SimScale CAE Forum

Measuring Displacement in Static FEA


Apologies if this has been covered previously but I was unable to find any resources that addressed this question directly.

I am trying to set up a fairly simple FEA analysis where I constrain a rod at one spot and apply forces normal to the rod axis at various distances from the constraint. I would then like to measure the displacement of the rod at each of these points. Currently I am only able to get an approximate sense of the displacement based on the gradient scale but I would like to measure it (fairly) exactly. Is there an ideal way to do this? Alternatively, I was thinking that I could export a warped model and perform the measurements in some other CAD software but I have not found a way to export that model in a usable file format.

Thanks in advance for the help with this issue. I realize this is very simplistic and could probably be calculated manually but I am trying to familiarize myself with basic functions before moving on to more complex analyses.



Hi @kwalker,

no worries. That’s why we have the forum.

You are able to create Points under “Geometry Primitives”.

In the next step you define the coordinates of the point(s) along the rod.

Under Result control in the Simulation Designer click “Add point data item” and chose the desired field (in your case displacement).

You can see the displacement plot in the post-processor and you are also able to download your plots in different file formats.

Does that answer your question?

If you provide me with a model and are stuck during the simulation process I will jump in and help you.

Good luck!



Thank you so much for the detailed and quick response! I was able to figure out how to do it and the process opened my eyes to a lot of functions that I wasn’t previously aware of (read: paying attention to) which will certainly save me questions down the line.

One follow-up question I had, is there a way to add a measurement such as this in after the the simulation run has already occurred? Obviously, I will try to put all my measurement points in prior to running the simulation but if I were to forget or otherwise make a mistake would there be a way to add that point/measurement in after the fact without running another simulation?

Here is the link to the project that I am using to learn with:

Thanks again!



Hi @kwalker,

glad that it helped you! You need to define the points prior to the simulation. If you accidently forget a point you need to rerun your simulation imho since the point(s) inserted after the simulation have no information about the displacements and have to go through the simulation process again (hope I am not mistaken :slight_smile: ).

Your model looks good but why don’t you apply the force directly on the face? Point loads usually cause a stress singularity that might falsify your results. You could check both variants and see if this has a tremendous impact on your results :slight_smile:

Do not hesitate to contact me again if you have any problems!

Happy simulating!



Hello @kwalker,

You can download the results and view them in ParaView on your local machine. This is a much more powerful post processor and it may allow you to perform the measurements you want.

Good Luck,