A typical way of obtaining a proportional 3D 8-Node element mesh in other FEA software is to extrude a 2-D 4-Node element mesh. Is this possible with Autodesk Simulation MES (Specifically, the 2011 release)?
Yes, it can be done. Any other questions?
I suggest you look at the page "Help > Autodesk Simulation > Examples > Modeling" in the Help. In particular, "Cylinder with Convection Model" and "Ball in a Box with Body to Body Radiation Model" use forms of "extrusion" to convert a planar mesh into a 3D mesh. You do not need to run the heat transfer analysis if you don't want to; you just need to read the examples for the modeling experience.
Simulation Mechanical user since Dec 1997