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Got questions?

FAQs around your favorite DFM App

Got questions?

FAQs around your favorite DFM App

Here you will find answers to frequently asked questions of our customers. If you couldn't find your question to be answered here, feel free to contact us.

Frequently Asked Questions

General questions

What are the key benefits of molded?

molded is a web-based design for manufacturing (DFM) simulation tool for injection molded plastic parts. It has been built to involve simulation at an early stage of the development process. It is easy to use, and it only takes seconds to get first results. Utilizing advanced Ultrasim technology molded will detect potential issues in your part designs and gives out recommendations for improvement. This way you can iterate faster and save time and cost.

How can I sign up for an account?

Currently, molded is in beta testing and only available to selected BASF customers. Please contact us for more details.

Is molded for free?

Yes. Once your account has been setup you can perform as many simulations as you want free of charge.

How do I use it?

The process of using molded is very straightforward. After logging in, go to ‘projects’, click on ‘New Project’, upload your CAD file, select a material and then start the DFM and injection molding analysis. It’s as simple as that. The results will be available very quickly for your review.

Is molded suitable for me?

There are many use cases we can think of. Here are some examples. If you design plastic parts but never worked with simulation before, then molded is for you. If you are a project or product manager for a plastic part and want to collaborate with your colleagues, then molded is also for you. If you are a CAE engineer who wants to learn more about injection molding and how to interpret simulation results or simply need a quick way to give your colleagues feedback, then molded is for you as well. In short, molded is for anyone that seeks out to improve the processes and communication about injection molding part design, with quick and comprehensible analysis results.

Does it replace sophisticated software?

molded is being aimed to use at the beginning of the development process for plastic parts in the research & development phase. It delivers results that are accurate enough during this stage by offering a first approximation, therefore providing better quality designs before more extensive simulation is done. Its it not meant to be used for prototyping or designing the mold. We strongly recommend to run a more sophisticated injection molding simulation (by suitable software) to check the final design of the part.

Technical questions

How accurate is molded?

molded can predict trends about the filling behavior and point out areas of concern. Since many results can be provided within seconds they are not as accurate as those coming from more specialized injection molding simulation software. However, the results are accurate enough to optimize part designs, find optimal injection locations and select appropriate BASF materials.

Which algorithm is being used?

molded uses a customized, patent-pending Ultrasim® algorithm for predicting the filling behavior during injection molding.

What are the CAD data requirements?

molded supports STEP (.stp, .step) and STL (.stl) file formats. For best results we recommend using the STP format. Make sure that you only export the cavity of the actual plastic part. It needs to be one closed volume without any errors like gaps or intersections and shouldn’t contain inserts. In order to speed up the analysis it can be also beneficial to remove certain minor entities like logos or small holes in your CAD system before exporting the STEP file and uploading it to molded. If you use the STL format, please make sure that the mesh is even and fine enough (Please note, that most CAD programms will export a mesh by default for geometric and not filling evaluations).

When does molded perform a CAD repair?

If we detect any issues with your CAD data while setting up the DFM and mold filling analysis we will try to fix them automatically. In this case you will get a notification that an automated CAD repair has been performed once your analysis results are available. In most cases, the CAD repair function fixes only small problems like gaps, intersections or tolerance problems. However, in some cases, it will also alter the geometry, which in rare cases can affects the results. So, once you see that an automated repair has been performed inspect the model to make sure that your geometry hasn’t been changed substantially.

What if the CAD upload still fails?

In some cases, your uploaded CAD data cannot be processed by molded and our automated repair function couldn’t fix the problems either (see previous question). In this case, the project owner (user that has created the project) can contact our support team to have a look at your CAD file and repair it manually. In order to do so please either send us an email at ultrasimweb@basf.com or select the “support” button after the error appears and wait until a BASF employees has a look at the data. The latter option is only available after you have hit the 'Start Analysis' button and therefore created a project we can look at. Most requests will be handled within a few hours if you submit them directly through molded during regular working hours at BASF in Ludwigshafen. Once the errors have been repaired you will be notified by email and can resume with your work.

Usage questions

What are ‚Projects‘ and ‚Versions'?

In short. A 'Project' can contain many 'Versions'. When you create a new project a first Version of the analysis is created when hitting the 'Start analysis' button. Whenever you change the material, set new injection location(s) or upload a new CAD file and therefore set off a new analysis, a new 'Version' will be created automatically within the project.

Can I share projects with colleagues?

Yes. If you want to share your analysis results with your colleagues, you can easily do so within a project. Just go to the project overview page ‘Projects’, choose a project you want to share and click on the share icon on the project preview tile. Now you can either select colleagues already existing on your sharing list or invite new users. Please note that every new user you invited will be notified by email and needs to accept your request. This can take some time and you will be notified by email once the user has accepted your invitation. After that the invited user will appear on your list.

Can I assign different user rights?

For every user on your list, you have shared with, you can specify individual user rights. Either the user can only ‘view’ your analysis results or he can ‘edit’ your project by creating his own versions by choosing e.g. new injection locations. Note that users you have shared with can never change existing versions or delete your project. Also, they can not invite additional users to your project. These rights will always remain by the project owner. Additionally, sharing with other users is not transferable to other projects and has to be initiated for every project individually for your own security.

How can I receive support?

If you want to discuss your analysis results with a BASF expert you can just invite the specific BASF contact to your project by using the sharing feature. However, if you need more detailed support and want to provide access to your CAD data, you can request support. There are two possible ways to do so. You can either go to the project overview page ‘Projects’, choose a project you want to request support and click on the three-dots icon on the project preview tile and click on “Request support”. The other way to request support is on the ‘Guide’ feature’s last content card. There you will see a “Request support” button as well. In both ways BASF will be notified by your support request and will get back to you as soon as possible. Note: For security reasons only users initially creating a project can initiate sharing or request support.

What are 'generic' materials?

molded is being developed by BASF and therefore only specific BASF materials from our portfolio can be selected for analysis. However, you can still get a first indication how polymers not available from BASF would perform. In order to do so we included a few so called “generic” materials. They behave like a typical material from the selected product family (e.g. PP or PC). However, there can be big variations within a product family so results from “generic” materials need to be treated with caution.

Security questions

Where is my data being stored?

We use Microsoft Azure cloud service to host molded. All data is being stored on a secure European server operated by a team of experts from Microsoft.

Is my data safe?

We use a highly secure cloud foundation managed by Microsoft to ensure your data is protected. Additionally, molded has undergone thorough checks by the BASF cybersecurity experts to identify and mitigate any potential security threats.

What about 3rd party software providers?

We do not collaborate with 3rd party software providers.

Can BASF 'see' my uploaded CAD data?

For us it is of utmost importance that you own your uploaded data and can determine yourself if and who is able to see it as well. By default, only you can see your uploaded CAD data. However, you can use the sharing function to share analysis results with your colleagues or with BASF. You can also ask BASF support to access your data.