Did you complete our Beginner Tutorial Part 1 and built your own desktop fan?

Congratulations, now, you will learn how to create documentation and analysis of the Fan with only five steps.

Please note that you'll need the components which you created in the first part of this Fan Tutorial to proceed.

This tutorial will take approx. 15 minutes to complete.

(1) Create an Analysis 

As an engineer, you might have to create an Analysis to leverage your engineering data and to document the properties of your design.

Add a descriptive Analysis

  • Go to the Analyses module by clicking on the Analyses button in the left sidebar (1)

  • In the project navigation pane, select your project from the top drop-down menu and click on All Analyses(2)

  • Create a new analysis by clicking on the + button in the left-hand corner at the top of the page (3)

  • Name the analysis Power_Analysis and click Create.

  • The analysis consists of blocks of text, images, videos, charts, or tables. Click inside the existing block 1. Write heading... and type in Introduction.

  • Click into the second block Write text... to add an introduction text.

  • The analysis content is automatically being saved while you type.

PowerUserTip #2: Click + Folder in the left navigation pane to create a group of analyses, in which you can organize your analyses.

(2) Save Text and Formulas as Valis for Re-use

There is nothing worse than copy-paste text and values which you have introduced into many Analyses. Once any information changes in that text, you usually would have to do updates in many places. However in Valispace, you can save variables in the text, so you can easily reuse them and only have to modify them once.


Create a Vali from Room Temperature

  • Click into the existing text box of your analysis.

  • Type $ into the text block and click create new in the popup.

  • Now, select Vali (1) and enter the following properties:

    • Name = room_temperature

    • Formula = 25 (here: the value)

    • Unit = degC

  • Click Create & Insert. (2)

Change Vali

  • Hover over the Vali room_temperature

  • Click Edit to edit the formula (number) and value (unit):

(3) Access Valis in Analysis

One of the main promises of Valispace is that you will not have to do copy-pasting and manual updating of values in your documentation anymore, even if the values of your design change. So, let's use some Valis, which we created in the Components Module, in the Analysis:

Write some text using Valispace placeholders

  • Add a new block to your Analysis by clicking on the faded box Click to add new block at the bottom of the window.

  • Select Text and then Normal text from the drop-down menu.

  • Add the following sentence in the editor (please instead of copy-pasting it, manually type it and you will be able to see the auto-complete feature for Valis):

When the room temperature reaches $Power_analysis.room_temperature, the fan is turned on at MAX power. The power consumption of the fan is then $Fan.PowerConsumption.

  • Upon clicking outside the block, you will see that Power_analysis.room_temperature and Fan.PowerConsumption is being replaced by their values. Valispace will always keep them up-to-date for you.

(4) Add a Pie Chart

Valispace does not only keep track of single data entries but also allows to add visualizations to the Analysis, which will also be kept up-to-date.

Insert a Mass break-down chart of your fan

  • Choose Click to add new block

  • Select Charts and choose Budget.

  • Click into the new block.

  • Under Name/Caption, type Mass breakdown of the fan

  • In this menu, select Pie Chart from Chart Type.

  • In the field + Add to vali start typing Fan and use the auto-complete to select Fan.Mass. Close.

  • In the Analysis, you can now see the Mass Breakdown of the Fan as a Pie Chart, which will automatically update itself.

  • To adjust the settings of the pie chart, click on the 3 dots in the right-hand top corner of the pie chart and choose Settings

PowerUserTip: These graphs will still show the correct distributions, even if you add or delete sub-components in the tree. You can go ahead and try it by adding another subcomponent to the fan, which also has a Mass.

(5) Create an Engineering Budget

Engineering budgets are at the heart of every hardware development: Clearly tracking apportionments of design values for key requirements, such as mass, power consumption, etc. is always up to date.

Insert a Power Budget for your Fan

  • Choose Click to add new block

  • Select Tables and choose Budget.

  • Click into the new block.

  • Under Name/Caption, type Power Budget for the Fan.

  • In the field + Add to vali start typing Fan.power and use the auto-complete to select Fan.PowerConsumption.

  • Enable the show margins and show worst case checkboxes. Close.

  • With the help of the arrow next to propeller in the table, you can expand or collapse the component tree.

  • If you want to export the table, click on the 3 dots on the right-hand top corner of the table and choose Export as image to save it on your local machine.

Next Steps?

Congratulations, you now know your way around Valispace!

 You could improve your Desktop Fan project. Here are some ideas:

  • Write some marketing material in Word, using the Valispace Word Plugin to include technical values that are automatically kept up to date with your design.

  • Or how about creating a simulation to calculate the resulting air displacement depending on the fan modes? You can directly access all Valis from Matlab, using the Valispace Matlab Toolbox.

  • Add a solar panel component to make the fan portable. You can make the maximum rotational speed dependent on the sun angle of the solar panel.