Ryan Navarro

Show off your Topology Optimization results!

Discussion created by Ryan Navarro on Sep 16, 2019
Latest reply on Sep 16, 2019 by Newell Voss

I really haven't seen much discussion on the Topology Optimization here on the forums so wanted to start a place where you can share screenshots of Topology Optimization results or pictures of any parts that were produced, along with a short description or background.


If you're willing to share any challenges you ran into, or tips you found helpful that's even better!


Topology Optimization (also sometimes referred to in industry as "generative design") was introduced in 2018 for SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional and has seen some enhancements since then. It allows defining a "design volume" or blocky overall starting shape, specifying loads and fixtures, setting goals and constraints, and then automatically iterating toward what should be the "optimal" shape for the given constraints.


These results are often times organic and bone-like, and lend themselves well to 3D printing - but manufacturing controls can be set up to help produce shapes more suitable for other manufacturing methods.


Topology optimization produces the resulting shape as a mesh. In my experience so far if a part is destined to be machined it will likely need to be remodeled using this mesh as a guide, but 3D printing direct from the smoothed mesh is possible.