Automatic tolerance analyses by generation of assembly graph and mating edges from STEP AP 242 file of mechanical assembly
Article publication date: 17 November 2022
Issue publication date: 6 December 2022
This paper aims to propose a method to automate the tolerance analyses of mechanical assembly using STandard for the Exchange of Product model data-Application Protocol Part 242 (STEP AP 242) files derived from the 3-D computer-aided design (CAD) models.
Product manufacturing information and mating information available in ISO 10303 STEP AP242 files resulting from the 3-D CAD model of mechanical assembly are extracted. The extracted geometric attributes, geometric dimensioning and tolerancing (GD&T) and mating information are used to automatically generate assembly graph and mating edges required for the tolerance analyses of the mechanical assembly by using the matrix approach.
The feasibility of the proposed method is verified through two mechanical assembly case studies. The results of manual calculations and tolerance values computed by the automated method are very closely matching.
Tolerance analysis is an integral part of product development that directly influences the cost and performance of a product. Apart from the academic interest, the work is expected to have positive implications for the digital design and smart manufacturing industry that involve in the development of solutions for automation of design and manufacturing system functions.
The approach presented in the paper that aids the automation of tolerance analyses of mechanical assembly is an innovative application of the STEP AP 242 file. The automation of tolerance analyses would improve the productivity and efficiency of the product realization process.
The corresponding author would like to thank NIT Calicut for providing funding to execute this work through Faculty Research Grant (FRG) 2019.
Declaration of conflict of interest: The authors declare no potential conflict of interest with reference to research, authorship and publication of this article.
S., M., R., M. and Lawrence K., D. (2022), "Automatic tolerance analyses by generation of assembly graph and mating edges from STEP AP 242 file of mechanical assembly", Assembly Automation, Vol. 42 No. 6, pp. 835-850. https://doi.org/10.1108/AA-11-2021-0155
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