3D Finite Element Structural Analysis
Windows 8, 7 and Vista (32 & 64 bit), XP, 2000 with Microsoft .Net 2.0 framework
Download CADRE Pro 6 evaluation version (a fully functioning version of CADRE Pro 6.6)
CADRE Pro viewer (Free: For reviewing FEA models and results prepared by others)
Note: The viewer, evaluation, and registered versions are mutually incompatible on the same computer!
CADRE Pro is a structural engineering application for Windows.
Although the finite element method is used to accomplish the core analysis in CADRE Pro, the application is about 'structural analysis', not simply about finite element analysis, and it contains many additional features beyond FEA analysis for building real structural models and performing practical analyses to confirm structural integrity. A principal emphasis in CADRE Pro is the understanding and predicting the behavior of real structures under actual loading conditions. As a result, it is a valuable educational tool as well; and is employed in many university engineering classrooms around the world.
CADRE Pro allows 3D frame, beam, and plate type structures (or integrated beam and plate structure) to be modeled and solved for loads and stresses or for vibration modes, frequencies, and shock loads. Advanced analysis features include buckling, beam-column effects and incremental solutions for larger displacements as well as forced vibration, shock, and seismic solutions.
CADRE Pro is designed by practicing professional engineers. It intended to be a general, yet practical, application that will allow the user to tackle a large variety of structural engineering projects from the very large to the very small in a short amount of time. We don't claim that CADRE Pro will do everything, nor that it is the only analysis application you will ever need, but, we believe it is the most versatile and easy-to-use structural analysis application available.
CADRE Pro is a structural analysis application, not a CAD application. The graphical interface is designed to render the structural model in a idealized fashion that can be represented by the available finite elements and their underlying physical assumptions. Although the idealized structural model can be developed in CAD and imported to CADRE Pro, most structures can be more easily constructed directly in CADRE Pro using the extensive built-in modeling tools and templates.
Validation and learning
CADRE Pro comes with over 90 sample models, each provided with a notes page with detailed description of the problem statement, model construction method, and FEA results. Then, many of the samples are also solved with classical methods for comparison of results for validation.
Many of the benchmark samples and tutorial exercises are taken from Structural design manuals, strength of materials textbooks, structural analysis references (e.g. Roark, Formulas for stress and strain), and engineering PE exam study guides.
White papers on specialized subjects related to actual engineering projects are also posted on this site from time to time.
CADRE Pro comes with an e-book type User Manual (Adobe pdf file) that is formatted to facilitate printing to paper if desired. It comes preformatted one-sided in either Letter (8.5 x 11) size or A4 size.
CADRE Pro also comes with a tutorial in Help entitled "Getting started" which contains 29 detailed exercises which lead the user through step-by-step construction, loading, solving, and then comparison with classical results. Most users find learning CADRE Pro to be intuitive, fast, and easy with little need for further training.
The Help file also contains a section of classical static and dynamic formulas for many basic structures such as beams and plates to assist you in validating and building further confidence on your own.
Water tower with
Static structural analyses
Finite element types
include standard fixed constant section beams
With these finite elements many structures such as trusses, houses, bridges, guyed towers and mechanical devices, can be modeled.
CADRE Pro is particularly useful for modeling combinations of beams and plates to form stiffened sheet/stringer structures and box beams.
CADRE Pro has many features specifically designed to aid
in the construction, loading, and analysis of curved or
spherical surfaces such as geodesic domes.
Oil tank with slope adjusted snow loads.
Special beam finite elements
Amphitheater steel structure with roof cable mesh
Pinned beams can be defined with a variable degree of pin restraint from free to fully restrained providing an easy means of specifying end fixity.
A tapered beam can be initially defined with just the end properties and then divided into segments maintaining the continuity of the taper.
One way elements (tension only and compression only can be used to represent cable supports or beams on one-way reaction points.
Eccentric beam finite element
Eccentric beam elements allow offset end loads
that facilitates the solving of structures like the lifting crane at the right.
Simple crane with eccentric axial load
Panel with stiffeners represented by eccentric beams
Beam section properties
There are many methods of deriving and inputting beam element stiffness properties:
- Simply type the information directly into the element library from published standards
- Importing from another CADRE finite element model
- Using the Basic Shapes wizard in CADRE Pro feature to derive properties of basic geometric shapes (round and rectangular bars and tubes, "L", "T", "Z" and "I-beam" shapes) in any system of units desired.
- Importing from the extensive database of AISC steel, Aluminum Association, and Wood data bases as well as European and Australian standards provided with the application.
- Using CADRE Analytics' application CADRE Profiler to derive custom section properties.
Plate type finite elements
Plane stress 2D triangular plate element that is especially designed to be integrated into 3D frame structures or stand alone for 2D plane stress solutions.
DKT triangular (Kirchhoff plate) element that accepts out-of-plane loads (bending) as well as in plane loads and provides both planar and traverse stress.
Built-up box beam with integrated beams and plates
Loading the finite element model
Discrete loads can be applied to selected nodes directly on the screen by selecting and pointing with the mouse.
Distributed loads can be applied to elements in a gravity, normal, projected, rotational, or hydraulic method to represent dead weight, pressure (e.g. wind), projected pressure (e.g. snow), centrifugal force, and linear varying pressure.
Load sets can be derived saved, merged, and recombined (with load factors) in any desired fashion.
Thermal loads and initial rigging loads
CADRE Pro can solve for temperature expansion and contraction effects and for the effects of initial tensile or compressive loads in members to account for rigging conditions.
The graphical interface and 3D modeling
The graphical interface allows the magnifying, moving, and rotating the 3D finite element model about three axes either in precise measured degrees or dynamically by on-screen controls. The model can be examined in perspective or isometric views. For dynamic analyses, the model is displaced in the form of the vibration mode shapes and can be animated for a visual vibration effect. Any element or node can be selected on the screen for a quick display of all its properties and calculated information such as displacement, internal loads, and stresses.
Parts of the model can be hidden by a variety of conditions or made semitransparent to simplify the access and visibility of other parts of the model.
Model construction and description
The models can be constructed directly on the screen or in CAD programs and imported through the DXF import feature. Models can be initiated using a variety of templates and then finished by editing on the screen with the extensive modeling utilities that allow expanding, replicating, inserting structural components, and merging with other models.
Modeling templates and model generators
This Quick modeler is a utility that allows the creation of several types of basic model templates and surface meshes.
This utility can make beams or surfaces in any orientation with specified meshing so that shear, torsion and bending moment diagrams or stress diagrams along the beam or within a surface can be determined.
The utility can make meshed models of plates, surfaces, and wire frames, including planar disks, rectangles, cylindrical, conical, spherical, torus, or box type structures.
Other utilities allow the cutting of holes and insertion of special structures such as Bézier curves, scissor connections, parabolas, arcs, and circles.
CADRE Pro contains a complete geodesic generator for making true geodesic spherical and dome type models and special low profile domes (see tank cover in the oil tank picture above).
There are additional tools for quickly building and cladding unusual structures such as the hyperbolic paraboloid roof structure shown below or quickly building surfaces of revolution like the expansion duct model to the right.
Pipeline choke plate diaphragm under pressure load
Expansion duct mapped for Von Mises stress
Displaying and evaluating output results
CADRE Pro provides several features for examining the results of calculations. The main output are the model graphics, the displacements, and internal loads or stresses in the elements and the reactions at the boundary conditions. The internal loads and stresses can be ranked in any chosen fashion in order to find the most critical members. The normal, principal, Von Mises, and traverse stresses are provided for both beams and plates. All output values can be output as extreme maximums and minimums of categorized structural members allowing quick overall assessment of the structure relative to multiple sets of load conditions. The data can be displayed on the screen, plotted, sent to a printer, copied to the clipboard, sent to a text file, or transferred to a spread sheet for additional refinement.
Load or stress diagrams can be created to display any of the 6 degrees of loading in a beam element or any of the stresses for a beam section or plate surface.
Displacement diagrams of any selected line of nodes can be presented (e.g. a displacement plot across a joisted floor under pressure) .
CADRE Pro provides a continuous rainbow palate for ranking and displaying output stresses, loads, and displacement.
Circuit board with assembly loads and reactions
Dynamic finite element analyses
Vibration analyses are conducted on restrained or completely free structures.
Structures are solved for vibration frequencies and mode shapes which are displayed and animated on the screen.
Animated modes can be converted to movie files for presentation in other applications.
Vibration analyses can be conducted with an applied static loading (including temperature effects) on the structure in order to account the effects of axial compression and tension on vibrating members.
Click here > 14th mode of a rectangular flat plate
Modal displacement can be illustrated with color mapping like the simply supported rectangular diaphragm to the right which is vibrating in the 14th symmetric mode.
Modal participation factors and as well as generalized and effective mass data are provided in output.
14th mode of a vibrating rectangular diaphragm
Shock and seismic analyses
Shock and seismic loads are calculated using a response spectrum and the natural modes of the vibrating structure. The program provides for construction of UBC and modern IBC seismic spectrums and has a general spectrum editor for custom spectrums for any type of shock analysis (e.g. equipment shock mounting).
You can include as many modes as desired for developing the static seismic loads, stresses, and displacements. The combination process can be either the CQC (complete quadratic combination) or the SRSS (square root of sum of squares) methods. The seismic loads can be factored and superimposed on other static loading conditions such as wind, snow, and dead or live weight. Features are provided to allow shock and seismic analysis by several different methodologies that might be needed for today's seismic or shock standards.
A foundation/footing calculator is embedded in CADRE Pro which can apply realistic spring stiffness values (based on classical formulae) to selected ground nodes so that ground/structure interaction can be considered in seismic analysis.
Forced periodic response analysis
To handle the affects of vibrating equipment mounted on structures, the dynamic analysis feature allows a periodic force to be applied at any selected node so that structural analysis can be performed with the resulting displacement envelope.
Help and documentation
The context sensitive help system provides an overview of the finite element method, help for using CADRE Pro and help in getting started with 29 step-by-step practice exercises. An extensive User Manual is also provided in an electronic searchable format but also formatted in convenient American and European paper sizes for printing.
Over 90 developed and solved models are provided, each with with detail descriptions of construction methods and analytical results including comparisons to classical methods.
A guide to the sample files that are installed with CADRE Pro provide an overview of the wide variety of problems you can solve with CADRE Pro.
Technical White papers are also provided on specialized subjects from time to time.
CADRE Pro is virtually unlimited in nodes or elements. Limits result from the allocation of memory by your computer and operating system.
Up to 3 simultaneous installations included in the standard license for CADRE Pro. Software licenses are perpetual (there are no maintenance or subscriptions fees).
Support for installation and operation is free and provided by real people by telephone or email. The best way to resolve support issues is to send us your problem model file as an email attachment so we can look at it while discussing it with you.
- 500 MB of RAM
- Windows 7 and Vista (32 & 64 bit), XP, 2000 with Microsoft .Net 2.0 framework
- 2 button mouse
- Hard disk with 20 megabytes of free space
- Windows XP, Vista, 7, or 8 with 1GB or more of RAM
- 4GB is optimal for large projects