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Autodesk Generative Design Tech Preview 5 – What’s New

Brian Sather
November 13, 2017

Whether you’re just getting started or have been using the Technology Preview since the beginning, there are a lot of great new capabilities in this release.  This release also marks a big expansion in the technology preview – Fusion 360 Ultimate customers now have access to Generative Design!  Look for details on how to join via e-mail in the next few days or use the contact form here to reach out to us directly to get started.

Explore Workspace

Comparison Feature

Developing new and better methods for comparing generated designs is a continuing focus. With TP5, you can now select multiple designs from the Thumbnail, Detail, or Table views within the Explore workspace and then view a tiled layout of 3D views for all the selected outcomes.

von Mises Stress Results

In the 3D View, there is a new icon in the bottom toolbar that displays the calculated von Mises stress result for the outcome, providing more insight into where high-stress locations are on the generated part.

Additional enhancements to the Explore workspace

  • The total number of calculated iterations shows in the iterations bar at the bottom of the 3D view.
  • Tooltips now have a bit more detail across the Explore workspace.
  • We’ve simplified the view toolset within the 3D view window – view settings, camera focal length option, and a few other things have been removed.
  • In the scatterplot view, we’ve removed the iterations preview when hovering over an image.

Define Workspace

Dialog Redesign

A few of our dialogs got a bit of a refresh.


Objectives menu:

  • We replaced the range of values for the safety factor with just a single value.
  • If you use the Mass Target objective, instead of percentage with an option to specify the actual Mass difference +/-.

Manufacturing menu:

  • We took minimum thickness out as an option if you’re using Unrestricted.
  • The Critical Overhang Angle and Nominal Overhang Angle are now just a single option called Overhang Angle.
  • For Additive Manufacturing, all 6 print directions are now considered by default.

Moment Loads!

Moment loads are now available from the Loads menu.

Projects Panel

The project management aspect has received a few very nice improvements. You can use the search bar at the top to find what you’re looking for a bit faster and there’s now options to sort by name, creation date, and last modified date.  You can also delete projects right from the panel rather than having to login to your A360/Fusion Team Hub separately.

Toggling Visibility

Let’s say you have 27 different obstacle geometries that you need to hide so you can apply your loads and constraints unimpeded. There’s now an option to show or hide everything based on the geometry type assignment to make that easier.  Click the visibility icon next to either Preserve, Obstacle, or Seed geometry within the Study and it will toggle on/off everything assigned to that geometry type.

Additional enhancements to the Define workspace

  • If you change your Home, Top, or Front view using the ViewCube, there’s now an option to reset them to the default.
  • Project thumbnails should now show up in web view of A360.

New Getting Started Materials

To help new folks get up to speed faster we’ve implemented a Quick Tour the first time you load up the application. This covers the essentials of the user interface and points you to all the most important steps for setting up and exploring a project.

We’ve also added some new onboarding videos in the online help that go into a bit more detail on the overall process and how it’s different from typical optimization software. From there you can go a bit deeper into the nuances of the user interface, how to define your design problem, and tips on exploring outcomes.

Solver – New & Improved!

We’re always working on the solver behind the scenes.  In this release, we’ve focused on the following areas:

  • We’ve implemented some efficiency improvements
  • It’s handling manufacturing constraints better
  • Geometry smoothing is a bit more smooth
  • CUDA error fixes (it’s much better, but you may still get some errors)
  • You’re less likely to get disconnected geometry

If you want to compare to the previous solver, copy and rename an existing project and generate new outcomes – let us know how we did in the forum.

Brian Sather