Using Structural Professional Engineer for Shrink Fit Analysis

With the introduction of Structural Professional Engineer to the SOLIDWORKS family of products the ability to solve some complex real world problems using the Abaqus solver is now at our design community’s fingertips. In this example we’re going to look at how Structural Professional Engineer approaches shrink fit analysis. We’ll start in SOLIDWORKS, with a simple model of a pair of cantilevered beams with an interference at their free ends. See Figure 1.

Figure 1: CAD Model of Interference


We’ll setup the model in SOLIDWORKS Simulation, it’s a straightforward setup, we’ll just fix the outside edges and make the assumption that one of the beams is rubber, while the other is made of a plastic Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene Polycarbonate (ABS-PC). Once the model is setup in SOLIDWORKS Simulation, we can utilize the one-click connector to pull our model into Structural Professional Engineer on the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform, shown in Figure 2.

Figure 2: One-Click Connector from SOLIDWORKS to Structural Professional Engineer


With the model inside of Structural Professional Engineer we simply need define our contact interference, which is done in the scenario app under the ‘Interactions’ tab, see Figure 3. We first create a surface contact pair, see Figure 4, that defines the surfaces on each body that are in interference. In this case there are four surfaces on each body. We’ll add the contact property definition which specifies a friction coefficient for us, in this case 0.1. Finally, we’ll specify this is a shrink fit and use the surface pair group we just created, Figure 5.

Figure 3: Interactions Interface for Structural Professional Engineer


Figure 4: Surface Contact Pairs Selection Structural Professional Engineer


Figure 5: Shrink Fit Settings in SPE


We’ll also take advantage of the advanced meshing capabilities in Structural Professional Engineer, which allow us to create structured swept brick meshes, this will help with convergence for nonlinear problems, such as this one with a shrink fit, Figure 6.

Figure 6: Swept Brick Mesh in Structural Professional Engineer


Now we’re ready to solve the shrink fit problem, Structural Professional Engineer allows us to solve locally or do a cloud compute with up to 32 cores, in this case because the problem is relatively small and simple we can solve locally. And within 2-3 minutes we’re able to solve the shrink fit analysis, we see both beam going into bending as a results of the resolved interference, Figure 7.

Figure 7: Solution to Shrink Fit in Structural Professional Engineer


At this point we can add secondary steps to continue the analysis after our assembly has resolved the interference fit. The Abaqus solve available inside of Structural Professional Engineer unlocks a whole realm of complex nonlinear problems that would have been difficult if not impossible to solve utilizing the solver inside of SOLIDWORKS Simulation Premium. If this is the class of problem you’re typically analyzing, please contact your local reseller or SOLIDWORKS directly.


Omar Zohni

Omar Zohni

Senior Territory Manager on the SOLIDWORKS Simulation Team
Omar Zohni

Latest posts by Omar Zohni (see all)