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  • Documentation

    How to Apply Cyclic Symmetry (FEA)?

    What Is Cyclic Symmetry?

    The cyclic symmetry constraint enables users to model only a sector of a 360° cyclic periodic structure. It also reduces computational time and memory consumption considerably. The user defines the center and axis of the cyclic symmetry as well as the sector angle. The master and slave surfaces define the cyclic periodicity boundaries.

    comparison of the full and sliced model for a cyclic contract definition
    Figure 1: Comparison of the full and sliced pieces

    How to Define a Cyclic Symmetry Contact?

    You will find cyclic symmetry under the contacts menu.

    Define the axis of revolution and sector angle for each part individually.

    • The sector angle has to be given in degrees.
    • Available ranges for the angle are from 0° to 180° and only values that divide 360° to an integer number are valid.
    • The axis is defined by the axis origin and the axis direction.
    • The Definition of Axis and Angle has to be in accordance with the right hand rule in that it defines a rotation that maps the slave to the master surface.


    You should not use one cyclic contact for multiple solids, each should have their own, otherwise you might get unexpected connections of the edge of one body connecting with the other part, instead of its own counterpart.

    Defining axis for a cyclic symmetry contact
    Figure 2: Defining axis of revolution
    master & slave assignments in a cyclic symmetry contact definition
    Figure 3: Assignment of master and slave surfaces

    Important Information

  • All DOFs of the slave nodes will be constrained. Adding an additional constraint on those nodes could lead to an over-constrained system.
  • This is a linear constraint, so no large rotations or large deformations are allowed in the proximity of the cyclic symmetry boundaries.
  • A cyclic symmetry condition is only valid if geometry and loading conditions are symmetric.
  • The results reflect only the simulated portion. When a reaction force is calculated and displayed, the user needs to multiply the value of this sector model with the number of sectors for the full model to extract the corresponding value.
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    Last updated: April 13th, 2023