Computer Integration for Geometry Generation for Product Optimization with Additive Manufacturing

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Reiher, T.
Vogelsang, S.
Koch, R.

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University of Texas at Austin


Designing parts for additive manufacturing (AM) offers a broad range of geometrical and functional potentials. On the one hand the manufacturing technology offers the possibility of manufacturing highly complex freeform shapes, often referred to as bionic shapes. By use of these, perfect force fluxes without stress risings due to imperfect notches are realizable, getting the most value of used material. On the other hand these complex structures require a reliable geometry representation in compatible CAD-files. Conventional CAD systems were developed to generate geometries that are manufacturable with conventional machining. These are not capable of representing the high complex designs for AM. Especially for geometries generated by CAE like from topology optimization the conventional CAD systems fail to take advantage of the combination of CAE and AM. This paper explains why there is a lack of compatibility of well-known CAD systems with the potentials of AM. Therefore the AM-side of the problem is described by showing some potentials of AM and the need of high complex structures for this manufacturing technology. For the other side of the problem conventional methodologies for geometry representation of CAD systems are described and their limitations with regard to AM are worked out. Finally a voxel based geometry representation is presented as a solution for computer aided geometry generation of high complex AM–structures.


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