Altair OptiStruct™

Optimization-enabled Structural Analysis

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What is Altair OptiStruct?

OptiStruct is a proven, modern structural solver with comprehensive, accurate and scalable solutions for linear and nonlinear analyses across statics and dynamics, vibrations, acoustics, fatigue and multiphysics disciplines. It is the industry-leading and most widely used solution for structural design and optimization.

Building on a 25-year legacy of providing innovative optimization technology, first-to-market OptiStruct is used by numerous companies worldwide across various industries to supplement their design validation processes through advanced analyses. Furthermore, it is strategically deployed in their design processes to optimize structures for a variety of performance metrics such as weight, strength, stiffness, vibration and fatigue characteristics, to develop innovative, efficient and lightweight designs.

Comprehensive Analysis Solutions

OptiStruct has evolved into a comprehensive solver for linear, nonlinear, vibrations, acoustics, fatigue and multiphysics analyses. Solutions are accurate, fast and highly scalable on CPUs and GPUs.

Industry Leading Optimization

OptiStruct has pioneered the development of innovative optimization technology including many industry-firsts such as fail-safe topology, multi-material topology and multi-model optimization.

Single Model Multi-Attribute’ Workflow

Streamline workflows, reduce repetitive tasks and minimize errors by analyzing and optimizing attributes from multiple disciplines (e.g. strength, vibrations, fatigue) using a single model.

Introduction Video

Altair OptiStruct™ Resources

Nonlinear Analysis Solver

Wide range of solutions for nonlinear analyses, including efficient contact algorithms, bolt and gasket modeling, hyperelastic material, and thermal analyses.

Most Advanced Solver for Vibrations and Acoustics

Unique capabilities and integrated specialty solvers (AMSES and FASTFR) enable efficient diagnostic analyses, from component to full vehicle.

Leading Optimization Technology

From topology to shape, apply optimization throughout the process with the largest set of design performance metrics all while considering manufacturability.

Advanced Materials and Manufacturing

Design and optimize composites (including ply shape and layup schedule), and components for 3D printing, such as complex lattice structures.


Coupled solutions to promote better understanding of interactions such as fluid-structure interactions (OptiStruct-AcuSolve) and electromagnetic-structure interactions (OptiStruct-Flux).

Speed and Scalability

Accurate and fast, OptiStruct can scale up to hundreds of cores using domain decomposition. Additional scalability benefits through GPU acceleration.

Creating Design Concepts

  • Topology Optimization: OptiStruct uses topology optimization to generate innovative concept design proposals. OptiStruct generates an optimal design proposal based on a user-defined design space, performance targets, and manufacturing constraints. Topology optimization can be applied to 1-D, 2-D and 3-D design spaces.
  • Topography Optimization: For thin-walled structures, beads or swages are often used as reinforcement features. For a given set of bead dimensions, OptiStruct’s topography optimization technology will generate innovative design proposals with the optimal bead pattern and location for reinforcement to meet certain performance requirements. Typical applications include panel stiffening and managing frequencies.
  • Free-size Optimization: Free-size optimization is widely applied in finding the optimal thickness distribution in machined metallic structures and identifying the optimal ply shapes in laminate composites. Element thickness per material layer is a design variable in free-size optimization.

Optimization for Design Fine-Tuning

  • Size Optimization: Optimal model parameters such as material properties, cross-sectional dimensions, and gauges can be determined through size optimization.
  • Shape Optimization: Shape optimization is performed to refine an existing design through user-defined shape variables. The shape variables are generated using the morphing technology – HyperMorph – available in HyperMesh.
  • Free-shape Optimization: OptiStruct’s proprietary technique for non-parametric shape optimization automatically generates shape variables and determines optimal shape contours based on design requirements. This relieves users from the task of defining shape variables and allows for greater flexibility for design improvements. Free-shape optimization is very effective in reducing high-stress concentrations.

Design and Optimization of Additively Manufactured Lattice Structures

Lattice structures offer many desirable characteristics such as lightweight and good thermal properties. They are also highly desirable in biomedical implants due to their porous nature and the ability to facilitate the integration of tissue with the trabecular structure. OptiStruct has a unique solution to design such lattice structures based on topology optimization. Subsequently, large scale sizing optimization studies can be run on the lattice beams while incorporating detailed performance targets such as stress, buckling, displacement and frequency.

Design and Optimization of Laminate Composites

A unique 3-phase process has been implemented in OptiStruct to aid in the design and optimization of laminate composites. The process is based on a natural and easy-to-use ply based modeling approach. This also facilitates incorporating various manufacturing constraints, such as ply drop-off, specific to laminate composite design. Application of this process yields optimal ply shapes (phase 1), optimal number of plies (phase 2) and the optimal ply stacking sequence (phase 3).

Advanced NVH Analysis

OptiStruct provides unique and advanced functionality for NVH analysis including one-step TPA (Transfer Path Analysis), Powerflow analysis, model reduction techniques (CMS and CDS super elements), design sensitivities, and an ERP (Equivalent Radiated Power) design criterion to optimize structures for NVH.

Robust Solver for Nonlinear Analysis and Powertrain Durability

OptiStruct has grown to support a comprehensive range of physics for powertrain analysis. This includes solutions for heat transfer, bolt and gasket modeling, hyperelastic materials, and efficient contact algorithms.

Integrated Fast and Large Scale Eigenvalue Solver

A built-in, standard feature of OptiStruct in an Automated Multi-level Sub-structuring Eigen Solver (AMSES) that can rapidly calculate thousands of modes with millions of degrees of freedom.

Analysis and Feature Highlights

Stiffness, Strength and Stability

  • Linear and nonlinear static analysis with contact and plasticity
  • Large displacement analysis with hyperelastic materials
  • Fast contact analysis
  • Buckling analysis

Structural Optimization

  • Topology, topography, and free-size optimization
  • Size, shape, and free-shape optimization
  • Design and optimization of laminate composites
  • Design and optimization of additively manufactured lattice structures
  • Equivalent static load method
  • Multi-model optimization

Kinematics and Dynamics

  • Static, quasi-static, and dynamic analysis
  • Loads extraction and effort estimation
  • Optimization of system and flexible bodies

Noise and Vibrations

  • Normal modes analysis for real and complex eigenvalue analysis
  • Direct and modal frequency response analysis
  • Random response analysis
  • Response spectrum analysis
  • Direct and modal transient response analysis
  • Preloading using nonlinear results for buckling, frequency response, and transient analysis
  • Rotor dynamics
  • Coupled fluid-structure (NVH) analysis
  • AMSES large scale eigenvalue solver
  • Fast large scale modal solver (FASTFR)
  • Result output at peak response frequencies (PEAKOUT)
  • One-step transfer path analysis (PFPATH)
  • Radiated sound analysis
  • Frequency-dependent and poro-elastic material properties

Powertrain Durability

  • 1D and 3D bolt pretension
  • Gasket modeling
  • Contact modeling and contact-friendly elements
  • Plasticity with hardening
  • Temperature dependent material properties
  • Domain decomposition

Heat Transfer Analysis

  • Linear and nonlinear steady-state analysis
  • Linear transient analysis
  • Coupled thermo-mechanical analysis
  • One-step transient thermal stress analysis
  • Contact-based thermal analysis