Altair Inspire Cast (formerly Click2Cast) software is a fast, easy, accurate and affordable casting simulation environment focused on creating high quality components with increased profitability through a highly intuitive user experience. The easy interface allows for both product designers as well as foundry engineers to execute and simulate casting scenarios. In this blog we are going to step through how to setup a basic gravity casting project in Inspire Cast.
Step 1: Importing Geometry
In our model we will be looking at a gravity casting problem to identify any porosity issues prior to sending to the foundry. Our first step is to import our CAD model into Inspire Cast. It is important to note that Inspire Cast can read multiple CAD formats, in our case we our importing a Parasolid file directly into the software. After browsing to the gravity casting Parasolid file, we click ok, and then Inspire Cast directly brings the model into the system.
Step 2: Gravity Orientation
Inspire Cast allows for multiple types of casting analyses, in this case we will be running a gravity casting analysis. The first step after importing the geometry file is to assign the gravity direction. Under the cast part icon, click on the gravity direction to apply the appropriate direction. Gravity in this model will be applied in the global Z direction as shown below by the blue arrow.
Step 3: Cavity and Runner Designation
In order to run a casting scenario, we need to have a specific cavity and runner for our geometry, so we now need to specify the casting flow path in our system. I first select the cavity in the system by clicking on the Cast Part Cavity Icon, I can then click the part at the end of the runner system to select the part cavity.
The last step is to click the runners themselves, which I do by clicking on the runner icon on the cast part icon and then selecting the runners. After successfully picking the runners, Inspire Cast will directly indicate the runner and part, as seen below.
Step 4: Gate and Component Designation
At this point we now have specified the runner system and the part cavity for our casting analysis. We now need to specify the gating and component locations. We need to tell Inspire Cast where the gate of our system is going to be, i.e. where the material is going to start its flow path from. In our case we want to specify the top of the cylinder to correspond with the gravity direction. We do this by clicking on the gate icon and then clicking on the top surface of the cylinder, as seen below in the figure.
The component designation allows us to apply specific casting components. In our case we will apply risers to both sides of the runner system right before entering the part. The risers will aid in eliminating porosity to the part. In order to add the riser, we need to click on the component tab and then select the riser icon as shown below. Inspire Cast allows the user to specify the size of the riser as well as the location, in our case we want the riser on the center of the runner face, prior to entrance of the part.
The other component in our system is also the mold, so we click on the component icon and select the mold icon. Inspire Cast automatically places the mold in your system, but you can resize if you choose to do so. Additionally, there are a multitude of mold materials to select in the database, but in this case, we will utilize the green sand material for the mold.
Step 5: Process Parameters
The last step prior to running our analysis is to specify the process parameters of the system. In our case we are running a gravity casting analysis, so we need to specify the options of the pour itself. We use spoon height since this represents the height at which it is being poured from the ladle. It should also be noted that if you want to specify a fill time or a flow rate, Inspire Cast gives you those options as well.
Step 6: Running Analysis and Viewing Results
We can now run our scenario. If we click on the analysis icon, we can specify what type of analysis we want to run. In our case we want to run both a solidification and filling scenario since we want to see both the filling process as well as porosity in our system. We specify an appropriate element size for our system to provide accurate results and then click run to start the scenario.
When the analysis completes, we click on the analysis icon and select the results icon, and then we see we have results for both the filling and solidification scenarios. We can click on various results to determine temperature, porosity, and other casting results we would be concerned with.
In our case we want to see if the risers eliminated the porosity, so we go to the solidification results and then click porosity. The results indicate that the porosity in the part is limited to the risers as opposed to the part, so we are happy with this result.
Inspire Cast is an easy to use tool and it allowed us to simulate a gravity casted part from start to finish. Inspire cast allowed us to understand any potential manufacturing issues prior to sending the part to the foundry. It should also be noted that Inspire cast also allows for investment casting, tilt casting, high pressure casting and low-pressure casting. If you have any further questions about Altair Inspire Cast, please reach out to us to see how you can streamline your future casting processes.
Application Engineer, Simulation Specialist
Computer Aided Technology, Inc.