First Look: solidThinking Updates its Inspire 2017
Kyle Maxey posted on June 16, 2017 | 1368 views
A typical Inspire workflow for optimizing a component. (Image Courtesy of solidThinking)

A typical Inspire workflow for optimizing a component. (Image Courtesy of solidThinking)

solidThinking has announced a new release for their Inspire 2017 concept generation package, updating tools for motion analysis, topography optimization and more.

solidThinking’s Inspire is the company’s generative simulation and design interrogation tool. The aim of Inspire is to give designers powerful automated design and simulation tools that can optimize the geometry of a component and improve its performance. 

But what is it about the company’s latest release that has engineers excited?

Here are the biggest highlights from the release.

Inspire Expands its Interrogation Portfolio

Arguably the biggest addition to Inspire 2017.2 is the ability for motion analysis results to be extracted from a study for use in structural analysis and optimization studies. In Inspire, peak loads from transient analysis will be automatically pulled from a study and employed in analysis and optimization simulations.

Simulations also have a greater degree of realism in Inspire 2017.2. Users now have the ability to apply a single load to many areas of a component, be it an edge, face or point. These contact points can represent loads, pressures, torque, support and enforced displacement.

Finally, two new “Move” features have been added to the latest Inspire release. The Move Faces tool gives designers a chance to translate and rotate holes, pockets and other surface features with ease. Additionally, the move tool can now be aligned to points, edges and faces, making the translation of a piece of geometry more accurate and easy to manipulate. 

Transient Load Extraction for Motion


Move Tool Alignment


Multi-Feature Loads and Supports


Move Faces 

According to Doug Hedges, President of metal additive manufacturing company Sintavia, LLC, “Inspire does what few programs can; it takes a complex process and makes it easy to understand. My whole team was able to use the program after just a few hours of training and it has led to dramatic time savings in the design process.”

What’s Beyond 2017? Can solidThinking Compete?

Although solidThinking is still a minor player in the CAD arena, its tools are increasing their capabilities with each succeeding release. Fostering clients that range from industrial and product design giants like Philips and Pininfarina Extra, to smaller architectural studios and Hollywood conceptual artists, solidThinking’s products are being endorsed and utilized by major players.

solidThinking’s generative design tools are easy to use and create compelling design modifications that dramatically improve product performance. The company’s modeling tools are easy to understand and their hybrid solution for 3D design is on par with the state of the art in the industry.

Still, it is possible that solidThinking’s role in the CAD landscape will be a minor one, thanks to the head start that large companies like Autodesk, Dassault and PTC have enjoyed. What’s more, when it comes to product performance, end-to-end solutions like Fusion360 seems to be gathering steam, adding new simulation, generative design, electronic and IoT tools to their portfolio on a monthly basis.

If solidThinking can keep up with the breakneck pace of innovation in the industry, it is reasonable to assume that they will be able to catch up to the pre-existing giants inhabiting the CAD environment.

Recommended For You