There are many occasions when we are asked, "Can SolidWorks Simulation handle my engineering issues?"
We ran into this last week, we were given deformation in the component and had to figure out load required to produce the deformation. What was interesting the part would be at the respective positions with respect to time. My response was lets not just simulate this, but tell you how much force is required to produce this deformation too. Well now that we had his interest piqued, he wanted to see this happen.
All we knew was the position of the keys at different time. For nonlinear studies, you can define time-dependent remote loads. Our reason for choosing Non-Linear analysis, In some cases, the linear solution can produce erroneous results because the assumptions upon which it is based are violated. Nonlinear analysis can be used to solve problems with nonlinearity caused by material behavior, large displacements, and contact conditions.
In addition, it was the easiest way to control deformation (our input and only known parameter).
We fixed (green) the key slots, in our application they are bolted to a plate, but for this analysis it was ok to assume the bolts offered little or no play. We looked at how the material behaved as it was deforming. In addition we could tell how much force is required to produce this deformation. This helped the customer further design components interacting with this spring.
With this plot on screen, showing the load varying with time (and in turn deformation) we knew everything we need to know about this component. With his engineering issue resolved, he went looking for another challenge to throw at us.
Product Manager - Simulation