FreeCAD is an open-source parametric 3D CAD modeler and probably the most hopeful open-source 3D modeler. It aggregates powerful open-source tools dedicated to 3D modeling like Open CASCADE (a CAD kernel), Coin3D (an incarnation of Open Inventor), the Qt GUI framework, and Python, a popular scripting language.
The module “Amelet-HDF Export” provides an easy way to export 3D models (meshes) into the Amelet-HDF mesh file format from FreeCAD. Amelet-HDF is a compact file format based on HDF5, dedicated to provide a standard for recording and recovering computer data of electromagnetic simulations.
“Amelet-HDF Export” is open source and free for all and can be downloaded from this link:
End-Loaded Planar Open-Sleeve Dipole (ELPOSD) antenna modeled in FreeCAD
“Amelet-HDF Export” is known to work with the following components:
- FreeCAD in version 0.14 or 0.15 (windows, linux)
- python-tables in version 2.4
Basic installation on Ubuntu 14.04
On Ubuntu OS, it is easy to install dependencies:
sudo apt-get install freecad
sudo apt-get install python-tables
Download “Amelet-HDF Export” (with the above button) with wget and run FreeCAD with the “-M” option:
freecad -M AmeletHDFExport
Quick starting with Amelet-HDF Export
The first thing to do is creating a new project by the (File/New) menu and then
- Select the “Part” workbench by the menu (View/Workbench/Part)
- Draw a simple object (like a cone)
- Select the Mesh workbench: (View/Workbench/Mesh design)
- Select the object into tree
- Create a mesh (Meshes/Create mesh from shape…)
- Run meshing tool (Ok) and close tool (Cancel)
- Select the mesh into the tree
- Export the mesh into Amelet-HDF mesh file (File/Export (Ctrl+E)). Into ‘Files of type’ combo box choose ‘Amelet HDF5 mesh file (*.h5)’
- Save the mesh.