[Paraview] VTU files for multi-body FEA models.

kenichiro yoshimi rccm.kyoshimi at gmail.com
Fri Jun 9 04:44:23 EDT 2017

Hi Jesse,

Usually vtkMultiBlockDataSet is used so as to store multi-body datasets and
the corresponding file format is a VTK vtkMultiBlockDataSet format
(.vtm). But in time development model such as your case, you'd better
use a ParaView Data format (.pvd) because vtm can't handle time
information. I attach the pvd file sample.

I also think the Multiblock Inspector is very convenient in multiblock


2017-06-07 1:22 GMT+09:00 Jesse Gerber <jig6 at psu.edu>:
> Hello,
> I am a mechanical engineering grad student. This question is regarding an
> active research project in our lab. We wrote a FEA program in C++ for 3D
> solid mechanics problems. At each time step, we output a vtu file using the
> unstructured grid format. Finally, we output a pvd file that creates a
> collection and associates a time step value with each vtu file. So far, we
> have been working with a single body, comprised of multiple hexahedral
> elements. Our point data consists of displacement, velocity, and
> acceleration. Our cell data consists of centroid stress and centroid strain.
> We now want to start solving multi-body models. Do we have to write a
> separate vtu file for each body, at each time step? Is there a way to
> combine multiple bodies into a single vtu file, at each time step, in a way
> that we can still view them as separate parts in ParaView? I would like be
> able to use show/hide and color on a part basis. How do people usually
> handle this sort of thing? For example, if I have 10 parts, will I have 10
> separate vtu files at each time step? Note that, within the FEA code, we
> define a part_id for each element in the model. Is there a way I can
> associate each element with a part_id in the vtu file? That way ParaView
> could tell the difference between each part?
> Thank you for your help!
> Best regards,
> Jesse
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