IES VisualAnalysis v11

(Last Updated On: July 9, 2016)
IES VisualAnalysis v11

You have choices in the marketplace for general-purpose FEA tools but VisualAnalysis shines in a number of areas:

  • Excellent for everyday projects.
  • Great for unusual projects, and large, complicated models.
  • Three feature and price levels available: Compare Levels.
  • Building-code support is optional, use it for mechanical applications too.
  • Extremely versatile: model just about anything!
  • Reporting is extremely powerful and very flexible (save your own styles)
  • So easy to use, most customers are productive within hours of installing
  • Over 3000 companies use IES tools: one part-time support person at IES! (Think about it, our products don't need support!)
  • BIM support: VARevitLink provides two-way integration with Autodesk Revit Structure.


  • Frames, Trusses, Grids, Beams, Tanks...
  • Beam or Truss Members, Plate/Shell Elements
  • Elastic Spring Supports
  • Auto-meshed Areas (for easy wall or slab modeling)**
  • Tension-only/Compression-only members or spring-supports
  • Cartesian, Polar, Cylindrical or Spherical Coordinates
  • No built-in size limit (20,000+ nodes are practical)
  • Typical Manufactured Shapes: Steel, Wood, Aluminum, Cold-formed
  • Parametric, Custom or Shapes imported from ShapeBuilder
  • Just about any Material, Libraries included, Customizable!
  • CAD-style selection box
  • Generate linear copies
  • Simple, Rigid, Semi-Rigid** Connections
  • Catenary Cable Elements**
  • Many Ways to Construct Models:
    • Sketch models graphically
    • Copy & Paste existing objects
    • Import/Export .DXF files
    • Import from Spreadsheet/Clipboard
    • Legacy or Interchange .STD files (basic model & loading)
    • Customizable parametric generation


  • Automatic Load Cases & Load Combinations
  • Updated! Built-in Support for IBC 2012, IBC 2010, ASCE7-10, etc. Combinations
  • Customizable Load Combinations.
  • Semi-Automatic ASCE 7 Wind Loads (Method 2)
  • Ice + Wind pressure on Members (e.g. open towers)
  • AASHTO Load Sources (optional)
  • Copy Multiple Loads from Member to Member
  • Import Loads from a Spreadsheet/Clipboard
  • Static Loads: Concentrated, Distributed, Pressure, Thermal, etc.
  • Area Loads (keeps model and loads separated so changes are easy!)
  • Area Edge Loads (in or out of plane)
  • Dynamic Response Spectra, IBC & Customizable
  • Dynamic Forcing Function, Time HIstory analysis**
  • Moving Loads** (limited, e.g. crane beams, single load-line)
  • Automatic live-load pattern load combinations**
  • Import Load Combinations**

Analysis & Results

  • Static Analysis (1st order, P-Delta, Iterated)
  • AISC Direct Analysis (notional loads, stiffness reduction)**
  • Dynamic Analysis (Sparse Lanzcos, Newmark)
  • Superposition Results and Envelopes**
  • Member Internal Forces, Displacements, Diagrams
  • Plate Forces, Stress, Contour Diagrams,
  • Edge Results
  • Automatic Mesh Refinement with Auto-Meshed Areas**
  • Nodal Reactions, Displacements
  • Graphical Results Viewing
  • Sophisticated, Customizable Text Reports
  • Spreadsheet report, and save directly Excel XLS**

Design Checks & Building Codes

  • Smart and flexible setup: bracing, deflection checks, size constraints
  • Updated! Steel 360-10 Design for frame and truss members (AISC, CISC)*
  • Updated! Concrete ACI 318-11 Design of Beams, Columns, Flat Slabs (ACI)*
  • Updated! Wood NDS 2012 Design for frame and truss members (NDS)*
  • Updated! Aluminum ADM 2010 Design for frame and truss members (ADM)*
  • Updated! Cold-Formed NAS 2012 Design for frame and truss members (NAS)*
    RSG Software's CFS is used internally to perform these checks 
  • Visual bracing locations
  • Steel seismic compactness checks
  • Stress & Deflection Checks (code agnostic, any material)**
  • Integrated Steel Connection Design** via VAConnect
  • Steel warping torsion checks**
  • Override intermediate values or parameters (e.g. Cb, Fy, wood C factors...)**
  • Moving Loads and Dynamic results are now checked**

System Requirements

  • Windows XP, Vista, 7.0, or 8.0. Both 32-bit and 64-bit. (VA is a 32-bit program)
  • Any modern CPU: faster is better.
  • 1 GB RAM, minimum
  • 1024x768 minimum recommended display resolution
  • Recommended: A high-quality graphics card, 128+ MB RAM, OpenGL 2.1+ support,with an updated driver! Update and then set your video card to 'Highest Quality' mode.
  • Wheel-mouse. (3-buttons)
  • ~50 MB disk space for programs, program data, utilities and libraries
  • Typical project files range from 1K to 1MB
  • Internet connection required for documentation
  • Not supported: Windows 98, ME, 2000, NT, Virtual PC (limited graphics)
  • Not supported: Linux, Unix, Apple iOS.  (Emulators may work, but we don't support)

Auxiliary Features

  • Custom Shapes through IES ShapeBuilder (sold separately)
  • Spread Footing Design through IES QuickFooting (sold separately)
  • Mat Foundation Design through IES VisualFoundation (sold separately)
  • Integration with Autodesk Revit Structure with IES VARevitLink** (free with advanced)
  • Import and Export: DXF, STD, SDNF, TXT, XLS
  • Batch Analysis for command-line operation, programmatic access


  • Not an 'ANSYS' or 'NASTRAN'; VisualAnalysis is practical, down-to-earth friendly!
  • Not a 'turn-key' system for building or truss design. You decide the layout, pick initial member sizes, etc. (No automatic total structural optimization.)
  • Does not run inside or integrated with AutoCAD (or any other CAD tool)
  • No internal pipe pressures
  • No orthotropic materials (linear isotropic only)
  • No solid (brick) elements
  • No curved beams (you may simulate through 'chords')
  • No staged loading
  • No nonlinear buckling analysis, full plastic analysis, pushover analysis
  • No pre-stressed or post-tensioned concrete design
  • No specialized bridge design (multiple lanes, code checks)