Introducing Simcenter 3D 2021.1

By Chad Ghalamzan

Introducing the latest release of Simcenter 3D. Enhancements in Simcenter 3D 2021.1 focus on these four differentiating strengths:

  • Multidiscipline Integration: Perform more simulation types from an integrated environment:
  • Faster CAE Processes: Spend less time modeling, and more time on engineering
  • Ties to the Digital Thread: Connecting simulation to your development process
  • Open and Scalable: Adapt and integrate Simcenter 3D into your workflow

Multidiscipline Integration

Listen To Your Simulation Data. Literally.

Firstly, it’s not often we can tell you that you can hear the difference in Simcenter 3D. However this is an exciting exception. Acoustics engineers use simulation to understand noise that is produced from various vibrating components or products. But, this is done visually through charts and graphs. So what if you could actually hear the noise that your simulation is predicting?

Simcenter 3D 2021.1 introduces a new auralization post-processing tool that lets an analyst listen to the simulated pressure results to evaluate sound quality.

As a result, you can generate a mono audio profile for a time domain signal. Listening to the simulated pressure results as sound helps to evaluate sound quality.

Au audio profile of pressure results as a function of time can now be played back inside Simcenter 3D.

Predict the Lifespan of Cables or Hoses

Hoses and cables are constantly moving and getting cycled through various positions. So, to avoid unexpectedly or prematurely failure, and costly product recalls, it’s important to determine their expected lifespan. Therefore, this requires a fatigue analysis of the cable/hose as well as their connecting elements (such as connectors, supports or separators).

Avoid torn and damaged cables or hoses

Flexible Pipe results (stress tensor for 2D shells and 3D volumes) are available as input to Simcenter 3D Specialist Durability. Simcenter 3D Specialist Durability allows for analyzing fatigue with material SN-curves (stress-life) of low-cycle fatigue analysis with strain-life approaches. Furthermore, the solver is also able to include any material and fatigue model using its unique open solver approach.

Durability analysis of a flexible pipe
Durability analysis of a flexible pipe

Rotor Misalignment

Misaligned sections of a rotor, even just slightly, can create conditions that are detrimental to the overall system performance.  Therefore, in Simcenter 3D 2021.1, you can now study the effect of rotor misalignment in the structure.

Misaligned rotor
Parallel and angular rotor misalignment at the highlighted location
Monitor displacements and forces at the rotor misalignment and on the structure.

Finally, some other highlights of new investments for multidiscipline integration include:

  • Simcenter 3D Thermal Multiphysics brings all Simcenter 3D Thermal and Flow-related product modules together into one product offering.  And this new product module is available to both existing and new customers.
  • Simcenter 3D FE Model Correlation now supports operational shapes, allowing you to correlate operational test and analysis results as well as combinations of test and analysis modal and operational results
  • Obtain more accurate stresses in turbine engine system models. Simcenter Nastran Multistep Nonlinear now supports models with combined 2D axisymmetric and 3D cyclic symmetric components.

Faster CAE Processes

Predict Next Command in Simcenter 3D

Simcenter 3D will show the next most likely commands you will use in the new predictive command bar based on your past usage over time. In short, you can work smarter, not harder, to get your job done.

Superelements for Rotor Models

So what is a Superelement? Simply put, it is a condensed model made of matrices and vectors. In other words, they reduce model size and thus consequentially, the computation time. Simcenter 3D 2021.1 supports the use of Superelements in rotor dynamics simulation.

For example, Superelements are nice for rotor models where you might have:

  • Repetitive structures
  • Linear parts in a non linear model
  • Intellectual property which needs to be protected

An analysis can contain multiple superelements.

Advanced Meshing for Additive Manufacturing

One of the most important features of Simcenter 3D additive manufacturing is the use of the exact meshing method – meaning a mesh more like traditional finite element analysis mesh (as compared to a voxel mesh, which is a rough hexa-type of mesh that does not accurately represent the geometry). However, the tradeoff to using exact meshing is that the meshing procedure can be challenging for complex parts.

Therefore in Simcenter 2021.1, the automatic meshing procedure was improved to deal better with model complexity.  If for any reason the meshing fails, you can now manually defeature idealized geometry, correct mesh mating conditions, modify CAE Geometry and control the mesh settings using the advanced meshing for additive manufacturing.

In Simcenter 2021.1, the automatic meshing procedure was improved to deal better with model complexity.

Performance Enhancements

Finally, some of the key performance enhancements to highlight in 2021.1 include:

  • Nonlinear structural solvers have been sped up by over 30%
  • Now up to 82% faster, Simcenter 3D offers the fastest durability solver on the market
  • New robust meshing options for Fluid-Structure Interactions (FSI)
  • Faster Simcenter Nastran Vibro-Acoustic simulations which require significantly less memory to obtain the same accurate results
  • Simcenter Nastran binary mode set performance is up to 3 times faster

Ties to the Digital Thread

Rapidly Design Electric Cables and Wire Harnesses

Electrification is increasing in the industry, which means even more wiring and more complex wire harness design. Simcenter 3D Flexible Pipe can now import data from Siemens Capital Harness software to add loads, movements, and material properties to provide an accurate positioning of the wires in the 3D space. After potential enhancements/optimization of the harness model for mechanical purposes, the harness can then also be used for further analysis like electromagnetic Interference and compatibility (EMI/EMC).

Simcenter 3D Motion Models for Real-Time Applications

In addition as part of the digital thread, engineers often connect software models with physical hardware for hardware in the loop simulations. You can use existing Simcenter 3D Motion models for real-time applications using a new process to export the model to external platforms.

Consequently, this can save you time by using high fidelity model-based systems models directly in real-time application which removes the need to reduce the model and available parameters, or recreate the model in another program. The new export model workflow walks you through steps to generate the files required to integrate the Simcenter 3D Motion model in other platforms like Simulink or real-time platforms like Procyon, Concurrent or dSPACE.

Simcenter 3D Motion Real-time
Simcenter 3D Motion Real-time supports single-source modeling for both On and Off-line simulations

Open and Scalable

Simulation-driven design can drastically lower the time it takes to bring a product to market. For this reason, Simcenter 3D’s thermal analysis capabilities have been scaled into a vertical solution for mold designers and design engineers.

The new NX Mold Cooling product uses Simcenter 3D technology underneath, and lets designers rapidly setup and simulate the thermal performance of an injection mold insert directly in NX as they are designing the mold. 

NX Mold Cooling allows for easy and rapid thermal analysis of injection mold designs

Questions or Interested in Trying Simcenter 3D 2021.1?

  • If you are a current customer, download Simcenter 3D 2021.1 or contact your representative via Support Center
  • For all others, please contact us to discuss further

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