FEA Software RFEM | Modelling
Useful Tools for Fast Generation of Structures
"We are completely satisfied with RFEM and the Dlubal Software team too. Keep it up!
Maderas Besteiro is in contact with many engineers and the structural wood research team at the University of Santiago de Compostela and they always speak of RFEM as the reference software."
“I really enjoy working with Dlubal Software programs. The structure generation and modification can proceed smoothly:
- Manageability of functions in the menu and movability in space
- Data transparency: checks, options to modify and transfer data
I am happy that I switched over to Dlubal Software!”
Useful auxiliary functions and tools for generation of structures including loads facilitate the modelling process. Member nonlinearities (creeping, tearing, slippage, friction, and others) are also possible as well as coupling or member and surface eccentricities.
It is possible to define combined timber cross-sections such as U-, T-, I- and box‑shaped beams. Single elements are connected by rigid or semi‑rigid connections. Furthermore, there are hybrid cross-sections available. In this case, a submenu provides an option to assign different materials to the individual cross‑section parts.
There are various tools such as the object snap, user‑defined input grids, and guidelines, which facilitate the graphical input of structural data. DXF files can be imported as line models or used as a layer in the background in order to use specific snap points.
Generating tools to enter parametric models such as frames, halls, trusses, spiral stairways, arcs, or roofs. In addition, many generators allow for the creation of load cases and loading resulting from weight, snow, and wind.
In order to work with recurring structural systems efficiently, RFEM provides the parameterized input, which can be combined with a parameterizable guideline method. Models can be created using particular parameters and adjusted to a new situation by modifying the parameters.
Various buttons allow you to directly change the perspective and work plane. By zooming, rotating and shifting the structure you can quickly adjust the appropriate view. Partial views represent specific structural parts clearly. Inactive objects can be displayed transparently in the background. By selecting structural elements according to special criteria, it is possible to group objects in a simple way.
Structures are entered as 1D, 2D or 3D models. Member types, such as beams, trusses, or tension members, facilitate the definition of member properties. In order to model surfaces, RFEM provides various surface types, such as Standard, Orthotropic, Glass, Laminate, Rigid, Membrane, and others.
In addition, you can select various material models: Isotropic Linear Elastic, Isotropic Plastic 1D/2D/3D, Isotropic Nonlinear Elastic 1D/2D/3D, Orthotropic Elastic 2D/3D, Orthotropic Plastic 2D/3D (Tsai‑Wu 2D/3D), Isotropic Thermal‑Elastic, Isotropic Masonry 2D, and Isotropic Damage 2D/3D.
It is possible to specifiy nonlinearities of member end releases (yielding, tearing, slippage, etc.) and supports (including friction). For this, there are special dialog boxes available for determining the spring stiffness of columns and walls based on the geometry input.
Members can be arranged eccentrically, supported by elastic foundations, or defined as rigid connections. Sets of members facilitate load application on several members.
In RFEM, you can also define eccentricities of surfaces. Here, it is possible to transform nodal and linear loads into surface loads. It is also possible to divide surfaces in surface components and members in surfaces.
There are load generators available for beam structures, creating snow loads according to ASCE/SEI 7-10. The load cases are generated depending on the roof structure. Another generator creates coating loads (ice). You can save recurring load combinations as templates.
The numbering of structural objects such as nodes and members can be adjusted subsequently. It is possible to renumber the objects automatically in accordance with the selected priorities (directions of axes).
Members can be extended or divided graphically. The model check quickly detects entry errors such as identical nodes or double members and deletes them. When entering structural data, you can automatically connect intersecting members. The measure function allows you to determine lengths and angles of members and surfaces (only RFEM).
There are various load types available for member and surface loads (force, moment, temperature, precamber, and others). Member loads can be assigned to members, sets of members, and member lists. In the case of imperfections, inclination and precamber can be determined according to Eurocode or the American standard ANSI/AISC 360.
It is possible to edit a model in the active rendering. The “Regenerate Model” function is useful when correcting slight deviations of node coordinates. Furthermore, it is possible to design round or angled surface corners (in order to reduce singularities in RFEM, for example).
Do you have any questions about our products or need advice on selecting the products needed for your projects?
Contact us via our free e-mail, chat, or forum support or find various suggested solutions and useful tips on our FAQ page.
In order to create a surface model with failing supports close to reality, an option called "Failure if contact perpendicular to surfaces failed" is available in RFEM 5 for contact solids under "Contact Parallel to Surfaces".
- Where in the Dlubal Extranet can I download my authorization file?
- How can I display more information about member end hinges in a graphic?
- I have a model with crossing line releases/line hinges and I obtain implausible results.
- I deleted my shortcut from the viewer. How can I restore them?
- Can I create a visibility from objects even though the function is grayed?
- How do I apply wind load on members of open structures?
- Is it possible to switch off the minimum internal forces when displaying a result diagram so that the maximum values are only displayed?
- Although I have modeled two identical structural systems, I obtain a different shape. Why?
- How can I rotate a nodal support using the COM interface?
- I do not want to design a cross-section in the RF‑/STEEL EC3 add-on module. Can I quickly remove this cross-section from the selection?
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