New Product Design Extension added to Fusion 360

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Autodesk has unveiled a new Product Design Extension for Fusion 360, which heads a bumper list of January 2022 updates and additions.

Geared towards product designers, the Product Design Extension gives users a set of design features that are aware of how a part is going to be manufactured, and automatically chains the workflow together, specific to the material used in the design.

Commands like, shell, thicken, rib, boss and others can be added as repeatable rules for plastic part design, dramatically speeding up the process by eliminating the need to continuously enter the same dimensions to multiple commands.

“We’ve identified the next obvious command applied to newly created geometry like draft and fillet and have them automatically applied as part of the feature, driven from the material you select so that if you need to change material, the changes are instantly reflected in all the plastic features,” says Fusion 360 community manager Keqing Song via Autodesk’s blog. “Let’s also not forget about our new geometric pattern feature as well, making it easier for you to create the right aesthetic in your design.”

With additive in mind, the a new Volumetric Lattice Preview functionality is now available to try out as part of the Product Design Extension, letting users create complex volumetric lattices within a design.

Additionally, Fusion 360 adds build preparation for its first SLS 3D printer, the Formlabs Fuse 1, as well as new support for Lulzbot and Emotion FDM 3D printers.

Two new Preview Features are also included as part of the launch, with Design Advice helping users identify manufacturability issues based on injection moulding best practices, and Volumetric Lattice allowing for complex lattice geometry right on the solid body.

The new Tangent Relationship command

The January 2022 Fusion 360 updates also see a new Tangent Relationship command added under the Assemble drop-down panel. Tangent Relationship lets users have two components tangent to each other and when one component moves then the other move tangentially to it.

The new command streamlines the previous convoluted process, making it much simpler especially for complex assemblies. Once users define a Tangent Relationship, it can be edited again in the Timeline as well as find it as an entity in the Browser under the ‘Relationship’ folder.

The Fusion 360 team also highlight another advantage of having the Product Design Extension comes from the new ability to convert mesh bodies into organic T-Spline bodies.

Now in the Convert Mesh command, a third option appears in the Method section titled ‘Organic’.

According to Song there are two things to look out for: “1.) Make sure that you have the timeline enabled before you invoke the Convert Mesh tool, and 2.) Make sure that the Operation option in the Convert Mesh dialog is set to Base Feature (if you are working in parametric design mode with the history Timeline turned on).”

Elsewhere, Repair Mesh has graduated out of preview and is now available as an official tool in the Mesh tab, and the Save As Mesh dialog hs updated to include an option to push the mesh object to Netfabb. Anyone exporting OBJs or 3MFs from the Save As Mesh dialog, appearances applied to mesh bodies are now also included in the exported files.

A new Simulation Extension changes the way users can pay to run Simulation Studies

As if a product design extension wasn’t enough, there’s a new Fusion 360 Simulation Extension also available, which through subscription eliminates the need to pay Cloud Credits for running Simulation Studies for the duration of your Simulation Extension.

The Fusion 360 Simulation Extension has an annual and a monthly subscription option along with a 7-day trial to evaluate requirements.

Mechanical, structural, and injection molding analysis tools include:

  • Non-linear static stress
  • Event simulation
  • Modal frequencies
  • Injection moulding simulation (mould filling, part quality, guided results)
  • Structural buckling
  • Thermal steady state
  • Thermal Stress Analysis
  • Shape Optimisation
  • The Simulation Extension is accessible through the Extensions button in-product.

There’s a huge amount in this latest release, which really launches Fusion 360 into 2022 with a bang – pick up on all the other major updates with the Fusion 360 team here.

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