Feature shape complexity: a new criterion for the simplification of feature-based 3D CAD models

  • Soonjo Kwon
  • Duhwan Mun
  • Byung Chul Kim
  • Soonhung HanEmail author


Three-dimensional computer-aided design (3D CAD) models with different levels of detail (LOD) are used in various industries for numerous purposes. Therefore, it is necessary to develop techniques to simplify 3D CAD models in order to adjust the LOD of the model according to its purpose. The main purpose of simplification is to minimize the change in the outer shape of the models and to reduce the data size of the models. The key technologies to achieve these purposes are evaluation metrics and simplification operation. Evaluation metrics are employed to select elements to be preserved or removed by calculating the importance of the geometric elements comprising a 3D CAD model. The simplification operation removes the selected elements and fills up the void in the model caused by the removal. Feature volume and type have been the most popular criteria used in evaluation metrics for the simplification of feature-based 3D CAD models. In this study, the concept of feature shape complexity (FSC) is introduced, and a method of adopting FSC as a criterion of evaluation metrics is presented. A prototype system for the simplification of 3D CAD models is then implemented. Finally, the effectiveness of the proposed method is verified by conducting simplification experiments with a complex 3D CAD assembly model.


Evaluation metrics Level of detail Feature shape complexity Feature-based 3D CAD model Simplification operation 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Kwon S, Kim BC, Mun D, Han S (2015) Simplification of feature-based 3D CAD assembly data of ship and offshore equipment using quantitative evaluation metrics. Comput Aided Des 59:140–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Foucault G, Cuilliere JC, Francois V, Leon JC, Maranzana R (2008) Adaptation of CAD model topology for finite element analysis. Comput Aided Des 40(2):176–96CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    El-Sana J, Varshney A (1998) Topology simplification for polygonal virtual environments. IEEE Trans Vis Comput Graph 4(2):133–44CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Kang Y, Kim BC, Mun D, Han S (2014) Method to simplify ship outfitting and offshore plant equipment three-dimensional (3-D) computer-aided design (CAD) data for construction of an equipment catalog. J Mar Sci Technol 19(2):185–196CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Date H, Kanai S, Kisinami T, Nishigaki I, Dohi T (2005) High-quality and property controlled finite element mesh generation from triangular meshes using the multiresolution technique. J Comput Inf Sci Eng 5(4):266–76CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Lee SH, Lee K (2012) Simultaneous and incremental feature-based multiresolution modeling with feature operations in part design. Comput Aided Des 44(5):457–83CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Kwon S, Kim BC, Mun D, Han S (2015) Graph-based simplification of feature-based three-dimensional computer-aided design models for preserving connectivity. J Comput Inf Sci Eng 15(3):90–103CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Hoppe H (1996) Progressive meshes. Proc ACM SIGGRAPH. doi: 10.1145/237170.237216, 99–108Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Sheffer A (2001) Model simplification for meshing using face clustering. Comput Aided Des 33(13):925–34CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Huang P, Wang C (2010) Volume and complexity bounded simplification of solid model represented by binary space partition. Proceedings of the 14th ACM Symposium on Solid and Physical Modeling, 177–82Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Kim BC, Mun D (2014) Stepwise volume decomposition for the modification of B-rep models. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 75(9–12):1393–403CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Seo JH, Song YJ, Kim SC, Lee KW, Choi Y, Chae SW (2005) Wrap-around operation for multi-resolution CAD model. Comput Aided Des Appl 2(1–4):67–76Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Kanai S, Iyoda D, Endo Y, Sakamoto H, Kanatani N (2012) Appearance preserving simplification of 3D CAD model with large-scale assembly structures. Int J Interact Des Manuf 6(3):139–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Yu JF, Xiao H, Zhang J, Cheng H, Xin B (2013) CAD model simplification for assembly field. Int J Adv Manuf Technol. doi: 10.1007/s00170-013-4850-z Google Scholar
  15. 15.
  16. 16.
    Rodriguez-Toro C, Tate S, Jared G, Swift K (2002) Shaping the complexity of a design. Proc IMECE 2002:641–9Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Pellerin J, Gaumon G, Julio C, Mejia-Herrera P, Botella A (2015) Elements for measuring the complexity of 3D structural models: connectivity and geometry. Comput Geosci 76(14):130–40CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Valentan B, Brajlih T, Drstvenšek I, Balič J (2011) Development of a part-complexity evaluation model for application in additive fabrication technologies. J Mech Eng 57(10):709–18CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    3D ACIS Modeler (2013) Spatial.
  20. 20.
  21. 21.
    The Boost Graph Library (BGL), Indiana University (2013)
  22. 22.
    XML technology. W3C.
  23. 23.
    ISO (1994) ISO 10303–203 1994. Industrial automation systems and integration—product data representation and exchange—part 203: application protocol: configuration controlled 3D designs of mechanical parts and assemblies. Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization. ISOGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Sun G (2007) A digital mock-up visualization system capable of processing giga-scale CAD models. Comput Aided Des 39(2):133–141CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Song IH, Chung SC (2009) Data format and browser of lightweight CAD files for dimensional verification over the internet. J Mech Sci Technol 23(5):1278–1288CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Soonjo Kwon
    • 1
  • Duhwan Mun
    • 2
  • Byung Chul Kim
    • 3
  • Soonhung Han
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Mechanical Engineering, Graduate School of Ocean Systems EngineeringKorea Advanced Institute of Science and TechnologyDaejeonSouth Korea
  2. 2.Department of Precision Mechanical EngineeringKyungpook National UniversitySangjuSouth Korea
  3. 3.Department of Mechanical EngineeringDong-A UniversityBusanSouth Korea

Personalised recommendations