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Article
Publication date: 16 October 2017

Ankit Sharma, A.K. Jha and Arpan Halder

In an industrial robotic cell, the optimal layout planning problem needs critical analysis, as it indirectly affects the manufacturing time and cost involved in the…

Abstract

Purpose

In an industrial robotic cell, the optimal layout planning problem needs critical analysis, as it indirectly affects the manufacturing time and cost involved in the production process. This paper aims to propose a generic three-step robotic cell layout planning method and aims to enhance the adaptability of robotic manufacturing cell in small-scale industries.

Design/methodology/approach

The method uses the data generated from the point cloud modeling and simulation of the objects (machines and robot) to optimize their positions and orientations in the cell. The simulated annealing algorithm has been used to solve the optimization problem with minimum joint displacement criterion. This approach is critically analyzed and discussed against the data collected from an industrial robotic cell in a foundry shop of a pipe manufacturing industry.

Findings

More than 50 per cent reduction in the net joint movement of the robot has been achieved. Immediate feedback of the results by a three-dimensional view of the optimal cell layout without using any commercial robotic simulation package.

Originality/value

The layout optimization of an industrial robotic cell based on the point cloud modeling of its objects is the novelty of the method.

Details

Industrial Robot: An International Journal, vol. 44 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 3 July 2009

Vacharapoom Benjaoran and Sdhabhon Bhokha

The 4D CAD model has been accepted for better conceptualizing and comprehending the sequences and spatial constraints in a construction schedule. The purpose of this paper…

Abstract

Purpose

The 4D CAD model has been accepted for better conceptualizing and comprehending the sequences and spatial constraints in a construction schedule. The purpose of this paper is to identify the deficiencies of the visualization of the 4D CAD model and to propose improvements.

Design/methodology/approach

The presentation abilities of the existing 4D CAD model are analyzed and compared with the other conventional methods, namely Gantt chart, network diagram, and the calendar. Four aspects of the visualization are addressed, namely the overview of a schedule, the duration of an activity, the relationship of an activity, and the project progress tracking. The proposed improvements employed different visual properties of 3D CAD objects such as color, line weight, and line type to represent the different activities' performing statuses. A prototype of the 4D CAD model with enhanced visualization was developed on a construction project case.

Findings

The model evaluation showed that this development could enhance the visualization of the 4D CAD model and provide a more informative construction schedule.

Original/value

It is anticipated that the 4D CAD model with these enhancements can substitute for conventional presentation methods of construction schedules.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 16 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 20 October 2014

Xiang Ren, Qingwei Zhang, Kewei Liu, Ho-lung Li and Jack G. Zhou

The purpose of this paper is establishing a general mathematical model and theoretical design rules for 3D printing of biomaterials. Additive manufacturing of biomaterials…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is establishing a general mathematical model and theoretical design rules for 3D printing of biomaterials. Additive manufacturing of biomaterials provides many opportunities for fabrication of complex tissue structures, which are difficult to fabricate by traditional manufacturing methods. Related problems and research tasks are raised by the study on biomaterials’ 3D printing. Most researchers are interested in the materials studies; however, the corresponded additive manufacturing machine is facing some technical problems in printing user-prepared biomaterials. New biomaterials have uncertainty in physical properties, such as viscosity and surface tension coefficient. Therefore, the 3D printing process requires lots of trials to achieve proper printing parameters, such as printing layer thickness, maximum printing line distance and printing nozzle’s feeding speed; otherwise, the desired computer-aided design (CAD) file will not be printed successfully in 3D printing.

Design/methodology/approach

Most additive manufacturing machine for user-prepared bio-material use pneumatic valve dispensers or extruder as printing nozzle, because the air pressure activated valve can print many different materials, which have a wide range of viscosity. We studied the structure inside the pneumatic valve dispenser in our 3D heterogeneous printing machine, and established mathematical models for 3D printing CAD structure and fluid behaviors inside the dispenser during printing process.

Findings

Based on theoretical modeling, we found that the bio-material’s viscosity, surface tension coefficient and pneumatic valve dispenser’s dispensing step time will affect the final structure directly. We verified our mathematical model by printing of two kinds of self-prepared biomaterials, and the results supported our modeling and theoretical calculation.

Research limitations/implications

For a certain kinds of biomaterials, the mathematical model and design rules will have unique solutions to the functions and equations. Therefore, each biomaterial’s physical data should be collected and input to the model for specified solutions. However, for each user-made 3D printing machine, the core programming code can be modified to adjust the parameters, which follows our mathematical model and the related CAD design rules.

Originality

This study will provide a universal mathematical method to set up design rules for new user-prepared biomaterials in 3D printing of a CAD structure.

Details

Rapid Prototyping Journal, vol. 20 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2546

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 25 July 2019

Zhoupeng Han, Rong Mo, Haicheng Yang and Li Hao

Three-dimensional computer-aided design (CAD) assembly model has become important resource for design reuse in enterprises, which implicates plenty of design intent…

Abstract

Purpose

Three-dimensional computer-aided design (CAD) assembly model has become important resource for design reuse in enterprises, which implicates plenty of design intent, assembly intent, design experience knowledge and functional structures. To acquire quickly CAD assembly models associated with specific functions by using product function requirement information in the product conceptual design phase for model reuse, this paper aims to find an approach for structure-function correlations analysis and functional semantic annotation of mechanical CAD assembly model before functional semantic-based assembly retrieval.

Design/methodology/approach

An approach for structure-function correlations analysis and functional semantic annotation of CAD assembly model is proposed. First, the product knowledge model is constructed based on ontology including design knowledge and function knowledge. Then, CAD assembly model is represented by part attributed adjacency graph and partitioned into multiple functional regions. Assembly region and flow-activity region are defined for structure-function correlations analysis of CAD assembly model. Meanwhile, the extraction process of assembly region and flow-activity region is given in detail. Furthermore, structure-function correlations analysis and functional semantic annotation are achieved by considering comprehensively assembly structure and assembled part shape structure in CAD assembly model. After that, a structure-function relation model is established based on polychromatic sets for expressing explicitly and formally relationships between functional structures, assembled parts and functional semantics.

Findings

The correlation between structure and function is analyzed effectively, and functional semantics corresponding to structures in CAD assembly model are labeled. Additionally, the relationships between functional structures, assembled parts and functional semantics can be described explicitly and formally.

Practical implications

The approach can be used to help designers accomplish functional semantic annotation of CAD assembly models in model repository, which provides support for functional semantic-based CAD assembly retrieval in the product conceptual design phase. These assembly models can be reused for product structure design and assembly process design.

Originality/value

The paper proposes a novel approach for structure-function correlations analysis and functional semantic annotation of mechanical CAD assembly model. Functional structures in assembly model are extracted and analyzed from the point of view of assembly structure and function part structure. Furthermore, the correlation relation between structures, assembled parts and functional semantics is expressed explicitly and formally based on polychromatic sets.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 39 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 17 April 2009

Haixia Wang and Dariusz Ceglarek

Dimensional variation management is a major challenge in multi‐station sheet metal assembly processes involving complex products such as automotive body and aircraft…

Abstract

Purpose

Dimensional variation management is a major challenge in multi‐station sheet metal assembly processes involving complex products such as automotive body and aircraft fuselage assemblies. Very few studies have explored it at a preliminary design phase taking into consideration effects of part deformation on variation propagation, since early design phase involves the development of imprecise design models with scant or incomplete product and process knowledge. The objective of this paper is to present a variation model which can be built into the preliminary design phase taking into consideration all of the existing interactions between flexible parts and tools in multi‐station sheet metal assembly process.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper addresses this problem by first, presenting a beam‐based product and process model which shares the same data structure of the B‐Rep CAD models, and therefore can be embedded in CAD systems for automatic product skeletal design; second, determining the influence of part deformation, for various, differing joining and releasing schemes, on variation propagation; and third, utilizing this information to generate a vector‐based variation propagation model for multistation sheet metal assemblies.

Findings

This paper presents a beam‐based product and process model which shares the same data structure of the B‐Rep CAD models, and therefore can be embedded in CAD systems for automatic product skeletal design; determines the influence of part deformation, for various, differing joining and releasing schemes, on variation propagation; and utilizes this information to generate a vector‐based variation propagation model for multistation sheet metal assemblies.

Originality/value

A truck cab assembly is presented to demonstrate the advantages of the proposed model over the state‐of‐the‐art approach used in industry for sheet metal assemblies.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 29 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 27 September 2011

Pinjun Xia, António Lopes and Maria Restivo

Haptics can significantly enhance the user's sense of immersion and interactivity. Especially in an assembly task, haptic feedback can help designers to have a better…

Abstract

Purpose

Haptics can significantly enhance the user's sense of immersion and interactivity. Especially in an assembly task, haptic feedback can help designers to have a better understanding of virtual objects and to increase task efficiency. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the design and implementation of a haptic‐based virtual assembly system (HVAS).

Design/methodology/approach

A multi‐thread system structure was designed, an automatic data integration interface was developed to transfer geometry, topology, assembly and physics information from a computer‐aided design system to virtual reality application, and a hierarchical constraint‐based data model and scene graph structure was designed to construct the virtual assembly environment. Unlike traditional virtual assembly systems based on collision detection or geometry constraint only, a physics‐based modeling approach combining with haptic feedback and geometry constraint was undertaken to realize and guide the realistic assembly process. When two parts collide into each other, the force and torque can be computed and provide feedback, and a spring‐mass model is used to prevent penetration and simulate dynamic behaviour. When two parts are close enough to each other and the assembly simulation state is activated, a geometry constraint can be captured, an attractive force can be generated to guide the user to assemble the part along the correct position, and the repulsive force can also be generated to realize the mating process as natural and realistic as in real life.

Findings

The implementation details and application examples demonstrate that haptic‐based virtual assembly is a valuable tool for assembly design and process planning.

Originality/value

The paper presents an HVAS.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 31 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 3 August 2010

Hongmin Zhu, Dianliang Wu and Xiumin Fan

The purpose of this paper is to develop a modeling and interactive operating method for virtual assembly (VA) to support assembly process generation based on interactive operation.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a modeling and interactive operating method for virtual assembly (VA) to support assembly process generation based on interactive operation.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper puts forward an assembly semantic modeling method for interactive assembly and process generation after the analysis on requirements of operation process generation. Based on this semantic model, methods for semantic generation, semantic processing and assembly motion extraction from interactive operation are presented. Partial process generation of auto engine is proposed to verify the approaches in this paper.

Findings

The application shows that assembly semantic modeling and operating methods can support process generation based on VA operations.

Originality/value

The approaches presented in this paper improve the efficiency of assembly process, making assembly process intuitive and natural.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 14 April 2014

Wayne M. Johnson, Matthew Rowell, Bill Deason and Malik Eubanks

The purpose of this paper is to present a qualitative and quantitative comparison and evaluation of an open-source fused deposition modeling (FDM) additive manufacturing…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a qualitative and quantitative comparison and evaluation of an open-source fused deposition modeling (FDM) additive manufacturing (AM) system with a proprietary FDM AM system based on the fabrication of a custom benchmarking model.

Design/methodology/approach

A custom benchmarking model was fabricated using the two AM systems and evaluated qualitatively and quantitatively. The fabricated models were visually inspected and scanned using a 3D laser scanning system to examine their dimensional accuracy and geometric dimensioning and tolerancing (GD&T) performance with respect to the computer-aided design (CAD) model geometry.

Findings

The open-source FDM AM system (CupCake CNC) successfully fabricated most of the features on the benchmark, but the model did suffer from greater thermal warping and surface roughness, and limitations in the fabrication of overhang structures compared to the model fabricated by the proprietary AM system. Overall, the CupCake CNC provides a relatively accurate, low-cost alternative to more expensive proprietary FDM AM systems.

Research limitations/implications

This work is limited in the sample size used for the evaluation.

Practical implications

This work will provide the public and research AM communities with an improved understanding of the performance and capabilities of an open-source AM system. It may also lead to increased use of open-source systems as research testbeds for the continued improvement of current AM processes, and the development of new AM system designs and processes.

Originality/value

This study is one of the first comparative evaluations of an open-source AM with a proprietary AM system.

Details

Rapid Prototyping Journal, vol. 20 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2546

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 3 August 2015

Hu Qiao, Rong Mo and Ying Xiang

The purpose of this paper is to establish an adaptive assembly, to realize the adaptive changing of the models and to improve the flexibility and reliability of assembly…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to establish an adaptive assembly, to realize the adaptive changing of the models and to improve the flexibility and reliability of assembly change. For a three-dimensional (3D) computer-aided design (CAD) assembly in a changing process, there are two practical problems. One is delivering parameters’ information not smoothly. The other one is to easily destroy an assembly structure.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper establishes associated parameters design structure matrix of related parts, and predicts possible propagation paths of the parameters. Based on the predicted path, structured storage is made for the affected parameters, tolerance range and the calculation relations. The study combines structured path information and all constrained assemblies to build the adaptive assembly, proposes an adaptive change algorithm for assembly changing and discusses the extendibility of the adaptive assembly.

Findings

The approach would improve the flexibility and reliability of assembly change and be applied to different CAD platform.

Practical implications

The examples illustrate the construction and adaptive behavior of the assembly and verify the feasibility and reasonability of the adaptive assembly in practical application.

Originality/value

The adaptive assembly model proposed in the paper is an original method to assembly change. And compared with other methods, good results have been obtained.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 35 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 9 January 2009

Heping Chen, Thomas Fuhlbrigge and Xiongzi Li

Paint path planning for industrial robots is critical for uniform paint distribution, process cycle time and material waste, etc. However, paint path planning is still a…

Abstract

Purpose

Paint path planning for industrial robots is critical for uniform paint distribution, process cycle time and material waste, etc. However, paint path planning is still a costly and time‐consuming process. Currently paint path planning has always caused a bottle‐neck for manufacturing automation because typical manual teaching methods are tedious, error‐prone and skill‐dependent. Hence, it is essential to develop automated tool path‐planning methods to replace manual paint path planning. The purpose of this paper is to review the existing automated tool path‐planning methods, and investigate their advantages and disadvantages.

Design/methodology/approach

The approach takes the form of a review of automated tool path‐planning methods, to investigate the advantages and disadvantages of the current technologies.

Findings

Paint path planning is a very complicated task considering complex parts, paint process requirements and complicated spraying tools. There are some research and development efforts in this area. Based on the review of the methods used for paint path planning and simulation, the paper concludes that: the tessellated CAD model formats have many advantages in paint path planning and paint deposition simulation. However, the tessellated CAD model formats lack edge and connection information. Hence, it may not be suitable for some applications requiring edge following, such as welding. For the spray gun model, more complicated models, such as 2D models, should be used for both path planning and paint distribution simulation. Paint path generation methods should be able to generate a paint path for complex automotive parts without assumptions, such as presupposing a part with a continuous surface.

Practical implications

The paper makes possible automated path generation for spray‐painting process using industrial robots such that the path‐planning time can be reduced, the product quality improved, etc.

Originality/value

The paper provides a useful review of current paint path‐planning methodologies based on the CAD models of parts.

Details

Industrial Robot: An International Journal, vol. 36 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

Keywords

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