SimScale CAE Forum

Universal Material database

This is not directly Product Feedback, but it’s the closest category that I could find.
At the moment the material assignments are being lost in the 3D workflows.
I would like to have a universal material database, and globally unique material identifiers.
The idea would be to be able to assign materials from this database to the various parts directly in a CAD application.
Then to integrate those material identifiers into the exchange fileformats (STL, …) so that you don’t have to re-assign the materials in the various down-stream applications like Simulation (SimScale), 3D-Rendering, 3D-Simulation (e.g. Game-Engine)…
For this to succeed we have to enhance the fileformats with a material field. And I think we need a global material database, where we have a unique id/name for e.g. steel. Then Simulation tools can add the information about the material behaviour, 3D-Rendering tools can add the information which textures and light-reflection properties the material has, …
Would SimScale be interested in participating in such a project?

I am not sure if I got you right. But is the main idea just the rendering part?

Keyshot, probably one of the most useful and best render tools (especially for engineers) out there, can do this and has a decent amount of materials in its library.

Disadvantage: Costs are relative high if you are not a student and get it for free from your university.

But nice idea though! :slight_smile:



Well, every 3D tool comes with it’s own material library (or has third-party libraries), but when you have a more complex object which is made out of several parts and those parts are made from different materials, then you have the problem that the mesh-file formats do not preserve the information which material it is, and so you have to assign the materials again in every tool that consumes the mesh files, and again with every iteration of your design/development cycle. If you just design once, never make any mistake, then that’s not a big issue. But I would like to make it easy to make a small change in the CAD tool, and have it easily re-simulated and re-rendered and re-processed in other tools, without having to define the materials in every tool again and again.
So the idea is that you define the material once in the CAD tool, and when export the mesh and import it into SimScale, the materials are already applied, and you don’t have to do that again.

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Yes, that really would make sense. It is a matter of implementation I guess. Ideas are never a problem. :slight_smile: