I have a very specific need for a program to simulate the effects of "inflating" a 3d object. I am currently prototyping a design that will involve a flexible silicone object being inflated with air, and I need it to react a certain way. I am hoping for a solution to refine the design that is more elegant than trial and error. Basically, I need something where I can input a 3d model (stl or something similar), select a material or material properties, then select an internal region that will have increasing pressure. The most basic example of this would be inputting a simple 3d model of a balloon and simulating the balloon expanding. Sorry, I know this is a weird request, and I'm not sure if anything like this even exists. I have experience in Blender and other CAD environments as well as some basic coding, so it doesn't have to be too user-friendly as long as it works. I can provide any more info if that helps, I know the post is kind of confusing. Thanks!

Edit: After experimenting a bit I have had some level of success simulating in blender, but it is incredibly buggy and doesn't offer enough control.

1 Answer 1


I would suggest trying Houdini. You can create an inflatable balloon object out of a mesh with any properties you desire. There is actually a beginners level tutorial that shows how to do exactly what you are talking about. An apprentice edition with very few restraints is available for free.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.