Have you ever wondered, after running a SolidWorks Simulation study, whether or not your results are correct? A few people I have talked to have questioned the validity of their results and sometimes wonder if the software is reporting what they actually see in the field or in a ‘test.’
Well, I typically find that the problem is not with the results, but in the set-up of the analysis. For example, loads may not be accurate, or may be applied incorrectly; people apply incorrect boundary conditions like fixtures, and in some cases, the user/analyst may be looking at a stress concentration.
So, to prove that the software is working correctly, SolidWorks presents you with SolidWorks Simulation Verification Problems and NAFEMS (National Agency for Finite Element Methods and Standards) Benchmarks. These verification problems compare the results of SolidWorks Simulation studies to known analytical solutions. You can find these problems from the Help menu within SolidWorks. With the Simulation Add-In checked, simply go to the Help menu > SolidWorks Simulation > Validation. Here you will find two options: Verification Problems and NAFEMS Benchmarks.
Selections marked with a (Professional) are available with SolidWorks Simulation Professional and above. Selections marked with a (Premium) are available only with SolidWorks Simulation Premium.
Within each group shown above, there are many examples. Below is a listing of what you will find under the Static selection, as well as one of the examples from this list: Deflection of a Cantilever Beam.
So if you get a chance, please take a look through all these great problems to see that SolidWorks is definitely verifying their Simulation software. And those incorrect results? They might actually be due to an incorrect setup of your analysis. Just remember: in any event, your SolidWorks reseller is there to support you! Give them a call.
Static Verification Problems:
Cantilever Beam Example:
Want to learn more about SolidWorks Simulation? Check out our First Look at Simulation video to see how simulation could improve your own designs and reduce prototypes.
Ken LaVictor is an Senior Applications Engineer at Fisher/Unitech, a SolidWorks Value Added Reseller with locations across the Midwestern and Northeastern United States. He is a regular contributor to the Fisher/Unitech blog.