3-D 10-Node Tetrahedral Electrostatic Solid

Compatible Products: – | – | – | Enterprise | Ent PP | Ent Solver | –

SOLID123 Element Description

SOLID123 is a 3-D, 10-node, charge-based electric element. It is well suited to model irregular meshes (such as produced from various CAD/CAM systems). The element has one degree of freedom, voltage, at each node.

This element is applicable to 3-D electrostatic and time-harmonic quasistatic electric field analyses. Various printout options are also available. See SOLID123 in the Mechanical APDL Theory Reference for more details about this element.

Figure 123.1:  SOLID123 Geometry

SOLID123 Geometry

SOLID123 Input Data

The geometry, node locations, and the coordinate system for this element are shown in Figure 123.1: SOLID123 Geometry.

Orthotropic material directions correspond to the element coordinate directions. The element coordinate system orientation is as described in Coordinate Systems. Properties not input default as described in the Material Reference. Nodal loads are defined with the D (Lab = VOLT) and F (Lab = CHRG) commands.

Element loads are described in Nodal Loading. Surface charge densities may be input as surface loads at the element faces as shown by the circled numbers on Figure 123.1: SOLID123 Geometry. Charge densities may be input as element body loads at the nodes. If the node I charge density CHRGD(I) is input, and all others are unspecified, they default to CHRGD(I). If all corner node charge densities are specified, each midside node charge density defaults to the average charge density of its adjacent corner nodes.

The temperature (for material property evaluation only) body loads may be input based on their value at the element's nodes or as a single element value [BF, BFE]. In general, unspecified nodal values of temperatures default to the uniform value specified with the BFUNIF or TUNIF commands.

A summary of the element input is given in "SOLID123 Input Summary". A general description of element input is given in Element Input.

SOLID123 Input Summary


I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R

Degrees of Freedom


Real Constants


Material Properties



Surface Loads
Surface charge densities -- 

CHRGS face 1 (J-I-K), face 2 (I-J-L), face 3 (J-K-L), face 4 (K-I-L)

Body Loads
Temperature --

T(I), T(J), T(K), T(L), T(M), T(N), T(O), T(P), T(Q), T(R)

Volume charge densities --
Special Features

Birth and death


Element coordinate system defined:

0 -- 

Element coordinate system is parallel to the global coordinate system

1 -- 

Element coordinate system is based on the element I-J side


Extra element output:

0 -- 

Basic element printout

1 -- 

Repeat basic solution for all integration points

2 -- 

Nodal fields printout


Electric charge reaction sign:

0 -- 


1 -- 


SOLID123 Output Data

The solution output associated with the element is in two forms:

The element output directions are parallel to the element coordinate system. A general description of solution output is given in Solution Output in the Element Reference. See the Basic Analysis Guide for ways to view results.

The Element Output Definitions table uses the following notation:

A colon (:) in the Name column indicates that the item can be accessed by the Component Name method (ETABLE, ESOL). The O column indicates the availability of the items in the file Jobname.OUT. The R column indicates the availability of the items in the results file.

In either the O or R columns, “Y” indicates that the item is always available, a number refers to a table footnote that describes when the item is conditionally available, and “-” indicates that the item is not available.

Table 123.1:  SOLID123 Element Output Definitions

ELElement NumberYY
NODESNodes - I, J, K, L, M, N, O, PYY
MATMaterial numberYY
XC, YC, ZCLocation where results are reportedY2
TEMPTemperatures T(I), T(J), T(K), T(L), T(M), T(N), T(O), T(P), T(Q), T(R)YY
LOCOutput location (X, Y, Z)11
PERX, PERY, PERZElectric relative permittivity11
EF:X, Y, ZElectric field components (X, Y, Z)11
EF:SUMVector magnitude of EF11
D:X, Y, ZElectric flux density components11
D:SUMVector magnitude of D11
JS:X, Y, Z, SUMCurrent density components (in the global Cartesian coordinate system) and vector magnitude [3]11
JT:X, Y, Z, SUMConduction current density components and magnitude [3]11
JHEAT:Joule heat generation rate per unit volume [4] [6] [5]11
SENE:Stored electric energy [5]11
FMAG:X, Y, ZElectrostatic force [7]-1
CHRGDApplied charge density-Y

  1. The solution value is output only if calculated (based upon input data). The element solution is at the centroid.

  2. Available only at centroid as a *GET item.

  3. For a time-harmonic analysis, JS represents the sum of element conduction and displacement current densities. JT represents the element conduction current density. The element displacement current density (JD) can be derived from JS and JT as JD=JS-JT. JS can be used as a source current density for a subsequent magnetostatic analysis with companion elements [LDREAD].

  4. For a time-harmonic analysis, calculated Joule heat generation rate per unit volume (JHEAT) includes conduction heating and dielectric heating due to the loss tangent.

  5. Calculated Joule heat generation rate per unit volume (JHEAT) may be made available for a subsequent thermal analysis with companion elements [LDREAD].

  6. For a time-harmonic analysis, Joule losses (JHEAT) and stored energy (SENE) represent time-average values. These values are stored in both the real and imaginary data sets.

  7. Use the EMFT macro to calculate the force distribution over the body. See the discussion on Electrostatic Forces in the Low-Frequency Electromagnetic Analysis Guide.

Table 123.2:  SOLID123 Miscellaneous Element Output

DescriptionNames of Items OutputOR
Integration Point SolutionLOC, PERX, PERY, PERZ, EF, EFSUM, D, DSUM1-
Nodal SolutionEF, EFSUM, D, DSUM2-

  1. Output at each integration point, if KEYOPT(5) = 1

  2. Output at each corner node, if KEYOPT(5) = 2

Table 123.3: SOLID123 Item and Sequence Numbers lists output available through the ETABLE command using the Sequence Number method. See The General Postprocessor (POST1) in the Basic Analysis Guide and The Item and Sequence Number Table in this reference for more information. The following notation is used in Table 123.3: SOLID123 Item and Sequence Numbers:


output quantity as defined in the Table 123.1: SOLID123 Element Output Definitions


predetermined Item label for ETABLE command


sequence number for single-valued or constant element data

Table 123.3:  SOLID123 Item and Sequence Numbers

Output Quantity NameETABLE and ESOL Command Input

SOLID123 Assumptions and Restrictions

  • The element must not have a zero volume or a zero length side. This occurs most frequently when the element is not numbered properly. Elements may be numbered either as shown in Figure 123.1: SOLID123 Geometry or in an opposite fashion.

  • An edge with a removed midside node implies that the potential varies linearly, rather than parabolically, along that edge. See Quadratic Elements (Midside Nodes) in the Modeling and Meshing Guide for more information on the use of midside nodes.

  • This element is only compatible with elements having a VOLT DOF and an electric charge reaction solution. Electric charge reactions must all be positive or negative. KEYOPT(6) sets the electric charge reaction sign. See Element Compatibility in the Low-Frequency Electromagnetic Analysis Guide for more information.

  • The solenoidal current density is required for a solution, or for any postprocessing operations.

SOLID123 Product Restrictions

There are no product-specific restrictions for this element.

Release 18.2 - © ANSYS, Inc. All rights reserved.