Revit for structural design

Looking for a CAD tool to do structural load analysis. I like Rhino, and have looked at Karamba and Revit. Rhino inside Revit is an interesting direction. Is this to satisfy the Architectural base that uses Rhino?

I am unsure if BIM modeling can handle structural steel analysis well? what do Architectural engineers choose when money is no object to evaluate a steel structure with beams, joints and plates in all directions?

So many choices. Rhino.inside.revit can extract the analysis model from Revit, along with the 3d geometry and much of the profile and type information useful for analysis:

The analysis options are endless.

  1. Karamba is integrated
  2. Sofistik is an option:
  3. Oasis, SAP, SCIA can also be connected thru GeometryGym.
  4. Parastaad is possible

Of course once connected, then optimization can be done: Structural simulation tools for GH?

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Hi Mage,

My short answer is that No, Revit is not the best structural analysis tool. I go into more depth…

Revit has a built in Structural Analysis program called ‘Robot’… to date, I’ve never heard of anyone using it; maybe they do, maybe my advice is outdated. I know that about 5 or so years ago it wasn’t quite ready for the big show. And it didn’t seem to be improving with updates.

I have seen however, people export a Revit model to Etabs for analysis. I can’t say if this workflow allowed the engineer to do everything you described because I was the exporter not the engineer.

Where Revit falls apart as a structural analysis tool is that when buildings get more complex, Revit’s weaknesses start to show; BIM technicians have to start taking short cuts and making work-arounds to model the product within the available deadline; It usually produces something not suitable for structural analysis. If time weren’t as much of an issue then maybe a workable BIM model could be produced. Or a simple building like a parking garage. In my experience, with the 100 or so BIM models I’ve seen, exactly 0 of them were suitable for use as a structural analysis model. The concrete towers exported to Etabs had to be ‘fixed up’, which took so much time that I would have just as soon modelled it in Rhino had I used Rhino back then.

I should mention again that my opinion is dated by 3 to 5 years. I hadn’t seen any signs of things getting better, neither within Revit updates nor the quality of the BIM models I worked with.

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Thank you for that. I suspected this.
In looking at some of the Grasshopper plugins mentioned here I see FEA implemented but not joints. Concentrated loads through joints is a failure point that has to be modeled properly. I notice Idea Statica can link to Karumba, but what about Steel Connections (Robot Structural Analysis)? Is there a path to this through Revit? This seems to handle the connections, but I am not clear what analysis can be performed on a completed structure that is a mix of plate, stringers, beams and a few critical connections at main supports.

Correct about Revit, but that is the interesting part with rhino.inside.revit. use rhino and grasshopper to work with the geometry before going to any analysis package. Sometimes Revit can give grasshopper the right analytical model information, and some objects grasshopper will have to calculate itself.

You can go from grasshopper into Robot also. Revit > Grasshopper > Rhino > Robot. Grasshopper to Robot export and of course Geometry Gym can go to Robot

Or Revit > Grasshopper > Tekla > Grasshopper > Analysis. An Alternate Automation process.

Sometimes you need to use Grasshopper to remodel everything from Revit geometry to make it right for structural analysis. So many ways to automate and modify the data collection necessary for analysis.

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