The aim of this document is to describe the support process at Volupe and to give you some friendly guidelines on how to describe your support case to us. A well-defined case makes it easier for us to provide a fast and accurate solution to your issues.
At Volupe we do our utmost to provide the best possible support to our customers. The support organization at Volupe consists of engineers with different backgrounds, both in terms of academia and prior experience from different industries. We come from mechanical engineering, engineering physics, chemical engineering, and marine engineering. Our combined years of experience within numerical and multiphysics simulations is almost 50 years. Before starting at Volupe, most of us have been working as consultants, which has provided us with insight in a wide variety of fields and applications. This, together with the experience gained from supporting our 70+ customers, gives us a good foundation to be able to support.
The support process
Step 1: Opening a support case
To open a support case we encourage you to write us an email to our official support inbox at firstname.lastname@example.org. It will be addressed and taken care of by your assigned Dedicated Support Engineer.
Before we can provide a solution to your support enquiry, we will try to get a clear picture of it. Therefore, we kindly ask you to describe your case for us in a way that helps us understand the issues you are facing. Below, under “Desired elements of a support enquiry” we have summarized some guidelines on what we wish you to include in your mail, so we can assist you in the best possible way.
Step 2: Solving the cases, and follow up from Volupe
Your dedicated support engineer will let you know shortly that your support enquiry has been received. The mail will be reviewed and processed. Sometimes an answer can be provided without too much investigation and communication needed. Sometimes, we need to gather complementary information and send follow up questions, or setup a Teams-call where the case can be discussed in person.
Step 3: Closing the support case
When you consider that your questions and issues are answered and resolved we can close the case.
Step 4: Filling out the support survey
After the completion of each support case you will receive a support survey. The survey takes a minute to complete, and we highly appreciate if you can spend this time and give us your feedback. Thanks in advance!
Please write a detailed description of your case.
As stated above: before we can provide a solution to your support enquiry, we will try to get a clear picture of it. Therefore, we kindly ask you to describe your case for us in a way that helps us understand the issues you are facing.
– Describe what you are simulating and what is the purpose of the simulation.
– Let us know which problems you are experiencing and what questions you have. A clearly stated question, helps us understand what kind of help you need. If you have several questions, you can write them in a structured bullet point list.
Include pictures, plots and potential error messages
Feel free to include pictures showing your case, preferably inserted directly in the mail. There is a saying that “a picture is worth a thousand words”. Very often a picture of a problem, granted that the problem can be visualized, will help immensely in understanding and also even directly seeing the solution.
If you receive any error messages, please include them in your mail as well.
Send us the simulation file
Often we need to have a look at your simulation file to properly understand and debug your case. If your simulation file is small enough (~15 MB) you can attach it directly to the mail. For larger files we will create a shared folder on our sharepoint where you can upload the file. If you need us to sign an NDA before sharing files with us, please forward it for our review and confirmation.
The email above contains information on what the customer wishes to achieve, from where the question is coming and a description of the level of experience the person has. The email contains a question, even if the issue, looking at the picture is self-explanatory. And the picture in this case gives all the information needed to solve the case.
In this case the client has not included the surface remesher in the Automated mesh operation, hence the refinement will not increase the cell count because the volume mesh will be created based on the tessellation of the input surface. What seems in this case to be pure CAD-tessellation of a cylinder, a tessellation that might very well be fine enough to resolve the curvature of a cylindrical pipe, is not enough to have as the basis for a volume mesh.
In terms of support there are several types of questions that can come up. At Volupe we wish to be as helpful and efficient in our support as possible, and for this reason it is a good idea to understand how different questions can be formulated for easy understanding and quick support. It is of course hard to beforehand define all types of questions, but here is a selection that we see often.
- Something is wrong with my case – this amounts to the example seen above. Something seems wrong, whether it is in the simulation or the meshing process. Follow the instructions above and try to include as much information as possible in the initial support request.
- Is this possible to do in Simcenter STAR-CCM+? – This is an open question, but one we see often. E.g., is it possible to simulate X in Simcenter STAR-CCM+? Here it is very important with a description of the end goal, because very often a subsection of what is asked is possible. And in many cases, this is actually enough to solve the engineering problem at hand. The application, background and the question you wish to have answered is the minimum information for a good estimation.
- Theory questions – Sometimes it is relevant to understand certain parts of the underlying models used in Simcenter STAR-CCM+. The documentation holds basically all the available information to users and is our biggest source of theoretical information. But if you have trouble finding or understanding what is stated there, we are happy to assist. A bit of background to the problem at hand is always good. Note also that more information can be found in the references found in the bibliography of each theory section. Note also that we do not necessarily have access to those publications at Volupe.
- Licensing – A problem with license is something we always consider prioritized at Volupe. It is important to us that you can use the software you have purchased. Also, here, as much background as possible is good. Often a Teams-meeting can help to speed up the process. It is worth noticing that the license setup can vary a lot based on what operative system is used and other underlying internal structures at a given company. This leads to sometimes more or less custom methods when setting up the license.
- Support center – The information found on the support center (Siemens Digital Industries Software | Siemens Software) is extensive, and it contains a lot of useful information. While we at Volupe do not have access to the underlying structure of support center, and cannot access accounts and settings, we can perhaps guide you in what needs to be done in order to get it to work properly. Sometimes you need to add information to your account. This blog post of ours is a good starting point (Information about Siemens Support center – VOLUPE Software).
- Scripting – Lately the available automation workflows in Simcenter STAR-CCM+ are moving away from the Java-environment. It is still possible to record macros in Simcenter STAR-CCM+ and change them to make them behave in a certain way. Note, however, that we do not officially support Java. Having said that, if you have a question on macros, send it in and we can take a look to come with pointers. Many things traditionally done with Java, can now be done using simulation operations, and other tools related to an automated workflow.