Tips & Tricks: How to Calculate the Inside Volume of a Tank or Bottle with Creo

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Suppose you have an enclosed model, like a fuel tank or a water bottle.  How do you accurately calculate how much gas or fluid your design will hold?

You could find the overall volume of the model by calculating mass properties, but then you would somehow need to subtract the space taken up by the walls of the model. And what if your model includes areas that you don’t want to include in the measure—like the nozzle?

Here is a quick overview of what you can do to calculate the inside volumes:

For best results, create the model as a shelled feature.

Calculate the relevant volume before and after shelling the solid geometry (see below), and subtract shelled volume from full solid volume

You’ll follow these general steps, but use the video below for step-by-step instruction:

1. Create a one-sided volume analysis feature. You can find instructions here.
2. Select the datum plane that defines the cut-off point of the analysis. That will help exclude areas you aren’t interested in measuring (like that nozzle).
3. Find the solid volume of the model. To do that, you measure the overall volume, you’ll assign a name to the feature, and save the measurement as part of your model tree.
4. Find the thickness volume of the model. To do that, you measure the volume of the shell feature you created. Again, assign a name to the feature, and save the measurement as part of your model tree.
5. Subtract the thickness volume from the solid volume. To do that, create a relation and use the parameters from the previously saved analysis features as shown in the image below.

PTC University has an online tutorial to show you how it works. An instructor shows you how to set up the datum plane and find solid, thickness, and inside volume.

You’ll also see how to set up your system to automatically recalculate the volume whenever wall thicknesses change.

Click the video below to view the tutorial for free; no login needed. If you’d like to see more, I’d recommend a visit to PTC University Learning Exchange. You’ll need to create an account—but it’s free and there are 700 more PTC tutorials just like this one waiting to show you how to use Creo effectively

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