A developer/preview PrePoMax version v2.0.3 has been released

In this version:

  • the thicken shell feature now works with normals computed from geometry; if the part has no geometry, the normals are computed from the mesh
  • the thicken shell feature now retains model edges (feature edges)
  • experimental support for the four-sided pyramid elements was added (C3D5 and C3D13); such elements can be created using the Transfinite mesh feature where some parts of the compound part are non-transfinite or using Gmsh shell feature and enabling the Recombine option to create pyramids on the surface; since pyramid elements are not yet supported by the CalculiX solver they are exported as collapsed wedges or collapsed hexahedrons (Settings → CalculiX); their precision is not very good, but they can be used for mesh transition from hexahedral mesh to tetrahedral mesh; sometimes Gmsh creates pyramids with unusable geometry (almost zero height) where changing the mesh size sometimes helps
  • various bugs exterminated :slight_smile:

Download: Downloads – PrePoMax


An example of a mixed mesh created using the Transfinite mesh feature.


Sorry but i want to mention that this also happens sometimes for a simple tetrahedral mesh at curved surfaces (see picture). Changing the 3D meshing algorithm can help sometimes, but activating Netgen for the 1st order optimization seems to be most effective to solve this.
So if you could/want to test it in combination with “Transfine Mesh”, maybe it will also work to prevent zero height pyramids?

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The netgen only supports tetrahedral elements so using it to optimize pyramids will not work as far as I understand it.