2 Ways to Use a 3Dconnexion® SpaceMouse® with COMSOL®

January 13, 2022

A 3Dconnexion® SpaceMouse® can help you navigate the graphics within many software packages, including the COMSOL Multiphysics® software. When working in the COMSOL® software, the 3Dconnexion® SpaceMouse® comes in handy at multiple times throughout the modeling process. There are two main use cases for the SpaceMouse®: selecting geometric entities and creating more visually appealing results images. Let’s go over them here…

A Convenient Way to Operate the COMSOL® Software

3Dconnexion® develops hardware for CAD software packages. The 3Dconnexion® SpaceMouse® is fully compatible with COMSOL Multiphysics® as of version 5.3. As a longtime user of my 3Dconnexion® SpaceMouse®, I find the device more comfortable than a regular computer mouse while working — and extremely useful when modeling in the COMSOL® software.

A 3Dconnexion SpaceMouse to the left of a computer keyboard.
The author’s SpaceMouse®, used with his left hand; the regular mouse is on the right side of the keyboard, which the author uses with his right hand.

Selecting Geometric Entities

Generally speaking, the most important aspect of using a 3Dconnexion® SpaceMouse® is to help “pick” selections, specifically when working with large and/or complex CAD geometries. The SpaceMouse® allows you to navigate the COMSOL Multiphysics® Graphics window with your nondominant hand while clicking on geometric entities with your dominant hand.

As seen in the video below, it is easy to select larger domains of a busbar model geometry using a regular mouse. However, when adding the titanium bolts to the selection, we need to zoom and pan. The SpaceMouse® enables us to do this in a much faster way than when using a regular mouse only, and reduces the number of clicks you need to make.

 

Creating Model Images

Once you have set up and run your model and are working with the results, the 3Dconnexion® SpaceMouse® helps to quickly create more visually appealing and informative images. Sometimes, it is helpful for viewing the results in their entirety. For instance, in the video below, we want to show the inlet of the water streamlines up close, while still keeping the entire model in view. While this is a somewhat difficult task to navigate with a regular mouse (shown below, from 0:00–0:16), once we start using the SpaceMouse®, we are able to easily bring the inlet into view up close while keeping the entire model image in view.

 

 

3DConnexion is a registered trademark of Société Civile “GALILEO 2011”. SpaceMouse is a registered trademark of Société Civile “GALILEO 2011”.


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