The SOFiSTiK interface for Rhinoceros

The SOFiSTiK Rhinoceros Interface is an extension to the 3D NURBS modeler Rhinoceros by Robert McNeel & Associates (Rhino), providing functionality to create a finite element model for analysis in SOFiSTiK from a model defined in Rhino.

McNeel Rhinoceros

Rhinoceros (Rhino) by Robert McNeel & Associates is a 3D, NURBS-based geometric modeler especially designed for the creation and handling of complex freeform shapes. It is used in a wide range of application from architectural to industrial design. Its strength is its intuitive handling, performance, diversity, extendibility, wide range of supported import and export formats and its relatively low cost.

More information about Rhino can be found on the respective webpage www.rhino3d.com. Rhino offers an evaluation version which can be used with this SOFiSTiK Rhino Interface.

SOFiSTiK Rhinoceros Interface

The SOFiSTiK Rhinoceros Interface is a plug-in written in C++ for Rhino, extending the modelers core functionality by finite element (FEA) and structural analysis with SOFiSTiK.

With the installation of the SOFiSTiK interface, Rhino will be fully integrated into the SOFiSTiK analysis environment (SOFiSTiK Structural Desktop), providing a seamless flow of geometric and semantic data between modeling, meshing and further analysis steps without having to manually exchange information between different programs.

The SOFiSTiK interface comes along with its own feature toolbox accessible by a range of commands, a toolbar for fast feature access and dialogs and settings to set-up and modify FEA and structural analysis from within Rhino.

Geometric objects in Rhino like points, curves, surfaces or meshes can be seamlessly integrated into your SOFiSTiK analysis by being attributed with structural information like cross sections, material properties or boundary conditions. The interface allows you to trigger SOFiSTiK tasks like finite element mesh generation from within Rhino and is bi-directionally coupled with SOFiSTiK tools like Teddy or SSD for the downstream set-up and processing of FEA and structural analysis of your geometric model.

Additional utilities in the SOFiSTiK toolbox of this extension allow the visualization of structural properties like beam cross sections, FE meshes or boundary conditions within Rhino (e.g. for rendering, documentation or visual evaluation purposes). Furthermore, a variety of extended utilities - e.g. specific type filters or annotations - are available for efficient model handling.

The utilities and additional structural information provided by this extension are exposed to the scripting and extendibility functionality provided by Rhino, e.g RhinoScript, Python scripting or Grasshopper. This allows to extend the functionality of the SOFiSTiK Rhino Interface and customize it to company or project specific needs.