Bridging the Gap Between Designers and Analysts

Simulation has always been the holy grail of engineering. In the early days, simulation was restricted to engineers with specific levels of education and experience. This often meant that designers would have to wait days, weeks, and sometimes months to get back simulation results for their CAD designs.

Seeing the inefficiencies of this process, SOLIDWORKS addressed many of these issues with SOLIDWORKS Simulation, which is built to validate designs in parallel with the design process. This led to CAD designers doing more simulation work on their own. For more complex simulations, they would still send models to the analyst.

The 3DEXPERIENCE WORKS portfolio of solutions enables SOLIDWORKS users to now manage even the most advanced simulations in a collaborative environment on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. Here’s is how this workflow can work in your current SOLIDWORKS environment.

Connecting SOLIDWORKS Desktop and Cloud-based Simulation Tools

The Collaborative Designer for SOLIDWORKS (Connector) role makes it easy to get your desktop models on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform and vice versa.

This Connector also automatically manages your CAD and simulation files through a revisioning process. Below is a screenshot of what you see in the SOLIDWORKS task pane. Notice the revisions on the left side and an example of maturity state on the right side.

Simulation and Collaboration with Data Management Built-in

The Collaborative Lifecycle app manages all the data, and the Structural Performance Engineer role enables advanced simulation. (3DEXPERIENCE nomenclature: apps serve a specific software function, while a role is a collection of apps.)

There are other easy-to-use apps on the platform that are part of the 3DEXPERIENCE workflow that enable efficient management and collaboration with your team. Here’s a brief description of each:


3DDashboard is a visual interface to centralize and monitor all team activities


 3DSwym is collaboration central and like familiar social media platforms

3DSpace is a work folder on the cloud where files are stored and retrieved

 3DPlay is the universal viewer for files

Illustrated Workflow: SOLIDWORKS and SIMULIAworks

Below is a snapshot of the simulation workflow for users using SOLIDWORKS Simulation desktop and SIMULIAworks. There are nine steps and each step shows a combination of products/roles/apps used at that stage.


The designer starts a conversation with an analyst using the 3DSwym app on the platform. In the screenshot below, the designer (Sasi) works on a flex design in SOLIDWORKS Simulation; he needs it to be run faster and address convergence issues. He reaches out to an analyst (Ramesh) and provides the project description on both the design and simulation via text/embedded images and videos.


In this step, the designer simply adds additional data to the conversation. In this case, screenshots of his SOLIDWORKS Simulation results, as requested by the analyst.


Using the 3DEXPERIENCE SOLIDWORKS Connector add-in, the designer pushes the design to a work folder on 3DEXPERIENCE. This work folder is a location on the cloud storage space (3DSpace) that can be shared between multiple users.

The first version is automatically revisioned as A.1


The analyst accesses the SOLIDWORKS file from the work folder and uses the Structural Scenario app (part of the Structural Performance Engineer role) to open the SOLIDWORKS file to perform the simulation. This is shown as Item #1

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