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SimForm FAQ

Sarra Zoghlami, 18 November 2022

About SimForm

SimForm is a web-based application that allows mold designers to simulate the thermal behavior of a plastic injection mold using a straightforward and easy-to-use workflow. SimForm provides game changing feedback early in the design process so that you deliver higher-quality molds that will satisfy your customers.

SimForm performs a full transient thermal simulation of the plastic injection mold, using a state-of-the-art thermal solver based on reliable and well-established physics models, running on Graphical Processing Units (GPUs) in the cloud . This type of simulation computes the distribution and the time evolution of the temperature in the plastic part, the mold and the cooling channels. During the simulation, the cooling channels remove heat from the mold via convection and advection.

SimForm is simple to use and no training is required. For first-time users, SimForm offers a built-in guided tour including step-by-step instructions on how to use the platform. Detailed How-to videos are also available in our knowledge base. If you need help or have any questions, our customer support team is a click away.

Yes, you can use SimForm on a tablet or a phone. The model configuration may be impractical on small screen mobile devices. However, using a mobile device allows you to easily modify and solve an existing simulation. This allows you to effectively exchange information with your customers during a meeting to support your business case.

Plan and Pricing

To use SimForm, you purchase credits from your Account Page in the web application. For every new SimForm project you create, you redeem 10 credits from your credit balance. Each project enables you to simulate up to 10 different solves (5 solves during the free trial) of the same mold design. You can spend as much time as you like setting up the model and reviewing the results.

Purchase credits from your Account Page in the web application. Credits can be purchased in packs of 10, 100, or 1000 credits. You can also subscribe to a monthly plan and credits will be automatically added to your account every month. You can use internationally recognized credit cards to purchase credits. We use a secure payment system and does not store your payment information. If you would like to receive an invoice, please contact us and we will provide it to you.

You can cancel your subscription plan after 3 months of usage. To cancel your subscription, go to your Account Page and click Manage subscription.

SimForm Capabilities

SimForm is continually updated with new features on a weekly basis through its web-based platform. This ensures that the application is always up-to-date and includes the latest capabilities at no additional cost. If you believe that the application could be further improved with additional features, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Yes, you can run simulations on different parts of the same family mold.

Yes, you can upload a plastic part CAD file to SimForm and use the basic mold feature to generate a simple mold around the plastic part. This allows you to perform a preliminary thermal analysis to identify the hot areas that would require cooling before designing your mold.

SimForm supports both conventional and conformal cooling methods. It provides you with insights to decide if it is worth investing in conformally cooled inserts and molds.

Yes, you can use SimForm to simulate cooling channels with baffles to reach areas of the mold which cannot be cooled effectively with straight cooling channels. The baffles must be in the same body as the cooling channels.

SimForm does not yet simulate the plastic filling of the mold. The solver assumes that the mold is filled with plastic and that the filling time is short enough that the plastic is initially at a nearly uniform temperature. The SimForm solver then simulates the heat transfer during the “Pack and Cool” cycle. If you need to have a plastic flow simulation, contact us.

SimForm does not yet support the modelling of hot runners. The team is currently working on this capability, which will be available in future releases.

SimForm does not replace the Computational Fluid Dynamics mold flow simulations (like the ones from MoldEx3D and Autodesk Moldflow). Designers can continuously use SimForm to quickly make better design decisions. The full mold flow simulation with cooling can be done as the final validation step for the mold design process.

Using SimForm

SimForm uses Projects to organize your data. You can create a new project for a mold design of a particular plastic part. A project can contain multiple jobs for the same part design.

A Job is a specific design or scenario for the mold. For example, in a project, you can create a job to explore a mold design where the core is entirely made of P20 Steel and create a second job where insert is made of a copper alloy. You can also create multiple jobs to test a mold design without cooling channels (to confirm where the hot areas are located), with conventional drilled channels, or with conformal channels.

A simulation predicts the mold and plastic temperatures for a given job, as well as the time for the plastic part to freeze sufficiently to be ejected. One job equals one simulation. A project allows up to 10 jobs (5 jobs during the free trial).

Currently, SimForm can read Parasolid files. Step files are supported, but they often include incomplete or non-solid geometry. The team is actively working to add native CAD formats.

If there are cooling channels in your design, the CAD model must contain solid bodies for the channels. The team is actively working on functionality to allow you to extract the cooling channels directly from the cavity and core blocks.

No, you cannot modify the model directly in SimForm. To help you keep track of all your changes, you must do all the mold modifications using your CAD package and export it into a supported format. Then, in your SimForm project, create a new job and import the revised CAD. Any components that retain the same name remain categorized in the new job, saving you the setup time and allowing to rapidly evaluate the new design.

In SimForm, you can choose from a list of widely used materials, or define new materials. SimForm considers both the material of the mold and the plastic part. The mold material thermal conductivity determines the rate at which heat is removed from the part. You can increase that rate by specifying highly conductive materials, like copper alloys, for inserts. A list of widely used materials is available in the application. If you need help defining new materials, it would be our pleasure to help you. Our customer support team is a click away.

SimForm starts from an initial approximation of the mold temperature based on the plastic manufacturer recommendations, then simulates multiple injection cycles to obtain a realistic temperature distribution in the mold. This temperature becomes the starting temperature for one final cycle, which produces the results that you can examine graphically. This technique provides reliable results in a very short simulation time.

SimForm automatically adjusts the water flow in cooling channels to promote turbulent flow. The thermal solver calculates the fluid velocity based on the channel diameter, ensuring that the resulting Reynolds number exceeds the threshold for turbulent flow.

The freeze time or safe ejection time is an estimate of when the plastic part is ready to be ejected. SimForm considers that it is safe to eject the plastic part when at least 20% of its thickness has solidified. SimForm reports an overall freeze time for the part, as well as a local freeze time for each location on the plastic part surface. For accuracy, the SimForm solver does not consider the cold runners when estimating the overall freeze time.

With general-purpose simulation software, users must mesh or discretize the parts to be analyzed which is a highly manual and often meticulous process. SimForm does not require a meshing process. The mold components are automatically and reliably discretized using a voxel-based mesh, in the form of cubes. The cubes get smaller in the regions of high detail around the plastic part. This meshing method does not require a user interaction and allows both the meshing task and the calculations to be done on a Graphical Processing Unit (GPU), hosted in the cloud. The automatic meshing process is one of the reasons why SimForm is very efficient.

On average, it takes less than 15 min to set up, run a simulation and get results. The simulation time depends on the mold complexity, the cooling channel designs, and the cooling cycle duration.

Meshing the model and setting the simulation parameters are fully automated and included in the solve time.

Yes, all the calculations are done in the cloud. It means that your computer won’t slow down as a mold is simulated. You can continue to set up other jobs and projects in SimForm or work locally with your CAD software.

File Storage and Security

Yes, all the files you upload to SimForm are protected. Nobody can access your files without your email address and password. Maya HTT will only access your models for the purposes of technical support and improvement of the SimForm app. Files are transferred to our Microsoft Azure-hosted servers using the secure http protocol and are encrypted. For more information, please refer to our Terms and Conditions.

Currently, SimForm only supports individual accounts. The team is working on introducing a company account, through which users can share credits, view, and exchange models. 

No, the app is not ITAR compliant.

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