Using adaptive ruled layers for Rapid Prototyping: principles and first results

de Jager, P.J.
Broek, J.J.
Vergeest, J.S.M.
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Current 2.5D layered rapid prototyping has as disadvantage the staircase effect, requiring thin layers to be used to achieve a reasonable accuracy. Slices with inclined outer surfaces can be constructed using linear interpolation between adjacent contours, resulting in ruled slices. A methodology to approximate a given model geometry within a specified accuracy using ruled slices and an adaptive layer thickness is described. This involves matching successive contours and analysing the geometry for curvature and inclination to calculate allowed layerthicknesses. First results show a significant reduction in the number of layers when compared to adaptive slicing using 2.5D layers. A proof-of-concept software, the Delft University of Technology Improved Slicer (DUTIS) has been developed to perform the adaptive slicing using either 2.5D or ruled layers allowing a comparison between the two alternative methods.