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What You Asked Us in May 2020

By Chloe Allison 04 June 2020

Welcome back to our monthly review of your OnScale support questions! Let’s take a look at the common support questions from May.

Which CAD formats are supported?

The current CAD formats supported in OnScale are:

  • *.step
  • *.iges
  • *.brep
  • *.stl
  • *.bdf
  • *.obj
  • *.sldprt
  • *.x_t, *.x_b
  • *.sat, *.sab

How do I radially pole a material?

Check out this article!

Why are parts not showing up in my Designer model?

In Designer, the Model Viewer displays a view of your model. When finish building your model, we recommend using Preview Model to check over your model and ensure you have appropriate meshing before running it on the cloud. A common issue is a part or parts missing in Preview Model.

Figure 1: Example of part missing. Left – Model Viewer Right -Preview Model

There are a few reasons why this could be.

Co-ordinate definition is in the wrong order – Primitives are defined using beginning and ending co-ordinates. These must be in the correct order. The beginning co-ordinate (e.g. X Begin, Y Begin, Z Begin) must be the smallest co-ordinate value for that shape and the ending co-ordinate (e.g. X End, Y End, Z End) must be the largest co-ordinate value. Be careful here, order dependence matters!

Coarse Meshing – If your meshing is too coarse e.g. your element size is larger than a part in your model, that part cannot be meshed and therefore won’t be represented.

Figure 2: Coarse meshing example where part (dark blue) cannot be meshed

To check that your meshing is fine enough to realize your whole geometry, you can inspect the mesh by going to Model Graphics > Show Approx. Meshing.

Incorrect precedence – Each part in your model has a precedence defined in its Properties. If parts have materials that overlap, the material in that area will be the part with the highest precedence.

How do I import data into OnScale?

There are different methods to import different types of data in OnScale.

Time Dependent Data

Time dependent data for special purpose functions such as drive functions and temperature functions can be imported into OnScale using the data hist command. This data can then be used in func and applied to parts of the geometry in piez (electric) or plod (pressure) or boun (boundary condition).


MATLAB data can be imported using the data file command. In this command you can specify a *.mat file by using mat as the type.

Field Data

Field data can be imported using the command data in command. This stores the data values into new array in the Data Array Manager which can be accessed in the code.

CAD File

CAD files can be imported using the cad file command. File names must contain the suffix and be in inverted commas e.g. cad file ‘myCAD.step’.

How do I convert my material properties?

Often times, manufacturing datasheets provide material properties as the density, Poisson’s ratio and Youngs Modulus. However, OnScale accepts materials in two primary formats: bulk and shear wave velocities or bulk and shear modulii. But we have an easy to use tool that can help you convert your material properties. The Material Conversion Tool is found in Analyst can convert your material properties for you and even give you the code to define that material!

That is all for this month. If you are new to OnScale, get in touch for a free demo here!

Chloe Allison
Chloe Allison

Chloe Allison is an Application Engineer at OnScale. She received her MA in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the University of Strathclyde. As part of our engineering team Chloe assists with developing applications, improving our existing software and providing technical support to our customers.

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