This page provides information on the Export .simscene function.
Phoenix can take only the nodes it needs for the simulation from the 3ds Max scene and write them to a .simscene file.
The Phoenix Standalone Simulator then can read .simscene files and run the Phoenix simulation on them, creating a sequence of AUR or VDB cache files.
Simulating using the Standalone Simulator happens outside of the 3ds Max process and is usually faster than simulating inside of 3ds Max. Also, simulating Phoenix inside 3ds Max requires a Phoenix GUI license as well as a Phoenix Simulation license, while the Standalone Simulator uses just a Phoenix Simulation license, so you can do it on a machine without 3ds Max installed, using the cheaper Phoenix Simulation license.
While the standalone simulation runs, the Phoenix Previewer can be used to view its progress - it reads the newly created AUR or VDB files and shows them using the different Phoenix previews - voxel preview, particle preview, mesh preview or GPU preview. Phoenix Previewer can also save out a sequence of images with these previews. You can view these images in real time in an app such as Chaos Player, Virtual Dub, etc., as opposed to using the Previewer to read the cache files and display them which can be slower than real time for large cache files, or cache files stored on the network, or on the cloud. Also, sending a sequence of images to another machine is much easier than sending a sequence of AUR or VDB cache files which could be huge, in the range of gigabytes.
The .simscene exporter allows you to run different combinations of the Phoenix standalone tools.
Export, Sim and Preview - Exports a simscene file, starts a Phoenix Standalone simulation, and opens the Phoenix Standalone Previewer which follows the latest simulated cache file from the simulation.
Export and Sim - Exports a simscene file and starts a simulation.
Export - Exports a simscene file which you can use for simulation at a later time or on a different machine.
Cancel - Closes the Export .simscene window.