Run an SLM Analysis

Run an SLM additive manufacturing analysis for the selcted print parts.

Before running a selective laser melting analysis, you must first select the parts to be printed, set up the printer, and define the part orientation and supports.
  1. Click the button on the Analyze icon.
  2. Specify the process parameters. Use the Fast/Accurate slider to set your preference between speed and accuracy.
  3. Click Run to begin the analysis.
    The run may take several minutes to several hours to complete, depending on the complexity of the model and the accuracy setting. If the run is completed successfully, a green flag will appear over the Analyze icon. If unsuccessful, a red flag will appear instead.
  4. Click the green flag or double-click the run name in the Run Status window to view the results.
  • Click on the Analyze icon to view the run status. Runs that are being processed or that have not been viewed are shown in the Run Status table.
  • Click on the Analyze icon to view the run history. Runs that have been viewed previously are shown in the Run History table.
  • The icon indicates that the run was incomplete. Some but not all of the result types may be available. You should run a new analysis to generate complete results.
  • To view multiple runs, hold the Ctrl key while selecting runs, then click the View Now button. If several runs are associated with the same part, the result from the most recently completed run for that part will be activated in the modeling window.
  • To open the directory where a run is stored, right-click the run name and select Open Run Folder.

Process Parameters

Process parameters impact what result types are available at the end of the simulation, as well as the processing time and accuracy of results.

Supports thickness
The thickness of a printed support's outer shell. The number will depend on the printer being used.
Enable this option to select available calibrations from the dropdown menu.
Powder layer thickness
For powder-based 3D printing processes, this indicates the thickness of the powder layer that is spread across the printing bed. This information is unique to the printer model and should be available from your 3D printer.
Inherent Strain Vector
This represents a symmetric tensor written in vector form, with components [XX, YY, XY]. The values in these fields represent the material's shrinkage in all directions as it cools.
Note: These parameters are only available for analyses in which the Calibrations option is not selected.
Average thickness
The simulation's results are shown as a voxel mesh. You can enter either an average thickness or an element size for the mesh.
Element size
If you choose to define the voxel mesh in terms of element size, enter a length and height. A good starting point is generally 1 x 1 mm. Reducing the voxel size improves accuracy, but increases the time of the analysis.