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Thesis - Step Capp

Thesis - Step Capp

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05/09/2013

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There is much literature in the area of FBD. Many different feature definitions
have been introduced and various FBD systems have been developed as stand-alone

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FBD systems or implemented in the existing CAD systems. The following is a
literature survey of well-known FBD systems and their characteristics.

FMDS is a feature modeling shell developed at Arizona State University in
USA (Shah and Rogers, 1988). It is a system for designing, documenting and
evaluating parts and is organized into a shell for product definition and another for
mapping and applications. FMDS can be customized by the organization using it to
define the features needed by their designers. Once the customization is complete,
designers can start using FMDS to define products. FMDS consists of three separate
modelers, each of which supports one type of feature. The modelers are form feature
modeler, precision feature modeler, and material feature modeler. Each modeler can
be used in a setup mode to create specific features and feature knowledge.

QTC is an acronym for Quick Turnaround Cell (Anderson and Chang, 1990). It
utilizes the approach of destructive solid geometry. Users working on QTC should
firstly instance a stock solid which is always a rectangular block. After that, users
can then instance and position features on the stock. The features correspond to stock
removal represented as volume that is to be subtracted by Boolean operations. FDG
is an acronym for Feature-Dependency Graph, developed by Sheu and Lin at
National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan (Sheu and Lin, 1993). It represents the
relationships between features in the part model. Feature-position operators act as the
bridges between dependent features in the FDG. Each form feature consists of a B-
rep model to represent its volume, a set of abstract measure entities to support the
basis for dimensioning, a set of sizes to control its intrinsic size, a set of locations for
location relative to parent features, and a set of constraints to define special behavior
positioning and dimensioning.

EXPO is an object-oriented feature-based design system to support concurrent
design and process planning (Wong and Wong, 1995). In EXPO, a set of primitive
features are built into a feature library based on the AutoCAD12 AME (Advanced
Modeling Extension) geometric modeling system which is a CSG based solid
modeler. AME is used to define the nominal geometry of the base stock, the

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machining features, the intermediate part shapes and the finished part. In modeling a
part, EXPO employs the approach of destructive modeling with features. A base
stock is defined prior to feature instancing. The finished part is obtained by
subtracting the machining features from the base stock. Their hierarchical boundary
information such as solid, faces, edges and vertices can be obtained via boundary
evaluation process. The hierarchical boundary information is then converted to the
half-edge data structure.

ZD-MCADII is a product modeling system developed by Artificial Intelligent
Institute of Zhejiang University in China (Hailong et al, 1996). It is a feature-based
parametric modeling system integrated with CAPP/CAM systems. Feature-based
modeling in ZD-MCADII allows design to include standard design elements in
product geometric model and eliminates traditional, time-consuming modeling
operations, and it provides various design features to facilitate the product design.
ZD-MCADII also allows designer to construct his own feature libraries with user-
defined feature provided by ZD-MCADII's feature module. ZD-MCADII's feature
editor allows designer to modify a feature on screen by selecting the dimension and
entering a new value. ZD-MCADII is able to convert design feature to manufacture
feature used in CAPP and CAM by its feature mapping module.

FEBDAPP is an acronym for Feature-Based Design And Process Planning
developed by Febransyah and presented in his Ph.D. dissertation at North Carolina
State University (Febransyah, 2001). It is a hybrid system incorporating design by
feature and feature recognition approaches. By incorporating advantages from both
approaches, the system provides designers with more flexibility in creating a part
then the pure design by feature approach and requires less complex feature
recognition algorithms than the common feature recognition approaches. The system
consists of three main subsystems as follows: (1) part creation, (2) feature mapping,
and system integration. In creating a part, designers can use predefined features to
build a CAD model. After the part has been created, the feature mapping process is
utilized to drive all information needed for downstream applications. The CAD-

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based interface developed as a part of this system integrates the system with process
planning.

As revealed in the literature survey presented above, an important issue has not
been dealt within the reviewed FBD systems. This issue is that no standard explicit
data format representing the features has been used. Most of the FBD systems save
features data in an implicit data format. In other words, these systems export features
data in one file and their technological attributes in another file. These data files
cannot be used directly in downstream manufacturing applications. Therefore, one of
goals in this thesis is to develop new FBD system for designing mechanical parts
using standard features and data format. The details of the proposed FBD system will
be presented in chapter 4.

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