StructuralAid

Graphical modeller and FEM solver for planar frame structures


Features

  • Create planar model in graphical model
  • Occasionally use command-line interface to insert exact coordinates, etc.
  • Click and select objects
  • Modify selection via a property grid
  • Use program's computational libraries to create custom applications or automatize structural analysis by scripts or compiled code in any of the .NET languages
  • Create custom commands and simple drop plugins into application's folder

 

Technologies and ideas used

The program uses a non-standard approach to structure modelling. Although currently only a Finite Element Method (FEM) solver is supported, the structure information model is far more abstract. It retains the potential of implementing other solvers or e.g. curved elemenwithout changing the codebase. The main design concept was to think about the structure model in terms of general geometrical traits rather than from a strict FEM perspective. To give an example - there is no notion of finite element at the level of abstract structure model. Notions like this emerge at the point of using a specific solver, here - FEM solver. Such a high-level  approach makes some automation scenarios far easier to program.

The most significant parts of the toolset used:

  • .NET 4.0 platform / C#
  • WPF framework for graphical interaction
  • Managed Extensiblity Framework (MEF), on which plugin architecture was based
  • MVVM pattern with MEFedMVVM project
  • IronPython as dynamic expression parser & evaluator
  • Custom utility libraries
  • MSTest integrated with Visual Studio as unit test / integration test platform
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