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SOLIDWORKS Simulation Meshing Guide

Very few things are more important to the accuracy and efficiency of a finite element analysis (FEA) than the mesh. The mesh is quite literally your geometry broken up into the individual elements, which are finite in number. While SOLIDWORKS makes life easy with an automated approach, following a few key steps can ensure you achieve a mesh that produces trustworthy results relatively quickly. In general, we would favor finer meshes with smaller elements to obtain reliable results, therefore, the time required to solve the analysis will increase. Ultimately, we try to design optimum meshes providing reasonable accuracy levels in acceptable run times.

1. Idealize

2. Create a Mesh

Mesh Density

Note: A good rule of thumb is to have two or more solid elements through the thickness of your component without the ‘draft quality’ check box checked. If this is difficult to accomplish in a reasonable amount of time, consider switching to shell or beam elements

3. Analyze the Mesh Before Solving

Mesh Detail
Mesh plot

4. Analyze the Mesh After Solving

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Mesh
  • Use an h or p Adaptive Method to allow SOLIDWORKS to finish the mesh refinement job for you. These tools allow you to specify a desired accuracy level and number of loops, and SOLIDWORKS will re-run the simulation multiple times, refining the mesh globally along the way until the number of loops or desired accuracy level is achieved.

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