Excel Catalog (Base Doc)

These catalogs are defined in an excel (.xlsx) file. Each row of the worksheet defines a complete simulation. The **Base Doc* approach is an alternative way to use the excel templates as a means to define a catalog. The main difference with this method and the standard method is that most of the model building occurs in the base document. The excel catalog then defines modifications to this base document. This is similiar to parameter sweeps, but may help user workflow in some circumstances.

Always available column names

ID

Ignored for now

Group

Used to group cases. Provides a filtering mechanism in the GUI.

Name

The name of the case. Each row should have a unique value.

Base Document

The base template document to use. The template catalog is searched. See User Document Catalogs for more information.

Column names reference

The column names to change an object property value must indicate the object name and its property name. For example, a column name of Static_Body Diameter, would refer to the Diameter property of the associated geometry of the object with name Static_Body.

  • Objects are refered to by name. If the object in the base document has a space in its name, replace the spaces with _ in your excel sheet to properly reference them.

  • Property names are searched over the referenced object

  • Property names are matched with a case-insensitive search

  • If a property is not found, an error will be shown at time of case creation or during the check command

  • Some properties are vector types, and therefore allow for a component name to be specified in the column name, eg. “myobject.stl Location X

To further illistrate this convention, see the below examples:

Static_Body Diameter
~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~
    ^-                  Object name
              ^-        Property Name (no spaces)

To specify a vector location –:

Moving_Body Location X
~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~ ~
    ^-                    Object name
               ^-         Property Name
                     ^-   Property vector x-component

Row values

Row values are specified according to their property type. The available types in the GUI are –

True/False

Simply put true or false as the value in the spread sheet. Excel recognizes this type

Enumeration/Choice

Indicate the value by writing the choice into the row value. For example, specify the fluid rheology type as power law with a value of PowerLaw in the cell value.

Text value

Enter the string/text value in the cell

Floating point value

Enter the floating point number in the cell

Integer

Values like -1, 0, 1, 2, 3, …

What are the available property names?

With your base document open, go to Tools -> Display Excel columns. This will show a text table of every property that can be accessed in the model. The table displays the column name you can use in your excel sheet, as well as the type and any options that are available.

Browsing your catalog in the GUI

  1. Make sure you have setup your Template Catalog Path on the Preferences form. Save your excel catalog file in this directory. See User Document Catalogs for more information.

  2. In the main menu, click File -> New from excel catalog.

  3. Your defined catalogs will show in the below form

  4. Select your catalog, filter, and case, and click OK

  5. The case is parsed/verified. A confirmation form lists any errors found in the definition.

  6. The case is loaded into the GUI and you can continue pre-processing or simply run your case.

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Select Catalog

Select the excel catalog you want to browse

Filter by Group

If you have defined groups, you may use this column to filter and down select the displayed case listing. Optional

Select Case

The case listing, determined by your catalog and filter selection. The Name value is indicated here.

Case Properties

A listing of the defined (non-empty) properties in the case. The can click Check Case to verify the case definition is valid.

Tip

As you develop your excel catalog, you can iterate on changes by saving your Excel document, then clicking Refresh on the catalog form