerequisites
This course is designed for experienced Autodesk® Inventor™ users who want to learn about the tools
and workflows in Autodesk Inventor Professional 2008 for simulating the operation of mechanisms
and motorized assemblies and predicting part stress and deflection.
It is recommended that you have:

A working knowledge of parametric part and assembly design using Autodesk Inventor.

A working knowledge of Microsoft® Windows® 2000, or Microsoft® Windows® XP.

Using This Courseware


The lessons are independent of each other. However, we recommend that you complete these lessons
in the order that they are presented unless you are familiar with the concepts and functionality
described in those lessons.
Each chapter contains:

Lessons
Usually two or more lessons in each chapter.
■ Exercises
Practical, real-world examples for you to practice using the functionality you have just learned.
Each exercise contains step-by-step procedures and graphics to help you complete the exercise
successfully.

CD Contents
The CD attached to the back cover of this book contains all the datasets you need to complete the
exercises in this course.

Completing the Exercises


You can complete the exercise in two ways: using the book or onscreen.
■ In the book
Follow the step-by-step exercises in the book.

Onscreen
Click the AOTC AIP 2008 Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis icon on your desktop, installed
from the CD, and follow the step-by-step exercises on screen. The onscreen exercises are the same
as those in the book. The onscreen version has the advantage that you can concentrate on the
screen without having to glance down at your book.

xii ■ Introduction
After launching the onscreen exercises, you might need to alter the size of your application to align
both windows.

Installing the Exercise Data Files from the CD


To install the data files for the exercises:

1. Insert the courseware CD.


2. When the setup wizard begins, follow the instructions on screen to install the data.
3. If the wizard does not start automatically, browse to the root directory of the CD and double-
click Setup.exe.

Unless you specify a different folder, the exercise files are installed in the following folder:
C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Autodesk Learning\AIP 2008\
Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis
After you install the data from the CD, this folder contains all the files necessary to complete each
exercise in this course. You can also use the Autodesk Learning shortcut on your desktop to quickly
access the datasets for each AOTC course on your system.

Projects
Most engineers work on several projects at a time, and each project might consist of a number of files.
You can use Autodesk Inventor projects to organize related files and maintain links between files. This
courseware has a project file that stores the paths to all the files related to the exercises. When you
open a file, Autodesk Inventor uses the paths in the current project file to locate other required files.
To work on a different project, you make a new project active in the Project Editor.

Introduction ■ xiii
Follow the instructions below to locate the Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis project file for this
courseware and make it active.

1. Start Autodesk Inventor Professional.


2. If the Autodesk Inventor New or Open dialog box does not appear, click File menu > Projects.

3. At the bottom of the Projects dialog box, click Browse.


■ Browse to C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Autodesk Learning\AIP 2008\
Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis.

Click Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis.ipj.
■ Click Open.

Click Done.

Notes, Tips, and Warnings


Throughout this courseware, notes, tips, and warnings are called out for special attention.

Notes contain guidelines, constraints, and other explanatory information.

Tips provide information to enhance your productivity.

Warnings provide information about actions that might result in the loss of data,
system failures, or other serious consequences.

Feedback
We always welcome feedback on Autodesk Official Training Courseware. After completing this course,
if you have suggestions for improvements or if you want to report an error in the book or on the CD,
please send your comments to AOTC.feedback@autodesk.com.

xiv ■ Introduction
Chapter

1
Introduction to
Engineering Analysis Chapter1:

This chapter introduces you to the Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis environments. You
learn how to use dynamic simulation and stress analysis to analyze designs and identify their
successes and flaws before you build costly physical prototypes.

Objectives
After completing this chapter, you will be able to:

Describe the Dynamic Simulation environment and the processes you use to create
simulations to evaluate motions in an assembly.

Describe the Stress Analysis environment and the processes you use to create and analyze
designs.

1
Lesson: Dynamic Simulation Overview

Overview
This lesson describes the Dynamic Simulation environment, and its interface and tools. The lesson also
describes the processes you use to create simulations to evaluate motions in an assembly, to size
actuators, to determine bearings, and to compute stresses in parts. Proving the validity of your designs
before you build saves time and money by eliminating costly reworking and alterations after the build
process has begun. Simulation data serves as a valuable presentation tool for customers to assure
them that you are providing a design that meets their requirements.
The integration of Dynamic Simulation with Autodesk® Inventor™, and the Dynamic Simulation
evaluation mechanisms, provide you with valuable tools to test, refine, and prove your designs.

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

Describe the Dynamic Simulation environment.

Identify the Dynamic Simulation interface, its tools, and its unique browser nodes.
■ Describe the basic process for creating a dynamic simulation.

2 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


About Dynamic Simulation
Dynamic Simulation is an environment included in Autodesk® Inventor™ Professional. Dynamic
Simulation is used to simulate and analyze dynamic characteristics of an assembly under various load
conditions. You can also export load conditions at any motion state to the Stress Analysis environment
to see how parts respond from a structural view to dynamic loads at any point in the assembly’s range
of motion. In addition, you have the option to transfer multiple load conditions simultaneously in the
assembly’s range of motion to the Stress Analysis environment. This option enables you to validate
and compare designs without the need to go back to Dynamic Simulation to transfer loads again.
In the following illustration, an assembly is shown in the Dynamic Simulation environment.

Definition of Dynamic Simulation


A dynamic simulation simulates the dynamic motion in an assembly. The Dynamic Simulation
environment automatically converts assembly constraints between components into mechanical
joints. You also have the option to define mechanical joints between components manually. After the
joints have been finalized, forces, accelerations, or velocities need to be applied to them where
applicable to reproduce real-world conditions. You can use the results of the simulation to determine
the integrity of a design, calculate the amount of force required to produce a desired motion, or view
the effect of natural forces such as gravity and friction on the mechanism.

Lesson: Dynamic Simulation Overview ■ 3


In the following illustration, an assembly is in the middle of a simulation with the Output Grapher
displaying force data used to perform stress analysis on a component.

Starting Dynamic Simulation


Within Autodesk Inventor Professional, you can access Dynamic Simulation only from an assembly file.
You must click the Application’s menu and then click Dynamic Simulation.

Example of Dynamic Simulation


You have designed a windshield wiper assembly that is ready to be manufactured. Before the design
is complete, you must determine the amount of driving torque required to rotate the drive arm at a
velocity of 180 degrees per second. In Dynamic Simulation, you define the mechanism and impose the
velocity on the drive arm. Using the Output Grapher, you can graph the torque curve for the drive arm.
You can then extract the maximum drive torque on the drive arm, which you use to select the proper
motor for the assembly.

4 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


In the following illustration, the drive arm for the wiper assembly is shown to the left of the
Output Grapher.

Dynamic Simulation Interface


The Dynamic Simulation environment uses the same major interface components that you use in the
part or assembly environments, including the graphics window, panel bar, and browser. The tools
presented on the panel bar, and the elements in the browser, are specific to the Dynamic Simulation
environment. Additionally, the Dynamic Simulation panel bar contains controls to run simulations and
set their time parameters.

Graphics window Dynamic Simulation browser


Dynamic Simulation panel bar Simulation Panel

Lesson: Dynamic Simulation Overview ■ 5


Dynamic Simulation Panel Bar
The Dynamic Simulation panel bar is divided into four sections according to the types of operations
that they perform.

Tools to create joints and the forces applied to them


Tools to simulate or to use the simulation output
Tool to set the simulation environment settings
Parameters tool to access assembly parameters

Dynamic Simulation Browser


The Dynamic Simulation browser provides a set of groups and nodes that are unique to the Dynamic
Simulation environment. Components are classified as Grounded or Mobile. Joints are grouped by
category, as are external loads and traces. In the browser you access the shortcut menus to open joint
properties, edit and delete joints, lock degrees of freedom, and control the display of joints.

6 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


The unique nodes in the Dynamic Simulation browser are shown in the following illustration.

Simulation Panel
The Simulation Panel is used to run a simulation. With this tool, you control the simulation time, how
many time steps are calculated, and the speed at which the simulation runs. The Simulation Panel is
synchronized with the mechanism in the graphics window and the Output Grapher, so that you can
see the position of the mechanism and the resultant force in the Output Grapher at any time step that
you choose. In the UI, the Simulation Panel is located below the Dynamic Simulation browser.
In the following illustration, the Simulation Panel is shown with the slider at 50%, halfway through the
simulation.

Lesson: Dynamic Simulation Overview ■ 7


Creating Dynamic Simulations
With dynamic simulation, the intent is to build a functional mechanism, and then add dynamic, real-
world influences of various kinds of loads to create a true kinematic chain. You then run the simulation
to see how the joints, loads, and component structures interact as a moving dynamic mechanism.
In the following illustration, the Input Grapher is open to adjust properties of a joint.

Process: Creating Dynamic Simulations


The following steps provide an overview of the process of creating dynamic simulations of your
assembly designs.

1. Open an assembly file in Autodesk Inventor Professional.


2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic Simulation.
3. Create standard joints by converting existing assembly constraints automatically and/or
manually in order to create degrees of freedom.
4. Create other types of joints like contacts, rolling/sliding, or spring, to further constrain your
mechanism.
5. Define the physical environment in the joint properties and apply forces by using the Input
Grapher.
6. Run the dynamic simulation to see how joints, loads, and component structures interact.
7. Use the Input Grapher to apply joint forces and external forces.
8. Use the Output Grapher to analyze and export results.
9. Transfer loads on a part to be analyzed by Stress Analysis to study the effect of the loads
on the part.

8 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


Exercise: Review a Cam Valve Simulation
In this exercise, you run a simulation of a cam valve
2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic
assembly with and without friction to determine the
Simulation. Click OK in the Dynamic
torque required to overcome the spring resistance
Simulation warning dialog box alerting you
and the friction force.
that legacy contact joints will be merged to
the new format.
3. On the Simulation Panel, click Run or Replay
Simulation, and view the simulation.

At the beginning of the simulation you


The completed exercise notice that the valve is bouncing. You will
correct this and run the simulation again.

Completing the Exercise 4. On the Simulation Panel, click Activate


To complete the exercise, follow the Construction Mode.
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 1:
Introduction to Engineering Analysis.
Click Exercise: Review a Cam Valve
Simulation.

1. Open CamValve.iam.
5. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, expand
the Contacts Joints node. Right-click nº4 : 2D
Contact (Cam:1, Valve:1). Click Properties.
6. In the nº4 :2D Contact (Cam:1, Valve:1)
dialog box, for Restitution, enter 0. Click OK.

7. On the Simulation Panel, click Run and view


the simulation. The valve does not bounce.

Lesson: Dynamic Simulation Overview ■ 9


8. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Output Grapher. Resize the Output Grapher
and zoom and pan in the CamValve
assembly to view both, as shown.

11. In the Output Grapher, click Save. Save the


file as CamValve.iaa.
12. On the Simulation Panel, click Activate
Construction Mode.
9. In the Output Grapher, double-click the
dashed line at 0.25 (1). The timeline (2) is
displayed, and the cam (3) position updates
to show its position at that point of the
simulation.

In the next two steps you add a coefficient of


friction to calculate the effect on the torque
required to rotate the cam and overcome
the spring force and friction force.
13. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, for
Contacts, right-click nº4 :2D Contact (Cam:1,
Valve:1). Click Properties.
14. In the nº4 :2D Contact (Cam:1, Valve:1)
dialog box, for Friction, enter 0.15. Click OK.

10. To cycle through the simulation, use the


right and left arrow keys on the keyboard to
step forward and backward in the
simulation. Cycle through the simulation to
1.00 to show the cam at the end of the
simulation.

10 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


15. On the Simulation Panel, click Run or Replay 19. In the Dynamic Simulation - Properties
Simulation, and view the simulation. The dialog box, click OK. Your graph in the
Output Grapher is still open, so you see the Output Grapher changes to red.
graph being generating as the simulation is
running.

In the next step, you change the color of the


newly generated curve. When you compare
the saved graph curve with this new one,
you can distinguish between the two of
them.
16. In the Output Grapher, right-click the
Ukin[2.1]/N mm column heading.
Click Curve Properties.

20. On the Output Grapher toolbar, click Import


Simulation.

17. In the Dynamic Simulation - Properties


dialog box, click the color box.
18. In the Color dialog box, click the red color
swatch and click OK.

Lesson: Dynamic Simulation Overview ■ 11


21. In the Dynamic Simulation - Load file dialog 23. The Output Grapher now shows the graphs
box, select CamValve.iaa and click Open. The of the driving force without friction (blue)
CamValve.iaa node is added to the Output and with friction (red), to compare the
Grapher tree, as shown. difference in force required for each
situation. A new column also appears to
display the numerical values.

24. Close the file. Do not save changes.

22. In the Output Grapher tree, expand the


CamValve.iaa node. Expand nº2 :Revolution
(Support:1, Cam:1). Expand Driving Force
and select Ukin[2.1].

12 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview

Overview
This lesson introduces you to the concept and overall process for performing a stress analysis in
Autodesk Inventor Professional.
In a typical product design cycle, you may need to examine how your design will perform under
certain real-world conditions. When the product will be exposed to forces, loads, and constraints
during normal use, it is important that you design the product to function properly to withstand these
forces, loads, and constraints.
In the following illustration, the results of a stress analysis indicate how the part would be deformed
under specific load and constraint conditions.

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:
■ Describe stress analysis and how you can use it to validate your designs.

Describe how the Stress Analysis environment is integrated into the Autodesk Inventor
user interface.

Explain how to perform basic stress analysis.
■ Perform a basic stress analysis and review the results.

Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview ■ 13


About Stress Analysis
Stress Analysis enables you to estimate the deformation, stress, and natural frequencies of your parts
as they are placed under certain load and constraint conditions. The process helps you to create better
parts by indicating areas of your models that require further attention. You can reduce the number of
design-test-redesign cycles by using Stress Analysis early in the design cycle to find and fix your
models before you build the first prototype.
For most components, you can consider a physical test of the final part to ensure that it meets the
performance criteria. You can even use Stress Analysis to help design the test by identifying locations
of high stress or deformation. You use the test results to fine-tune your stress analysis so that you can
predict the stress on similar parts with greater accuracy. Testing also builds confidence in your stress
analysis methods and results.

Definition of Stress Analysis


Stress Analysis uses a technique called finite element analysis (FEA) to calculate the deformation,
stress, and mode shapes of a model. Finite element analysis is an approximation method that
estimates the behavior of a model.
If a model has simple geometry, it is straightforward to solve for stress and deflection manually by
using available equations. However, most models have complex geometry, and equations to predict
the stress, deflections, or mode shapes are typically unavailable. In finite element analysis, the model
is subdivided into a number of pieces called elements, which have simple shapes that have available
solutions. The solutions for each element are combined to obtain the behavior of the entire model.
The process of generating the elements in finite element analysis is called meshing, and the resulting
set of connected elements is called the mesh.

14 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


In the following illustration, the original and meshed models for a bracket are shown.

The size of each element in the mesh determines the resolution of the results. The smaller the
elements, the more accurate the numerical results, but the model takes longer to process. In areas of
the model where the stress is fairly constant, large elements are adequate; however, where the stress
changes rapidly, such as near a stress concentration, smaller elements are required.

Example of Stress Analysis


In the following illustration, deformation results are shown for a stress analysis on a metal bracket.

Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview ■ 15


Potential Uses for Stress Analysis
You use Stress Analysis to identify:

Portions of your models that are highly stressed and may lead to part failure during the prototype
or production phase.
■ Areas that carry little load, which may warrant a change in geometry to save weight or material.

Components that deform beyond an allowable limit and that may need to be stiffened through
model or material changes.
■ Parts with modal frequencies near the operating frequency that may result in excess wear or noise.

Stress Analysis Assumptions


You use Stress Analysis to solve linear static problems. Although many engineering components can
be analyzed using Stress Analysis, there may be situations where linear static analysis assumptions do
not apply.
Linear static stress analysis assumptions include the following:

The deflection and stress are linearly proportional to the load. If you double the load, the
deflection and stress double.
■ Material properties are linear. The stress-strain curve is a straight line, with the stress remaining
proportional to the strain. There is no yielding of the material.

The loading is static and is applied slowly. Dynamic loading effects such as sudden load
application or impact are not considered.

Temperature has no effect on the part geometry or material properties.

The deformation of the part is small when compared to the dimensions of the part. Large
deflection requires a nonlinear analysis to account for changing part and load geometry and is not
considered in linear analysis.

Other nonlinear effects such as buckling are not considered.
If you have a problem for which these assumptions are not valid, you should either upgrade to a full
analysis package such as ANSYS DesignSpace®, or pass the problem on to an analyst with the
appropriate knowledge and software to manage it.

16 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


Stress Analysis User Interface
The Stress Analysis environment uses all of the interface elements you are familiar with in the
assembly and part modeling environments.
In the following illustration a part is shown in the Stress Analysis environment. Specific stress analysis
tools and features are shown in the panel bar, browser, and graphics window.

Activating the Stress Analysis Application


Before you can access stress analysis tools, you must activate the Stress Analysis application. You do
this with the Applications menu.

Access

Stress Analysis

Menu: Applications > Stress Analysis

Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview ■ 17


Stress Analysis Panel Bar
The Stress Analysis panel bar is displayed automatically when the Stress Analysis application is
activated. The Stress Analysis panel bar provides the tool set for the Stress Analysis environment. You
use the Applications menu to switch between the Stress Analysis and part environments.

Stress Analysis Browser


The Stress Analysis browser lists the loads, constraints, and results of an analysis. You use the browser
to edit or delete existing loads and constraints, and to select the results you want to display.

18 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


Stress Analysis Display Tools
In the Stress Analysis environment, you use tools on the Standard toolbar to control the display of
input and results.

Select the desired contour setting.


Use these options to toggle the display of Elements, Boundary Conditions, Maximum
Stress/Displacement Point, and Minimum Stress/Displacement Point.
Select a deformation scale in the list to exaggerate the visual results.

Stress Analysis Options in the Part Environment


After you perform a stress analysis, you may need to modify geometry in identified areas of concern.
While you are working in the part environment, the Standard toolbar contains tools that enable you
to update the stress analysis and display the last stress result item. Using these tools, you can identify
areas of the model that require edits to address problems identified by the stress analysis. After
making the changes, you can update the analysis to see the effects of your changes.

Click to update the stress analysis to incorporate changes in the part model.
Click to display the results of the last stress analysis result item.

Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview ■ 19


Performing a Stress Analysis
The process of performing a stress analysis involves several steps, some of which must be repeated as
you refine the model geometry based on the analysis results. When you perform a stress analysis, your
goal is to simulate real-world conditions on your part by duplicating forces, loads, and constraints in
the design environment.
In the following illustration, Equivalent Stress results are shown on a simple part model.

Process: Performing a Stress Analysis


The following steps describe the process of performing a stress analysis.

1. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis.


2. Add loads to your model that represent the actual
loading conditions that will occur.
■ You can add forces, moments, pressure,
bearing, and body loads such as gravity and
acceleration.
■ Specify the load directions using geometry
on the part or on other parts in the assembly.

20 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


3. Add constraints that represent the physical
connection of the part to other parts in the
design. For example, use a constraint where the
part is bolted or welded, or where it contacts
other components.

4. Set the analysis options. In the Stress Analysis


dialog box, select the type of analysis and the
mesh size.
5. Analyze the model:

When you finish applying loads and
constraints, click the Stress Analysis Update
tool to analyze the model.

The Solution Status dialog box shows the
analysis progress.
6. View the results.
■ When the analysis is complete, the results are
displayed graphically on the model.

You can view contours for stress, deformation,
factor of safety, or the different mode shapes.

You can also display or hide the mesh, loads,
or constraints; change the display range for
contours; and display or hide minimum and
maximum markers.

7. Refine the model:



If there are areas of concern, return to the part
environment, display the results of the
analysis on the model to guide your changes,
make appropriate model changes, and then
update the stress analysis.
■ Repeat this cycle until you are satisfied with
the model’s results.
8. Document the results:

Create a report that summarizes the input
values and results, including images of the
results.

The report is in HTML format, so you can share
it with others on the design team and include
it in documentation.

Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview ■ 21


Guidelines
Keep the following guidelines in mind when performing a stress analysis.

If your part is a component of an assembly, either edit the part in place or open the part separately.

To analyze a series of rigidly connected components in an assembly, create a derived part and then
analyze the derived part.

Suppress features that do not affect the results, especially if the features are small.

Typical features that you want to suppress include small cosmetic rounds, chamfers on outside
corners, and small holes or other features in areas where the stress will be low and which do not
contribute to the stiffness of the model.

Small features increase the number of elements and can significantly increase solution time. If you
are interested in converging the stress results, make sure that inside corners in the area of interest
have fillets. Sharp inside corners result in infinite stress, and the stress results will not converge.

The processing time depends on the size of the model and of the mesh.
■ You typically analyze several times at decreasing mesh sizes to prove that the results are
converged.

When you are confident that the model performs correctly, select Result Convergence to
automatically converge on a result.

Using Autodesk Inventor


Although you must have Autodesk Inventor Professional software to perform a stress analysis and
view analysis results, you can open and edit a part that contains Stress Analysis results with the
Autodesk Inventor application. If you modify the part in an Autodesk Inventor application and then
open it in Autodesk Inventor Professional software, the stress results must be updated so that they
reflect the changes. You may need to edit loads and constraints if the geometry to which they were
attached was modified.

22 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


Exercise: Perform a Basic Stress Analysis
In this exercise, you determine the stress and
deformation of a plate with an end load. You apply 1. Open Stress_SteppedPlate.ipt.
loads and constraints, run an analysis, and view the
results. You add a hole to the plate and determine
the hole’s effects on the results. You perform a
convergence study to determine whether the mesh
size is adequate.
NOTE: The first part of this problem is a simple
example with a known solution. Whenever you run a
new analysis type, run a simple test case to
familiarize yourself with the input values and other
program settings.
2. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis.

Because no material was set for the
model, the Choose Material dialog box is
displayed.

From the Material list, select Steel, Mild.
Click OK.
3. On the panel bar, click Force.
■ Move the cursor over edges, vertices,
and faces on the plate to display the
allowed selections.
■ Click the right end face of the plate.

The force is applied with its default direction


perpendicular to and toward the selected
face.
The completed exercise

Completing the Exercise


To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 1:
Introduction to Engineering Analysis.
Click Exercise: Perform a Basic Stress
Analysis.

Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview ■ 23


4. In the Force dialog box: 7. Confirm the appearance of the constraint in

the browser.
Click the Flip Force button to make the
force arrow point away from the face.
■ For Magnitude, enter 5000 N.

Click OK.

8. To adjust the Stress Analysis Settings:



On the panel bar, click the Stress Analysis
Settings tool.

In the Stress Analysis Settings dialog
box, make sure that Stress Analysis is
selected in the Analysis Type list.

Click Preview Mesh to view the finite
element mesh.
■ Click OK.
5. Confirm the appearance of the force
element in the browser.

9. On the Standard toolbar, click the Stress


Analysis Update tool.
When the analysis is complete, the
6. Add a constraint to the part: equivalent stress is displayed on the
■ deformed model.
On the panel bar, click the Fixed
Constraint tool.

Select the face at the left end of the
plate. Click OK.

24 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


As expected, the stress is highest at the The contours are parallel because the plate is
fillets. The result is close to the theoretical loaded uniformly across the end. The
stress of about 56 MPa (using a stress contours are farther apart in the wider area
concentration factor of 1.6). of the plate and closer together in the
narrower area because the plate deforms
NOTE: In this analysis, the analysis result
more per unit length in the narrower area.
matched the theoretical result on the first
The result matches the theoretical estimate
run because the model loading and
of 0.011 mm.
geometry are simple. Never consider an
analysis complete after just one run. You 16. In the browser, double-click Safety Factor.
must always perform a convergence study
to confirm that the results of several runs are The safety factor contours are displayed on
converged. the model.
The lowest safety factor is 3.7214, which is
10. In the browser, right-click Fixed Constraint 1.
equal to the yield strength of the material
Click Reaction Forces. In the Reaction Forces
(207 MPa) divided by the maximum stress
dialog box:
(55.6243 MPa).
■ Confirm that the reaction force in the X
direction is -5000 N. 17. To change the force magnitude:
■ ■ In the browser, right-click Force 1. Click
Click OK to close the dialog box.
Edit.
11. On the Standard toolbar, in the Deformation ■
In the Edit Force dialog box, for
Scale list, select 2:1 Automatic.
Magnitude, enter 6000 N.
The deformed shape changes. Remember ■
Click OK.
that the deformation is exaggerated.
18. In the browser, notice that the icons in front
12. On the Standard toolbar, in the Deformation of the results have lightning bolts, indicating
Scale list, select Actual. that the results need to be updated.
Notice that the actual deformation is very
small.
13. Return the deformation style to the default
value of 1:1 Automatic.
14. On the Standard toolbar, turn the display
tools on and off and notice the effects.
15. In the browser, double-click Deformation.
The deformation contours are displayed on
the model.

19. Click the Stress Analysis Update tool.


20. View the stress, deformation, and safety
factor. The stress and deflection values
should be approximately twenty percent
greater than the previous values.

Lesson: Stress Analysis Overview ■ 25


21. In the browser, expand Features. Right-click The stress has decreased slightly, and the
Hole1. Click Unsuppress Features. Notice deformation is unchanged at 0.0159 mm.
that the results need updating. Because the percentage of change in stress
is very small between the runs, the mesh size
22. On the Standard toolbar, click the Stress is probably adequate to predict the stress in
Analysis Update tool to rerun the analysis. the model.
View the results.
You now try automatic convergence. The
analysis may take several minutes.
25. To use Results Convergence:

Click the Stress Analysis Settings tool.
■ In the Stress Analysis Settings dialog
box, under Mesh Control, select the
Results Convergence check box.

Click OK.
26. Click the Stress Analysis Update tool to rerun
the analysis. The stress has decreased
slightly again.

The maximum stress is now 141.44 MPa and On the Standard toolbar make sure the
is located near the hole. The maximum Element Visibility button is selected. This
deformation is 0.0159 mm. causes the mesh to be displayed.

Notice that the mesh is much finer near
23. Click the Stress Analysis Settings tool.
the hole.
■ In the Stress Analysis Settings dialog
box, change the Mesh Relevance slider
to 100.
■ Click Preview the Mesh.

In the warning dialog box, click OK.

In the Stress Analysis Settings dialog
box, click OK.
24. Click the Stress Analysis Update tool to rerun
the analysis.

27. Close the file. Do not save changes.

26 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis


Chapter Summary

This chapter introduced you to the Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis environments. You
learned how to use dynamic simulation and stress analysis to analyze designs and identify their
successes and flaws before you build costly physical prototypes.
Having completed this chapter, you can:

Describe the Dynamic Simulation environment and the processes you use to create simulations
to evaluate motions in an assembly.
■ Describe the Stress Analysis environment and the processes you use to create and analyze designs.

Chapter Summary ■ 27
28 ■ Chapter 1: Introduction to Engineering Analysis
Chapter

2
Dynamic Simulation Chapter2:

In this chapter, you learn how to define relationships between components by describing how
parts move in relationship to one another, and how to identify and avoid redundancy in a
simulation design. You learn how to identify the starting conditions of joints, as well as motion or
force values which define the environment under which the mechanism runs. You also learn how
to run a simulation and use the Output Grapher to review and analyze the simulation results.

Objectives
After completing this chapter, you will be able to:

Create joints that define the relationships between components in a mechanism while
avoiding redundancy.
■ Create environmental constraints for a simulation.

Run a simulation, then use the Output Grapher to review and analyze the results.

29
Lesson: Creating Joints

Overview
This lesson describes joints, their use in describing how a mechanism works, and their importance in
the dynamic simulation process. This lesson also describes redundancy in Dynamic Simulation
mechanisms, and how to create nonredundant models. You learn how to define redundancy, how
redundancies occur, and how redundancies can be repaired.
To simulate dynamic motion in an assembly, you need to design mechanical joints between
components in an assembly. Joints define the relationships between components in a mechanism by
describing how parts move in relationship to one another, as well as determining the types of active
and reactive forces that act on the mechanism to control its movements.
In mechanism theory, redundancy occurs when too many unknowns exist in a simulation, resulting in
the existence of infinite solutions when only one solution is needed.
In the following illustration, a Spring/Damper/Jack joint is being applied to a cam valve assembly.

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:
■ Describe joints and their importance in Dynamic Simulation.

Identify joint types and where particular joints should be used.

Describe the guidelines for creating joints.
■ Create different types of joints based on mechanism or simulation requirements.

Explain redundancy and how redundancies occur in dynamic simulations.

Repair redundancies in joints.

30 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


About Joints
In Dynamic Simulation, creating joints of types such as revolution, planar, and spherical is how you
manage degrees of freedom for components. Unlike assembly constraints, which restrict degrees of
freedom, joints add degrees of freedom. Joints are used to provide motions to components, which
along with component inertial property, friction, gravity, and other imposed forces, provide Dynamic
Simulation with the information needed to generate the simulation and graph the results.
In the following illustration, a revolution joint is being applied to the cam, which provides the freedom
to rotate within the hole on the support component.

Definition of Joints
A joint is a relationship between assembly components that determines how they move or react to
one another within a mechanism. You can create joints automatically in the Dynamic Simulation
environment by converting existing and new assembly constraints, or manually by using the
Insert Joint tool.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 31


In the following illustration, the spring joint imposes a force on the valve, causing the valve to maintain
contact with the cam surface.

Differences Between Assembly Constraints and Joints


Degrees of freedom (DOF) for components are managed differently in the assembly environment as
compared to the Dynamic Simulation environment.
In the assembly environment, unconstrained and nongrounded parts, by default, have six degrees of
freedom: three rotational, and three translational. When you add assembly constraints, you restrict
degrees of freedom. For instance, adding an insert constraint to a cylindrical component restricts five
degrees of freedom, and allows the component to rotate only around one axis.
In Dynamic Simulation, all parts, by default, have zero degrees of freedom. Even parts that are not
grounded in the assembly environment have zero degrees of freedom in Dynamic Simulation. Adding
a revolution joint to a component in Dynamic Simulation creates one degree of freedom, freeing the
part to rotate around the selected rotation axis.

32 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Example of Joints
You have designed a cam valve assembly. You use a spring to ensure that the valve maintains contact
with the cam during the cycle, and a contact joint to manage the contact between the cam and the
valve. Due to contact friction, power is lost during the motion. You use Dynamic Simulation to
determine the loss in power. The first step you take to run the simulation is to convert assembly
constraints and insert joints to define the mechanism. Now you are set to run the dynamic simulation.
In the following illustration, the cam valve assembly is shown before the joints were applied (1) and in
the middle of a simulation after creation of the required joints (2).

Joint Types
The first step in building a mechanism in Dynamic Simulation is to create joints. The different
categories of joints include standard, rolling, sliding, contact, and force. Standard joints can be
automatically created from assembly constraints to create degrees of freedom, or manually if no
assembly constraints are present. Rolling, sliding, and contact joints are special joints that are created
in addition to standard joints to restrict and create specific motion. Force joints like spring, damper,
and jack create an action/reaction force between two components in an assembly.
The following illustration displays the Joints Table, where you select the joint to insert. The upper part
of the dialog box displays buttons representing the categories of joints: standard joints, rolling joints,
sliding joints, 2D contact joints, and force joints. When you click a category button in the upper
window, the lower window updates to display buttons representing the available joints that fit the
chosen category. Select the button for the joint you want to use and click OK to create the joint.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 33


Standard Joints: Create Degrees of Freedom
The joints in the following table create degrees of freedom. These joints must be the first joints that
are created in an assembly in order to create the degrees of freedom between components.

Button Description
Revolution Joint
Use this joint to create a relationship between the cylindrical faces and cylindrical axes
of two components. This joint authorizes rotation around the Z axis of the joint
coordinate system. The angular value of the rotational degree of freedom is measured
between the first coordinate system X axis and the second coordinate system X axis.

Prismatic Joint
Use the prismatic joint to constrain the edge of one component to the edge of a
second component. This joint authorizes translation along the Z axis of the joint
coordinate system. The value of the translational degree of freedom is measured
between the first coordinate system origin and the second coordinate system origin.

Cylindrical Joint
Use this joint to constrain the axes of two cylindrical components to allow the
component that is chosen second to move back and forth along the axis of the first
component. This joint authorizes translation along the Z axis of the joint coordinate
system and rotation around the Z axis of the joint coordinate system. The value of the
translational degree of freedom is measured between the first coordinate system
origin and the second coordinate system origin. The angular value of the rotational
degree of freedom is measured between the first coordinate system X axis and the
second coordinate system X axis.

34 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Button Description
Spherical Joint
This joint is used for a ball-and-socket type movement. This joint authorizes three
rotations between the joint’s coordinate systems. The two joint coordinate system
origins always remain coincident.

Planar Joint
Use the planar joint to constrain a planar face on one component to a planar face on a
second component. The first selected component is the reference component and
remains stationary. The second component can move freely on the selected face of
the reference component.
Use the planar joint to constrain a planar face on one component to a planar face on a
second component. This joint authorizes two translations along the X and Z axis and
one rotation around the Y axis of the joint coordinate system. The value of the
translational degree of freedom is measured between the first coordinate system
origin and the second coordinate system origin. The angular value of the rotational
degree of freedom is measured between the first coordinate system X axis and the
second coordinate system X axis.

Point - Line Joint


This joint constrains the center point of a spherical component to the axis of a
cylindrical feature or a point on a line. This joint authorizes one translation along the
Z axis and three rotations between the two joint coordinate systems. The value of the
translational degree of freedom is measured between the first coordinate system
origin and the second coordinate system origin. The origin of the second coordinate
system always stays on the Z axis of the first coordinate system.

Line - Plane Joint


This joint constrains the line edge of a component to a planar face on a reference
component. This joint authorizes two translations along the X and Z axis and two
rotations between the two-joint coordinate system. The value of the translational
degree of freedom is measured between the first coordinate system origin and the
second coordinate system origin. The Z axis of the second coordinate systems always
stays on the XZ plane of the first coordinate system.

Point - Plane Joint


This joint constrains a single point of a component to a planar face on a reference
component. This joint authorizes two translations along the X and Z axis and three
rotations between the two joint coordinate system. The value of the translational
degrees of freedom is measured between the first coordinate system origin and the
second coordinate system origin. The origin of the second coordinate system always
stays on the XZ plane of the first coordinate system.

Spatial Joint
This joint creates a space relationship between two moving components. This joint
authorizes three translations along the X, Y and Z axes and three rotations between
the two joint coordinate systems. The value of the translational degrees of freedom is
measured between the first coordinate system origin and the second coordinate
system origin.

Welding Joint
Use the welding joint when multiple components need to function as one. This joint
displays as a welded group in the Dynamic Simulation browser. Unlike the weld
feature, Dynamic Simulation provides reaction forces and torques for this joint as
output results.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 35


Rolling Joints: Restrict Degrees of Freedom
The rolling joints in the following table restrict degrees of freedom.

Button Description
Rl Cylinder on Plane Joint
This joint constrains a rotating cylinder face without sliding to a flat face on a second
component. The relative motion between the two components must be 2D. Use for
gear and a rack or for a cylinder that rolls on a plane. This joint must be created using
the primitive cylinder and plane of the rack. If you use Design Accelerator, the
primitive surfaces are automatically created, you simply must make them visible and
use them to create the joint. If not, you can use, for instance, sketches on each
component that contains the primitive circle for the gear and the primitive line for
the rack.

Rl Cylinder on Cylinder Joint


This joint constrains the rotating cylindrical face of one component to the rotating
cylindrical face of a second component without sliding. The relative motion between
the two components must be 2D. This joint must be created using the cylinder edges
or the sketched pitch diameters of gears. If you use Design Accelerator to create gears,
the primitive surfaces are automatically created, you simply must make them visible
and use them to create the joint. For other gears, you can use sketches on each
component that contain the circle representing the pitch diameter for each gear.

Rl Cylinder in Cylinder Joint


This joint constrains the rotating cylindrical face of one component inside the rotating
cylindrical face of a second component without sliding. The relative motion between
the two components must be 2D. This joint must be created using the edge of the
cylinders or sketches of the pitch diameter of gears. If you use Design Accelerator to
create gears, the primitive surfaces are automatically created, you simply must make
them visible and use them to create the joint. If not, you can use, for instance, sketches
on each component that contains the primitive circles for each gear.

Rl Cylinder Curve Joint


Use this joint for a rotating cylinder face that maintains contact with a rotating cam
face. The relative motion between the two components must be 2D. Use the edges,
faces, or sketches of the two components for selection.

Belt Joint
This joint is used to constrain a belt to two rotating cylindrical components.

Rl Cone on Plane Joint


This joint constrains a rotating conical face to the flat face of a second component. If
you use Design Accelerator to create gears, the primitive surfaces are automatically
created, you simply must make them visible and use them to create the joint. If not,
you can use, for instance, sketches on each component that contains the primitive
circles for each gear.

Rl Cone on Cone Joint


This joint constrains a rotating conical face to the conical face of a second component.
If you use Design Accelerator to create gears, the primitive surfaces are automatically
created, you simply must make them visible and use them to create the joint. If not,
you can use, for instance, sketches on each component that contains the primitive
circles for each gear.

36 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Button Description
Rl Cone in Cone Joint
This joint constrains the face of a conical rotating component to the inside conical
face of a second stationary component.

Screw Joint
Use this joint to construct a relationship between a component that screws into a
second component. You create a cylindrical joint between the two components and
the thread pitch to indicate the amount of travel per rotation.

Worm Gear Joint


Use this joint to constrain a worm gear component to a helical gear component. If you
use Design Accelerator, the primitive surfaces are automatically created, you simply
must make them visible and use them to create the joint. If not, you can use, for
instance, sketches on each component that contains the primitive circles for
each gear.

Sliding Joints: Restrict Degrees of Freedom


The sliding joints in the following table restrict degrees of freedom.

Button Description
Sl Cylinder on Plane Joint
Use this joint to constrain a cylindrical face to a plane so that it slides without rotating.
The relative motion between the two components must be 2D.

Sl Cylinder on Cylinder Joint


Use this joint to constrain a cylindrical face to slide on a cylindrical face. The relative
motion between the two components must be 2D.

Sl Cylinder in Cylinder Joint


Use this joint to constrain a cylindrical face to slide inside a cylindrical face. The
relative motion between the two components must be 2D.

Sl Cylinder Curve Joint


Use this joint to constrain the cylindrical face to slide on a face of a cam. The relative
motion between the two components must be 2D.

Sl Point Curve Joint


This joint constrains a point on one component to stay on a curve defined by a face,
edges, or sketches. The relative motion between the two components must be 2D.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 37


2D Contact Joint: Restrict Degrees of Freedom
The 2D contact joint in the following table restricts degrees of freedom.

Button Description
2D Contact Joint
This joint creates a contact between a curve on one component and curve on another.
The relative motion between the two components must be 2D. The curves can be
defined by selecting a face, an edge, or a sketch. Unlike rolling and sliding joints, the
contact could be nonpermanent during the simulation.

Force Joints: Create an Action/Reaction Force


The force joints in the following table create an action/reaction force.

Button Description
Spring/Damper/Jack Joint
Use this joint when you need to create a spring force, a damping force like a shock
absorber, or a jack force that lifts or lowers.

3D Contact Joint
This joint, based on spring-damper forces between the parts, detects the interference
on the entire faceted surface of the parts. This joint works only with part occurrences.
A subassembly is not completely taken into account if a single part is selected.

Guidelines for Creating Joints


The most important step in creating joints is determining which joints should be created for the
intended simulation. After you determine the necessary joints for your mechanism, your joints must
be created in the proper order, standard joints first and then others, like contact, rolling/sliding, and
spring joints. Correct creation of joints ensures that the mechanism works as intended and that the
simulation can be run.
Use the following as guidelines for creating joints.

The number of joints in a mechanism can affect Dynamic Simulation performance. For
components and subassemblies that function as a unit, consider using the welded joint in
Dynamic Simulation, or restructure as a subassembly in the assembly environment. These actions
cause Dynamic Simulation to treat the welded group and the subassembly as a single entity
during the simulation, which optimizes simulation time.
■ You can simplify the standard joint creation process by automatically creating multiple joints at
once, from all existing and new assembly constraints, or converting joints automatically from
assembly constraints one by one. After converting assembly constraints, you can manually create
any remaining joints that are required including rolling, sliding, or 2D contact joints.

38 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation



If you are unsure of which joint to use, click the Joints Table button in the Insert Joints dialog box
to open the Joints Table, which shows visual representations of the joints and how they affect the
selected components. Be sure to close the Joints Table when you are finished, because you cannot
select any geometry with the Joints Table open.

When you create a joint between components that are not in place, you need to specify the Z axis,
origin, and X axis (the coordinate system) on each component to align and create a relationship
between the two components. Adjust the alignment of the X and Z axes of the coordinate systems
on your selected components to control how the components’ positions are adjusted when the
coordinate systems are aligned.

Example of Applying Guidelines to Create a Joint


You create a revolution joint on the cam valve assembly. When you select the face and edges to create
the joint, the Z axis for the coordinate system on the cam component is pointing in the opposite
direction of the Z axis of the coordinate system on the support. If you apply the joint, the cam flips to
align the origin point and the axes of its coordinate system with that of the support component’s
origin point and axes. In the Insert Joints dialog box, you invert the Z axes of the coordinate system on
the cam before applying the joint.
In the following illustration, on the left, the Z axis of the cam (1) is pointing in the opposite direction
of the Z axis on the support (2). On the right, the Z axis on the cam (3) has been inverted and now is
pointing in the same direction as the Z axis on the support.

Creating Joints
When you create joints, you must determine whether the components are already aligned or not. If
you are creating the joints between parts that are not initially aligned, it may be necessary to adjust
the orientation of the axes and origin for the coordinate systems of the selected geometry on your
components. If components are already in place, then it is easier to make use of the automatic
conversion/update of assembly constraints to joints.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 39


In the following illustration, all components that are in place and have been constrained in the
assembly environment will have their constraints automatically converted to the appropriate joints.
This is achieved by selecting the Automatically Update Translated Joints button as shown.

Access

Insert Joint

Panel Bar: Dynamic Simulation


Toolbar: Dynamic Simulation

Access

Convert Assembly Constraints

Panel Bar: Dynamic Simulation


Toolbar: Dynamic Simulation

40 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Procedure: Updating Existing Assembly Constraints Automatically
The following table lists the steps to automatically convert all existing and new assembly constraints
to standard joints in Dynamic Simulation.

1. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click


Dynamic Simulation Settings.
2. In the Dynamic Simulation Settings dialog box,
select the Automatically Update Translated Joints
option.

3. Click OK. All existing constraints are displayed in


the Dynamic Simulation browser under the
Standard Joints group.

4. To create a new joint between two components in


position, press SHIFT+C on your keyboard to start
the Place Constraint tool. Use standard
procedures to create the required constraints.

5. As soon as you click OK, the newly created


constraints are converted to joints as illustrated.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 41


NOTE: If you use the Automatically Update Translated Joints option, the Standard Joint Types and
Convert Assembly Constraints tools are disabled. However you still can create standard joints by using
assembly constraints within the Dynamic Simulation environment by pressing SHIFT+C on the
keyboard.

Procedure: Converting Assembly Constraints


The following table lists the steps to convert existing assembly constraints to standard joints by
manually selecting constraints one by one in Dynamic Simulation. The benefit of this method over the
automatic update method is that you can manipulate the type of joint created from existing
constraints.

1. On the Dynamic Simulation panel


bar, click Convert Assembly
Constraints.
2. In the graphics window, select the
parts with constraints that you want
to convert. The Convert Assembly
Constraints dialog box is displayed
showing the assembly constraints
between the two components.

42 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


3. In the Convert Assembly Constraints
dialog box, select the assembly
constraints you want to convert
(1 and 2). The dialog box updates
to show the joint that will be
created (3).

4. Click OK. The new constraint is


displayed in the Dynamic Simulation
browser under the Standard Joints
group.

Procedure: Inserting Standard Joints


The following table lists the steps to insert a standard joint in Dynamic Simulation.

1. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click


Insert Joint.
2. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click the Display
Joints Table button.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 43


3. In the Joints Table dialog box, select the
Standard Joints category (1). Select the joint
you want to create (2). In the Joints Table
dialog box, click OK.

4. To place the first joint coordinate system, select


geometry (1) to create the coordinate system.
Select a circular edge (2) or point to set the
origin for the first coordinate system.

5. To place the second joint coordinate system,


select geometry (1) to create the coordinate
system. Select a circular edge (2) or point to
set the origin for the second coordinate
system. If necessary, click Switch Z or Switch X
to adjust the direction of the axes to control the
second component orientation when the joint
is created.

44 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


6. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click OK. The
origin of the second joint coordinate system is
moved to the origin of the first joint coordinate
system and axes of the second coordinate
system align with the corresponding axes of
the first coordinate system. Degree(s) of freedom
are created between the two joint coordinates
systems depending on the joint type. In this
example, you have created a revolution joint,
so a rotational degree of freedom is created
around the Z axis.

Procedure: Inserting Rolling Joints


The following table lists the steps to insert a rolling joint in Dynamic Simulation.

1. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click


Insert Joint.
2. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click Display
Joints Table.

3. In the Joints Table dialog box, select the


Rolling Joints category (1). Select the joint you
want to create (2). In the Joints Table dialog
box, click OK.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 45


4. To place the first rolling joint cylinder face, select
a part edge, visible sketch, or surface (1) to
determine the radius. Select a circular edge (2) or
point to set the center point for the first cylinder
face. In case of rolling joints, you have access to
two different modes: two constraints (rolling and
tangency), and one constraint (rolling). The two-
constraints mode makes the two-cylinder face
tangent and causes rolling without sliding. If the
two cylinders are already tangent, use the one-
constraint mode.

5. To place the second rolling joint cylinder face,


select a part edge, visible sketch, or surface (1)
to determine the radius. Select a circular edge (2)
or point to set the origin for the second cylinder
face.

6. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click OK. The joint


is created and it is displayed under the Rolling
Joints node in the Dynamic Simulation browser.

Procedure: Inserting Sliding Joints


The following table lists the steps to insert a sliding joint in Dynamic Simulation.

1. On the Dynamic Simulation panel


bar, click Insert Joint.
2. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click
Display Joints Table.

46 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


3. In the Joints Table dialog box, select
the Sliding Joints category (1). Select
the joint you want to create (2). In
the Joints Table dialog box, click OK.

4. Make your selections for the first


component. Selecting the plane on
the first component, as shown,
sets the plane on which the second
component will slide.

5. Make your selections for the second


component. Select the cylindrical
face that will slide on the plane
selected in the first component.

6. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click


OK. The joint is created and it is
displayed under the Sliding Joints
node in the Dynamic Simulation
browser.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 47


Procedure: Inserting 2D Contact Joints
The following table lists the steps to insert a 2D contact joint in Dynamic Simulation.

1. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click


Insert Joint.
2. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click Display
Joints Table.

3. In the Joints Table dialog box, select the 2D


Contact Joints category (1). Select the joint
you want to create (2). In the Joints Table
dialog box, click OK.

4. Select a part edge (1) or visible part sketch on


the first component, and a part edge or visible
part sketch (2) on the second component.

48 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


5. Whenever you create a 2D contact joint, it is
important to check the Z normal direction of
the curve component. In the Dynamic
Simulation browser, under Contacts, right-click
the 2D contact joint you just created and select
Properties in the shortcut menu.

6. The Z normal axis (1) on a disk curve should


always point toward the air. The selected curve is
a cam, which means that the material is on the
inside and the air is on the outside. Click Invert
Normal (2) to invert the normal direction of the
first component. Click OK.

Procedure: Inserting Force Joints


The following table lists the steps to insert a force joint in Dynamic Simulation.

1. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click


Insert Joint.
2. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click Display
Joints Table. The Joints Table dialog box is
displayed.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 49


3. In the Joints Table dialog box, select the Force
joints category (1). Select the joint you want
to create (2). In the Joints Table dialog box,
click OK.

4. Select part edges, part corner points, user work


points, or circular edges to set the extremities of
the force joint. In this example, select a circular
edge (1) on the first component and a circular
edge (2) on the second component. When you
select a circular edge, the center of the arc is
automatically selected.

5. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click OK. The force


joint is created. By default the joint is not active.
Also, you need to specify the force for the joint as
well as any other parameters to describe the joint.

50 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


6. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, under the
Force Joints node, right-click the newly created
force joint and select Properties in the shortcut
menu.

7. A properties dialog box is displayed with the


joint name in the title bar. To activate the joint,
select Active Joint. Enter the desired values in
the edit boxes. Click OK.

8. Notice that the joint properties are applied and


the joint display updates in the graphics window.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 51


About Redundancy
When you constrain components in Autodesk® Inventor™ assembly files, all measurements are at the
nominal values. Thus you can apply constraints without consideration for manufacturing tolerances
or clearances. In reality these tolerances or clearances are necessary for assembling components
together and providing flexibility in the kinematic loop, as explained and illustrated by the following
illustrations.

No manufacturing clearance exists between the pin and hole. This means it is sometimes
difficult to assemble components and therefore clearance is necessary.

52 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


In Dynamic Simulation, this lack of flexibility in joints creates redundancies, meaning multiple
solutions exist in the joint due to the lack of degrees of freedom. Therefore, you need to increase
degrees of freedom between joints to relate to the reality of clearances between parts, as shown in the
following illustration.

Manufacturing clearance between the pin and hole. This clearance allows some angular
movement between the pin and hole in addition to rotation.

In the following illustration, a revolution joint is being changed to a point-line joint, adding degrees
of freedom to eliminate redundancies in the joint.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 53


Definition of Redundancy
Redundant joints are those that cause a mechanism to be overconstrained. Redundancy occurs in
mechanisms when no provision exists for the clearances that occur in real-life mechanisms. In the
assembly environment, components are made to nominal values that enable the assembly to be
constrained using exact measurements. Due to machining imperfections and tolerances, real-life
mechanisms are not entirely perfect, and thus these clearances provide flexibility to keep the
mechanism from binding.
NOTE: When you run a simulation for a redundant model, the Output Grapher is yellow as shown in
the following illustration.

Yellow background indicates a redundant condition.

Example of Redundancy and Repair


In a typical four bar linkage, if you start applying revolution joints from (1) to (4), you achieve the
following joint configuration.

Revolution joint
Revolution joint
Revolution joint
Revolution joint

54 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


As soon as you apply a revolution joint to Joint four (4), the mechanism is considered to be
overconstrained. You are notified of this condition, and informed about using the Repair
Redundancies command to fix the problem.

This warning indicates that manufacturing tolerances or clearances have not been taken into account
in the assembly, and thus do not reflect a real-life situation. Joint four (4) needs to be resolved in order
to remove redundancy from the assembly. In other words, this means that more degrees of freedom
are required for Joint four (4). One possible solution is to use Repair Redundancies on the joint. This
achieves the results shown in the illustration on the left. However, this model is not unique because it
was dependent on the workflow of the designer in creating joints (1) through to (4). Another possible
nonredundant model is shown in the illustration on the right.

Revolution joint Revolution joint


Revolution joint Spherical joint
Revolution joint Revolution joint
Point-Line joint Cylindrical joint

While the results may be slightly different, both these solutions are correct and provide correct
simulation results regarding the dynamics of the model, including inertial loads. However, you should
be aware that if you are interested in analyzing the reactions at the joints (or need to transfer loads for
stress analysis), the results are not unique.
For example, the point-line joint has no reaction in the Z direction, whereas the revolution joint has
reaction in the Z direction. Different joints create different reaction forces/torques that you should be
aware of.
If you want to study the reaction forces and torques, then place the extra degree joints on the weakest
joints or in the joints where you intend to put clearances in the real mechanism.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 55


Repairing Redundant Models
When a mechanism contains redundancies, you can use a tool in the Dynamic Simulation
environment to automatically repair them.
In the following illustration, the Repair Redundancies dialog box shows the joint with the
redundancies and suggested repair.

Repairing Redundancies Defined


Repairing redundancies is accomplished by editing the joint that contains the redundancies and
changing it to one that has additional degrees of freedom. For example, you change a revolution joint,
which has only one degree of freedom, to a cylindrical joint, which has two degrees of freedom. The
Dynamic Simulation environment also has a Repair Redundancies tool that monitors your joints and
suggests repair options.

Process: Repairing Redundant Models


The following steps give an overview for repairing redundant models.

1. Create the joints to define your mechanism.


2. Upon receiving a warning that the mechanism is overconstrained, click OK.
3. In the browser, right-click the joint with the redundancies and select the Repair Redundancies
tool.
4. Click OK in the Repair Redundancies dialog box to accept the edits suggested.
5. The Repair Redundancies tool works only on manually created joints. If the joint was created
by converting assembly constraints, you must edit the redundant joints manually.

56 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Exercise: Create Joints
In this exercise, you create joints to add degrees of
2. In the browser, expand frame:1 to see the
freedom to components in an assembly. First, you
two Mate constraints. In the following steps
create two revolution joints by converting assembly
you convert these constraints to create
constraints and by using the Insert Joint tool. Next,
degrees of freedom between the frame and
you create two 2D contact joints to control the
the cross components.
relationship between the two revolving
subassemblies. Finally, you impose motion on the
joints to see the effect in the assembly.

The completed exercise

Completing the Exercise 3. Click Applications menu > Dynamic


To complete the exercise, follow the Simulation.
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters 4. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, notice
and exercises, click Chapter 2: Dynamic that all of the subassemblies are shown
Simulation. Click Exercise: Create Joints. under the Grounded node because no joints
have been applied.

Update Constraints Automatically


In this portion of the exercise, you convert existing
assembly constraints into a revolution joint.

1. Open GenevaDrive.iam.

5. To automatically update the assembly


constraints to a standard joint, on the
Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Dynamic Simulation Settings.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 57


6. In the Dynamic Simulation Settings dialog Create a Standard Joint
box, click the Automatically Update In this portion of the exercise, you manually create a
Translated Joints check box. Click OK. revolution joint between two components using
assembly constraint commands.

1. With the Dynamic Simulation application


still active, press SHIFT+C to activate the
Place Constraint dialog box.

7. In the Dynamic Simulation browser:


■ Notice the subassemblies have a prefix
added to signify that they have had
joints applied to them. Because the
frame assembly is grounded in the
assembly environment, it remains in the
Grounded group in the Dynamic
Simulation browser.

A Mobile Groups node is added and the 2. Select the Insert Constraint option. For the
cross subassembly is placed in that first component, select the edge as shown.
group.

A Standard Joints node is added and the
newly created Revolution joint is placed
there as a result of existing assembly
mate constraints.

NOTE: The number of joints created is not


necessarily the same as the number of
assembly constraints.

58 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


3. On the keyboard press and hold the F4 key 5. On the keyboard, press F6 to return to the
and rotate the view as shown, to expose the isometric view to see the results of the new
bottom of the rotor subassembly. rotation joint.

4. For the second component, select the edge


as shown. Click OK. Create 2D Contact Joints
In this portion of the exercise, you create two 2D
contact joints between the cross and rotor
subassemblies and set the initial position of the rotor
subassembly.

1. In the graphics window, right-click the cross


subassembly. Click Open.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 59


2. Notice the geometry in the cross.iam file. You
use the work plane and the projected edges
to create the 2D contact joint.

7. On the cross assembly, click the projected


loop, as shown.

3. On the keyboard, press CTRL+TAB to switch


back to the GenevaDrive.iam file.
4. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Insert Joint.
5. In the Insert Joint dialog box, click Display
Joints Table.

8. On the rotor assembly, click the edge on the


cylindrical face, as shown. Click OK. When the
joint is applied, this edge cannot penetrate
in the projected loop during simulation. This
joint drives the cross subassembly.

6. In the Joints Table dialog box:



Click 2D Contact Joints (1).
■ Click 2D Contact Joint (2).

Click OK.

60 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


The Z axis for the coordinate system of the Next, you set up the initial state of the rotor
projected loop must be inverted for the joint relative to the cross. This is to make sure that
to function properly. In its present the two components are not interfering at
orientation, it functions as a hole and not a start of the simulation.
perimeter edge.
11. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, under
9. To invert the Z axis, in the Dynamic Standard Joints, right-click n°2 :Revolution
Simulation browser, under Contacts, right- (frame:1, rotor:1). Click Properties.
click n°3 : 2D Contact (cross:1, rotor:1). Click
Properties. 12. In the n°2 :Revolution (frame:1, rotor:1)
dialog box:

Click the Dof 1 (R) tab (1).
■ Confirm that Edit Initial Conditions is
selected (2).

For Position, enter 60 deg (3).
■ Click OK.

10. In the n°3 : 2D Contact (cross:1, rotor:1)


dialog box:

Click Invert Normal (1).
■ Notice that the Z axis (2) is now pointing
away from the cross assembly. 13. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click

Click OK. Insert Joint. In the Insert Joint dialog box,
select 2D Contact in the Joint Type list.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 61


14. For the first loop, on the cross subassembly, 16. To invert the Z axes, in the Dynamic
select the radius edge as shown. Simulation browser, for Contacts, right-click
n°4 :2D Contact (cross:1, rotor:1). Click
Properties.

15. For the second loop, on the rotor


subassembly, select the radius edge as
shown. Click OK.

17. Notice the position of the Z axis (1) for the


cross subassembly. In the n°4 :2D Contact
(cross:1, rotor:1) dialog box, click the left
Invert Normal button (2) for the cross
subassembly.

You must invert the Z axes for the coordinate


systems of the cross subassembly in order for
the joint to function properly. In its present
orientation it acts as a hole and not
perimeter edge.

62 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


18. Confirm that the Z axis is inverted, as shown.
Click OK.

3. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, notice


the icon for the n°2 :Revolution (frame:1,
rotor:1) joint. A # symbol was added to
signify that motion was applied to the joint.
Run the Simulation
Before you can run the simulation, you must impose
a motion on the rotor and apply gravity to the
assembly.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, under


Standard Joints, right-click n°2 :Revolution
(frame:1, rotor:1). Click Properties.
2. In the n°2 :Revolution (frame:1, rotor:1)
dialog box:

Click the Dof 1 (R) tab (1).
■ Click Edit Imposed Motion (2).

Select Enable Imposed Motion (3). 4. Next you apply gravity to the assembly. In

the browser, under External Loads, double-
Select Velocity (4).
click Gravity. In the Gravity dialog box:
■ Click the arrow and select Constant

Value (5). Clear the Suppress option.


Enter 360 deg/s in the edit box (6). Select Components.
■ For Coordinates, for g[X], enter 0 m/s^2.
■ Click OK.

For Coordinates, for g[Y], enter
-9.81 m/s^2.
■ For Coordinates, for g[Z], enter 0 m/s^2.

Click OK.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 63


5. To run the simulation, on the Simulation
Panel:

Under Final Time, enter 2 s (1).
■ In Time Mode, Images =, enter 60 (2).

Click Run or Replay Simulation (3).

6. View the simulation. The rotor makes two


revolutions and drives the cross
subassembly when the pin engages the
slots.

7. Close all files. Do not save changes.

64 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Exercise: Create a Nonredundant Model
In this exercise, you create joints in a windshield Create Revolution Joints for the Wiper
wiper assembly. Some of the joints that you create Assemblies
contain redundancies. Although you can simulate a
redundant model in the Dynamic Simulation In this portion of the exercise, you create revolution
environment, it is not advisable to do so. You repair joints between the wiper subassemblies and the
the redundancies and test the joints to confirm the bearings subassembly.
wiper subassembly movement.
1. Open WiperAssemblyNRM.iam.

The completed exercise


2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic
Simulation.
Completing the Exercise 3. Use zoom and pan to adjust the view
To complete the exercise, follow the as shown.
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 2: Dynamic
Simulation. Click Exercise: Create a
Nonredundant Model.

The Brush_asm_left and the


Complete_wiper_left_asm subassemblies
must move as a unit. In the next step, you
weld the two subassemblies together.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 65


4. On the keyboard, press and hold CTRL. 6. On the keyboard, press ALT+] to turn on the
In the Dynamic Simulation browser, visibility of the user work planes.
click the Brush_asm_left and
Complete_wiper_left_asm subassemblies.
Right-click Brush_asm_left:1. Click Weld
Parts.

7. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click


Insert Joint. The Insert Joint dialog box is
displayed and the Revolution Joint is active.

5. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, notice


that n°1 :Welded group1 is added beneath
the Grounded node.

With the two subassemblies welded, you


now create the joints to add degrees of
freedom to the wiper assembly mechanism.

66 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


8. In the graphics window, click the tubular 10. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under
component (1) to set the rotation axis, and Component 2, click the button, as shown.
the work plane (2) to set the origin for the
coordinate system, as shown.

9. On the keyboard, press and hold F4 and


rotate views as shown. 11. Click the circular edge twice, as shown, to set
the rotation axis and the origin for the
coordinate system on the welded assembly.

12. Click OK.


13. On the keyboard, press F6 to return to the
isometric view.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 67


14. Zoom in to the view as shown. 17. In the graphics window, click as shown to
select the subassembly.

18. Select the constraint as shown. A revolution


joint is displayed.

The Complete_wiper_right_asm and the


Bearings subassemblies currently are in the
proper orientation. Next, you create a
revolution joint by converting assembly
constraints.
15. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Convert Assembly Constraints. The Convert
Assembly Constraints dialog box is
displayed.
16. In the graphics window, click as shown to
select Part 1.

68 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


19. Click OK to create a revolution joint. On the 2. In the graphics window, place the cursor (1)
keyboard, press HOME to zoom all. over the Complete_wiper_left_asm as
shown. Press and hold the left mouse button
and drag in the direction shown (2).

3. Position the wiper blade so that it is close to


parallel, as shown.

Repair Redundant Joints


In this portion of the exercise, you create revolution
joints between the Inter_Crank and the wiper
subassemblies. Because using only revolution joints
to build the four-bar linkage leads to redundancies,
you use the Repair Redundancies tool to analyze and
repair the problem. 4. Using the Zoom and Rotate tools, position
the view as shown to see the back side of the
1. On the keyboard, press ALT+] to turn off the repositioned wiper blade.
user work planes. Zoom in to the wiper
subassemblies, as shown.

Before you create the revolution joint, you


Next, you align the wiper assemblies so that
must reposition the Inter_Crank to view the
they are nearly parallel.
hole for the pivot.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 69


5. In the graphics window, place the cursor on 8. Click the circular edge (1) twice to set the
the part. Press and hold the left mouse coordinate system for the first component
button and drag to a new location, as shown. and its origin. Notice the orientation of the
X axis (2) and the Z axis (3).

Now you create a revolution joint between


the Inter_Crank and the
Complete_wiper_left_asm.
6. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Insert Joint. 9. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under
7. In the Insert Joint dialog box, the Revolution Component 2, click the button, as shown.
joint is active.

70 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


10. Click the circular edge (1) twice to set the 12. Click OK. The joint is created.
coordinate system for the first component
and the origin for the coordinate system.
Notice the orientation of the X axis (2) and
the Z axis (3).

Now you create a revolution joint between


The Z axes are pointing in the same direction, the other end of the Inter_Crank component
so the components maintain their current and the Complete_wiper_right_asm
orientation. The X axes are pointing in nearly subassembly.
opposite directions, which will cause the 13. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Inter_Crank part to rotate so that its X axis Insert Joint. The Insert Joint dialog box is
matches the direction of the X axis on the displayed with the Revolution Joint active.
Complete_wiper_left_asm subassembly.
Next, you reverse the direction of the 14. Click the circular edge (1) twice, to set the
Complete_wiper_left_asm X axis to coordinate system for the first component
minimize the rotation. and the origin for the coordinate system.
Notice the direction of the X axis (2) and the
11. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under Z axis (3) for the coordinate system.
Component 2, click X Axis (1). The X axis (2)
for the Complete_wiper_left_asm
subassembly reverses direction.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 71


15. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under With the Z axes and the X axes for the two
Component 2, click the button, as shown. components pointing in opposite directions,
one of the components will try to flip to
match the Z axis of the other component and
rotate to match the X axis, causing the joint
to fail. Next, you reverse the direction of the
X and Z axes of Component 2 to create a
successful joint.
18. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under
Component 2, click Z Axis (1), and the Z axis
(2) reverses direction in the graphics
window. Under Component 2, click X Axis (3),
and the X axis reverses direction in the
graphics window (4).

16. In the graphics window, pan over to the end


of the Complete_wiper_right_asm, as
shown.

19. Click OK. A warning box is displayed stating


that the mechanism is overconstrained by
three degrees. Click OK.

17. Click the circular edge (1) twice to set the


coordinate system for the second
component and the origin for the coordinate 20. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, in the
system. Notice the direction of the X axis (2) Standard Joints group, notice that the
and the Z axis (3) for the coordinate system. n°4 :Revolution (Inter_Crank:1,
Complete_wiper_right_asm:1) joint is
shown with an icon indicating that it has
redundancies.

72 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


24. In the dialog box, notice that the problem
areas with the joint are highlighted with an
orange background. For your joint:

Tz denotes a Translational redundancy
preventing movement along the Z axis
of the joint.

Rx denotes a rotational redundancy
preventing rotation around the X axis of
the joint.

Ry denotes a rotational redundancy
preventing rotation around the Y axis of
the joint.

In the Final Joints column, next to the
redundant constraints, is a joint that can
repair the redundancies.

Next, you repair the redundancies in the


revolution joint.
21. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, click the
n°4 :Revolution (Inter_Crank:1,
Complete_wiper_right_asm:1) node.
22. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Repair Redundancies.
23. Notice that the Repair Redundancies dialog
box is displayed. In the graphics window, the 25. Click OK to apply the Point-Line joint
coordinate system glyphs for the joint are solution. In the Dynamic Simulation browser,
displayed. notice that the joint is updated and the
redundancy icon is gone.

Lesson: Creating Joints ■ 73


26. At the keyboard, press F6 to return to the 28. Notice that the wiper subassemblies are
isometric view. linked together through the joints you have
created and move together as shown.

In the next step you test the joints to verify


that they work correctly. 29. Close the file. Do not save changes.
27. In the graphics window, place the cursor (1)
over the Complete_wiper_left_asm as
shown. Press and hold the left mouse button
and drag in the direction shown (2).

74 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Lesson: Environmental Constraints

Overview
This lesson describes environmental constraints and how you apply them in Dynamic Simulation. To
run a simulation, you must define the virtual environment that simulates the reality in which the
mechanism behaves or functions. The initial joints that have been automatically transferred from
existing Inventor assembly constraints, or manually created within Dynamic Simulation, define the
degrees of freedom. You create environmental constraints to define the initial starting conditions of a
joint, simulate realistic friction for joints, and manipulate imposed motion of the joints. Examples of
external environmental constraints that can be applied to the design or assembly include forces,
torques, friction, and gravity. These environmental constraints define what joints and assemblies do
during the simulation.
Environmental constraints provide Dynamic Simulation with the information necessary to calculate
the simulation.
In the following illustration, a resistant force has been applied to the windshield wiper blades. During
the simulation the force is displayed as arrows pointing in the direction of the resistance, as shown.

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

Define initial positions of joints.

Define joint torques.
■ Define imposed motions and apply them to joints.

Define external forces and apply them to joints.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 75


■ Explain friction and gravity and how to apply their effects on your mechanism and assembly
designs.

Identify the Input Grapher, its tools, and its options for fine-tuning your environmental constraints.
■ Use the Input Grapher to refine your imposed motions and joint torques, as well as the way they
are applied during your simulation.

Impose motion and resistive force in a mechanism, and use the Input Grapher to control the effect
of resistive force during the simulation.

Setting Initial Positions of Joints


After you constrain a mechanism using joints, it is sometimes necessary to set the initial position of a
joint. Depending on the type of joint, the position could either be a translational or rotational position.
For example, for a revolution joint, you should generally be able to set the initial position by defining
the angle in degrees.
In the following illustration, an initial position of a revolution joint is being set to -20 degrees.

Description of Initial Position of Joints


The initial position of a joint can be rotational, translational, or both depending on the joint. For more
complicated joints, for example a point line joint, one translational and three rotational positions need
to be defined to set the initial position of the joint. You can define an initial joint position with a
constant value only.

76 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Process: Applying Initial Positions
The following steps describe the process for defining the initial position of a joint in a dynamic
simulation.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation environment, apply the joints to define the mechanism.
2. Edit the properties of the joint to which you want to impose the motion.
3. Click the DOF tab that corresponds to the degree of freedom that you want to define for the
initial position.
4. On the DOF tab, use the edit box to enter a constant value.
5. Click OK to apply the initial position.

Applying Joint Torques


After you constrain a mechanism using joints, it is sometimes useful to apply damping or friction to a
joint to create a resistance that simulates what occurs in real joints.
In the following illustration, damping is being applied to a joint.

Description of Joint Torques


A joint torque can be defined by applying damping or elastic stiffness, and/or by specifying a value for
a coefficient of friction. You can define joint torques with a constant value throughout the time range
of the simulation, or you can use the Input Grapher to apply different values that may occur at
designated times during the simulation.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 77


Process: Applying Joint Torques
The following steps describe the process for adding imposed motion to a joint in a dynamic
simulation.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation environment, apply the joints to define the mechanism.
2. Edit the properties of the joint to which you want to impose the motion.
3. Click the DOF tab that corresponds to the degree of freedom you are adding the motion to.
4. On the DOF tab, enable the joint torque and use the edit box to enter a constant value, or use
the Input Grapher to define different values along the simulation timeline.
5. Click OK to apply the imposed motion.

Applying Imposed Motion


After you constrain a mechanism using joints, it is necessary to define the movement of the joints. For
a joint with a rotational or translational degree of freedom you impose a velocity, acceleration, or
position motion. Combined with the time of the simulation, which is set in the Dynamic Simulation
panel bar, you control the total amount of movement in the joint.
In the following illustration, an imposed motion is being applied to a joint, defining its velocity.

Description of Imposed Motion


Imposed motion is the position, velocity, or acceleration applied to a joint that has a rotational or
translational degree of freedom. You can define imposed motion with a constant value throughout
the time range of the simulation, or you can use the Input Grapher to apply different values that may
occur at designated times during the simulation.

78 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Process: Applying Imposed Motion
The following steps describe the process for adding imposed motion to a joint in a dynamic
simulation.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation environment, apply the joints to define the mechanism.
2. Edit the properties of the joint to which you want to impose the motion.
3. Click the DOF tab that corresponds to the degree of freedom you are adding the motion to.
4. On the DOF tab, enable the imposed motion and use the edit box to enter a constant value, or
use the Input Grapher to define different values along the simulation timeline.
5. Click OK to apply the imposed motion.

Applying External Forces


When a mechanism is going through its motions, various forces affect the movement, such as gravity,
friction, or drag. Sometimes these forces are resistive, or opposed to the motion, and sometimes
external forces are driving forces and help the motion. You define these forces in the Dynamic
Simulation environment to further ensure that the simulation takes into account all factors that
control movement in the simulation.
In the following illustration, an external force is shown being applied to point on a windshield wiper
blade with an arrow defining the direction of the force.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 79


Description of Applying External Forces
In the Dynamic Simulation environment, external forces are forces that you apply to account for
gravity, friction, drag and any other type of force that resists movement or aids movement. External
forces do not have to be exact, but can reflect the maximum amount of resistance that you want the
mechanism to overcome.

Process of Applying External Forces


The following steps describe the process for adding external forces to a joint in a dynamic simulation.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation environment, use the Force or Torque tool to place an external
force.
2. Define the location for the external force.
3. Define the direction of the external force.
4. Designate whether the direction of the external force is fixed or associative.
5. Designate whether the force will display during the simulation, and the size and color of the
symbol.
6. Apply the external force to the joint.

Applying Friction and Gravity


Friction and gravity are forces that affect a mechanism or joint evenly. The effect of gravity occurs in a
single direction relative to the entire mechanism. Friction occurs on all contact surfaces of a joint,
defining the resistance of the two components that comprise the joints as they rub against each other
during motion.

80 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


In the following illustration, gravity is being applied to the mechanism, with the arrow defining the
direction of gravity and the dialog box defining the magnitude.

Description of Applying Friction


Applying friction defines the resistant force in a joint caused by component surfaces rubbing against
each other. Friction is defined by entering a coefficient value equal to the percentage of extra force
required to overcome this condition.

Description of Applying Gravity


Applying gravity defines the effect of gravity on the mechanism. Gravity can resist or aid a mechanism
depending on its relationship to the mechanism. If a mechanism is lifting against gravity, more driving
force is required to overcome the gravitational force. If a lifter lowers in the direction of gravity, gravity
works as a driving force helping the mechanism.

Process: Applying Friction


The following steps provide an overview of how to apply friction.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right-click the joint you want to add the friction to and
click Properties in the shortcut menu.
2. In the Properties dialog box, click the DOF you want to add the coefficient of friction to.
3. Depending on whether the DOF is rotational or translational, click Edit Joint Torque for
rotational and Edit Joint Force for translational.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 81


4. Select the check box to enable the joint force.
5. For a translational DOF tab, edit the coefficient of friction. For a rotational DOF tab, edit the
coefficient of friction and the radius distance from the joint where the friction will be
calculated.
6. Click OK to apply the friction values.

Process: Applying Gravity


The following steps provide an overview of how to apply gravity.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right-click Gravity and select Define Gravity on the
shortcut menu.
2. Activate gravity.
3. Select whether the gravity will be defined relative to an entity or to global coordinates.
4. If defined by an entity, select a component face and the direction relative to the face. Enter the
value for gravity and click OK.
5. If defined by an entity, select a component face and the direction relative to the force. Enter
the value and click OK.
6. If defined by coordinates, enter the gravity values for the X, Y, and Z axes. Click OK.

About the Input Grapher


The Input Grapher is used to define the laws of dynamic actions (movement law, joint forces, and
external forces) using a graphical interface. This interface proposes simple laws, like Constant and
Sine, and other more developed options, like Ramps and Spline. You can also combine laws in
time sectors.
In the following illustration, the Input Grapher is shown with the ramp up from 0 deg/s velocity up to
full speed, and the ramp back down to 0 deg/s.

82 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Definition of the Input Grapher
The Input Grapher is a graphical interface that you use to define the imposed motions when a
constant value is not applied to the motion. The Input Grapher provides tools to separate the
simulation time range into sectors, each of which can have its own laws controlling the motion
in that sector.
In the following illustration, the ramp up sector of the velocity is shown. When you activate a sector,
it is shaded as shown.

Example of the Input Grapher


In the course of designing your windshield wiper mechanism, you need to calculate the driving torque
needed to move the wipers. Because the wipers do not immediately go from 0 deg/s velocity at start
to the 180 deg/s velocity required, you use the Input Grapher to define the time periods for ramp up,
constant velocity, and ramp down back to 0 deg/s at the end of the simulation. Also, you need to
define the change in direction of the external force on the wiper blades as the wipers reverse direction.
The Input Grapher provides the interface to set the rules for the external force reversal.
In the following illustration, the transition of the external force is shown reversing with the cubic ramp
law controlling the transition of the force.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 83


Using the Input Grapher
The Input Grapher can be accessed from any external force or imposed motion to fine-tune the way
that the motion or force is applied. You can define the values as a function of any of the mechanism’s
variables, apply user parameters, and create equations.
In the illustration, the function is shown being changed to velocity as the reference.

Description of the Using the Input Grapher


In the following illustration, the Input Grapher is displayed with its sections labeled.

84 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


The graph area displays the results of the values applied to the designated motion or force.
In this area, you define the parameters for the highlighted sector in the graph. Starting Point
defines the values at the beginning of the chosen time sector, and Ending Point defines the
values at the end of the chosen time sector.
Property of the Select Sector defines the law applied to the highlighted sector in the graph.
The reference button opens the mechanism’s variables browser where you can select a
different reference for the context of defining the motion or force.

Process: Using the Input Grapher


The following steps provide an overview of how to use the Input Grapher.

1. Access the Input Grapher by editing the properties of the selected joint.
2. Select the DOF tab for the joint degree of freedom you want to edit.
3. Select the joint force or Imposed Motion button depending on the value you want to edit.
4. Confirm that the imposed force or motion is active, then select Position.
5. From the Force edit box, access the Input Grapher.
6. In the Input Grapher, select the reference for the values you will define.
7. Add time sectors as required to define changes in the values.
8. Define the start and end values for each time sector and the law to apply to each sector.
9. Click OK to apply the changes and exit the grapher.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 85


Exercise: Define Environmental Constraints
In this exercise you create joints in a wiper assembly
3. Use the Rotate, Pan, and Zoom tools to
to drive the wiper arms. You impose motion on the
orient your view to match the following
drive arm and add resistive force to the wiper blades
illustration.
to simulate the friction of the blade on the
windshield. Finally you use the Input Grapher to
define the resistive force so that it is always opposed
to the wiper motion.

First, you create a joint to control the rotation


of the Motor_Crank_Asm (1). This
subassembly is attached to the wiper motor
and drives the Crank_motor2 component
(2), which drives the wiper subassemblies (3).
4. To insert a joint:
The completed exercise ■
On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar,
click Insert Joint.
Completing the Exercise ■ In the Insert Joint dialog box, expand the
To complete the exercise, follow the Joint list and select Cylindrical.
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters 5. To set the Z axis (axis of rotation) of
and exercises, click Chapter 2: Dynamic component 1, click in the hole of the
Simulation. Click Exercise: Define Motor_Crank_Asm as shown.
Environmental Constraints.

Create the Drive Arm Joints


In this portion of the exercise, you define the joints
that connect the drive arm to the cranks that move
the wiper subassemblies.

1. Open WiperAssemblyDEC.iam.
NOTE: For this exercise you can continue to
work on the earlier exercise
WiperAssemblyNRM.iam if it is complete and
still opened.
2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic
Simulation.

86 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


6. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under 9. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Component 2, click the button for the Z axis, Insert Joint.
as shown.
10. In the Insert Joint dialog box, expand the
joint list and select Revolution.
11. To set the Z axis (axis of rotation) of
component 1, click the circular edge twice.
The first click sets the Z axis for the first
coordinate system, and the second click sets
the origin for the coordinate system.

7. To set the Z axis (axis of rotation) of


component 2, select the work axis, as shown.

12. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under


Component 2, click the button for the
8. Click OK to apply the joint. The cylindrical Z axis as shown.
joint enables the Motor_Crank_Asm to
rotate freely around the work axis, as well as
to move along the work axis.

Now, you create the joints to connect the


Crank_motor2 to the Motor_Crank_Asm and
the Complete_wiper_left_asm, completing
the mechanism.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 87


13. To set the Z axis (axis of rotation) of 15. Click Apply to apply the joint. The
component 2, click the circular edge twice. Crank_motor2 now moves to the correct
The first click sets the Z axis for the second position, as shown, to make the joint. The
coordinate system, and the second click sets dialog box remains open.
the origin for the coordinate system.

16. In the Insert Joint dialog box, expand the


Joint list. Select Spherical.
17. To set the spherical point of component 1,
click the circular edge (1) twice. The first click
selects the center point of the circular edge
as the point for component 1, and the
14. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under second click sets the Z axis for the coordinate
system. Notice the direction of the Z axis (2)
Component 2, click Switch X, as shown, to
reverse the direction of the coordinate for the component 1 coordinate system.
system X axis. This enables the minimal
rotation of the link when the joint is created.

18. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under


Component 2, click the button for the Point,
as shown.

88 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


19. To set the spherical point of component 2, 21. Click OK to create the joint.
click the circular edge (1) twice. The first click
selects the center point of the circular edge
as the point for component 2, and the
second click sets the Z axis for the coordinate
system. Notice that the Z axis for the
component 2 coordinate system is pointing
in the opposite direction of the Z axis (2) of
the component 1 coordinate system.

22. On the keyboard, press F6 to return to the


isometric view.

20. In the Insert Joint dialog box, under


Component 2, click Switch Z to reverse the
direction of the coordinate system Z axis.
This causes the Z axis of component 2 to
match the Z axis of component 1.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 89


Impose Motion and Add External Forces 3. In the n°5 :Cylindrical (Motor_Crank_Asm:1,
In this portion of the exercise, you impose motion on Bearings:1) dialog box:
the Motor_Crank_Asm to simulate the wiper motor ■
Click the Dof 1 (R) tab. (1)
driving the wipers. Then you add a resistant force to ■ Confirm that Edit Initial Conditions is
the wipers to simulate the wiper blade rubbing selected. (2)
against the windshield as it turns. ■
For Position, enter -15 deg. (3)
■ Click OK.
1. Zoom in on the view to match the following
illustration.

Next, you set the starting conditions for your


assembly. 4. Notice that the -15 deg is placed between
2. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right- the X axis (1) of component 1 in the
click n°5 :Cylindrical (Motor_Crank_Asm:1, cylindrical joint and the X axis (2) of
Bearings:1). Click Properties. component 2.

Now, you impose motion on the cylindrical


joint to see the mechanism in action.
5. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right-
click n°5 :Cylindrical (Motor_Crank_Asm:1,
Bearings:1). Click Properties.

90 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


6. In the n°5 :Cylindrical (Motor_Crank_Asm:1, 8. In the Simulation Panel, click the
Bearings:1) dialog box: Construction Mode button. You can make

edits only in the construction mode.
Click the Dof 1 (R) tab. (1)

Click Edit Imposed Motion. (2)
■ Select Enable Imposed Motion. (3)

Under Driving, select Velocity. (4)

Click the arrow and select Constant
Value in the shortcut menu. (5)
■ In the edit window, enter 180 deg/s. (6)

Click OK.
Next, you add a resistive force to the left
wiper arm to simulate friction between the
wiper blade and the windshield. In the case
of the wiper blade, the resistive force must
be calculated in each direction due to the
back and forth motion of the wipers.
9. Zoom in on the view to match the following
illustration.

Next you run the simulation using the


velocity value that you just set. Because the
velocity is set to 180 deg/s, it will take two
seconds to make a full revolution.
7. In the Simulation Panel:
■ In the Final Time window, enter 4s (1)
and press TAB. This simulates two full
revolutions.
■ In Time Mode, Images =, the value
should change to 400. (2) This
determines the number of total images
10. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar,
generated during the simulation.
click Force.

Click Run (3) or Replay Simulation
to view.

The Motor_Crank_Asm makes two complete


revolutions, driving the wiper arms back and
forth for two cycles.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 91


11. For the location of the force, click the work 13. For the force direction, click the flat surface
point on the wiper blade, as shown. of the wiper arm, as shown.

14. Notice that the glyph shown in the following


illustration displays the direction of the
force.

12. Notice that the glyph shown in the following


illustration is placed at the location of the
force.

92 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


15. In the Force dialog box: 17. In the Simulation Panel, click Run or Replay

Simulation. Notice that the force arrow is
For Magnitude, enter 5N. (1)
displayed on the wiper blade during the

Click Associative Load Direction. (2) This simulation, as shown.
option causes the force to maintain its
relationship to the location point.

Select Display. (3) This displays the force
direction when you run a simulation.

Click OK.

The resistive force maintains the same


direction on the wiper throughout the
simulation. The resistive force of the wiper
should always be opposite the motion.
You use the Input Grapher to change the
direction of the force when the wiper
changes direction.
16. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, notice 18. In the Simulation Panel, click Activate
that the Force is added beneath the External Construction Mode.
Loads node.

19. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right-


click Force1 (Force on Brush:1). Click Edit
Force.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 93


20. In the Force dialog box, click the arrow in the 23. In the Magnitude dialog box:
Magnitude edit window. Click Input Grapher. ■
For X1, enter -1 deg/s.

For Y1, enter 5 N.
■ For X2, enter 1 deg/s.

For Y2, enter -5 N.

21. In the Magnitude dialog box, click Select


Reference.

Between -1 deg/s velocity and 1 deg/s


velocity, the resistant force reverses itself,
avoiding a discontinuity or immediate
switch in the resistive force.
24. In the Magnitude dialog box, notice that the
graph updates to reflect the values in the
Starting Point and the Ending Point. The
ramp area is shaded in the graph.

22. In the Select Reference dialog box:


■ Expand n°1 :Revolution (Bearings:1,
Welded group1).
■ To create a smooth transition in the resistive
Expand Velocities.
■ Select v[1.1]. force, you can change the ramp from a linear
ramp to a cubic ramp.

94 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


25. In the Magnitude dialog box: 28. In the Simulation Panel, click Run or Replay

Simulation to view the simulation. This time
Expand the list of available laws. (1)
you see the resistive force arrow direction

Select Cubic Ramp. (2) reverse when the wiper reverses, as shown.

Click Replace the Current Law. (3)

26. In the Magnitude dialog box, notice that the Because both wiper blades rub against the
graph updates to reflect the cubic ramp. windshield, you need to repeat steps 10
Click OK. through 27 for the right wiper.
29. Close the file. Do not save changes.

27. In the Force dialog box, click OK.

Lesson: Environmental Constraints ■ 95


Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing
Results

Overview
This lesson describes the process of running a simulation and analyzing or interpreting the results.
After all joints, external forces, and imposed motions are defined, you use the Simulation Panel to run
the simulation. While running the simulation, you can use the Output Grapher to view a graphical
representation of the results.
The ultimate goal of a simulation is to provide the feedback that you need to adjust and refine your
design to meet specific design requirements. To ensure that your simulation is accurate and provides
you with the appropriate technical feedback, you need to know how to use the Simulation Panel to
set up and run the simulation, and how to use the Output Grapher to interpret the results.
In the following illustration, the Output Grapher is used to analyze the results of a simulation.

96 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

Describe how to set up and run a simulation using the Simulation Panel.

Describe the Output Grapher.
■ Use the Output Grapher to view and export graphical and numeric results of your simulation.

Review and analyze your simulation results to determine whether your mechanism will perform
as designed.
■ Run a simulation to calculate the driving torque of a component in an assembly.

Running Simulations
After all joints, external forces, and imposed motions are defined, you run the simulation to view the
results. You use the Simulation Panel to run the simulation, stop it at any point, or play it in a
continuous loop. While running the simulation, you can open the Output Grapher to view a graphical
representation of a selected variable in a graphical or numeric format. Results can be exported to FEA
for stress analysis of individual components.
In the following illustration, a simulation is running with the Output Grapher open showing the
synchronization with the current time step in the Simulation Panel, and the assembly in the
graphics window.

Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing Results ■ 97


Description of Running Simulations
Running a simulation in Dynamic Simulation is the act of calculating the values of the joints in a
mechanism. When you run a simulation, your mechanism moves according to the joints, imposed
motions and torques, and external forces you have applied to it.

Simulation Panel
You use the Simulation Panel to set up and run the dynamic simulation of the assembly. The panel has
several buttons that enable you to control the simulation time and accuracy. In addition it provides
visual feedback on the progress of the simulation of the assembly. It is the most important part of the
simulation process because it controls the accuracy of the simulation.

Simulation construction After playing the simulation, click to enter construction mode to
mode continue editing the simulation.
Player controls Click the various buttons to control playback of the simulation.
Final time Enter the final simulation time.
Images Enter the number of images to create for the simulation. More
images result in a more accurate simulation, but also take longer
to solve the simulation.
Filter Normally set to 1. If the value is changed to 10, then the
simulation ignores images between 1 to 10.
Simulation time Read-only value depicting the time step in the simulation.
Percentage of realized Read-only value that displays the percentage of simulation
simulation completed.
Real time Read-only field that displays the actual time that has elapsed
during the simulation.

98 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Player Controls

Rewind to the beginning Returns the simulation back to its starting condition. This
of simulation button is available only after the simulation has started or
when the slider is moved from 0%.
Stop current simulation Stops the simulation.
Run or replay simulation Runs the simulation forward from the current step. If the
simulation is at the end point, or the slider set to 100%, this
button has no effect.
Deactivate screen refresh Prevents the screen refresh at each time step. This speeds up
at each time step the simulation and depending on your computer may or may
not be noticeable.
Forward to end of Advances to the end of simulation. This button is available
simulation only when the simulation has not started or when the slider is
set to less than 100%.
Play current simulation Plays the simulation all the way through, returns to the
in continuous loop beginning and starts over again. The simulation continues to
repeat until you stop it.

Process: Running a Simulation


The following steps provide an overview of the process of running a simulation.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation environment, define the joints, external torques and forces, and
imposed motions to define the mechanism.
2. Use the Simulation Panel to run the simulation.
3. If required, open the Output Grapher to see a graphical representation of the selected
variables in the mechanism.

Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing Results ■ 99


About the Output Grapher
When your simulation is prepared and running, you need a way to use the data that is generated.
The Output Grapher enables you to view the results of any of the variables in the simulation using a
graphical interface. Data from the Output Grapher can be output to Microsoft® Excel, or to an IAA file
that can be imported back into the Output Grapher to compare with a set of values from a new
simulation with different forces or motions.
In the following illustration, a mechanism is shown with the Output Grapher open. The time step is set
to the maximum force in the simulation.

Definition of the Output Grapher


The Output Grapher is a tool in Dynamic Simulation that generates graphs and numerical values for
all the input and output variables of a simulation, both during and after the simulation completes.
You can have more than one Output Grapher open simultaneously.
The Output Grapher is synchronized to the mechanism. You can access any time step in the
simulation, and the mechanism displays the state of joints at that time step.

100 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


In the following illustration, the synchronization between the Output Grapher and mechanism is
shown. The time step in the graph (1) is highlighted in the values area, (2) while the position of the
wipers (3) is shown at that time step.

Example of the Output Grapher


In your cam and follower assembly, you want to compare the driving force on the cam when two
different contact values are applied between the follower and cam. You run the simulation with the
first value applied. In the Output Grapher, you display the graph of the cam driving force and save
the results. You edit the contact properties between the cam and follower and rerun the simulation.
You display the graph of the second simulation and then import the saved IAA file from the first
simulation. You then display the driving force value of the first simulation so that you can compare
the values.

Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing Results ■ 101


In the following illustration, the graph shows the driving force (1) for the second cam force and the
original cam force (2).

Using the Output Grapher


The Output Grapher provides many options and controls to display and export the results of your
simulation. Simulation results can be exported to Microsoft® Excel, to FEA for stress analysis, or
imported into a different simulation to perform comparison studies. The Output Grapher can be open
during a simulation to generate the graph as the simulation runs, or you can open it after the
simulation to see the final results.

102 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


In the following illustration, the results of a simulation have been exported from the Output Grapher
to Microsoft® Excel, creating a page for the graphical results and a page for the numeric results.

Description of the Output Grapher


In the following illustration, the Output Grapher is displayed with its sections labeled.

Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing Results ■ 103


Output Grapher Tree Here you have access to all the variables from the simulation.
Variables selected here have their values displayed in the graph
and the time column.
Graphic Area The graphs of the selected variables are displayed here. Double-
click in this area to set a time step in the graph that is
synchronized to the Time column, the display of the mechanism
in the graphics window, and the slider in the Simulation Panel.
Time Column Contains a column for the time steps. The number of steps
matches the time mode images in the Simulation Panel. Each of
the variables selected in the tree has a column.
Load Transfer Column Select single or multiple time steps to transfer loads to FEA.

Process: Using the Output Grapher


The following steps provide an overview of the process for using the Output Grapher.

1. In Dynamic Simulation, create your joints and set your environmental constraints.
2. Run the simulation and open the Output Grapher during the simulation or after the simulation
has finished.
3. In the selection tree, select the variables that you want displayed in the grapher.
4. Double-click in the graph to set the current time. Step back and forth in the grapher using the
right and left arrow keys on your keyboard.
5. To find the maximum value on a curve, right click anywhere on the chosen tabular column and
select Search Max.
6. To find the minimum value on a curve, right click anywhere on the chosen tabular column and
select Search Min.
7. To save the graph curve, with the Grapher open save the assembly file. The results of the
simulation are saved in a file with the same name as the assembly file and an extension of .iaa.

104 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Reviewing and Analyzing Simulation Results
After you have run the simulation, you must review and analyze the results. Dynamic Simulation uses
the joints you define, the external forces, and the imposed forces and torques to calculate the various
drive forces and torques, accelerations, and velocities in your mechanism. The Output Grapher acts as
the repository and organizer of the simulation results.
In the following illustration, the driving force of a revolution joint and the moment of the prismatic
joint are shown in the Output Grapher to compare their relationship.

Reviewing and Analyzing Simulation Results


Reviewing and analyzing simulation results using the Output Grapher gives you graphical and
numeric feedback for a specific joint. You can view the driving force on revolutions and motions, and
positions of components during the simulation, as well as velocities, accelerations, and moment
forces. Some results, specifically moments and forces, can be exported to FEA to perform stress
analysis calculations on parts.

Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing Results ■ 105


Process: Reviewing and Analyzing Simulation Results
The following steps describe how to review and analyze results in Dynamic Simulation.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation environment, define your mechanism using Automatic Update of
Constraint joints, or converted assembly constraints and/or inserted joints. Define the start
position and the imposed motion, imposed forces and torques, and external forces.
2. In the Simulation Panel, enter the settings for the simulation and then run the simulation.
3. Open the Output Grapher.
4. In the Output Grapher, selection tree, expand the joint that you are analyzing.
5. Expand the folder for the type of results you want to review.
6. Click the node that you want the grapher to display.
7. Find the time step, and minimum or maximum value in the graph, or export the file to
Microsoft® Excel for later use. Then save the results for import into another simulation, and
save the file with the Output Grapher open.
8. Import results from another simulation for comparison.

106 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Exercise: Calculate the Driving Torque of the Wiper Assembly
In this exercise, you use Dynamic Simulation on the
wiper assembly to calculate the driving torque 1. Open WiperAssemblySDP.iam.
required to move the wipers so that you can size the
wiper motor. You then use the Output Grapher to
plot the graph and review the results.

2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic


Simulation.
First you impose a velocity on the
Motor_Crank_Asm. The wiper assembly is
fully constrained and a force of 5 N has been
The completed exercise
added to each wiper blade assembly to
simulate the drag of the blade on the
windshield.
Completing the Exercise
3. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right-
To complete the exercise, follow the click n°5 :Cylindrical (Motor_Crank_Asm:1,
steps in this book or in the onscreen
Bearings:1). Click Properties.
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 2: Dynamic
Simulation. Click Exercise: Calculate the
Driving Torque of the Wiper Assembly.

Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing Results ■ 107


4. In the n°5 :Cylindrical (Motor_Crank_Asm:1, 7. If the Output Grapher is minimized, resize it
Bearings:1) dialog box: by placing your cursor at a corner of the title

bar, as shown. When the double-ended
Click the Dof 1 (R) tab. (1)
arrow is displayed, press and hold the left
■ Click Edit Imposed Motion. (2) mouse button and drag to resize the Output

Select Enable Imposed Motion. (3) Grapher.

Under Driving, select Velocity. (4)
■ Click the arrow next to the edit window.
Click Constant Value. (5)

In the edit window, enter 180 deg/s. (6)
■ Click OK.

Next, you run the simulation to see the wiper Next, you select the variable to view in the
assembly in motion. Because the velocity is Output Grapher.
180 degrees per second, you set the
simulation to run for two seconds so that the 8. In the Output Grapher browser:
Motor_Crank_Asm makes one complete ■ Expand n°5 :Cylindrical
revolution. (Motor_Crank_Asm:1, Bearings:1).

5. In the Simulation Panel: Expand Driving Force.
■ Select Ukin[5.1].

For Final Time, enter 2 s. (1)
■ For Time mode, enter 200. (2)

Click Run or Replay Simulation. (3)

Next, you open the Output Grapher to view


the driving torque on the Motor_Crank_Asm.
Now, you find the maximum torque required
6. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
to rotate Motor_Crank_Asm at the specified
Output Grapher.
velocity.

108 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


9. In the Values window, right-click anywhere 12. Challenge Task
in the Ukin[5.1] column. Click Search Max.
Now try increasing the force to 10 N on each
10. View the grapher. In the Values window the wiper to determine the size of the motor
maximum driving torque is highlighted, and required by this change.
in the graph the time bar displays the correct Tips
time. You also notice that the assembly is

synchronized to the grapher, and the Right-click Force1 to edit the force value.

mechanism shows the position of the wipers Double-click the Input Grapher in the
at maximum drive torque. The maximum value box.
driving torque required to move the wipers is ■ Change both the starting and ending
4148 N mm. The torque of the motor point force values from 5 to 10 and from
required to drive the windshield wipers must -5 to -10 respectively.
at least equal this value. ■ Click OK twice.

Repeat the above steps for Force2.

Run the simulation.
■ Search max value approx (8292N).
13. Close the file. Do not save changes.

11. In the Simulation Panel, click Activate


Construction Mode.

Lesson: Running Simulations and Analyzing Results ■ 109


Chapter Summary

Dynamic Simulation enables you to simulate functional assemblies while generating sophisticated
engineering data. With this data, you can determine how your design will perform in real-world
situations, while reducing the need for expensive prototypes.
Having completed this chapter, you can:

Create joints that define the relationships between components in a mechanism while avoiding
redundancy.
■ Create environmental constraints for a simulation.

Run a simulation, then use the Output Grapher to review and analyze the results.

110 ■ Chapter 2: Dynamic Simulation


Chapter

3
Stress Analysis Chapter3:

In this chapter, you learn how to analyze parts to determine stress, deformation, and natural
frequencies. You also learn how to use results from the Dynamic Simulation environment to
accurately place loads in the Stress Analysis environment.

Objectives
After completing this chapter, you will be able to:

Create loads and constraints to simulate the real-world conditions in which your designs are
expected to perform.

Set up and run stress analyses and review the results; animate those results and perform
convergency studies to achieve the greatest accuracy.
■ Perform a finite element analysis on a component in the Stress Analysis environment using
loads calculated in the Dynamic Simulation environment.

111
Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints

Overview
This lesson describes loads and constraints and how to create them to simulate the real-world
conditions in which your designs will be expected to perform.
To accurately simulate the stresses that occur on a part, stress analysis applications must be able to
simulate real-world conditions. Two conditions that must be simulated are loads, which are external
forces that act upon the part, and constraints, which are virtual conditions that act against forces by
constraining degrees of freedom for the part.
In the following illustration, a simple rocker arm design illustrates how loads and constraints work in
a simple mechanism. Forces (1) are applied to the component through the pushrod mechanism, while
constraints (2) restrict the available degrees of freedom. The combination of these conditions
simulates real-world effects that are exerted on the mechanism.

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

Describe loads and how they are used in the Stress Analysis environment.

Identify the types of loads that can be applied to parts and explain how to create them.
■ Describe constraints and how they are used in the Stress Analysis environment.

Identify the types of constraints that can be applied to parts and explain how to create them.

112 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


About Loads
Loads represent the external forces that are exerted on a part. During normal use, the component is
expected to withstand these loads and continue to perform as intended. The goal of performing a
stress analysis is to determine how these loads affect the part and then, if necessary, adjust the design
to withstand these loads.
In the following illustration, a load is being placed on the component at the location and direction
indicated by the arrow. (1) After the appropriate constraints are applied, a stress analysis reveals the
equivalent stress on the component as a result of the load that is applied. (2)

Definition of Loads
A load can be defined as an external force that is exerted on a component directly or indirectly. Loads
can occur in various locations on the part, and their magnitude and types are also variable. The Stress
Analysis environment in Autodesk® Inventor™ supports the following types of loads:
■ Force

Pressure

Bearing
■ Moment

Body

Motion

Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints ■ 113


In the following illustration, bearing loads (1) have been added to each arm of the centrifuge rotor. A
body load specifying a rotational velocity of 4500 rpms has also been applied. The resulting stress
analysis shows the amount of deformation that would occur on the component.

Example of Loads Exerted on a Part


In the following illustration, a bearing load is being applied to the surface of the hole. (1) The load
direction is set by selecting an edge of a connecting part. (2) The preview arrow (3) indicates the
direction of the load being created.

114 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Types of Loads
You create loads by specifying a force, moment, pressure, bearing force, acceleration, gravity, or
rotational velocity. Loads can be applied to vertices, edges, or faces of the part. With many loads, you
can specify the direction by selecting model geometry or by specifying the individual X,Y,Z
components of the load.

Applying Loads
To apply a load, click a load tool on the Stress Analysis panel bar and specify the geometry, magnitude,
and if applicable, the direction.

Load Direction
Some types of loads require you to specify a load direction. The following illustrations give examples
of how the load directions can be specified.

Load normal to face Load aligned to work axis Load aligned to other part edge

The load is parallel to the selected edge or normal to the selected face.
If you need to orient the load in a direction that cannot be specified using existing model
geometry, you can specify the load’s components in the X,Y, and Z directions. Alternatively,
you can create a work plane or work axis and then use the work feature to orient the load, as
shown in this illustration.
To orient a load, you can select a part edge or face on the part itself or from another part in the
assembly.

Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints ■ 115


Force Loads
You can apply a force to a vertex, edge, or face on a part. You specify the direction by X, Y, Z
components, by selecting a planar face, work plane, edge, or work axis, or by selecting two vertices on
either the part itself or on another part in the assembly. If you select a planar face or work plane to
orient the force, the force is aligned normal to the selected geometry.

When you select geometry to apply the force, all selections must be of the same type. For example,
you can select four different faces but not two edges and two faces. The total force is evenly divided
among the selected geometry.

Apply forces to faces rather than to edges or vertices to avoid stress singularities.

Pressure Loads
You can apply a pressure to a face. The pressure’s direction is always normal to the selected faces and
is directed toward the faces by default. Enter a negative magnitude to reverse the direction so that the
pressure is directed away from the faces.

116 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Bearing Loads
You can apply a bearing load to an inside or outside cylindrical face. You specify the direction using
X, Y, Z components or by selecting a planar face, work plane, edge, or work axis on the part itself or on
another part in the assembly.

The component of the bearing load that is radial (perpendicular to the circular face), is distributed over
the projected area of the face, as shown in the following illustration.

Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints ■ 117


You normally use a bearing load to apply a load where a bolt, shaft, or pin makes contact with the part.
If the pin or shaft is a tight fit, you can assume that the contact area is the full surface. When the pin or
shaft is a loose fit, the contact area is smaller, and you might want to split the face and apply the
bearing load to a smaller section of the cylindrical face.

Moment Loads
Moment loads take into account bending and twisting of components. You can apply a moment load
to faces. You specify the direction by using X, Y, Z components or by selecting a planar face.

118 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Body Loads
Body loads include loading due to gravity and acceleration and apply to the entire part, not to specific
areas of the part. You apply gravity to incorporate the part’s weight into the analysis. You can set the
direction as the X, Y, or Z part axis. You apply linear acceleration or rotational velocity to determine the
effect of accelerating the entire part. You specify the direction by selecting a planar face, work plane,
linear edge, or work axis.

Motion Loads
Motion loads are created from joints from within the Dynamic Simulation environment and not from
the Stress Analysis environment. The motion loads are automatically converted from reaction forces
on the joints and applied as bearing loads, torque, and moments on the faces of the joints. If a part to
be analyzed has three connecting parts (or three joints), then you need to specify the three faces on
the part as shown in the following illustration.
The dialog box is displayed when you select the part to be exported to FEA. The only loads that cannot
be created from motion loads are pressure. When you are in the Stress Analysis environment, a Motion
Loads button is displayed in the Loads area. When you click Motion Loads, all the bearing loads and
moments are automatically applied to the specified faces.

Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints ■ 119


Enforced Displacement
You can apply a fixed displacement to a vertex, edge, or face in order to calculate the force required
to deform the part or the resulting stress. You specify a displacement by applying a fixed constraint
and then specifying the displacement in the constraint components. Enforced displacement loads are
useful to determine how much force is required to close the gap between two parts or to deform a
part a given distance.

120 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Guidelines for Applying Loads
You may not always have geometry at a location where you want to apply a load. To add a load to an
area of the model that does not have a face, edge, or vertex, you split a face of the model using the
Split tool and then apply the load to the new face.

If you specify the components of a load while editing a part in place, remember that the top-
level assembly’s coordinate system is displayed, and not the part’s. The force components
that you enter must be in the part coordinate system. These can be difficult to determine
while you are in the assembly.

To specify the components or magnitude of a force, you can enter an equation in which you make
calculations or reference other parameters.

Summary of Load Types


The following table summarizes the available loads, the geometry to which you can apply the load,
and the methods you can use to specify the load’s direction.

Load Can Be Applied To Specify Direction Using


Force Vertex Components
Edge Planar face or work plane
Face Edge or work axis
Two vertices
Pressure Face Pressure is always normal to the face
Bearing Load Face (cylindrical only) Components
Planar face or work plane
Edge or work axis
Moment Face Components
Planar face or work plane
Edge or work axis
Body Loads Acts on the whole body Planar face or work plane
Edge or work axis
Motion Loads Face Generated automatically by Dynamic
Simulation
Enforced Vertex Components
Displacement Edge
Face

Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints ■ 121


About Constraints
You use constraints to model how the part is restrained from motion. You typically place a constraint
where the part is connected to or makes contact with other rigid components. Using one or more
fixed, pin, or frictionless constraint, you must constrain the model so that it cannot translate or rotate
in any directions.
In the following illustration, a pin constraint is being added to the rocker arm where it swivels on the
shaft component.

Definition of Constraints
Constraints are used to define how components would be fixed in a real-world assembly. These
constraints can be controlled by varying the fixing directions in the X,Y,and Z axes or radial, axial, and
tangential directions for cylindrical components. The Stress Analysis environment in Autodesk
Inventor supports the following types of constraints:
■ Fixed

Pin

Frictionless

122 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


In the following illustration, a pin constraint is being applied to one of the cylindrical faces (1) of the
connecting arm. The tangential direction is free to move as it would in reality.

Example of Constraints
In the following illustration, a frictionless constraint is applied to the rocker. (1) This enables the rocker
to move in the indicated direction. (2)

Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints ■ 123


Types of Constraints
To apply a constraint, you click a constraint tool on the Stress Analysis panel bar and specify the
geometry to constrain.

Fixed Constraints
A fixed constraint restricts the translation of the constrained geometry in one, two, or three directions.
Use a fixed constraint to model rigid connection points to other components.
Fix all three directions when you know that the part is fully fixed to a rigid support, such as where an
edge or face of the part is welded or bonded to another part. Use components of the fixed constraint
to fix or release motion in specific directions. If the face of a part contacts another part and the faces
are not fully attached, either apply a fixed constraint and release the in-plane motion directions, or use
a frictionless constraint.
You can also use the components of the fixed constraint to specify a displacement for the constrained
geometry.

124 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Pin Constraints
You use a pin constraint to prevent a cylindrical surface on the part from moving radially, tangentially,
or axially. You typically use pin constraints where holes are supported by bearings or pins. You can
select which directions to fix with respect to the cylindrical surface. For a bearing or pin, you free the
tangential direction to enable the surface to rotate freely.

Frictionless Constraints
A frictionless constraint enables a surface to freely slide along a plane or surface but prevents the
surface from moving normal to itself. You use frictionless constraints to model face-to-face and
surface-to-surface contact between parts where one part can slide on the other. Most surfaces in
contact are not entirely frictionless. Furthermore, frictionless constraints give conservative results
because the friction’s contribution to the overall model stiffness is not included.

Frictionless constraints are also used to model symmetry boundary conditions. When a model’s
loading and geometry are symmetric, you can analyze a portion of the model to save analysis time.
You use frictionless constraints on all of the symmetry surfaces in the model. For example, consider a
rotor for a swing-bucket centrifuge rotating at 4500 rpm, and a pin constraint applied in the hole in
the middle. Because the load, constraints, and model are symmetric, you can analyze a section instead

Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints ■ 125


of the entire model. You apply the load and constraints as you would for the entire model and then
apply frictionless constraints to the faces on the cut planes, as indicated by the arrows in the following
illustration.

Guidelines for Applying Constraints


Before you perform a stress analysis, you must fully constrain the model so that you prevent
translation and rotation in all directions. If you fail to constrain the model fully, an error message is
displayed, and the analysis does not proceed.

When you use frictionless or pin constraints, potential may exist for rigid body motion, even though
rigid body motion is not possible based on the combination of constraints. Weak springs are
automatically added to the model to prevent rigid body motion. If the boundary conditions prevent
rigid body motion, the springs do not affect the result. When the analysis is complete, you should
check that the deformed model and the reaction forces are reasonable.

Selecting the wrong type of constraint or overconstraining the model are frequent mistakes
in finite element analysis. The constraints that you choose and where you apply them
significantly affect the results. Make sure that you understand how the part interacts with
other parts in the assembly. If you are uncertain about which constraint to apply, run a
sensitivity analysis to determine how sensitive the result is to the type of constraint.

126 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Exercise: Create Loads and Constraints
In this exercise, you create the required loads and ■
Preview the mesh.
constraints to determine the stress and deformation

of a rotor for a swing-bucket centrifuge rotating at Click OK.
4500 rpm. 5. On the panel bar, click the Body Loads tool.
■ Under Rotational Velocity, select Enable.
■ Click the Select Rotational Direction
arrow.

Move the cursor over the top face of the
hub until the load arrow is displayed.

Click to set the direction.

Under Rotational Velocity, for
Magnitude, enter 4500 rpm. Click OK.

The completed exercise

Completing the Exercise


To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
6. Apply a pin constraint to the inner circular
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters surface of the hub. Constrain all three
and exercises, click Chapter 3: Stress directions by selecting the check boxes.
Analysis. Click Exercise: Create Loads and
Constraints.

1. Open Stress_CentrifugeRotor.ipt.

2. Change the material to Aluminum-6061.


3. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis.
4. On the panel bar, click the Stress Analysis
Settings tool.

In the Stress Analysis Settings dialog NOTE: A pin constraint with all three
box, make sure that Stress Analysis is directions constrained is equivalent to a
selected from the Analysis Type list. fixed constraint.

Lesson: Creating Loads and Constraints ■ 127


7. On the panel bar, click the Bearing Load tool.

Select the two holes (1) on either side of
the cutout that is aligned with the
positive X axis.

Click the Select Bearing Load Direction
button.
■ Select the edge of the slot (2) to orient
the forces in the positive X axis direction.

For magnitude, enter 1600 N.
■ Click OK.

NOTE: The magnitude was calculated based


on the rotational velocity, mass of the swing
10. Review the deformation and safety factor.
buckets and contents, and swing radius.
The stress is far below the yield point for the
material. The highest stress is at the load
connection point, but the stress at that point
is not accurate because the load connection
was not modeled in detail. Because the
stress is low in the rest of the arm and no
stress singularities or critical locations are
apparent, you do not perform a stress
convergence study.
You now increase each force to 2000
Newtons using the Parameters dialog box.
11. On the panel bar, click Parameters. In the
Parameters dialog box. under either Model
Parameters or Stress Analysis Parameters,
change all of the 1600 N entries to 2000 N
and click Done.

8. Repeat the previous step for each of the


other slots. Make sure that the forces point
out from the center of the part.
9. On the Standard toolbar click Stress Analysis
Update.
When the analysis is complete, the 12. On the Standard toolbar, click Stress Analysis
equivalent stress is displayed on the Update to update the analysis and view the
deformed model. results.
13. Save and close the file.

128 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Lesson: Running an Analysis and
Analyzing Results

Overview
This lesson describes how to run a stress analysis and analyze the results for quality and performance.
After you have applied loads and constraints, it is time to run a stress analysis and analyze the results.
To effectively use the resulting data, you typically run multiple analyses as you refine the design.
Understanding how to access and analyze the results enables you to effectively change the design to
ensure desired performance.
The following illustration shows an equivalent stress plot of a rocker arm indicating areas of high
stress. Other result plots include deformation and factor of safety.

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

Set up and run a stress analysis.
■ Revise models and stress analysis loads and constraints, and rerun an analysis to determine
the results.

Review and interpret the stress analysis results.
■ Animate and report analysis results.

Perform a convergence study.

Describe and identify the types of files that are created when you perform a stress analysis.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 129


Setting Up and Running the Analysis
Before you run the analysis, you should confirm the default settings that are selected in the Stress
Analysis Settings dialog box. If necessary you should then revise them based on the type of analysis
you require and the relevant mesh control. During a typical analysis process, you may change the
settings several times as you refine the component’s design and change other analysis properties such
as constraints and loads.

Access

Stress Analysis Settings

Panel Bar: Stress Analysis


Toolbar: Stress Analysis

Access

Stress Analysis Update

Toolbar: Standard

Analysis Type
You use the Analysis Type list to select a stress analysis, a modal analysis, or both. If the model
on which you run a modal analysis has loads, the natural frequencies are calculated for the
stressed model.

130 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Term Definition
Stress Analysis Determines the strength of components and enables you to optimize
designs by indicating areas of stress and potential failure.
Modal Analysis Determines the natural frequencies of the component. This type of
analysis is useful when the component is part of an assembly.

Mesh Control
The Mesh Control settings determine the mesh size. On the Mesh Relevance slider, you can set the
average overall mesh size. The default setting of zero is a good starting point for most analyses. You
use a higher number for a smaller mesh size, providing a more accurate answer but increasing analysis
time. You use lower settings to perform a quick analysis to ensure that the model, loads, and
constraints are correctly applied before you run an analysis with a smaller mesh.
If Result Convergence is selected, the mesh is automatically refined. This significantly increases
analysis time but generally provides a more accurate result.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 131


Running the Analysis
Click the Stress Analysis Update tool to run the analysis. The ANSYS Solution Status dialog box displays
the progress of the analysis.

Process: Setting Up and Running the Analysis


The following steps give an overview of the process of setting up and running the analysis.

1. With the Stress Analysis application activate, click the Stress Analysis Settings button on the
panel bar.
2. Select the type of analysis and adjust the mesh relevance slider based on the current analysis
and your requirements.
3. Run the analysis by clicking the Stress Analysis Update button on the Standard toolbar.

Revising Models and Stress Analysis


Based on the result of an analysis, you may need to make changes to the part or to the applied loads
and constraints and then rerun the analysis.

Editing Loads and Constraints


To edit a load or constraint, right-click it in the Stress Analysis browser and click Edit.

132 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Loads are stored as user parameters, so you can edit their magnitudes using the Parameters tool. You
use this method to change the value of multiple loads, or for automation using VBA or another
automation tool.

Results
You edit the part geometry by changing the model parameters or by switching to the part
environment. In the part environment, you can display the last stress result item on the part to guide
your model changes.

When you change the part or other values that affect the stress results, the icons in the Results folder
of the Stress Analysis browser change to indicate that the results are out of date. Click the Stress
Analysis Update tool to rerun the analysis.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 133


Process: Revising Models and Stress Analysis
The following steps give an overview of revising the model and stress analysis.

1. Edit loads or constraints based on the stress analysis requirements.


2. Switch to the part environment and make design changes as required, based upon the stress
analysis results.
3. Update the stress analysis and continue to revise the design and analysis.

Reviewing and Interpreting Analysis Results


When you view and interpret analysis results, you should remember that finite element analysis
approximates the actual stress and deflection. The result is sensitive to many factors, including:

Material properties
■ Model geometry

Mesh density (element size)

Type of loads and how and where they are applied
■ Types of constraints and how and where they are applied

134 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


If any input value is incorrect, the result may look reasonable but can be meaningless. Incorrect loads
and constraints cause many errors in finite element analysis. The real-world interaction between one
part and another needs to be approximated, and incorrect assumptions can lead to errors in the result.
You learn by experience to approximate the actual conditions with available loads and constraints.
Finite element analysis identifies problems early in the design cycle, which helps you make better
products. If you are designing a critical component, you should test the actual part to ensure that it
meets the performance criteria. You can use the test result to fine-tune your stress analysis to predict
stress on similar parts with greater accuracy.

Viewing Results
When the analysis is complete, the result is displayed graphically on a deformed model. To view a
different result, double-click the result in the Results folder in the Stress Analysis browser.

Several terms and values are displayed as results of a stress analysis. The equivalent stress is a
combination of all of the stresses. It is also known as Von Mises stress. For ductile materials, you
compare the equivalent stress to the yield strength of the material to estimate whether the material
will yield.
The safety factor is equal to the yield strength of the material divided by the equivalent stress. If the
safety factor is greater than 1, the yield strength is greater than the equivalent stress, and the part
should not yield.
The results are typically displayed on a deflected shape. Actual deformations are normally small, so the
default display setting greatly exaggerates the deformation. If you are concerned about actual
deformation (for example, to assess whether the part would make contact with another part), you
should be sure to view both the actual deformed shape and the deformation contours.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 135


Results Deformation
The following illustration shows the exaggerated (left) and actual (right) deformed shape of a bracket.
From the exaggerated deformation, you might conclude that the side of the bracket deforms beyond
the back of the bracket, making contact with the component to which the bracket is mounted.
However, the actual deformed shape on the right shows that the side of the bracket deforms
very little.

You change the deformation scale with the Deformation Style list on the Standard toolbar.

Reaction Forces
The constraints resist external loading by generating reaction forces. To view the reaction forces at a
constraint, right-click the constraint and click Reaction Forces.

136 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Color Bar
The color bar relates the colors of contoured results to numerical values. You can adjust the color bar
to ignore extreme results such as a stress singularity or to give more detail in a specific range of values.
To adjust the color bar, click the Color Bar tool on the Stress Analysis panel bar. In the Color Bar dialog
box, you can:

Clear the Automatic check boxes to specify a range of stress values of interest to you.

Change the color styles from color to monochrome.
■ Orient the position of the color bar in the graphics window in standard or compact form.

Each result item maintains its own color bar, so the changes that you make, for example to the
equivalent stress color bar, do not affect the deformation or safety factor color bars.

Parameters
The result of a stress or modal analysis is saved as both stress analysis parameters and reference
parameters. You can view the result in the Parameters dialog box or read the parameters using VBA or
another automation tool.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 137


Stress Singularities
Stress singularities can occur in models where you simplified loads, constraints, or model geometry.
In theory, the stress at a singularity is infinite, resulting in an unrealistically high stress. You should be
aware of singularities so that you can correctly interpret analysis results.
An example of a singularity is when you apply a force or a fixed constraint to a vertex or edge of a
model. Because a point or edge has an area equal to zero, the theoretical stress is infinite. As shown in
the following illustration, the stress reported by finite element analysis is large at point loads.

A point or edge load is unusual in real models, but these loads are convenient for stress analysis and
work well if the result is interpreted correctly. If the area of interest in the model is located away from
the load, you can ignore the unrealistically high stresses reported at the load. If the singularity is at the
area of interest, you need to model that area in more detail. If you perform a convergence study, the
stress at the singularity never converges, because the theoretical stress is infinite. Monitor the stress
at the area of interest and not at the stress singularity.
Another common cause of stress singularities is models with sharp internal corners. Because sharp
internal corners have infinite stress, the stress never converges on an answer. Most models have a fillet
in the corner, especially if the corner is in an area where high stresses are expected. If the sharp corner
is in an area of concern, add a fillet to better approximate the real component. If the corner is not in an
area of concern, either add a fillet or ignore the unrealistic high stress reported at the singularity. You
can adjust the color bar so that you ignore the unrealistic stresses at a singularity.

Although you can ignore stress singularities when you perform a manual mesh convergence,
you cannot perform an automatic convergence if the model contains singularities.

Animating and Reporting Analysis Results


When a simulation is complete, you have two additional tools for interpreting and communicating the
results: animation and report generation. The Animation tool enables you to better understand the
behavior of the component under a specific loading condition.
The Report tool enables you to communicate your designs and results effectively without needing
Inventor or Inventor Professional. The report automatically includes a copy of all the result plots and
data in a compact HTML file, making it an excellent medium for communicating results through the
Internet or intranet.

138 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


The following illustration is part of an HTML report generated in the stress analysis environment
showing a summary of maximum results and an equivalent stress plot.

Animate Results
You use the Animate Results tool to see how the part reacts under load by animating the deformed
model. The animation uses the current deformation scale. You can view the animation on screen, or
save it to an AVI file to include in reports or share with team members.

Access

Animate Results

Panel Bar: Stress Analysis


Toolbar: Stress Analysis

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 139


In the following illustration, four images are shown to simulate the animated results of the analysis.
Using standard media player controls you can play, pause, stop, and record the animated results.

Generating Reports
When an analysis is complete, you use the Report tool to generate an HTML report of the result. The
report includes:

Loads.
■ Constraints.

Material properties.

Tabular results, such as maximum and minimum stress, deformation, safety factor, and modal
frequencies.

Graphical results, such as equivalent stress, deformation, safety factor, and mode shapes.

Access

Report

Panel Bar: Stress Analysis


Toolbar: Stress Analysis

140 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


In the following illustrations, different areas of the report are shown to illustrate the types of
information the reports contain.

The report is in HTML format and includes several linked files. To distribute or move the report, include
the report file itself and all of the linked files. You can find the location of the report in your web
browser’s address bar.
You can edit a report by opening it in an HTML editor or word processor. Use Microsoft® Word to
embed the images in the document and save the report as a single document to share with others, or
to incorporate into other documents.

The same name and location are used for all reports. If you want to keep a report, copy the
report and its associated files to another folder so that they are not overwritten when you
generate the next report.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 141


Performing a Convergence Study
The number, size, and distribution of elements in a model are critical to the success of your analysis. In
finite element analysis, there is a trade-off between accuracy and speed of solution. For greater speed,
you should use fewer elements. For greater accuracy, you must use more elements. To ensure that
your analysis results are accurate, you need to perform a convergence study to determine the
optimum mesh size for your design.
The appropriate distribution of elements is also important to avoid wasting solution time solving for
many small elements where a few large elements suffice. In areas of the model where stress is fairly
continuous or changes minimally, large elements can adequately model the stress distribution. In
areas of the model where the stress changes rapidly, such as near a stress concentration, small
elements are required.

Stress Analysis Settings


You use the Mesh Relevance slider in the Stress Settings dialog box to set the global mesh size.

You typically perform two or more runs to determine the best mesh size. You can manually perform a
convergence study by running the analysis at several different mesh relevance settings, such as 0, 50,
and 100.
To run automatic convergence, select Result Convergence and run the analysis. The model is meshed
using the global mesh size that you set on the Mesh Relevance slider. When the analysis is complete,
the software calculates the change in stress (error norm) for each element. If the change in stress is
large, the element is divided into four elements for the next run.
After the next analysis, if the results have changed less than 10%, the model is considered to have
converged. If not, the elements with high error norm are again divided and the analysis is rerun. There
is a maximum of three analyses. If the model fails to converge, a warning message is displayed. When
this occurs, check for and correct singularities in the model.
Automatic convergence can produce much finer mesh than you can achieve using the manual Mesh
Relevance slider, but it can take much longer to converge on an answer.

142 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


The following illustration shows differences in mesh size with manual meshing and using automatic
convergence.

Mesh Relevance = -100 Mesh Relevance = 100 Automatic Convergence

Convergence Study Graphs


The following illustrations show stress results that are converging on a value (the left graph) and
values that are not converging (the right graph).

In the left graph, it is clear that the results are converging on a value and that a further decrease in
mesh size will not make a significant difference to the answer. If the results have not converged, as in
the right graph, there is a problem in the model and you need to examine the results closely before
you use them. Nonconverging results are normally due to stress singularities caused by modeling
simplifications or errors. If the stress singularity is not in the area of interest, you can ignore the high
stress and use the results at the area of interest.

Process: Performing a Convergence Study


The following steps outline how to perform a convergence study to determine the optimum mesh size
for a model.

1. Start with a coarse mesh (few large elements) and run the analysis.
2. View the deformation to determine whether constraints and loads are correctly applied.
3. Record the result (stress, deformation, or modal frequency) in the area of interest.
4. Re-mesh with a smaller mesh in the area of high stress gradient.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 143


5. Run the analysis again and record the result in the area of interest.
6. Re-mesh with a smaller mesh in the area of high stress gradient.
7. Run the analysis again and record the result in the area of interest.
8. Plot or tabulate the results to determine if they are converging. Typically, if the result changes
less than 10% between runs, the model is considered to have converged.

Convergence Study Guidelines


Results convergence can take a long time to run, so it is best to do last, after you understand the
analysis behavior and have performed all design iterations. In most cases, only the end quantity
changes in the converged answer, and not the area where the high stress occurs and how the part
deflects.
Deformation and mode shape typically converge quickly and without problem. Because deformation
is not affected by small geometric features, larger elements adequately model deformation, and few
runs are required to converge on a result. Stress results typically take more steps to converge and may
not converge at all if singularities are present. If the high stress is concentrated in a small area,
numerous small elements are required to adequately model the stress distribution, which typically
takes several steps before the results converge.

Avoid the tendency to select a fine mesh and run only one analysis. It is impossible to
determine whether the results converge unless you run several analyses.

If you run out of disk space during results convergence, change the %TEMP% or %TMP%
system variable to point to a drive with more free space. To access these variables, right-click
My Computer, click Properties, click the Advanced tab, and click Environment Variables.

Stress Analysis Files


When you add stress analysis information to a part and then save the part file, new files are created to
hold the stress analysis input and results. The file names begin with the same name as the part file but
have different extensions. By default, the files are created in the same location as the part file, with
some files being stored in subfolders within that location.

144 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Stress Analysis Settings Dialog Box
Select the Create OLE Link to Result Files option to create OLE links between the part file and the result
files that are generated.

OLE Linked Result Files


In the following illustration, result files are displayed under the 3rd Party node in the browser. These
files are automatically created and linked when the part file is saved. The *_Structure files are displayed
only when Analysis Type is set to Stress Analysis or Both, while the *_Modal file is displayed only when
the Analysis Type is set to Modal or Both.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 145


Storage Locations
The following illustration shows the analysis result file storage locations.

The primary result file *.ipa is created in the same folder as the part file to which it is linked.
Additional result files are stored in a subfolder that uses the same name as the part file to which
they are linked.

File Management
The analysis result files contain the analysis settings, loads, and results. The IPT file also contains a copy
of the analysis settings and loads, but it does not contain the results. The IPT and result files each
contain references to each other.
You manage these files in a similar manner to managing other Autodesk Inventor files. If you move or
rename one of the files and not the others, you see a prompt to resolve the file link errors when you
open the part or when you switch to the Stress Analysis environment. To resolve the link, you can
locate the files or, if you know that the files are missing or deleted, skip the file to continue. If you skip
the file, the loads and settings are still available, because copies are stored in the IPT file.
To update the results, update the analysis. When you save the part file, new result files are generated.
If you use Autodesk® Vault storage, the result files are treated as children of the part file. Autodesk
Vault retrieves and checks in the result files at the same time as the part file when requested to do so.

146 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Exercise: Determine Enforced Displacement
In this exercise, you determine the force required to
2. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis.
displace a cantilever snap fit a known distance. You
Because no material was set for the model,
also determine the stress and safety factor.
the Choose Material dialog box is displayed.

From the Material list, select Nylon-6/6.

Click OK.

The Stress Analysis panel bar is displayed.


There are no loads or constraints, so the
Stress Analysis Update tool is disabled.
3. On the panel bar, click the Fixed Constraint
tool.
■ Click the face at the left end of the beam.

Click OK.

Notice that the fixed constraint is added
to the browser.

The completed exercise

Completing the Exercise


To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 3: Stress
Analysis. Click Exercise: Determine
4. Click the Fixed Constraint tool.
Enforced Displacment.

Click the face on the back of the hook.
■ Expand the Fixed Constraint dialog box.
1. Open Stress_CantileverSnapFit.ipt. ■
Select Use Components.

Select the check box next to Y and enter
-4mm. Notice that the displacement is
negative because the tip must deflect
down.
■ Click OK.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 147


The stress distribution in the beam looks
reasonable. The stress is not uniform at the
fixed end because the fixed constraint
prevents the beam from shrinking laterally
NOTE: You could also apply the constraint to as a result of the Poisson effect.
the top edge instead of the face. Because the
area of the edge is zero, the reported stress 7. In the browser, right-click Fixed Constraint 2.
will be unrealistically high at the edge. Click Reaction Forces.
The force required to displace the edge is
5. Click the Stress Analysis Settings tool. In the
listed.
Stress Analysis Settings dialog box, ensure
that: ■ Click OK to close the Reaction Forces

dialog box.
For Analysis Type, Stress Analysis is
selected.

Mesh Relevance is 0.

The Result Convergence check box is
clear.

In the dialog box, click OK.


6. On the Standard toolbar, click the Stress
Analysis Update tool.
When the analysis is complete, the
equivalent stress is displayed on the
deformed model. 8. In the browser, double-click Deformation.
9. On the Standard toolbar, select 1:1
Automatic in the Deformation Style list.

148 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


10. View the model from the front and confirm 12. Adjust the color bands so that you can
that the snap fit deflects the correct amount. determine the stress on the top of the beam,
near the fixed end.

On the panel bar, click Color Bar.
■ In the Color Bar dialog box, clear the
Automatic option.

Enter 5.00e+001 MPa.

Click OK.

11. Reanalyze the model using a mesh relevance


of approximately 50 and again with a mesh
relevance of 100. Confirm that the stress has
converged.
The following illustration shows the stress
for a mesh relevance of 100.
13. On the panel bar, click the Stress Analysis
Settings tool.
■ Set the Mesh Relevance to 0.

Select Result Convergence and click OK.
14. Run the analysis. This may take several
minutes.
15. Turn on the mesh display to see the resulting
mesh.

As you increase the mesh size, the maximum


stress at the corners of the fixed end
increases because there is a stress singularity
at the corner.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 149


16. Adjust the color bars to determine the stress
on the top face of the beam near the
fixed end.

The factor of safety plot shows a value of 1.2.


There is very little option to reduce weight
based on achieving a factor of safety of 1.
Another option is to use a stronger material
and then reduce weight.
17. Save and close the file.

150 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Exercise: Perform an In-Place Analysis
In this exercise, you perform an in-place analysis of a part in an assembly. You add a bearing load using another
part in the assembly to align the load. You also use pin and frictionless constraints.

The completed exercise

Completing the Exercise 1. Open Stress_RockerArm.iam.


To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 3: Stress
Analysis. Click Exercise: Perform an In-
Place Analysis.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 151


2. To suppress fillets on the Rocker Arm part: 6. On the panel bar, click the Bearing Load tool.
■ ■
In the browser, right-click Rocker Arm. Select the hole where the hydraulic
Click Edit. cylinder is attached.
■ In the browser, right-click ExteriorFillets. ■ For Magnitude, enter 20000 N.
Click Suppress Features. ■
Click the Set Bearing Load Direction
3. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis. button.
■ Click the edge of the hydraulic cylinder
4. On the panel bar, click the Pin Constraint to orient the force. If the force points
tool. toward the cylinder, click Flip Bearing
■ Select the two cylindrical surfaces that Load to make the force point away from
contact the bearings. the cylinder.


Click OK. Click OK to close the Bearing Load
dialog box.

5. On the panel bar, click the Frictionless


Constraint tool.

Select the flat face.
■ Click OK.

7. On the panel bar, click the Stress Analysis


Settings tool. In the Stress Analysis Settings
dialog box, confirm the following:

The analysis type is Stress Analysis.

Mesh Relevance is approximately 0.
■ Result Convergence is cleared.

Click OK to close the Stress Analysis Settings


dialog box.
8. On the Standard toolbar, click the Stress
Analysis Update tool.

152 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


9. When the analysis is complete, the 13. In the browser, right-click Hyd_Ram_Pin.
equivalent stress is displayed on the Select Properties.
deformed model. ■
Click the Occurrence tab.

Change the X Offset to -500 mm.
■ Click OK.
14. On the Standard toolbar, click Update.
15. Edit the rocker arm in place. Activate the
Stress Analysis application.
16. Zoom in to the right end where the hydraulic
cylinder is attached. Notice that the force
direction does not update to reflect the
change in position of the component.

10. On the panel bar, click Animate Results.



In the Animation dialog box,
click Play.

With the animation still running, view 17. In the browser, right-click Bearing Load.
the model from the front. Click Edit.

■ Zoom in to the left end. Set the force direction.
■ ■ Close the Edit Bearing Load
Confirm that the face slides left and right
and does not move up or down. dialog box.
18. Rerun the analysis and view the result.

11. With the animation still running, zoom out to


display the entire model. When you
understand how the model deforms,
click OK.
12. Return to the top-level assembly.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 153


19. In the browser, double-click the Safety 22. Return to the Stress Analysis environment.
Factor result. On the Standard toolbar, click Stress Analysis
Update.

According to the factor of safety plot, you


can reduce weight if you are trying to
achieve a factor of safety value of 2. 23. In the browser, double-click the Safety
20. Return to the part environment. On the Factor result.
Standard toolbar, click the Last Displayed
Stress Result Item as shown.

This result is useful because it enables you to


edit features based on stress results.
21. Create a cutout using the following
dimensions.

Even though you have reduced the weight,


the factor of safety remains unaltered and
stress has remained the same. You can try
the next challenge step or go straight to the
last step.

154 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


24. Challenge Task 26. Alter the position of the small hole away
from the big hole as shown in the following
Now see if you can remove further material
illustration.
without going below a factor of safety of 2.
A sample is shown.

TIP: Reduce thickness of material in the


region of the hole cutouts. Use a thickness 27. Update the analysis. As a result of moving
of 6 mm. the hole further away, you have achieved
your goal.
25. Run a results convergence to see if the
results have converged.

28. Save and close all files.

As a result of performing a results


convergence, the factor of safety plot has
reduced to less than 2. If it is greater than 2,
then you do not need to proceed to next
step. Go straight to the last step.

Lesson: Running an Analysis and Analyzing Results ■ 155


Lesson: Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results
with Stress Analysis

Overview
This lesson describes how to transfer reaction loads of joints from the Dynamic Simulation
environment into the Stress Analysis environment. It also illustrates how to apply motion loads in the
Stress Analysis environment.
Performing FEA on a component using loads calculated in the Dynamic Simulation environment
provides a realistic view of how the component will perform in real-life conditions.
In the following illustration, Stress Analysis was used to test an arm, and the display was set to
Safety Factor.

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

Describe how Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis can work together to validate part designs.

Export Dynamic Simulation results to FEA.

156 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


About Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with
Stress Analysis
Performing stress analysis on a component requires you to choose where the loads should be applied,
which types of loads should be applied, and the magnitude of the loads to calculate stresses. To
eliminate guesswork and save time, you can use the Dynamic Simulation environment to calculate the
types of forces and magnitude of forces on the component, and then export the required loads
directly to FEA. If the stress analysis exposes problem areas with a component, you can quickly return
to the part environment, edit the design, and return to the Stress Analysis environment to test the
effect of the edits.
In the following illustration, a component is shown in the Stress Analysis environment with motion
loads that were exported from the Dynamic Simulation environment. The symbols designate the
location of the loads and the type of load to be applied.

Definition of Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with Stress Analysis


Solving design problems with Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis is a two-step process that
ensures that components in an assembly withstand the forces and motions applied to them during
the proposed life of the mechanism. You can use Dynamic Simulation to calculate the types of forces
as well as the magnitude of the forces, and export that information to be used for stress analysis. In the
Stress Analysis environment the exported forces, or motion loads, are then applied to the component
and the results are displayed according to the output that you require.

Lesson: Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with Stress Analysis ■ 157


In the following illustration, the Output Grapher is displaying the time cycle showing the time step
chosen to be exported (1) to Stress Analysis. The steps that are chosen for export appear under the
Time Steps node (2).

Example
In the course of designing a window glass lift mechanism, the design of one of the arms has come into
question. To test the ability of the arm to withstand the stresses of lifting and lowering the window
glass, you use Dynamic Simulation to place the joints, add the required velocity to the mechanism, and
then calculate the motion loads. After the simulation has run, you use the Output Grapher to export
the loads to FEA. In Stress Analysis, you apply the motion loads to the component and perform a stress
analysis update to view the results. Upon changing the display to Safety Factor, you see that in several
areas the safety factor is less than the customer-mandated safety factor of four. With this information,
you can modify the component design and quickly repeat the process to see the effect of your
modifications.
In the following illustration, the stress analysis has been completed and the part displayed with
contour colors that correspond to the color bar on the left.

158 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Exporting Motion Loads to Stress Analysis
After you calculate reaction forces and torques in joints in Dynamic Simulation, you can easily export
these values to Stress Analysis as input values to test and validate a part. This method of analyzing a
part is accurate because Dynamic Simulation provides the magnitude of the forces and torques that
the part experiences in the mechanism during the motion.
In the following illustration, a simulation is running, and the forces designated for stress analysis are
indicated by arrows. These arrows display the direction and magnitude of the forces.

Process: Exporting Motion Loads to Stress Analysis


The following steps describe the process of sharing Dynamic Simulation results with Stress Analysis.

1. In the Dynamic Simulation environment, create joints for the mechanism using the Automatic
Update of Constraints or Convert Assembly Constraints and Insert Joint tools.
2. Run the simulation to calculate the motion loads.
3. Use the Output Grapher to determine the time step you will use by clicking in the Export
FEA column.
4. Click Export to FEA in the panel bar. Designate the joint faces whose motion loads will be
exported to FEA.
5. Perform an in-place edit of the part.
6. Enter the Stress Analysis environment.
7. Apply the motion loads.
8. Perform a stress analysis update to calculate the stresses.
9. If testing reveals an area of concern, return to the part modeling environment (or suppress
features within the Stress Analysis environment if applicable).

Lesson: Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with Stress Analysis ■ 159


10. Make necessary edits to the part.
11. Rerun the Stress Analysis.
12. Enter the Dynamic Simulation environment and rerun the dynamic simulation to verify inertial
and reaction loads.

Guidelines
The following list describes some basic guidelines for sharing Dynamic Simulation results with Stress
Analysis.
■ Because selection can be difficult when the entire assembly is visible, isolate the part in the
assembly environment. Return to the Dynamic Simulation environment and designate the part
faces for FEA testing before you run the simulation.
■ Because it can be difficult to find the time step where you have the maximum peak stresses during
the motion, it is recommended that you export several time steps and compare the results.

160 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Exercise: Simulate and Analyze a Glass Lever Mechanism
In this exercise, you run a simulation of a glass lever
mechanism. You then use the simulation results to 1. Open WindowGlassLeverFEA.iam.
export the maximum loads to the Stress Analysis
environment to validate the robustness of a part. The
initial results indicate that the original design
achieves a factor of safety below 1, which indicates
that the part has failed.

The joints for this mechanism have already


been created. You designate the load
bearing faces on the second arm
component. These are the faces that will be
used by Stress Analysis to apply the reaction
forces and torques in the joints determined
by Dynamic Simulation.
2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic
The completed exercise Simulation.
3. In the Simulation Panel, click Run or Replay
Completing the Exercise Simulation.
To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 3: Stress
Analysis. Click Exercise: Simulate and
Analyze a Glass Lever Mechanism.

After the simulation is complete, you open


the Output Grapher to find the time step for
the maximum force on the arm. You use this
time step to test the part in FEA.
4. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, click
Output Grapher.

Lesson: Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with Stress Analysis ■ 161


5. In the Output Grapher browser: 7. When the search max load is highlighted,

select the box as indicated by (1). This action
In n°3 :Revolution (Main Arm asm:1,
transfers the loads to the Stress Analysis
Second Arm:1), expand Force. Select
environment as indicated by (2).
fr[3.1] (1).

In n°4 :Welding (Pin:1, Second Arm:1),
expand Force. Select fr[4.0] (2).
■ In n°5 :Welding (Upper_Pin:1, Second
Arm:1), expand Force. Select fr[5.0] (3).

NOTE: You can transfer multiple loads to


Stress Analysis.
8. Close the Output Grapher and reset the
simulation to the start position by clicking
the Rewind button or dragging the time
slider to 0.00 seconds.
9. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
Export to FEA.
10. Select the Second Arm as shown. This action
enables you to transfer the loads to this part
6. Right-click the column heading for fr[3.1] (N).
to perform stress analysis. Click OK.
Click Search Max. The time bar on the graph
moves to the time step highlighted in the
Time Viewer, as shown.

162 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


11. Highlight Joint No. 3 if not already 13. Next highlight Joint No. 5. Select the load
highlighted. Select the load bearing surface bearing surface as shown. Click OK.
as shown. This is the surface where the loads
will be transferred to.

12. Next highlight Joint No. 4. Select the load


bearing surface as shown.

14. Click Applications menu > Assembly.


15. In the Model browser, right-click Second
Arm:1. Click Edit.
16. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis.
17. On the Stress Analysis panel bar, click Motion
Loads. In the Motion Loads information box,
click OK. Notice the symbols added to the
part at the locations where the loads will be
calculated, as shown.

Lesson: Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with Stress Analysis ■ 163


18. On the Standard toolbar, click Stress Analysis 20. On the Standard toolbar, in the Deformation
Update. After a few moments the part Scale list, select Actual.
updates to show the effect of the stress on
the Second Arm:1 at the selected time step
of the simulation.
NOTE: Due to the complex calculations
required, this update may take several
minutes to complete.

21. Notice that the display updates to show the


actual amount of deformation in the part.

The results in the graphics window display


the equivalent stress on the arm. The color
contours correspond to the values defined
by the color bar. Equivalent stress can be
used to obtain a reasonable estimation of
fatigue failure, especially in cases of Next you change the display to view the
repeated tensile and tensile-shear loading. safety factor for the part. The safety factor
identifies the areas of the model that are
19. In the graphics window, use the Rotate and likely to fail under load.
Zoom tools so that your view matches the
following illustration. 22. In the Model browser, for Second Arm:1,
under Results, double-click Safety Factor.
Notice that the view updates with a new
color bar and the part display updates to
reflect the safety factor values. The red areas
highlight where the part’s safety factor is 1 or
less and indicates areas where failure is likely
to occur.

NOTE: The amount of flex shown is not the


true amount of change in the part, but a
scaled representation. Next, you change the
scale to see the actual amount of
deformation of the part.

164 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


NOTE: You may need to rotate your view to
see the areas that are likely to fail.

The part has a minimum factor of safety of


0.635. This means it has gone beyond the
elastic limit and the part has failed.
23. On the Standard toolbar, click Return.
24. Close the file. Do not save changes.

Lesson: Sharing Dynamic Simulation Results with Stress Analysis ■ 165


Chapter Summary

Stress Analysis enables you to visualize how your design will perform and helps to identify areas in the
design that may need improvement. Like any simulation application, the result accuracy for Stress
Analysis is completely dependent on the accuracy of the information that is given for loads and
constraints. By using information gathered from the results of your dynamic simulation, the accuracy
of your stress analysis is enhanced and the process is streamlined.
Having completed this chapter, you can:
■ Create loads and constraints to simulate the real-world conditions in which your designs are
expected to perform.

Set up and run stress analyses and review the results; animate those results and perform
convergency studies to achieve the greatest accuracy.

Perform a finite element analysis on a component in the Stress Analysis environment using loads
calculated in the Dynamic Simulation environment.

166 ■ Chapter 3: Stress Analysis


Chapter

4
Engineering Problems
and Solutions Chapter4:

This chapter offers you a chance to practice using the tools and techniques you have learned in
previous chapters to solve real-world engineering and design problems.

167
Lesson: Solving Design Problems

Overview
Designers are required to solve many different engineering problems throughout a typical design.
At any point during the design process, a designer may ask one or more of the following questions:

Do the parts fit together properly?

Do the parts move well together?
■ Is there an unknown interference between parts?

Do the parts follow the intended path?

Even though most of these questions can be answered using the standard design tools offered in
the Autodesk® Inventor™ software, there may be other questions which cannot. For example, most
designers also want to know:

What is the machinery time cycle?
■ Is the actuator powerful enough?
■ Is the link robust enough?

Can you reduce weight without sacrificing integrity?

All these questions can be answered by building a digital prototype using Dynamic Simulation and
Stress Analysis. By combining the design tools available in the standard Autodesk Inventor software
with the Dynamic Simulation and Stress Analysis capabilities in the Autodesk® Inventor™ Professional
software, designers can quickly build and validate an optimum product that enables them to
complete the tasks identified in the following illustration.

Size bearings using reactions. Find peak stresses using motion loads.
Size actuators using reaction loads. Evaluate the global motion and time cycle.

168 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


This lesson contains a collection of real-world engineering design problems. Each design problem is
unique and offers a recommended approach or workflow for solving the problem using Dynamic
Simulation and/or Stress Analysis. These engineering design problems include:
1. Calculating the stress on a wheelie bar.
2. Calculating the maximum acceleration of a cross subassembly.
3. Validating the robustness of an arm linkage.
4. Creating a cam part from motion outputs.
5. Sizing a spring for a bike suspension.

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:
■ Use Stress Analysis to apply boundary conditions and analyze an initial design. Based on the initial
stress analysis results, revise the design in the part environment for reanalysis.

Use Dynamic Simulation to define realistic contact mechanisms incorporating frictional and
restitutional properties.

Use Dynamic Simulation to export motion loads to Stress Analysis. In Stress Analysis, apply the
motion loads and perform a stress analysis to view initial results and modify geometry to satisfy
design criteria.

Use Dynamic Simulation to trace the motion of a component during the simulation and then use
this trace curve to create a part.
■ Use Dynamic Simulation to identify the length, stiffness, and tension requirements of a spring for
a bike suspension.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 169


Design Problem 1: Calculate the Stress on a Wheelie Bar
Design problem – Optimizing a design can become Set the Boundary Conditions for the
a lengthy process, especially when designers and Wheelie Bar
analysts are working in isolation or when a physical
prototype is required to test the initial design. This
task becomes more challenging and tedious when 1. Open Stress_WheelieBar.ipt.
you need to revise the design.
Design solution – Using Stress Analysis you can
easily apply boundary conditions, including forces
and constraints, to analyze the initial design using a
digital prototype. Based on the initial stress analysis
results, you can easily make changes to the
component in the part environment for reanalysis.
In this exercise, you do the following:
2. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis.
1. Set boundary conditions for the wheelie bar.
3. The wheelie bar assembly must be designed
2. Perform an initial analysis of the wheelie bar to
to withstand a total load of 700 N because
check for strength and deflection.
there are two brackets and the force is
3. Make design changes to the wheelie bar and divided between them. The force of 350 N
then reanalyze. needs to be applied at 10 degrees from the
vertical position.
■ On the panel bar, click the Force tool.
Select the upper hole (1) on the right side
of the part.
■ In the Force dialog box, expand the
dialog box. Select Use Components.

In the Fy field, enter -350N*sin(80deg).
■ Make sure the Fx and Fz values are set
to 0.

Click OK.

The completed exercise

Completing the Exercise


To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 4:
Engineering Problems and Solutions.
Click Design Problem1: Calculate the
Stress on a Wheelie Bar.

170 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions



4. The wheelie bar is supported by the bolt Click Applications menu > Part.
through the axle and needs to be fully ■ Split both faces top and bottom equally
constrained using the fixed constraint at the as shown.
bolt hole.
■ On the panel bar, click the Fixed
Constraint tool.

Select the bolt hole and click OK.

5. The wheelie bar is also prevented from


rotating around the bolt hole because the
bar fits tightly over the frame rail. When a 6. To constrain the split faces:
force is applied, the wheelie bar bends down

and tries to rotate around the bolt hole. Click Applications menu > Stress
Although the constraint on the bolt prevents Analysis.
■ On the panel bar, click the frictionless
rigid body rotation, it does not prevent the
bar from deforming into the space occupied constraint. Select the top and bottom
by the frame rail. To prevent rotation, you split faces as shown.
need to fix the Y direction on the faces that ■ Click OK.
make contact with the top and bottom of the
frame rail using frictionless constraints.
You constrain only half of each face because
the other half must be free to pull away from
the frame rail as the wheelie bar deforms.
TIP: Sketch a line on each face and then split
each face using the sketched line.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 171


Perform an Initial Analysis of the Make Design Changes to the Wheelie Bar
Wheelie Bar
1. In the browser, expand the Features folder.
1. On the panel bar, click the Stress Analysis ■
Right-click Fillet3.
Setting tool. ■
Click Unsuppress Features.
■ Set Mesh Relevance to 0 if it is not
already set. 2. On the Standard toolbar, click the Stress

Analysis Update button.
Clear the Result Convergence check box

if it is selected. In the browser, in the Results folder,

Click OK. double-click Safety Factor.

2. On the Standard toolbar, click Stress Analysis


Update.
3. In the browser, double-click Safety Factor.
The factor of safety is approx 1.4.

Even though the factor of safety has


increased, it is still less than 2. The design
requires additional alterations.
4. The design target is 2. Therefore the
component has failed. While design 3. Click Applications menu > Part.
alterations are required, first you create
4. Add the rib to wheelie bar as shown.
a report.
■ On the panel bar, click Report.

Minimize the report.

Do not close the report.

172 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


5. On the panel bar, click Fillet. 8. In the browser, double-click Safety Factor to

display the results.
Add 4 mm radius fillets to the four edges
as shown.

Click OK.

Because the factor of safety is greater than 2,


6. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis. you can conclude that the component is safe
for operation based on the design criteria.
7. On the Standard toolbar, click Stress Analysis
Update to rerun the analysis. 9. On the panel bar, click Report to generate a
new report. Compare the results with the
original report.
10. Close the file. Do not save changes.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 173


Design Problem 2: Calculate the Maximum Acceleration of a
Cross Subassembly
Design Problem – Traditionally, the ability to Apply 2D Contacts Between the Cross
accurately study complex contact mechanisms Subassembly and Rotor
could be achieved only by either building a physical
prototype or through extensive research and
development. The major disadvantage of these 1. Open GenevaDriveSDP.iam.
methods is that they are both time-consuming and
costly.
Design Solution – Using Dynamic Simulation, you
can easily create realistic contact mechanisms that
incorporate frictional and restitutional properties.
This enables you to simulate realistic conditions and
analyze mechanisms confidently and efficiently.
In this exercise, you do the following:
1. Apply 2D contacts between the cross
subassembly and rotor, including specifying
frictional and restitution properties.
2. Apply rotational velocity to the rotor.
3. Determine maximum acceleration of the cross
subassembly.
The joints for the Geneva drive have already
been applied. First you apply a coefficient of
friction to the contact joints between the
cross and rotor subassemblies.
2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic
Simulation. In the Dynamic Simulation
dialog box, read the message about
migrating legacy joints and click OK.
3. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right-
click n°3 : 2D Contact (cross:1, rotor:1).
Click Properties.

The completed exercise

Completing the Exercise


To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 4:
Engineering Problems and Solutions.
Click Design Problem 2: Calculate the
Maximum Acceleration of a Cross
Subassembly.

174 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


4. In the n°3 :2D Contact (cross:1, rotor:1) dialog Apply Rotational Velocity on the Rotor
box:

For Restitution, enter 0. 1. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right-

click n°2 :Revolution (frame:1, rotor:1).
For Friction, enter 0.15. Click Properties.
■ Click OK.

5. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, right-


click n°4 :2D Contact (cross:1, rotor:1). Click
Properties.

2. In the n°2 :Revolution (frame:1, rotor:1)


dialog box:

Click the Dof (1) R tab. (1)
■ Click Edit Imposed Motion. (2)

Select Enable Imposed Motion. (3)

Select Velocity. (4)
■ Click the arrow next to the edit window.
Click Constant Value. (5)

In the edit window, enter
-360 deg/s. (6)

Click OK.
6. In the n°4 :2D Contact (cross:1, rotor:1)
dialog box:

For Restitution, enter 0.
■ For Friction, enter 0.15.

Click OK.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 175


3. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, notice Determine Maximum Acceleration
that the revolution joint n°2 :Revolution of Rotor
(frame:1, cross:1) has a hash mark (#) added
to the icon, signifying that a force has been 1. In the Simulation Panel:
imposed on the joint.

For Final time, enter 2 s. (1)
■ For Time Mode, enter 200. (2)

Click Run or Replay Simulation. (3)

Next, you open the Output Grapher to view


4. In the browser, right click n°4 :2D Contact the results.
(cross:1, rotor:1). Click Properties. In the
2. On the Dynamic Simulation panel bar, click
n°4 :2D Contact (cross:1, rotor:1) dialog box:
Output Grapher.

Click Invert Normal as shown (1).

3. If the Output Grapher is minimized, expand it
Click OK. by placing your cursor on the corner of the
title bar as shown. Hold down your left
mouse button and drag to resize.

Next, you run the simulation to view the


resulting forces in the graphics window.

176 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


When the Output Grapher is visible, you 6. In the Graphics area of the Output Grapher, a
select the information you wish to display. graph of the items selected in the browser is
For this simulation, you want to determine displayed. The graph displays the time (1)
the acceleration of the cross as the rotor divided in 0.25 second increments, and the
rotates at one turn per second. Then you acceleration (2) measured in degrees per
determine the maximum acceleration and second.
the point at which it occurs.
4. In the Output Grapher browser:

Under Positions, clear p[1.1].
■ Expand Accelerations.

Select a[1.1].

Next, you use the Output Grapher to


determine the maximum acceleration of the
cross and the point at which this acceleration
occurs.
7. Right-click anywhere in the a[1.1] column.
Click Search Max.

5. Notice that the Output Grapher updates to


display the information that you selected. In
the Values area, two columns are displayed:
■ Time (1): The total time of the simulation
is divided by the number of images
specified in the Simulation Panel.
■ a[1.1] (2): This column displays the
acceleration value in relation to the time.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 177


8. In the Output Grapher:

The maximum acceleration is
highlighted in the Values area. (1)
■ The time bar displays on the graph
showing the time of the maximum
acceleration. (2)
■ The assembly updates to show the
position of the rotor subassembly at
maximum acceleration. (3)

9. Close the Output Grapher. In the Simulation


Panel, click Activate Construction Mode.

10. Close the file. Do not save changes.

178 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


Design Problem 3: Validate the Robustness of an Arm Linkage
Design Problem – In the course of designing a Perform Initial Analysis of Second Arm
window glass lift mechanism, the designer needs to
verify that one of the arms can withstand the stresses In this portion of the exercise, you calculate the
of lifting and lowering the window glass. Developing stresses in the second arm component. After
a physical prototype would be costly and time- performing the stress analysis, you view the
consuming. Relying only on engineering experience equivalent stress, safety factor, and deformation for
could introduce a significant element of risk or the component and then generate a report for
introduce an overdesign scenario. comparison.
Design Solution – Using Dynamic Simulation, you
1. Open WindowGlassLeverFEA-DP3.iam.
can simulate the mechanism and export the motion
loads to Stress Analysis. In Stress Analysis, you can
apply the motion loads to the component and
perform a stress analysis to view initial results. Based
on these results, you can modify the part geometry
to satisfy the design criteria.
In this exercise, you do the following:
1. Conduct an initial analysis of the second arm
using motion loads exported from Dynamic
Simulation.
2. Modify the second arm design and reanalyze.

2. In the browser, right-click Second Arm.


Click Edit.
3. Click Applications menu > Stress Analysis.
■ On the panel bar, click Motion Loads.

Click OK.

Notice that the loads have already been


transferred from the Dynamic Simulation
The completed exercise environment.

Completing the Exercise


To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 4:
Engineering Problems and Solutions.
Click Design Problem 3: Validate the
Robustness of an Arm Linkage.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 179


4. On the Standard toolbar, click Stress Analysis
Update. After a few moments the part
updates to show the effect of the stress on
the connecting arm at the selected time step
of the dynamic simulation.
NOTE: Due to the complex calculations
required, this update may take several
minutes to complete.

Next, you change the view to determine the


total deformation of the part.
6. In the browser, under the Results folder,
double-click Deformation.
Notice the color bar on the left. It shows that
the maximum deformation of the part is
7.2716 mm and the minimum deformation
is 0.
Equivalent stress can be used to obtain a
reasonable estimation of fatigue failure,
especially in cases of repeated tensile and
tensile-shear loading.
Next you change the display to view the
safety factor for the part. The safety factor
identifies the areas of the model that are
likely to fail under load.
5. In the browser, under the Results folder,
double-click Safety Factor.
Notice that the view updates with a new
color bar, and the part display updates to
reflect the safety factor values. The red areas
highlight where the part’s safety factor is 1 or
less and indicate areas where failure is likely
to occur. The part has a minimum factor of Next, you generate a report that displays all
safety of 0.635. This means it has gone of the stresses, the deformation, and safety
beyond the elastic limit and that the part factors on a single HTML page.
has failed.

180 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


7. On the panel bar, click Report. A Microsoft® 1. In the browser, under Second Arm:1, expand
Internet Explorer window opens displaying a the Features folder.
page with part information on tables, and

images of the different types of stresses and Right-click Fillet2. Click Unsuppress
their associated color bars. Features.

Minimize the report window.

Do not close the report.

Modify Second Arm Design


In this portion of the exercise, you make changes to
the second arm and rerun the stress analysis to see 2. Notice the ribs in each of the openings.
the effect of the changes. The part had an initial These were created and suppressed in the
safety factor value of less than 1, and the simulation event that the part would need extra
indicates that the part would fail under normal use. strength.
You make changes to the design in order to increase
the safety factor to an acceptable value. Finally you
generate a report of the stress analysis to compare
with the original version of the part.

Next, you perform a stress analysis on the


revised part.
3. On the Standard toolbar, click Stress Analysis
Update. The initial view displays the
equivalent stress values for the Second
Arm:1.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 181


4. You recall the deformation values to 6. The safety factor is to close to 1 at a value of
compare with the original version of the part. approx 1.0451.
■ ■
In the browser, under the Results folder, In the browser, double-click Equivalent
double-click Deformation. Stress.
■ ■
Notice the minimum and maximum Zoom in to the model to see the
values for the deformation of the part. maximum stress area around the fillet,
as shown.
The maximum deformation is now 3.0968.

7. To reduce the stress, you alter the fillet size


5. In the browser, double-click Safety Factor. around the high stress area.
Notice that minimum factor of safety is now ■ In the browser, in the Features Folder,
greater than 1.
right-click Fillet2. Click Edit Feature.

In the Fillet dialog box, change the radius
from 2 to 4 mm.
■ Click OK.
8. On the Standard toolbar, click Stress Analysis
Update to rerun the analysis. The stress has
reduced from 263MPa to 234MPa. The
maximum stress has moved to the back fillet
as shown.

182 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


9. In the browser, double-click Safety Factor. 11. Challenge Task:
The factor of safety has increased again
If you want to further increase the factor of
to 1.1725.
safety, then you can add further ribs or alter
other geometry.
12. On the Standard toolbar, click Return.
13. Close the file. Do not save changes.

10. Finally, you generate a report of the stress


values to compare with the original version
of the part.
■ On the Stress Analysis panel bar, click
Report. A second Microsoft® Internet
Explorer window is displayed with an
HTML page showing a report of the
revised part statistics and the results of
the stress analysis.
■ Compare the latest report to the initial
report.

Save these reports for comparison
purposes and as a record to show that
the analysis was performed.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 183


Design Problem 4: Create a Cam Part from Motion Outputs
Design Problem – Designing a cam is often a Create Joints Automatically from
tedious process, especially if you approach the Assembly Constraints
problem using data generated from mathematical
expressions and equations from several different In this portion of the exercise, you convert all
sources. The task becomes even more challenging assembly constraints to joints.
when you need to revise the cam design as a result of
a change in your mechanism and/or function. 1. Open Cam_To_Build.iam.
Design Solution – Using Dynamic Simulation, you
can easily create a cam by tracing the motion of a
component during the simulation. You can then use
this trace curve to easily create a cam part. This
process also simplifies the task of revising or
replacing your cam part as a result of a change in
your mechanism design.
In this exercise, you do the following:
1. Create joints automatically from existing
assembly constraints.
2. Set the initial closed position of the valve.
3. Import time and position data for the follower
from a text file using the Input Grapher.
4. Create a trace of the follower relative to the shaft.
5. Export the trace of the follower to a sketch to
create the cam.
6. Create the 3D cam part from exported trace data 2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic
in the part environment. Simulation.
3. In the Dynamic Simulation browser, notice
that all of the subassemblies are shown
under the Grounded node because no joints
have been applied.

The completed exercise

Completing the Exercise


To complete the exercise, follow the
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 4:
Engineering Problems and Solutions.
Click Design Problem 4: Create a CAM
Part from Motion Outputs.

184 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


4. To automatically update the assembly 6. In the graphics window, place the cursor (1)
constraints to a standard joint: over the C06:1 valve as shown.
■ ■
On the panel bar, click Dynamic Press and hold the left mouse button
Simulation Settings. and drag in the direction as shown (2).
■ In the Dynamic Simulation Settings ■ Click Undo after you have checked the
dialog box, select Automatically Update mechanism to enable the mechanism to
Translated Joints. go to its original position.
■ Click OK.

In the next section, you set the initial position


5. In the browser, notice that all of the of the C06:1 valve to its closed position.
assembly constraints are translated into
joints. All are shown below the Standard
Joints folder. Set the Initial Closed Position of the Valve

1. Click Applications menu > Assembly.


2. On the panel bar, click Constraint.
■ In the Place Constraint dialog box, under
Solution, click Flush.

Select the two faces as shown.

Click OK.

In the next step, you test the joints to verify


that the initial mechanism is working
correctly.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 185


3. The flush constraint was used only to move Notice that this offset resets the position
the C06:1 component to its closed position. value to 0 for the current position of the
Now suppress the Flush:4 constraint as nº 2 Prismatic (Ground:1, C06:1) joint.
shown. In the browser, right-click the Flush
constraint. Click Suppress.

Import Time/Position Data of Follower


from a Text File Using the Input Grapher

1. In the browser, right-click nº 2 Prismatic


4. Click Applications menu > (Ground:1, C06:1). Click Properties.
Dynamic Simulation.
2. In the nº 2 Prismatic (Ground:1, C06:1)
5. In the browser, expand the Standard Joints dialog box:
node. ■
Click the Dof 1 (T) tab. (1)

Right-click nº 2 Prismatic (Ground:1, ■
Click Edit Imposed Motion. (2)
C06:1). Click Properties. ■ Select Enable Imposed Motion. (3)
■ In the nº 2 Prismatic (Ground:1, C06:1) ■
Select Position. (4)
dialog box, click the Dof 1 (T) tab. (1)


Select Input Grapher. (5)
Right-click in the Position window.

Click Set Offset. (2) Click in the edit box. (6)

Click OK.

186 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


3. When the Input Grapher is displayed, for the 6. In the browser, right-click nº 6 Revolution
law of motion, select Spline as shown. (Ground:1, Shaft:1). Click Properties. In the
nº 6 Revolution (Ground:1, Shaft:1) dialog
box:
■ Click the Dof 1 (R) tab. (1)

Click Edit Imposed Motion. (2)

Select Enabled Imposed Motion. (3)

Select Velocity. (4)
■ Select Constant Value. (5)

In the edit box, enter 360 deg/s. (6)

Click OK.

4. In the Input Grapher:


■ Click Replace the Current Law. (1)

Click Load a Spline. (2)

Navigate to the location of your student
dataset files. Select Cam_To_Build.txt. (3)

Click Open.

Make sure X1 = 0 and X2 = 1.

Create a Trace of the Follower


Relative to the Shaft

1. In the browser, right-click Traces. Click Add


Trace.
2. Select the circular edge of the follower C3:1
as shown.
5. Click OK twice.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 187


3. Choose the shaft as the reference geometry. 2. In the browser, right-click Trace C3:1. Click
Export to Sketch. Select the shaft as shown.
A sketch with the trace is created on the
selected component.

4. Click the Trajectory color swatch. In the Color


dialog box, select Pink. Click OK. In the Trace
dialog box, click OK.

Export the Trace of the Follower to a


Sketch to Create a Cam
Create a Cam Part from the
1. Run the simulation. Exported Trace
The following trace is produced at the end of
the simulation. 1. Click Applications menu > Assembly.
NOTE: Do not restart the simulation. 2. In the browser, double-click Shaft:1 to edit
the part.
3. Double-click Sketch11 to edit the sketch.

On the panel bar, click Offset. Select the
exported sketch.
■ Offset the new sketch toward the inside
of the existing sketch geometry.

Place a 5 mm dimension between two
curves.

188 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


4. On the Standard toolbar, click Return.
5. Extrude the profile using a mid-plane
extrusion to a depth of 15 mm.

6. Change the cam feature color to pink.



In the browser, right-click the new
feature. Click Properties.
■ In the Feature Properties dialog box, in
the Feature Color Style list, select Pink.

Click OK.

7. On the Standard toolbar, click Return.


8. Click Applications menu > Dynamic
Simulation.
9. In the Simulation Panel, click Construction
Mode.
10. Rerun the simulation.
11. Close the file. Do not save changes.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 189


Design Problem 5: Size a Spring for a Bike Suspension
Design Problem – In order for a bike suspension to Convert Assembly Constraints to Joints
function properly, you need to ensure that the spring Automatically
has enough stiffness and travel to overcome a
known force exerted on the rear wheel and frame.
The frame design with the appropriate joints and 1. Open Bike_Suspension.iam.
environmental constraints is known, and has already
been defined. To complete the design, you need to
determine the stiffness and length (or travel) of the
spring.
Design Solution – Using Dynamic Simulation, you
can easily create and define a mechanism that
accurately represents the realistic behavior of forces.
With these actions, you can easily identify the
appropriate spring length, stiffness, and tension, all
of which are required to ensure a properly
functioning bike suspension design.
In this exercise, you do the following:
2. Click Applications menu > Dynamic
1. Convert assembly constraints to joints Simulation.
automatically.
2. Create an external force on the rear axis using 3. In the browser, notice that all of the joints
the Input Grapher. have been created automatically.
3. Run the unknown force to determine the
equilibrium state of the mechanism.
4. Determine the spring length and plot the spring
behavior.

The completed exercise

This is because the Automatically Update


Completing the Exercise Translated Joints option is selected in the
To complete the exercise, follow the Dynamic Simulation Settings.
steps in this book or in the onscreen
exercise. In the onscreen list of chapters
and exercises, click Chapter 4:
Engineering Problems and Solutions.
Click Design Problem 5: Size a Spring for
a Bike Suspension.

190 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


In the next step you test the joints to verify
that the initial mechanism is working
correctly.
4. In the graphics window, place the cursor (1)
over the Oscillating Arm:1 as shown. Press
and hold the left mouse button and drag in
the direction as shown. (2)

2. Notice that Trace1 is added in the browser.

NOTE: This export of trajectory data for the


force enables you to select X, Y, Z data in the
Output Grapher.
3. On the panel bar, click Force. Select the
endpoint of the Oscillating Arm:1. (1)

Select the axis for direction. (2)
5. On the Standard toolbar, click Undo to return ■
Expand the Force dialog box. Select the
the mechanism to its original position. Display option. (3)

For Scale, enter 0.0001.

Create an External Force on the Rear Axis


Using the Input Grapher

1. In the browser, right-click Traces. Click


Add Trace.

Select the endpoint of the Oscillating
Arm:1. (1)
■ Clear Display Trace Value for the
Trajectory check box. (2)

Select Output Trace Value for the
Trajectory check box. (3)

Click OK.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 191


4. In the Force dialog box, from the value edit 6. In the Magnitude dialog box, enter the
box, select Input Grapher. following coordinates: X1 = 0 mm,
Y1 = 500 N, X2 = 100 mm, Y2 = 2000 N.

5. In the Magnitude dialog box, click Select


Reference. (1)

In the Select Reference dialog box,
expand Trace1.
■ Select the Z coordinate of Trace1
(Oscillating Arm). (2)

NOTE: These actions create a linear behavior


between 0 mm and 100 mm. Beyond these
points the value is constant, which you need
to change so that the whole motion is linear
even beyond these points.
7. Click the Next Sector button.

192 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions



8. In the Magnitude dialog box, under the Out From the Joint list, select Revolution
of Definition area, select On the Right of the (Frame:1, Oscillating Arm:1). (4)
Last Point. (1) Select Constant Slope. (2) ■
For Final Position, enter -10 deg. (5)

For # of steps, enter 20. (6)
■ Expand the dialog box. Select Display. (7)

For Scale, enter 0.0001. (8)

9. In the Magnitude dialog box, under the Out


of Definition area, select On the Left of the
First Point. (1) Select Constant Slope. (2)

2. Click OK.

10. Click OK to close the Magnitude dialog box.


11. Click OK to close the Force dialog box.

Run the Unknown Force


In this portion of the exercise, you calculate the
required jack (or compression force of the spring) for
a set of specified positions to keep the mechanism in
static equilibrium when the force is applied.

1. On the panel bar, click Unknown Force.


■ In the Unknown Force dialog box, select NOTE: The results for the unknown force are
Jack. (1) given as a function of the step number rather

For Location 1, select the point as than as a function of time. The unknown
shown. (2) force is accessible in the Unknown Force

folder.
For Location 2, select the point as
shown. (3) 3. Close the Output Grapher.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 193


Determine the Spring Length and Plot the
Spring Behavior

1. On the Simulation Panel, click Construction


mode.
2. In the browser, right-click Traces. Click
Add Trace.

Select a point as shown. (1)

Clear the Display Trace Value check box
for Trajectory.

Select the Output Trace Value check box
for Trajectory.

Click Apply.

4. On the panel bar, click Unknown Force.


Click OK.
5. In the Output Grapher, click the New Curve
icon.

3. Select a point as shown. (2) 6. Using Windows® Explorer, browse to the


location of your dataset files and open
NOTE: Make sure you select the small circle.
formula.txt.

Clear the Display Trace Value check box
for Trajectory.

Select the Output Trace Value check box
for Trajectory.
■ Click OK.

7. Select and copy all text.

194 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


8. For Name, enter Spring_Length. Paste the 11. Right-click Spring_Length. Click Set as
selected text in the equation field. Reference.

9. Click OK. 12. The jack force is displayed as a function of


the spring’s length.
NOTE: This formula defines the distance
between the two selected points.
Where:

10. A new variable is created in User Variables


folder. Clear the selection for Spring_Length.

NOTE: The graph has a minimum value of


1094 N which is the preload, and a maximum
value of 6161 N to react against the applied
force to gain equilibrium. From the curve,
you can manually calculate the gradient to
give you a value for the stiffness of the spring
(or jack). The maximum spring length is
373.7 mm.
Calculation of the gradient:
K (Spring Stiffness) = (6161 - 1094) / (373.7 -
284.5)
= 5067 / 89
= 56.8 N/ mm
NOTE: Actual values may vary.
13. Close the file. Do not save changes.

Lesson: Solving Design Problems ■ 195


Chapter Summary

This chapter offered you a chance to practice using the tools and techniques you learned in previous
chapters to solve real-world engineering and design problems. Because each design problem was
unique, different workflows and approaches were required to solve these problems.
Having completed this chapter, you can:

Use Stress Analysis to apply boundary conditions and analyze an initial design. Based on the initial
stress analysis results, revise the design in the part environment for reanalysis.
■ Use Dynamic Simulation to define realistic contact mechanisms incorporating frictional and
restitutional properties.

Use Dynamic Simulation to export motion loads to Stress Analysis. In Stress Analysis, apply the
motion loads and perform a stress analysis to view initial results and modify geometry to satisfy
design criteria.

Use Dynamic Simulation to trace the motion of a component during the simulation, and then use
this trace curve to create a part.

Use Dynamic Simulation to identify the length, stiffness, and tension requirements of a spring for
a bike suspension.

196 ■ Chapter 4: Engineering Problems and Solutions


Appendix

A
Additional Support and Resources ApendixA:

A variety of resources are available to help you get the most from Autodesk® software:

Courseware from Autodesk (AOTC, AOCC, AATC)
■ Autodesk Services and Support

Autodesk Subscription

Autodesk Consulting

Autodesk Partners
■ Autodesk Authorized Training Centers (ATC®)

Autodesk Certification

197
Courseware from Autodesk
Autodesk publishes dozens of courseware titles every year designed to help users at all levels of
expertise improve their productivity with Autodesk software.
Courseware from Autodesk is the preferred classroom training material for Autodesk Authorized
Training Centers (ATC) and Resellers. The same training materials are also well-suited for self-paced,
standalone learning.
Autodesk offers three brands of Courseware:
Autodesk Official Training Courseware (AOTC) is developed by Autodesk for hands-on learning
covering the most important software features and functionality.
Autodesk Official Certification Courseware (AOCC) covers the knowledge and skills assessed on
the Certified User and Certified Expert examinations.
Autodesk Authorized Training Courseware (AATC) is created in cooperation with leading Autodesk
partners, and includes a growing number of local-language titles.

Experience Real-world, Hands-on Learning


Students simulate real-world projects and work through hands-on, job-related exercises. Most titles
include a trial version of the software.

Reaching All Levels


Autodesk has courseware titles to fit a wide range of skill levels. Beginners, advanced users, and those
looking for transitioning and migration materials will find a title that fits their needs:

Essentials titles teach the basics.

Transition titles help smooth the way of upgrades and migrations.
■ Advanced titles focus on advanced skills to improve productivity.

Solution Series apply a process-based approach to real-world projects.

Role-specific Learning Paths


Autodesk Courseware fits into a wide range of role-based Learning Paths so you can focus your
training on skills and certifications that are most important to your job – and career. Within each
Learning Path, you’ll find a series of courses that follow a natural progression and build on each other,
delivering a powerful synergy of both theory and practical skills. Like a roadmap, each Learning Path
provides you with a clear and effective route to your career destination.
To embark on your personal learning path, talk with your local Autodesk Authorized Training Center
www.autodesk.com/atc. An ATC instructor can lead you through the steps to improve your product
knowledge and map the way to gaining Autodesk Certification www.autodesk.com/certification.

198 ■ Appendix A: Additional Support and Resources


Available for Most Autodesk Products
■ AutoCAD® Architecture (former Autodesk® ■ Autodesk® Productstream®
Architectural Desktop)
■ ■
AutoCAD® MEP (former Autodesk® Autodesk® Vault
Building Systems)
■ ■
Revit® Architecture (former Autodesk® AutoCAD®
Revit® Building)
■ Revit® MEP (former Autodesk® ■ AutoCAD LT®
Revit® Systems)
■ ■
Revit® Structure (former Autodesk® Autodesk® VIZ
Revit® Structure)
■ ■
AutoCAD® Civil 3D® (former Autodesk® AutoCAD® Map 3D (former
Civil 3D®) Autodesk Map® 3D)
■ AutoCAD® Land Desktop (former Autodesk® ■ AutoCAD® Raster Design (former
Land Desktop) Autodesk® Raster Design)
■ ■
Autodesk® FMDesktop™ Autodesk® 3ds Max®
■ ■
AutoCAD® Electrical Autodesk® Combustion®
■ ■
AutoCAD® Mechanical Autodesk® Fire®
■ ■
Autodesk® Inventor™ (not a stand-alone Autodesk® Smoke®
product)

Autodesk® Inventor™ Professional

Digital Site License


Delivering training for a large number of students? A Courseware Digital Site License enables you to
print courseware yourself to flexibly meet your training schedules and enrollment levels. Contact your
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Finding Courseware
Courseware can be found in training classes offered by Autodesk Authorized Training Centers,
Autodesk Resellers, or may be purchased directly from the Autodesk eStore (North America only).
To find up-to-date information on the latest official Autodesk courseware titles, visit
www.autodesk.com/aotc and browse the Courseware Catalog for titles and topics.

Feedback Encouraged
If you have comments, suggestions for future titles, or general inquiries about Autodesk courseware,
please email AOTC.feedback@autodesk.com. We value your feedback!

Appendix A: Additional Support and Resources ■ 199


Autodesk Services & Support
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Knowledge Base
Search the support database for answers, hot fixes, tips, and service packs. Access the knowledge base
from the main Autodesk Services & Support page at www.autodesk.com/servicesandsupport.

Contact a Reseller
Get in touch with a reseller near you for information on product support programs that fit your needs.
Find a reseller near you with our reseller locator at www.autodesk.com/reseller.

Discussion Groups
Ask questions and share information in peer-to-peer forums. For more information visit the Discussion
Groups area at www.autodesk.com/discussion.

Autodesk Subscription
Ensure competitive advantage by keeping your design tools—and your design skills—up to date
easily and cost-effectively with Autodesk® Subscription.
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With Autodesk Subscription you get the latest releases of your Autodesk software, incremental
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Autodesk Consulting
Make the most of your software investment with Autodesk Consulting. Get access to Autodesk
technical and project management professionals, a global network of technical experts. For more
details visit www.autodesk.com/consulting.

200 ■ Appendix A: Additional Support and Resources


Autodesk Partners
Developer Center
The Developer Center was created for developers seeking proven tools and technologies to produce
superior design solutions. Whether you plan to customize existing Autodesk software or develop a
completely new application, Autodesk is committed to making technology that is accessible to you.
For more information visit www.autodesk.com/developer.

Autodesk Sparks
Sparks developers leverage Autodesk Media and Entertainment’s strong technical and market
expertise to deliver integrated, creative and workflow solutions to the post-production community.
For more information visit www.autodesk.com/sparks.

Reseller Center
Autodesk resellers understand your design processes and business requirements, and specialize in all
kinds of industries and applications. You can maximize your productivity with Autodesk software with
Reseller services, from implementation and customization to learning and training. To learn more and
find a reseller near you, visit www.autodesk.com/resellers.

Partner Products & Services


Autodesk works together with thousands of software development partners from around the world.
In the Partner Products & Services catalog, you can search for and find detailed information on
Autodesk partners around the world that further enhance our broad range of fully integrated and
interoperable solutions, for every design profession you can imagine. For more information visit
www.autodesk.com/partnerproducts.

Autodesk Authorized Training Centers


Be more productive with Autodesk Software. Get trained at an Autodesk Authorized Training Center
(ATC®) with hands-on, instructor-led classes to help you get the most from your Autodesk Products.
Autodesk has a global network of Authorized Training Centers offering Autodesk-approved training
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Every day, thousands of our customers are taught how to realize their ideas, faster, with Autodesk®
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Authorized Training Center. ATCs are carefully selected and monitored to ensure you receive high-
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An ATC® is your best source for Autodesk-authorized classes, tailored to meet the needs and
challenges facing today’s design professionals.

Find an Authorized Training Center


With nearly 2000 ATCs around the world, there is probably one close to you. Visit the ATC locator at
www.autodesk.com/atc to find an Autodesk Authorized Training Center near you.

Appendix A: Additional Support and Resources ■ 201


Autodesk Certification
Gain a competitive edge with Autodesk Certification. Autodesk certifications validate that you have
the knowledge and skills required to use Autodesk products. Demonstrate your software skills to
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Application Proficiency Examination measures your readiness for Certification. Assess your skills
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Autodesk Official Certification Courseware (AOCC) covers the knowledge and skills assessed on
the Certified User and Certified Expert examinations.
Autodesk Certified User Examination validates your core knowledge of an Autodesk application.
Autodesk Certified Expert Examination validates that you can use the application to perform
complex tasks typically associated with a power user.

Certification Benefits
■ Immediate feedback on your certification status

An Electronic Certificate with a unique serial number

The right to use an official Autodesk end User Certification logo
■ The option to display your certification status in the Autodesk Certified User database

For more information:


Visit www.autodesk.com/certification to learn more and to take the next steps to get certified.

Useful Links
Courseware: Consulting:
www.autodesk.com/aotc www.autodesk.com/consulting
Certification: Discussion Groups:
www.autodesk.com/certification discussion.autodesk.com
Find a Reseller: Blogs:
www.autodesk.com/reseller www.autodesk.com/blogs
Find an Authorized Training Center: Communities:
www.autodesk.com/atc www.autodesk.com/community
Services & Support: Student Community:
www.autodesk.com/servicesandsupport students.autodesk.com

202 ■ Appendix A: Additional Support and Resources