Export Catia mesh to NX Nastran | Export catia FEA mesh model to Nastran solver .dat file

If you want to export the FEM mesh model that you have generated in CATIA to external Nastran solver, then you have to export the CATIA mesh into Nastran Bulk file which has extension .dat.

This tutorial will simply illustrate the steps to export the FEA mesh from Catia and to import it into Nastran.
  1. Open the mesh model in Catia that you need to export to Nastran solver
  2. Before exporting the mesh, ensure that the writing code page for saving Catia data is set as ISO8859-1. You can see this settings in Tools→Options→General→Compatibility
  3. Now, in Import/Export toolbar, select Export Mesh option. You can find the same option in Menu→Analysis & Simulation Advanced Meshing Tools → Export mesh
  4. In the newly opened window, select file type as Bulk data(.dat) , Provide a file name without space.
  5. Click Save.
  6. Now the mesh will be exported with .dat extension in the chosen location.
  7. Now, Go to the Nastran solver and Import the .dat file that you have created just now.


In this export method, you can only export the mesh which contains nodes, elements of RBE2,RBE3, thin shell, solid , etc. But we cannot export the solid model through this method.