Design Module Updates

For users of the Design Module, COMSOL Multiphysics® version 5.6 includes more advanced Boolean operations and improvements to the constraints and dimensions functionality. Read about these improvements and more below.

Design Module Boolean Operations

The Design Module adds support for more advanced Boolean operations that can be enabled in the Geometry Settings window when working with a 3D model. Enabling these Boolean operations is expected to yield better results in more complex cases, for example, when computing the union of objects having touching faces that do not match exactly.

Horizontal and Vertical Constraints

The new Horizontal and Vertical constraints make it easier to constrain straight edges to be parallel to the x- and y-axes. Previously, the x-Distance and y-Distance dimensions, with the dimension value set to zero, were being applied to the end points of the edges to achieve the same constraint.

The COMSOL Multiphysics version 5.6 UI showing the Sketch ribbon tab, Vertical constraint settings, and a sketch in the Graphics window. Demonstrating vertical constraints The Vertical constraint highlighted in the drawing constrains the edge to be parallel to the y-axis.

Measuring Dimensions and Dimension Parameters

Measuring dimensions have been introduced to add dimensions as a measurement, and do not constrain the geometry. To change a dimension into a measuring dimension, toggle the padlock icon to the right of the dimension value. You can also create a parameter from a dimension by selecting its Create parameter check box. The parameter can be used in geometry, mesh, and physics, for example, with some restrictions. When used in the expression of another 2D geometry feature, the expression must depend linearly on the parameter. Parameters can be created from both constraining and measuring dimensions.

The COMSOL Multiphysics version 5.6 UI showing the Sketch ribbon tab, Distance 6 settings, and a sketch in the Graphics window. Demonstrating measuring dimensions The measuring dimensions highlighted in the figure make it easy to evaluate the total width of the drawn object. By creating a parameter for the dimension, its value can be referenced by other operations in the geometry sequence.
The COMSOL Multiphysics version 5.6 UI showing the Sketch ribbon tab, Distance 7 settings with geom1.dist6/3 highlighted, and a sketch in the Graphics window. Demonstrating dimension parameters The expression for the dimension highlighted in the figure contains a parameter defined by a measuring dimension set up to evaluate the total width of the drawing.

Automatic Constraint Generation

The new Constrain button in the Sketch toolbar adds appropriate constraints automatically when drawing or dragging a vertex with the Snap to Geometry option turned on. For example, while drawing consecutive segments of a polygon that snap to being perpendicular, a Perpendicular constraint will be created automatically when the Constrain button is enabled.

Detect Interferences

The Detect Interferences tool, added to the Defeaturing and Repair menu, can detect interference between objects. This tool supports solid and surface objects as input and detects intersections, touches, gaps, and containments. You can see this feature demonstrated in the Creating a Fluid Domain Inside a Solid Structure tutorial model.

The COMSOL Multiphysics version 5.6 UI showing the Geometry ribbon tab, the Detect Interferences tool, and a model geometry in the Graphics window. Demonstrating the Detect Interferences tool Several intersections, touches, and gaps are detected in this imported CAD assembly, including information about the objects and faces involved in the interferences. Gaps are listed together with the gap distance, and the Zoom to Selection button makes it easy to find the location of the interfering faces on the geometry.

Check Feature

The new Check feature, added to the Defeaturing and Repair menu, can be used to detect faults in CAD objects. Add a Check node to a geometry sequence, such as after a Delete Faces operation, to confirm that no problems remain after replacing a faulty face.

No faults remain in this geometry after replacing the faulty face using the Delete Faces operation.

Support for New and Updated CAD File Format Versions

The CAD file import and export functionality has been extended to support new versions for the following file formats:

Read from File

  • AutoCAD® (.dwg, .dxf): 2021
  • PTC® Creo® Parametric™ (.prt, .asm): 7.0
  • Inventor® (.ipt, .iam): 2021
  • NX™ (.prt): 1899
  • Parasolid® (.xt, .xb, .xmttxt, .xmtbin): 33.0

Write to File

  • Parasolid® (.xt, .xb, .xmttxt, .xmtbin): 33.0

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