What’s New in NX | June 2023 | Design Space Explorer

By Jamie Tyler

Introducing Design Space Explorer

Welcome back to the third installment of our what’s new derivative content series! Throughout this series, we’re taking a look at new capabilities we’ve added to the June 2023 release of NX™ software. In this installment, we’re taking a look at Design Space Explorer; a brand new add-on module added in this latest release. Without further ado, let’s take a look. 👇

Design Space Explorer is an optional add-on module you can implement into your workflow that automatically explorers broader design spaces to more rapidly discover better designs.”

Throughout the course of this blog, we’ll explore how Design Space Explorer enables you to identify and apply new design ideas that may have previously been overlooked. Everything you see throughout this episode is derived from or June 2023 YouTube premier event; be sure to check that out if you want to see the other new capabilities added in this release.

The coffee machine tamping system

We’ll be focusing on the tamping system within the coffee machine. The tamping system will direct water at high pressure through the ground coffee, which will create the espresso. Design Space Explorer will automate optimization processes for multiple design iterations of the tamping system.

We will be exploring the design space by implementing a range of variables and constraints to create the optimal study. We have two goals with the tamping system; we want to find the ideal material to use for manufacturing the part, and to minimize its total mass.

Setting up our Design and material variables

Our Design Space Explorer starts by creating design variables. We’re referring to the different expressions that make up the tamping system at this stage. The power of Design Space Explorer means we can set variables on pretty much all of the different expressions for the tamping systems. There’s two approaches we can take with the variables that we are setting:

Discrete variables

When we use discrete variables, we’re referring to specific values. It’s a good approach to take when we want to use exact figures for our study

Continuous variables

Continuous variables are important if we want to explore a range of values within a series. Setting the increment amount would enable us to control the number of changes to run for a specific design parameter.

Material Variables

To keep our options open, we’re going to use different material variables within our study. It’s important to understand that different materials will have different properties that will ultimately have different outcomes on our study. With this mind, we’re going to see how steel and aluminium are going to perform within our study

Setting up our design objectives and constraints

Design Objectives

With the tamping system, one of our primary goals for these study is to reduce raw materials used and keep the tamping systems’ total mass to a minimum. The goal is to satisfy our sustainability targets, and this is where Design Objectives come into play.

Design Constraints

A limiting factor for our study is to ensure we keep the amount stress exerted on the tamping system to a minimum. If the amount of stress exerted is too high, the part will ultimately fail.

Evaluating our results

With the Design Space Explorer study ran, we now have a set of results. The study runs multiple iterations based on the criteria we previously set, and are displayed in a easy-to-follow table. Their feasibility can be visualized in a red, white and green color system. The goal here is to make it as easy as possible for designers to see which iteration is the best iteration.

The iteration highlighted in green has optimal design variables, doesn’t exceed the Design constraints, and satisfies the original Design objective. It’s a clear design option, and once that can be applied to the design of the part.

Continue your journey with NX

And that wraps up this blog on Design Space Explorer. There’s a whole range of content out there on Design Space Explorer, taking your simulation capabilities to the next level. Be sure to continue your journey with NX by taking a look through the content below

Watch the full Design Space Explorer video here ▶️

Watch our tips and tricks series on Design Space Explorer

Take me to the NX design blog 📚

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at