SOFiSTiK interface integration

The SOFiSTiK Rhinoceros Interface is a plug-in extending the Rhino eco-system by functionality to define a finite elment model for structural analysis using SOFiSTiK. It is a plug-in written in C++ and will be loaded into Rhino as an external software library.

Following picture shows a screenshot of Rhino with the interface installed and actively loaded:


The graphical user interface of Rhino will be extended by the following three components:

SOFiSTiK UI component



The SOFiSTiK menu provides access to general options, settings, all commands of the Interface, general information and this help documentary. img_sofMenu

SOFiSTiK Toolbar

The SOFiSTiK toolbar provides quick access to important SOFiSTiK commands and functionalities (e.g. _sofExportModel) and external SOFiSTiK programs (e.g. SOFiSTiK animator).

The toolbar should be visible after installation of this extension by default. If this is not the case or the toolbar was closed by the user, it can be activated and shown using the command _sofToolbar or with the help of the toolbar manager Tools ‣ Toolbar Layout ‣ sofistik rhino toolbar.

The toolbar can be placed and moved around the program screen by the user in the same way all other Rhino toolbars can be modified and customized.


SOFiSTiK Properties Dialog

The SOFiSTiK structural properties dialog provides access to structural analysis properties assigned to geometric objects like points, curves and faces, … .

The properties dialog will be displayed after selecting objects in the model. It allows viewing and editing of structural properties for the selected objects. The interface provides properties dialogs for structural points, curves, surfaces/meshes and mechanical couplings.

If the structural properties dialog is not visible it can be activated either with the command _sofStructProperties or from the menu: SOFiSTiK Menu ‣ structural properties. Like the toolbar, the dialog location and size can be customized by the user.


Structural Property Dialogs

The SOFiSTiK Structural Property Dialog provides four Tabs for each type of supported structural objects, namely structural points (SPT), structural lines (SLN), structural areas (SAR) and couplings (CPL).

SOFiSTiK SOFiSTiK structural property dialogs:


Within the property dialogs, the user can initially mark selected Rhino objects to be a SOFiSTiK structural object and modify its analytical properties. By deactivating the ‘’structural’’ flag, the association between a Rhino object and its SOFiSTiK structural properties can also be removed.

The dialogs will react dynamically on any user selection, showing the corresponding dialog in case the selection contains a supported geometric object. All feasible dialogs will be enabled for user interaction. The dialogs also support multi-selection. For multi-selections with differing geometric entities (e.g. selecting points and curves at the same time), all feasible dialogs are activated with the ‘’highest’’ property shown at front (selection hierarchy: SPT – SLN – SAR - CPL) and such that the user can navigate through them in the tab bar of the dialog.

The properties in the dialogs follow basically the properties of the respective items in the text input of SOFiMSHC. Hence, further information about the structural properties can be found in the SOFiMSHC manual (records SOFIMSHC: SPT, SOFIMSHC: SLN, SOFIMSHC: SAR).