Automation of Analysis Model Creation

Period of Performance: 08/01/2006 - 05/31/2007


Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

CSS (computational Simulation Software,
17 Merchant Street
American Fork, UT 84003
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Texas at Austin
10100 Burnet Road, Bldg 160 J. J. Pickle Research Campus
Austin, TX 78758
Institution POC


Traditional finite element methods require conversion of a CAD model into an alternate geometric representation called the finite element mesh. Tools like Cubit, developed at Sandia National Laboratories, have greatly reduced the time to mesh. However, it is still expensive to produce a complete analysis and difficult to have that analysis affect the design cycle in a timely manner. Our studies have shown that 80% of the modeling effort is spent modifying the geometry so that it can be meshed. In this proposal, we present a method called isogeometric analysis that eliminates the need for the traditional meshing portion of the model preparation. It utilizes the mathematical representation of the CAD model to create the analysis model. This proposal will specifically examine the modeling issues surrounding isogeometric analysis and the tools that are required to make this new analytical method usable in production design and analysis settings.BENEFITS: The size of the Computer Aided Design (CAD) industry is estimated at $5 - $10 billion, compared to $1 - $2 billion for the Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) industry. Only the best funded organizations can afford the time required to use CAE to its fullest extent because of the problems inherent in the current Design to Analysis (D2A) process. We believe the current D2A process is a growth inhibitor to the CAE industry. The approach outlined in this proposal would effectively eliminate the current problem and bottleneck inherent in today's process, that is, producing a usable mesh from an existing geometry in a timely manner. This is a potentially disruptive technology that could both displace current technologies and open new markets for the tools described in this proposal.