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How to Visualize Springs

For analysis purposes, a spring is modeled using a line element; however, for presentation purposes, you might want to display the spring more realistically to show the coils, wire diameter and attachment types and locations. You can create realistic spring visualizations for both spring (linear structural and dynamic analysis) and truss (nonlinear structural analysis and Mechanical Event Simulation) elements in the Superview IV Results environment of FEMPRO.

To specify spring visualization, do the following:

  1. In the FEA Editor environment, access the "Element Definition" screen. As shown in Figure 1, this can be done by right clicking on the "Element Definition" heading under the part in the model tree and then choosing "Modify Element Definition...".
    Figure 1: The "Modify Element Definition..." command accesses the "Element Definition" screen where options for visualizing a spring can be specified.
  2. Click on the "Visualization" tab (see Figure 2). Here you can specify options to control the visualization of the spring including:

    • Visualize as spring - Activate this checkbox and, when the model is displayed in the Superview IV Results environment, the line elements of the part will appear as actual springs. Additionally, a preview of the spring will appear on the right half of the "Element Definition" screen.

    • Beginning length - The length from the beginning of the spring to the beginning of the coil.

    • End length - The length from the end of the coil to the end of the spring.

    • Coil diameter - The diameter of the spring coils.

    • Wire diameter - The diameter of the wire used to create the spring.

    • Number of coils - The total number of coils in the spring.

    • Beginning attachment type - The type of attachment (none, loop or hook) that connects the beginning of the spring to the model.

    • End attachment type - The type of attachment (none, loop or hook) that connects the end of the spring to the model.

    • Attachment orientation - The X, Y and Z coordinates of a point that is used to define the plane in which the attachments lie.

    Note: The spring visualization options do not affect the performance of the spring; they are for visualization purposes only.
    Figure 2: Specify the options for visualizing the spring on the "Visualization" tab of the "Element Definition" screen.
  3. Examine the model in the Superview IV Results environment. The spring will appear with the visualization options that you specified (see Figure 3).
  4. Figure 3: In the Superview IV Results environment, the spring will be visualized as you specified.

Thus, the capability to visualize springs in the Superview IV Results environment enables you to create presentations that are more realistic, vivid and intuitive.

For more information about visualizing springs, see the ALGOR User's Guide.



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