Dear Desktop Engineering Reader:
Cranes Software is one of the most important outfits that you might not be aware of. That's because you know it better by some of its product lines like SYSTAT, SigmaPlot, and TableCurve 3D, all leading products in their class. Cranes Software also offers NISA finite element software, today's Pick of the Week.
Actually, NISA is a modular interface with domain-specific modules for addressing the engineering analysis of solids, fluids, heat, and electromagnetism. It offers a single integrated pre/ postprocessor user interface as well as interoperability with leading engineering and design applications such as ANSYS, Inventor, Nastran, Pro/ENGINEER, Solid Edge, and SolidWorks.
The head turner, in my opinion, is that NISA is such a powerful and flexible suite of software, but it's not powerfully expensive. The base module, which includes pre- and postprocessing, static analysis (linear and nonlinear), and CAD interfaces, is about $7,000 for a perpetual license.
The real power for you lies in how you tailor your NISA environment with the additional analysis modules you need to get your job done. The extensions modules cover all the bases: CFD, composite materials, electromagnetics, fatigue / fracture mechanics, heat transfer, multi-body mechanical systems, printed circuit board analysis, rotor dynamics, and structural, shape, and sectional optimization. There are also more modules for CAD and FEA translations. I'm told that about $16,000 does the works.
NISA, somewhat like Cranes Software itself, is one of the most powerful and most comprehensive suites of finite element programs available that you might have limited knowledge of. NISA just does not seem to get the press other heavyweights get, probably because the company appears more focused on R&D than marketing. Well, wait a minute on that. The company also backs up NISA and focuses a lot of attention on providing users with world-class technical support, online discussion groups, webinars, and ongoing training.
Cranes Software has more than 350,000 users of all its software in nearly 40 countries, so it's up to something good. Clients like Allied Signal, BP International, Ford, GE, Texas Instruments, 3M, and others throughout the aerospace, automotive, civil, electrical, and mechanical engineering industries know NISA well. From a link in today's Pick of the Week write-up, you can sign up for a free evaluation copy and get to know NISA well for yourself. It seems to me to be a good idea for you to give it careful consideration.
Thanks, Pal. — Lockwood
Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, Desktop Engineering Magazine