A topology-optimized part is being designed in software.

Design for additive manufacturing

Cutting-edge design tools are the keystone of quality additive manufacturing (AM) output.

Proven design tools for additively manufactured parts

Generating the desired output from the additive manufacturing process begins with the right design. Design for AM is more than just optimizing geometry, but also verifying the design will print as expected. Get the tools you need to ensure first-article print quality.

Unparalleled design tools

Leverage a complete parametric computer-aided design (CAD) system that enables you to work with non-uniform rational basis spline (NURBS), facet/mesh, and even sub-division bodies interchangeably and together in the same part. The robust design solutions available in NX mean you have all the tools necessary to design the simplest or the most complex printed parts.

Learn more about CAD in NX

A printed part design with non-uniform rational B-splines (NURBS) and mesh bodies in the same part.

Lattice structures

Take advantage of lattice structures. Additive manufacturing is uniquely suited to the manufacturing of lattice structures, which are complex, repeated structures often in the interior of a part. They are often used for weight reduction or for special cases, like osteointegration for medical implants. NX provides robust capabilities for lattice creation, including regular lattices, triply periodic minimal surface (TPMS) structures and even user-defined lattice geometry.

Learn more about lattice structure creation

A lattice structure for use in a shoe sole.

Generative design

Iterate quickly through hundreds or thousands of possible optimized designs. Generative design is a method of automatically generating and comparing multiple design options to find an ideal, best-fit solution. Simcenter HEEDS is a generative design solution that can use NX CAD geometry with Simcenter CAE simulation to provide optimized designs. The end result is a truly optimized solution that can then be 3D printed.

Learn about Simcenter 3D design space exploration

Multiple design options generated from a generative design process.

Topology optimization

Optimize a part for performance with topology optimization, a process that uses CAE with special mathematics. When optimizing for strength, you provide a set of inputs and then the system generates optimized part geometry.

When paired with additive manufacturing, topology optimization can result in parts that meet strength requirements while minimizing material usage, weight and other characteristics.

Learn more about topology optimization

An image showing a traditionally designed part and a topology-optimized version of the same part.

Fluid flow optimization

Capitalize on the strong fluid flow analysis capabilities in our Star-CCM+ product as you apply that technology to topology optimization. The result is a system that can optimize part geometry for efficient fluid flow, meaning you can optimize fluid systems to normalize flow between multiple outlets and direct the flow through a duct system in the most efficient manner.

Learn about fluid flow optimization in Star-CCM+

An image showing a human-designed duct and a version optimized for fluid flow.

Performance simulation

Simulate the performance of a printed design in real-world conditions once the design is complete. Simcenter 3D allows you to expedite the simulation process by combining best-in-class geometry editing, associative simulation modeling and multi-discipline solutions embedded with industry expertise.

Learn about performance simulation in Simcenter 3D

A printed part design color-coded after a strength simulation.

Production readiness validation

Manage the unique requirements in additive manufacturing processes, including allowable overhang, print resolution and print volume. NX includes a series of integrated solutions for validating designs against these process requirements, allowing both the designer and the shop floor operator to be confident the designs released to manufacturing are printable. This saves time and money.

Learn about validation for AM in NX

A part showing results from a maximum overhang validation.
Case Study


Building the future with additive manufacturing


Sede:United States

Siemens Software:NX