This paper discusses advances in interactive discrete element simulation for use in computer‐aided concurrent design. We highlight the computational problems of creating a ‘virtual world’ populated by objects which behave much as real world objects and propose a system based on a new class of volumetric models, called superquadrics. These functions have significant advantages for calculating multibody interactions, and by coupling volumetric representation to a modal decomposition method for the physical dynamics we have been able to gain up to two orders of magnitude in efficiency. The modal method allows us to trade off high order modes for improved stability, time step magnitude, temporal aliasing and speed of response, and so provide almost real time feedback to the designer. We believe that virtual manufacturing systems will be especially useful in conceptual design, in design for manufacture and in the new thrust in concurrent design.
WILLIAMS, J.R. and PENTLAND, A.P. (1992), "SUPERQUADRICS AND MODAL DYNAMICS FOR DISCRETE ELEMENTS IN INTERACTIVE DESIGN", Engineering Computations, Vol. 9 No. 2, pp. 115-127. https://doi.org/10.1108/eb023852
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