Today KeyCreator announced KeyCreator Analysis, a new version of their flagship KeyCreator Direct Modeling MCAD product. This product is a result of two years of partnership between Kubotek and AMPS Technology, a Pittsburgh based company that has a multiphysics Finite Element Analysis solver called AMPSol which is targeted at the high-end analyst. Kubotek has embedded their solver into their Direct Modeling product to give designers an engineers the ability to do first pass and some advanced multiphysics simulation in KeyCreator.
AMPS Technology has its own product called AMPS Solid Modeling which uses ACIS and HOOPS, the same technologies as KeyCreator. But it is not as powerful or easy to use as KeyCreator. In my briefing the folks at Kubotek alluded to the possibility of KeyCreator replacing AMPS Solid Modeling.
Scott Sweeney of Kubotek tells me “We really are wanting universal adoption of this product so it is very aggressively priced initially“. The cost of a seat of KeyCreator in the Americas is $3,700. KeyCreator Analysis comes in 4 packages:
- Simultaneous (new license $7,695, upgrade $3,995)
- Simultaneous with Dynamics (new license $10,195, upgrade $6,495)
- Simultaneous Expert (new license $11,695, upgrade $7,995)
- Simultaneous Expert with Dynamics (new license $14,695, upgrade $10,995)
The features of each package are listed in this table.
KeyCreator Analysis is not yet released and I have been playing around with a beta for a couple of days. The software seems to be pretty simply and straightforward to use. When you start a new simulation this panel shows up towards the right of the graphics window.
Like the simulation tools in other MCAD products KeyCreator Analysis takes a wizard approach to FEA. The question marks (??) you see in the image above signify that the steps that are yet to be completed. Basically you set up the model and its material properties, add constraints, set up the loads, mesh the model and fire up the analysis.
KeyCreator uses something called Sefea Technology (stands for Strain Enriched Finite Element Analysis) which “utilizes automatic generated low-order tetrahedron elements to achieve results virtually equivalent to legacy methods employing large numbers of 2nd-order tetra or brick elements.”. For more information on Sefea Technology you can read this white paper.
Not everybody who knows to fly a CAD system can or will be able to do simulation. People will need to be trained to use the software, which is quite easy to begin with. But more importantly users will need to understand the results and should be able to know what to do with them. John McCullough of Kubotek shared with me his plan relating to training. He said to me, “I’ve been planning that our basic (non-linear) course would be two days. Courses beyond that level will probably be taught by Chuck Paulsen of AMPS.”