Change Element Configuration

Make changes to the configuration of existing elements.

Use this tool when you want to modify the element configuration of a model. For example, if you have a model that includes a section of quad elements that were given the initial configuration of plates, but that section is really best represented by beam behavior, you may change the configuration from plate to beam.

Another convenient use of the Config Edit tool is it enables you to pair this option with the function to generate plot elements, which are similar to gap elements, but have no properties. An example is where you have created a complex structure made up of two planes each containing a thousand elements. If, after creating your model, you determine that you would like to have 1000 gap elements between those two planes, you can create plot elements between all those nodes by using linear 1D. After the plot elements have been created, it is possible to change the plot elements to gap elements by changing the value of the configuration to that of gaps. It is then possible to assign gap properties to those gap elements and to run the model. This eliminates having to create the gap elements individually.

  1. From the Topology ribbon, click the arrow next to the Edit tool set name and select Change Element Config from the drop-down menu.
  2. Choose a new config type from the second drop-down.
  3. Select elements whose configuration you which to change.
    Your selection is filtered depending on which "type" is active. For example, if the "type" menu is set to 3D-Tetra10, you can only pick 3D elems as no other type of element has enough nodes to be a 3D tetra other than 3D elems. Essentially, the tool doesn't allow you to change to a config that has more nodes than the elements you've selected.
  4. On the guide bar, click one of the following:
    • - Apply and stay in the tool
    • - Apply and close the tool
  • When you change an element configuration, the values stored with the element are set to zero. You can update these values in the appropriate tools.
  • When you change the configuration, the order of the nodes on the old element is maintained on the new element.
  • RBE3 elements can be converted to rigidlink elements and rigidlink elements can be converted to RBE3 elements, but other element types can not be converted to RBE3 or rigidlink elements.