These questions are really more related to time-history analysis rather than to SAP directly. So, feel free to respond even if you are not a SAP user.
For those of you who are doing Time-History analysis, I have a few questions for you:
1) What sort of projects are you using this feature for most often? My guess is that it will fall into one of a few main categories:
a) Seismic Analysis to existing earthquake records
b) Steady State Analysis for vibrating equipment.
c) Ramp-up or Shut Down analysis for vibrating equipment.
d) Other (wave analyis, blast analysis, footfall vibration, traffic loading, or what?)
Follow up question for those who answered a)
2) Where do you get your earthquake records?
Follow up question for those who answered b).
3) Do you define a steady state analysis function directly in the program. Or, do you run a regular time-history and just wait for the structure to reach a steady state response?
Follow up questions for those who answered c).
4) Do you use the utilities in the program to create your time histories, or do you have to use Excel to do it?
5) Can you think of any ways in which the your analysis program could make the creation of these time histories easier?
I work for RISA (which could be considered a competitor of SAP's, though we usually have a pretty friendly relationship) and am doing some research into industry practices related to Time-History analysis. If, or when, RISA decides to do Time-History analysis, I want to make sure that we have a thorough understanding over what engineers are actually using it for. My sense has been that most time-history analysis program are geared towards earthquakes. However, my industry experience has been that most time-history analysis is doing for dynamic equipment supports and not earthquakes. I could easily be wrong, of course. It can be dangerous to assume that other engineering firms are doing the same type of work that I have done in the past.