FAQs

Here are the answers to some questions that new OnScale users often ask.

Getting started

How can I sign up for an account?
To get started with OnScale, go to the Portal and then click Register here.
How many core-hours do I have?
Your core-hour balance is shown on the Accounts page of the Portal.

Payments and billing

What plans are available and what are the prices?

For all pricing information, see Pricing.

For information about accepted payment methods, see the FAQ page of the main website.

Cloud Scheduler

I can't see the Parametric Sweep option. What should I do?

If you're using Analyst, make sure you define the variable you want to sweep with the symbx command (not the symb command).

If you're using Designer, make sure you select the Varying checkbox in the Parameter Table when defining the variable that you want to sweep.

How do I generate a user-defined variable file?

If you're using Analyst, make sure you define the variable you want to sweep with the symbx command (not the symb command).

Create a comma-separated values (CSV) file with your favorite editor (for example, Excel or Notepad++). The first row should contain the parametric variable names separated by commas. Each subsequent row represents a simulation with the defined variable values. Parametric variables must be declared using the symbx command in Analyst.

I have started a large batch of simulations but forgot to change the CPU configuration and realized there was an error in the parametric sweep settings. What should I do?
Use the Abort button to kill all simulations. This will allow you to start a new simulation in the Cloud Storage window.

Cloud storage

How to do I download multiple folders of results?
  1. Hold Shift or Ctrl on your keyboard and then left-click the results that you would like to download.
  2. Click Download or else use the right-click context menu to download the results to a local directory.
How do I access all my previous results?
Use the Cloud Storage window. This automatically opens once your simulations have completed. You can also open it at anytime from the ribbon or from the Cloud Scheduler tool.
How do I delete previous results?
Right-click a result in the Cloud Storage window that you wish to delete and then select Delete. Depending on the folder size, this may take a couple of of minutes.

General

What units does OnScale use?
OnScale uses SI units, for example distance in meters, pressure in pascals, force in newtons, frequency in hertz, and so on.
How does OnScale compare to legacy FEM codes?

Speed

Ultrasonic simulations require a fine mesh across the full model and therefore can reach tens of millions of elements very easily, especially with full 3D models. This in turn requires a large computational effort to solve the problem in a reasonable (useful) time frame.

Our solver has been optimized for these types of problems and is orders of magnitude faster than legacy software, allowing users to complete simulations faster, to run more parametric sweeps, and also allowing more realistic setups with less approximations.

Memory efficiency

Large models have large RAM requirements. Our solver efficiency, much like our computational speed, is close to 1000x greater than more general purpose packages. This, coupled with our speed, allows you to explore greater complexity and detail in your designs.

Time-domain capabilities

Fundamentally our solver technology is based in the time domain with all features built around this methodology. As a result we work with analog signals (waveforms varying over time) that directly correlate with real-world signals. This let you recreate experimental setups directly in the software to get like-for-like datasets out.

Coupling of domains

All physics are coupled seamlessly into the one simulation and do not require complex boundary setups or element types to handle multiple domains such as fluid and elastic materials. Simply enter the correct properties for your material and the solver will do the rest.

Parallelization

From day one a requirement of the core solver was for it to be deployable on HPC/distributed computer networks. The solver was written to work on the most challenging numerical problems facing the US government at the time, and these problems were very large in terms of simulation resource (RAM, number of elements). Problems such as progressive collapse of buildings and large-scale wave propagation (blast, impact) had to be solved on 1980s computer hardware.

As a result, with today's computer technology, we can solve realistic system configurations in the time domain that our competitors simply cannot (sensor, array, substrate, encapsulant, environment).

True multiphysics in the time domain

Multi-stage simulation setup to capture unique boundary conditions is a requirement for disparate solver types. For example, setting up a static electrostatic solution, to couple into a structural solution, to then couple into an acoustic solution. Our solver simplified this and handles this automatically.

Harmonic analysis

From a single time-domain simulation, you can extract frequency-domain responses for any frequency. The added advantage of this approach over an eigenfrequency approach is that we inherently capture damping and coupling effects. This gives a "true" modal response of the system, rather than an eigen solution that merely indicates where modes may exist but does not fully present their impact.

Real-world results

OnScale can be thought of as a virtual experiment. We generate the same metrics that engineers would gain from an experimental setup. Key performance indicators (KPIs) such as electrical impedance, bandwidth, directivity, sensitivity, pulse-echo response, and many more are available directly from a single simulation.