1. Getting started

1.1 System requirements

Hydrostatics Calculator is a lightweight software by itself, taking up less than 2 MB of space in your hard drive, requiring very little processing power and featuring minimal memory consumption (30-40 MB). However, as it interfaces with SOLIDWORKS API, and manipulates Virtual Bodies inside the model, computation times will strongly benefit from a powerful CPU; high single-thread performance is preferable. In any case, the minimum system requirements are no higher than that of SOLIDWORKS [1] itself:

  • Windows® 7 or newer (64-bit)
  • Dual core CPU; Quad core recommended
  • 8GB RAM; 16GB recommended
  • 2GB free disk space; 5GB recommended
  • 2GB or more GPU RAM; 4GB recommended
  • NVIDIA® graphics card: NVIDIA Quadro®/NVIDIA GeForce®/Tesla™ with at least NVIDIA Kepler™ chip; Dual-GPU setup with at least NVIDIA Maxwell™ cards for the best experience 
  • NVIDIA driver version 385.41 (or newer) recommended
  • NVIDIA driver support for CUDA® 9.0 or newer required
  • HDR Light Studio connection: HDR Light Studio v5.3.3 or newer, except v5.4 [not required for Hydrostatics Calculator]
  • 4GB of video memory or more required for the Denoiser feature

Obviously, Hydrostatics Calculator requires a functioning SOLIDWORKS installation to work. Hydrostatics Calculator was tested against SOLIDWORKS 2017 SP3 and 2018 SP3, including the Student Edition, but should work in earlier and later versions as well. On the off-chance that the SOLIDWORKS API changes, breaking the functionality of Hydrostatics Calculator, please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for a fix.

Hydrostatics Calculator also requires .NET Framework 4.5 to be installed.


1.2 Setting up

Hydrostatics Calculator does not require to be installed; it is a portable application that can be run from any directory on the licensed machine (refer to section 7 for more information). Hydrostatics Calculator is distributed as a single executable, and should be placed in any folder of your choosing that has Administrator privileges.

Upon running the Hydrostatics Calculator for the first time, you will be presented with the license authentication window, as illustrated below.


In order to obtain a Trial License or a Full License of the application, please fill out the top three fields, and press either Request button to send us the request for your license.  Please note the Trial License is time-limited (7 days), and you can run it on any computer for that period of time, including multiple computers at once. However, the Full License is tied to your specific hardware configuration, and will work only on the computer that you sent the request from. If you do not have Internet access on the computer that you intend to use Hydrostatics Calculator on, or if the request fails to send for any reason (firewall or anti-virus blocking the application) please send us your information via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and sure you include your unique Hardware Key at the bottom of this window.

After we receive your request, we'll get back to you as soon as possible via e-mail, usually within 24 hours. After we send you your Activation Key (immediatelly for Trial License, and after receiving payment for Full Version), paste that key at the Activation Key field, and press Activate License. This is a one-time procedure, and once completed, will grant you full access to all of the Hydrostatics Calculator features, including the future versions as well.


If you are using a Trial License, at each launch of the application you will be presented with a message box, informing of the time remaining on your trial, and an option to either continue with the Trial, or return to the Authentication window to request a Full License.

After validating your license, you will be presented with the following window. 


 To begin, select the Mode from the drop-down menu at the top, fill out the enabled fields, and press Run! to start calculations. Make sure you check the Settings to enable or disable the calculations you require. It is recommended that you read the rest of this manual to learn more about the operations of Hydrostatics Calculator before proceeding further. Most GUI elements have tool-tips to guide you through. Hover your mouse over each active control to learn more about it.


1.3 Suggested workflow

While you can use Hydrostatics Calculator in any way you like, consider the following order of operations to maximize time efficiency and get the most out of this software:

1. Design a rough hull shape in SOLIDWORKS, following the guidelines explained in section 3.

2. Run Hydrostatics Calculator, and obtain the information needed to improve the hull shape.

3. Modify the hull as required.

4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until the hull hydrostatics are approximately within the design parameters.

5. Use the resulting hull shape as a mould to develop the design (hollowing out the interior or offseting from the hull surfaces, building support and deck structures, creating additional parts, assigning materials, etc.). It is highly recommended that you design top-down, connecting the subsequent features to the initial hull model, so that any changes in the hull proportions will propagate throughout the design as fluently as possible. You can also export the hull shape to a separate SOLIDWORKS Part or Assembly file, but it is highly recommended that you maintain the link between the two models.

6. As the design reveals more accurate location of the center of mass, displacement and other properties, roll-back the Feature Tree to the point where the hull is still represented as a single Solid Body, and run Hydrostatics Calculator again to fine-tune the hull shape. 

7. Roll-forward the Feature Tree to update the subsequent features. 

8. Repeat steps 6 and 7 until the design is perfected.

Additional tips:

  • Hydrostatics Calculator can perform calculations of the hull at any stage of it's design, as long as the hull is still filled (not hollow), comprised of a single SOLIDWORKS Body, and is positioned correctly (refer to section 3 for more information).
  • Though it should not affect the functionality of Hydrostatics Calculator, it is still recommended that you exit any open Sketches or Features in SOLIDWORKS before running any calculations.