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Automated fixture configuration using projective geometry approach

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The geometric and topological specification of a workpiece boundary is usually represented in a specific data format in a CAD database. To retrieve a set of workpiece data, to analyse its shape in addition to the machining requirements, and to determine the proper fixture configuration accordingly, are not trivial tasks when a part has a complicated shape. The real challenge is to recognise and synthesise the shape of a workpiece from its data representation. Consequently, the decision for fixturing can be made when the shape of a workpiece and the relationship of the shape and the fixturing configuration can be derived by a systematic methodology. In this paper, a projective spatial occupancy enumeration (PSOE) approach is applied as a representational and manipulating scheme for developing algorithms in automatic fixture configuration. The workpiece is projected onto the working plane of the fixture baseplate. A 2D projection is defined as a matrix of cells which can represent a workpiece with an arbitrary shape. Using a discrete search based upon the matrix of cells, the fixture types and their locations are generated according to a set of heuristic algorithms. This work is a generalisation and extension of previous works for prismatic parts. The same methodology is equally applicable in general robot grasping.

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Correspondence to Dr Amy J. C. Trappey.

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Trappey, A.J.C., Liu, C.R. Automated fixture configuration using projective geometry approach. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 8, 297–304 (1993). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01783613

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  • Boundary representation
  • Modular fixturing
  • Projective geometry
  • Fixture configuration