structural engineering apps for ipad

If you are looking for Structural Engineering Apps For Ipad, then you are on the right page. It contains mechanical engineering apps. Suppose you want the best apps for engineering drawing instead. Then this article is what you need.

The App Store is a wonderful place, full of things that can make your procrastination easier, more efficient, more fun. From Candy Crush to Fruit Ninja to Ballz, there are millions of ways to not get done what it was you wanted to do, whether that’s working, studying, or spending time with your family.

But there are actually some apps that can improve your productivity, instead of damaging it. The apps covered are some of the best engineering related apps currently available for the iPad, such as unit converters, circuit board designers and as engineering dictionaries, among many others. Particularly while in lockdown during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to stay on top of your field and find as many ways as possible to make studying from home easier. Hopefully, alongside your multitude of games and time-wasting apps, you’ll find something here that will make your life a little more productive.

mechanical engineering apps

Structural Engineering Apps For Ipad

the best apps for engineers

NewEngineer and our parent company 11 Academia Networks are Apple Associates, meaning we are a part of their affiliate program. This article contains affiliate links, which means we may earn money through any qualifying purchases made after you click through. However, this is not a sponsored post.

Applications for Mechanical Engineers

Mechanical engineering often requires numerous site visits during all stages of a project and that makes it very difficult to quickly check a formula or a component. The apps presented in this section make it much easier to reference engineering materials when out of the office, which is very useful in our current climate.

1. iEngineer

As a mechanical engineer you’ve most definitely faced the difficult task of selecting the correct bolt or screw for your specific application. This process often requires you to sift through hundreds of online catalogues that are hard to navigate and leave out some of the most important information. The iEngineer app endeavours to shed some light on this situation, as it puts a wealth of technical information into an easy-to-use and searchable interface. It even displays the maximum allowable forces for that specific bolt or screw, as well as the required drill hole diameter for your chosen bolt.

2. Engineering Cookbook

This app is based on the Engineering Cookbook by the Loren cookbook company. This app is great because it lets you carry around the book in an easy to read and searchable form. It focusses mainly on HVAC related topics and contains equations related to fans, ducts, motors, system design and heating. It also includes various HVAC related charts and summaries that will definitely help you out of a difficult problem while on site.

3. Steel Profiles

Structural steel design is a very involved process, especially when it comes to choosing the correct profile for the task at hand. Each profile has a long list of properties that need to be inputted into an FEA program or a simple Excel spreadsheet in order to work out various calculations. You could always flip through the thousands of pages of a reference manual to get this information, but who wants to suffer that painful experience? This app makes the searching of specific steel profiles very easy. It supports both metric and imperial profiles and even contains profiles from various geographic regions.

4. LuxCalc Fluid Prop

When working with heat transfer calculations, it’s important to know the thermophysical properties of the various fluids you’ll be using. It’s often difficult to find the required fluid properties and many websites even contradict each other. However, LuxCalc makes the search much easier. The lite version of the app has 6 types of fluids available, whereas the full paid version has 20 different types of fluids.

Apps for CAD – Computer Aided Design

CAD software is used in some form or another by most engineers. However, the degree to which it is used in the different engineering disciplines varies widely. For example, an electronic engineer needs to make sure their circuit board can fit into a housing designed by the mechanical engineer, but the electrical engineer does not need a full CAD package to quickly check dimensions. CAD apps make it very easy to share 3D models between the interdisciplinary teams that typically work on engineering projects.

5. Fusion 360

Fusion 360 is a piece of Autodesk CAD software that has grown in popularity in the past few years. This is due to its ease of use, coupled with powerful CAD and engineering tools. The app functions as an extension of the software, as it allows you to track progress on projects as well as measure and mark-up designs on the fly. You’ll also be able to open and view many different CAD file formats. It does not let you edit and create CAD files, but doing CAD on an iPad isn’t ideal anyway.

6. AutoCAD

AutoCAD is a very popular draughting package that is used extensively in every engineering field. It tends to focus on 2D drawings and you’ve more likely than not had direct contact with this software, especially its .dwg file type. The AutoCAD app allows you to view and annotate your DWG files on the move. It also has nifty draughting tools that let you measure and modify these drawings. The app can link to desktop versions of AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT.

7. FingerCAD

Most engineers will scoff at the idea of doing CAD work on an iPad and this distaste is justified if you are drawing up a complicated machine with multiple interrelated parts. However, fingerCAD is not designed to displace your much-loved CAD package of choice, but rather to assist the engineer or designer on site. You’ll often have to share an idea while on site and a pen and paper is not always available, and even if it is, you may not be the best at hand drawings. A bad drawing will create even more confusion. FingerCAD has all the basic functions needed to quickly generate a 3D model on site to get an idea across.

General Engineering Applications

The apps listed below don’t fall into any specific category but rather cover a broad range of specialised uses from project management to news platforms.

8. Engineering Unit Converter

If you’ve ever had to google what ten inches is in millimetres, then you know the pain of unit conversions. Whether you want to convert pound force-foot to kilojoule or a nautical mile to millimetres, this app can save you extreme frustration. It has a tidy user interface free of gimmicks and distracting graphics. It also contains a handy currency converter.

9. Trello

As an engineer you often have to juggle the semi-controlled chaos of many different projects at once. This can easily get to the point where you forget about certain tasks and deadlines. Trello is a great app to keep track of each of your projects and the tasks related to them. Trello works by allowing you to create “Boards” that you can then add tasks or “Cards” to. Within these cards you can add bullet point lists, add pictures, set deadlines and even create check box lists. You can add team members so that when a task is added to the project, everyone in the team is notified about the addition. There are also plenty of nifty features, like integration with Google Docs and Slack, as well as a paid version that includes even more juicy add-ons.


It’s important to stay up-to-date with the goings on within the engineering field. Keeping up with current technology trends allows you to make informed decisions and gives you the upper hand when implementing new techniques and technologies. It also allows for interesting dinner conversations (if your mates and/or family are also in the field). This app brings all the latest engineering and technology news into one simple, navigable app. You can even create boards with which you can share and participate in engineering discussions.

11. Basic Engineering Dictionary

We’ve all been in a meeting where an indecipherable term is thrown around by everyone in the room, leaving you wondering what it means. Instead of displaying your ignorance you can pull out your engineering dictionary app and pretend you are viewing an extremely important email and before anyone is aware of it, you’re on the same page. This app contains over 8000 engineering terms and lets you save your favourites. It also lets you test your knowledge with a quiz.

12. Graphing Calculator

A scientific calculator is invaluable for any engineer. It’s a relatively uncluttered app with a simple interface. These features include a graphing capability, unit converters, scientific constants, tracking of significant figures and many more.

Apps for Electrical Engineering

Let’s face it, electronic engineering is incredibly complicated and as such, any extra help can go a long way to making your day-to-day circuit wrangling a lot more pleasant.

13. iCircuit

Building circuits can be a very entertaining exercise when things go well and there is no hint of the dreaded blue smoke. For the times when you would rather not risk testing a circuit that you aren’t too confident with, there’s iCircuit. This app lets you build both analogue and digital circuits and then test it with a digital multi-meter.

14. EE Toolkit

This app is for both the weekend tinkerer as well as a full-time electronic engineer. It’s been well reviewed and is used in many universities as the preferred electronics engineering app. It includes various useful features such as component references, real time circuit simulations, a frequency generator and over 150 electronics applications.

15. Electronic Toolbox Pro

Our final app is impressively comprehensive. Its list of features and components is staggering. It has also been continuously improved from 2009, showing that the creators are passionate about this app. It includes millions of components that can be searched based on specific parameters. It also has various calculation tools built into it, making it well worth the higher-than-average cost.

best apps for engineering drawing

Best 3D modeling software for mechanical engineering

There are many software solutions with advanced features that will allow you to work on really technical projects. Here is our selection of the best software to work with for your next mechanical engineering projects. Find out all the modeling and design tools that you need.  

Fusion 360

Fusion 360 is a great CAD software tool developed by Autodesk. This a cloud-based program, that will allow you to improve your teamwork thanks to better communication around your mechanical projects. This program has advanced software tools, you will be able to work on solid modeling, mesh modeling and parametric modeling. If you are planning to work with this 3D software solution, be sure to check our tutorial on how to prepare a 3D file for 3D printing with Fusion 360.




KeyCreator is a geometry centered 3D modeling software tool, perfect to create your 3D design concepts. KeyCreator offers direct CAD modeling, 2 and 3 axis machining and a flexible design strategy. You can both work on 2D and 3D projects with this CAD program in order to design engineering projects. This software tool has 3 different versions: Standard, Pro or Max, all offering different features. You will surely find the software package that will fit your project. Watch the video below to see a demo of this design software:


Here is one of the best modeling software tools available on the market to design your mechanical projects: Inventor. It has various modeling options and great simulation tools. No doubts, this CAD software solution will help you to improve your performance. DIS-TRAN, a company specialized in the conception of complex steel structure arrangements such as H-Frame Transmission Structures, are actually using this software solution in order to design their electrical engineering projects. It is the proof that Inventor can help you to develop any of your complex mechanical parts, even the big ones. Here is a tutorial to prepare your 3D file for 3D printing with Inventor.  

Solid Edge

Solid Edge is developed by Siemens. It is the perfect 3D software for engineers for complex projects but also to give shape quite quickly to your ideas. It has a great 2D orthographic view functionality, really convenient for mechanical designers. It also has powerful engineering simulation capabilities for Computer-Aided Engineering. This software is essential and will surely allow you to go further with all of your technical 3D projects! Here is a video to see how to design mechanical projects with Solid Edge:


NX is another program developed by Siemens PLM Software, it is allowing to work on conception, simulation, and manufacturing. Their goal: improving your production process with an efficient program, offering a complete toolset perfectly matching your expectations. This software solution will provide you all the necessary tools to work on free form designs or templates based design. This software tool also allows you to work on sheet metal parts. For example, you can quickly convert solid models to sheet metal components using NX, which can totally help you with your technical projects


SolidWorks is the perfect 3D modeling software for engineers and 3D designers. SolidWorks is a powerful and complete tool that will help designers and engineers to build innovative mechanical models. This 3D software has a user friendly interface and can be used for design, or to create machinery parts, for example. It will perfectly fit engineering students looking for a great tool to make mechanical drawings! We already saw in a previous post about car design programs that SolidWorks is used by automotive manufacturers such as The Knapheide Manufacturing Company, working on utility truck bodies, or the motorcycle manufacturer Orange Country Choppers. Watch this video to see how to make a conceptual design using SolidWorks:


Catia is a professional software tool developed by Dassault Systèmes. Mostly used for aerospace projects, this program is particularly useful for complex and detailed designs. With this program, you can actually work on any product. If you are an engineer, it will perfectly meet your expectations to create your 3D CAD models, and it is really perfect for mechanical engineering projects. If you need some help to create 3D designs with Catia, check our tutorial! Watch the video below for a Catia demo:


ProE (also known as PTC Creo or Creo Parametric) is developed by Parametric Technology Corporation and is an engineering design software tool. It is 3D CAD software providing assembly modeling, finite element analysis, NURBS surface modeling, but also great features dedicated to mechanical designers. This is a good and complete software solution to do some rapid prototyping for your mechanical parts, but also to produce your end-use products.


Mathematica is a technical computing system that could totally allow you to create solid parts for your future 3D printed mechanical parts. It is offering advanced features, such as 2D and 3D data visualization, function and geo-visualization and animation tools. This program is particularly convenient for any scientific, mathematical or engineering project. If you want to start your 3D modeling project using Mathematica, check out our tutorial.  


Alibre is a parametric CAD software tool dedicated to mechanical systems. It is possible to use this 3D program to create quite complex parts. This mechanical software solution also has a good rendering tool. This 3D software tool has great features, perfect to develop, prototype or produce all of your projects.



TurboCAD Deluxe

This mechanical engineering software offers a lot of different features. It has an easy learning curve, but at the same time, is quite powerful. You will be able to work in both 2D and 3D, customize UI, and use tailored mechanical tools for engineering projects. Product designers will also benefit from rendering options such as different materials and lighting.They will be able to produce photorealistic visualizations. Additionally you will be able to easily share your work with other 3D software such as AutoCAD or SketchUp. Also, your 3D models can be prepared for 3D printing with TurboCAD Deluxe.

AutoCAD Mechanical

Autodesk produces the classics of 3D modeling and AutoCAD is certainly one of them. As mechanical engineering 3D software evolves, so did this program. Autodesk produced a version that combines the reliable tools and functionality of AutoCAD with customized mechanical tools: AutoCAD Mechanical. This 3D program allows you to document CAD models, reuse mechanical drawing detailing tools, but also to create rectangles from the ribbon, restore and isolate layer groups and much more. Most importantly, AutoCAD Mechanical will provide you with a huge library (over 700 000) of standard parts and international drafting standards support. This is a true game-changer in the world of mechanical engineering.


This 3D modeling software is similar to SolidWorks, but free and open-source. Driven by the needs of the users, FreeCAD offers a wide range of tools for mechanical engineering and product design applications. FreeCAD is a parametric 3D software that will allow you to easily edit the model by going into its history. It is a good software for beginners, but will still provide advanced CAD users with professional-grade options. Our 3D printing experts have first-hand experience with FreeCAD as we used it for a tutorial: how to design interlocking parts.


SolveSpace is another 2D/3D parametric software. It’s a great 3D program to prepare CAM data, design mechanisms, use plane, and solid geometry.  The key features of SolveSpace include: constraints and dimensions on distance, projected distance, lengths in imperial and metric units, and various sketch tools. You can also analyze your models. On top of all of that, you can prepare your projects for 3D printing.

DesignSpark Mechanical

This 3D modeling software is a free 3D program enabling mechanical engineers and makers to produce rapid prototypes and reverse engineering projects thanks to a wide range of tools. DesignSpark Mechanical will seamlessly integrate into your current workflow. Work through the whole design process, from sketches, rapid prototyping to the final production. It will also allow you to prepare your projects for 3D printing.

Which software should you choose?

Are you ready to use one of these software tools to create your mechanical engineering projects? Share your experience with us, and tell us what software you are using to create your mechanical parts. If you need to 3D print your parts, upload your 3D files right now on our 3D printing service!

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