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Reconstruction of primitive-shaped pipe elbows from a triangular mesh in ship outfitting model

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Integration of heterogeneous computer-aided design (CAD) models into shipbuilding CAD systems is necessary during ship modeling in shipyards. Vendor package models provided by equipment vendors were designed using mechanical CAD systems. Complex triangular meshes severely affect the modeling performance of shipbuilding CAD systems. Particularly, reconstructing pipe elbows from shipbuilding CAD models represented by triangular meshes is a challenging problem. We present a method to reconstruct elbow primitives for plant design management system (PDMS), a commercial shipbuilding CAD system, from a triangular mesh using mesh segmentation and elbow parameter extraction method. The mesh segmentation method divides a mesh of irregular and minimal 3D points into segments for elbow parameter extraction based on curvature and connectivity. The proposed method also extracts the parameters of an elbow using the geometric features of a partial torus. The results of the proposed method are implemented and verified using 100 test models.

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G :

Gaussian curvature

H :

Mean curvature

k max :

Maximum value of principal curvatures

k min :

Minimum value of principal curvatures

v :


e :


VC 12 :

Set of vertices that correspond to the elbow end-cap

\({{\vec n}_0}\) :

Direction of the axis that is orthogonal to the elbow

\({{\vec n}_{1,2}}\) :

Normal vectors of the elbow end-caps

C 0 :

Center of the elbow

C 1,2 :

Centers of the two end-caps

R :

Major radius of the elbow

r :

Minor radius of the elbow

θ 0 :

Angle between the two end-caps


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This work was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (grant number 2018R1D1A1B07050199).

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Correspondence to Sanguk Cheon.

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Gun-Yeol Na is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Industrial Engineering at Ajou University, Suwon, Korea. He obtained his Master’s degree in Industrial Engineering in 2018 at Ajou University. His current research interests are geometric modeling, neural networks for engineering applications and virtual reality for simulation.

Jeongsam Yang is a Professor in the Department of Industrial Engineering and is leading the CAD laboratory ( at Ajou University, Korea. He worked at Carnegie Mellon University (USA) and Clausthal University of Technology (Germany) as a researcher, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison (USA) as a postdoctoral associate. He obtained his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering in 2004 at KAIST. His current research interests are geometry modeling, VR application in product design, image pattern analysis, 3D model reconstruction, and computer graphics.

Duhwan Mun is a Professor at the School of Mechanical Engineering at Korea University. Prior to that, he worked at the Maritime & Ocean Engineering Research Institute (MOERI) for 4 years and at Kyungpook National University for 10 years. His research interests include computer-aided design, industrial data standards, product lifecycle management, knowledge-based engineering, and virtual reality for engineering applications. He received a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Korea University; an M.S. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from KAIST.

Sanguk Cheon is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Integrative Systems Engineering at Ajou University. He holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from KAIST. He has 20 years of experience in CAD system development, mainly developing shipbuilding CAD systems. His current research interests are ship/plant CAD, geometric modeling, and industrial CAD/CAM applications.

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Na, GY., Yang, J., Mun, D. et al. Reconstruction of primitive-shaped pipe elbows from a triangular mesh in ship outfitting model. J Mech Sci Technol 35, 5551–5560 (2021).

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