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Catia Tutorial

This Catia tutorial will give you a complete overview of Catia modules and toolset. It includes catia versions, catia advantages, applications of catia, catia workbench, Catia 3D Experience, etc.

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Catia refers to a Computer-aided Three-Dimensional Interactive Application. It is a complete software suite incorporating CAD, CAM(Computer-Aided Manufacturing), and CAE(Computer-Aided Engineering). It is an excellent choice of CAD software for beginners because of its extensive tools and feature set. The user-friendly interface helps beginners to start learning and creating instantly.

The 3D modeling capabilities of Catia are better than those of other softwares, enabling designers to create stunning visuals. The 3D design and 3D digital mock-up made CATIA a go-to tool for different sectors like aerospace, construction, engineering, and medicine. So, learning CATIA will help you advance your career growth and grab the best job opportunities. That is why we have designed this Catia tutorial to provide you with a thorough understanding of this gigantic application. It helps you master various approaches to product design.

Table of Content

What is Catia?

Catia is a potential 3D software for professionals. On the contrary to 3D applications, Catia software is based on the modeling technique utilizing curves instead of a mesh approach. It is the most accurate modeling method. Since 3D files are used as a guide for the machine tools in the industry, CATIA is the most popular and regularly used software application.

Delve deeper into the functionalities of Catia, a leading 3D software for professionals, by practicing extensively and seeking clarification on any queries you may have during Catia Training sessions conducted by our experienced trainers.

What is CAD?

Computer-aided design is the most utilized by engineers for creating, modifying, and analyzing the graphical representations of product designs. The applications stretch throughout a multitude of industries because of their benefits. The CAD software innovation enhances the design quality with good accuracy and minimization of errors.

What is CAE?

Computer-aided engineering(CAE) is used by engineers for the analysis and simulation of product designs. These analyses include Multibody Dynamics, Finite Element Analysis, and Computational Fluid Dynamics.

What is CAM?

Computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) is used by manufacturers for planning, managing, automating, and controlling manufacturing operations.

What is the use of Catia?

CATIA offers tools for the 3D design visualization. The main reason for using CATIA is its structured system, sketching, multiplatform development, technical intuitions, and multiplatform development. The automotive, aerospace, defense, and industrial equipment sectors are the ones that primarily use CATIA. CATIA integrates a multidisciplinary methodology and cross-discipline development platform. 

CATIA is useful even for designing electronic, electrical, and distributed systems. Contrary to 3D applications, the graphical user interface is user-friendly. The workspace tools and commands are easy to use. 

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Catia Versions

The requirements of several enterprises evaluate how software is built. Every CAD professional seeks to create new and enhanced. CATIA has continuously improved its versions since 1980 to meet design requirements. 

Catia V3 and V4

The primary version of CATIA was released in or around 1982. The Boeing Company utilized the primary 3D CAD tool, the CATIA V3. Building 3D designs requires the utilization of CATIA V3; CATIA V3 is converted from the Mainframe systems to UNIX. In 1994, Dassault Systems created CATIA V4 and released it. 

The native formats like STEP, DXL, STP, and IGES have been included in CATIA V4. .model, session, .exp, .dlv3, and .dlv4 are the file extensos of CATIA V4. CATIA V4 contains a function that converts CATIA V4 files to V5.


The most extensively used and popular version of CATIA is V5. For both non-parametric and parametric modeling, V5 is the CAD program. By including new features like enhanced usability and extended compatibility, CATIA V4 replaced it. Without SIMULIA and DELMIA packages, CATIA V5 can do fundamental FEA Analysis and machining.


The 3D collaboration solution of CATIA V6 is also called CATIA 3D experience. Users can define and implement the driving system for managing difficulties and producing goods on schedule. It also enables us to assemble and model complicated products. 

Engineers can utilize it to do digital prototyping, like analysis and simulation of design, function quality design, and performance across the design process. A real-world experience that predicts performance in the real world is possible through CATIA V6 integration of challenging product behavior into the product description.

Catia Functionalities

1) Part Modeling

It allows you to design the accurate 3D mechanical parts. From assembly sketching to in-depth design, part design application satisfies the majority of the design needs.

2) Assembly Modeling

It allows you to cooperate with the part design and the generative drafting applications on the extensible design products.

3) Surface Modeling

Surface modeling enables you to produce wireframe construction elements and improve the existing mechanical parts design with surface and wireframe features.

4) Finite Element Analysis

Finite Element allows you to conduct the first-order mechanical analysis for the 3D systems.

5) Sheetmetal Part Design

Sheetmetal Part Design is helpful in conducting associate feature-oriented modeling, allowing it to develop metal parts in parallel engineering between the folded or unfolded part depiction.  

Advantages of Catia

1) It is easy and secure to share the designs. We can share our Catia designs with anybody anytime on any web-enabled device.

2) By using Catia, we can quickly and efficiently collaborate with any stakeholder, and they can participate in digital mock-ups from anywhere.

3) While compiling and saving Catia V5 files, we can complete other operations using background-saving features.

4) Designing process can be easily handled, allowing to streamline the workflows from concept to validation, change management, and production.

5) Through CATIA, we can connect to the future now while using the cloud-oriented 3DEXPERIENCE platform.

6) Engineers, developers, and architects can utilize CATIA multiplatform development to combine multi-discipline modeling, business processing, and verification.

7) It helps engineers understand variables impacting the overall performance, goods quality, and 3D modeling tools.

8) Engineers remain compatible with the market regulations and standards because CATIA minimizes development expenses for systems and products.

CATIA 3D Experience

CATIA 3D Experience incorporates Dassault systems and other brands like SIMULIA, DELMIA, and ENOVIA for offering product data management and product lifecycle management. It is used for establishing connections with different enterprise divisions. It provides a customized environment for all the engineering and design tasks.

These tasks are divided into groupings that can reflect the actual processes, standardize the iconography, allow a rapid learning curve, and make locating appropriate functions and raising productivity easy.

CATIA Workbench

CATIA offers different modules and workbenches. The primary tool for solid modeling is the Generative shape design part design. With the adaptable and accessible user interface, this workbench allows you to build 3D mechanical components at any stage, from sample sketches to thorough iterative designs. Following are the few Workbench commands:

1) Pad: It is used for converting drawings into 3D designs. Pad is also called Extrude.

2) Face: It is used for modifying the angle of the selected faces to get the required form for that particular face.

3) Fillet: It can build a smooth edge using the required size.

4) Pocket: For making a hole-in-pad design at a particular distance, utilize the pocket command.

Sectors that use CATIA

1) CATIA in Mechanical Engineering

CATIA 3D modeling technologies provide mechanical engineers with helpful insights into crucial aspects of performance and quality. The product development team can digitally develop and analyze an automated product in the operational environment using digital analysis, simulation, and prototyping. The user can build components in a user-friendly environment through CATIA's mechanical design products.

2) CATIA in the Engineering Systems

Using CATIA, system engineers can understand the multidisciplinary systems development process using CATIA. It provides developers with integrated systems engineering that efficiently monitors the complete development process. System Architecture Definition, Requirements Engineering, and Extensive simulation and modeling of complicated systems must be mastered from the perspective of a complete product for the system engineering products to build smoothly.

3) CATIA in the Construction Industry

CATIA is used in the construction industry for the digital continuity of buildings and infrastructure. Every project phase needs tight integration between several players, like construction engineers. Moreover, While using 3D as a general language, a team effort is required for simplifying communication and reducing rework between the phases of complex projects.

4) Styling or Design in CATIA

The style and design of a product have a significant impact on how it performs in the market. The main components of CATIA Design/Styling are creating innovative materials and shapes, achieving good software quality, and obtaining the best decision-making tools. 

CATIA Graphical User Interface

Specification Tree

  • The specification tree will be displayed on the left side of the screen while we are working with CATIA.
  • It tells us how a part is constructed and displays the product structure.
  • We can select the product entities from the specification tree or geometry tree.
  • We can modify the parts by choosing them from the specification tree
  • Press “+” for opening the tree branch
  • We store the solid parts in the PartBody branch of the Part tree

Sketcher Module

Sketcher Workbench is a group of tools that allows you to create and restrict the 2D geometries. After that, Features can be made for Solids, or changes can be made to solids through these 2D profiles. We can utilize the sketcher workbench in various ways. We can access the sketcher workbench by using the top pull-down menu or by choosing the sketcher icon. After entering into Sketcher, we have to select a plane to sketch on. For exiting from the Sketcher, choose the "Exit Workbench" icon.

Sketcher workbench includes the below standard workbench toolbars:

Workbench-specific toolbars

  • Operation toolbar: After creating the profile, we can modify it through commands like mirror, trim, chamfer, and other commands available in toolbar.
  • Profile toolbar: The commands available in this toolbar will enable you to create simple and more complex geometrics.
  • Sketch toolbar: The commands present in this toolbar will allow you to work in different modes, which makes sketching simpler.
  • Constraint toolbar: We can constrain the profiles through geometrical or dimensional constraints through the commands of the Constraint toolbar.

Part Design Module

The part design environment module is used to create the 3D models from the 2D sketches built in the sketcher environment.

Feature and Commands of Part Design Module

SHAFT Command

It is the same as the revolve command in other CAD softwares. The Shaft command is highly used for building shaft-like parts. It needs the axis alongside which the sketch can be revolved.

RIB Command

Generally, this command is called SWEEP; however, in Catia, it is called the RIB command. It includes material along the guide curve. RIB is utilized for making components like pipes, springs, etc.

Slot command

The slot command removes the material along the guide curve.

Assembly module

The assembly environment is used for mating two or more part models to or from the complete assembly. Assembly module has two approaches: Top-down approach and Bottom-up approach. 

We can create the complete design structure in the product environment in a top-down approach while the bottom-up parts are made separately.

Drafting Module

Drafting is the mechanism of creating the 2D machine drawing for the 3D part models for sending to manufacturers.

We have two kinds of CATIA Drafting:

1) Interactive Drafting and 

2)Generative Drafting.

Geometric Modeling

Computer Aided Engineering(CAE) field contains Computer Aided Manufacturing(CAM) and Computer Aided Design(CAD). Computer Aided Drafting, Finite Element Analysis, and Computer Geometry Modeling are the remaining subcategories of CAD.

Mathematical representation of an object's geometry through the software is called computer geometric modeling. The represented item form is explained in the geometric model. Curves are used in computer geometric modeling to create geometric shapes and handle the object's surface and analytical functions. For making the geometric model of the object, we can use the following three stages:

  • Create geometric objects using circles, points, and lines commands in the CAD software.
  • We can use commands to change the geometric parts like scaling, rotation, etc.
  • Incorporate the components of the objects for creating the final geometric model.

Geometric Solid Modeling

The object's edges, surfaces, and nodes can be defined through solid modeling. It depicts the filled and included mathematically in an extensive and precise manner. Contrary to surface modelers, Solid modelers start with concrete or use topological principles to ensure that all the surfaces are correctly joined.

Comprising of constructive boundary representation and solid geometry, solid models are depicted through the two techniques. Basic solid objects are integrated into the constructive solid geometry. Removing or adding the forms generates the final solid shape. In boundary depiction, borders are used to define them. It delivers the orders that rotate or sweep the defined face into the third dimension for producing solid and defining the points.

Solidworks vs Catia

1) Pricing


In Solidworks, a Free 30-day trial is available. Solidworks provides a student or educator edition for $150 per year. Solidworks also provides standard subscriptions, professional subscriptions, and premium subscriptions.


CATIA V6 licenses range from $9000 to $65000.

2) Design Approach


It emphasizes providing a feature-based and parametric design approach. It provides a broad variety of in-built features that can be applied to intricate designs.


CATIA offers a more versatile and flexible design approach. It provides various design methodologies and tools like direct and parametric modeling.

3) Industry Specialization


Solidworks has a good presence in the market and is extensively utilized in electronics, consumer products, and sheet metal fabrication. It provides tools for mold design, sheet metal design, and simulation.


CATIA is significant in the automotive, industrial machinery, and aerospace industries. The advanced capabilities and extensive CATIA tools suit these industries' requirements.

4) Collaboration and Data Management


Solidworks provides collaboration and data management capabilities using its product data management solution called Solidworks PDM. Solidworks PDM offers crucial features for handling revision control, design files, and workflow automation.


The latest version of Catia focuses on collaboration and data management features. It offers a unified platform that allows the teams to work together on the project, aiding real-time collaboration, concurrent engineering, and version control.

5) Analysis and Simulation


Solidworks also offers simulation and analysis capabilities using the Solidworks simulation module. Even though it is less extensive than Catia, Solidworks simulation provides various simulation tools like thermal analysis, stress analysis, and motion analysis.


Catia includes a robust set of simulation and analysis tools suitable for industries needing deep engineering analysis. It provides advanced finite element analysis and computational fluid dynamics analysis.

Solidworks is good because of its ease of use, affordability, and user-friendliness. Thus, it suits small and medium businesses and several other industries. Catia's advanced capabilities, like strong industry specialization and complex design handling, are helpful for big industries in aerospace and other engineering-intensive fields. 


Catia provides solutions for product lifecycle management, and it is frequently used by OEMs(Original Equipment Manufacturers) in the manufacturing sector for accelerating product design, management, and analysis. In this Catia tutorial, you would have learned all the fundamentals of Catia and how to install and work with it. If you have any queries, let us know by commenting below. 

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Last updated: 20 Mar 2024
About Author


Madhuri is a Senior Content Creator at MindMajix. She has written about a range of different topics on various technologies, which include, Splunk, Tensorflow, Selenium, and CEH. She spends most of her time researching on technology, and startups. Connect with her via LinkedIn and Twitter .

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