8:30 / Wednesday, November 8

Global Methods for Shaping NURBS Surfaces

Although nonuniform rational B-splines (NURBS) have become a CAD/CAM industry standard for free-form surface representation, the software tools available to designers for creating and reshaping such surfaces are often inefficient for industrial parts, thereby consuming a large amount of designer time. As a result, more automatic, global methods for optimizing the shape of NURBS surfaces have been studied for more than two decades.

Historically, progress on these techniques has been slow, because (a) exact approaches lead to nonlinear equations for which numerical solution methods typically execute slowly and may fail to converge to a desirable shape, while (b) linear approximations, though fast, are often complicated to derive and may also yield undesirable shapes. Nevertheless, recent research is producing interesting, albeit limited, results. In this presentation, the speaker will give a status report on such methods, focusing mainly on variational techniques.

Ramon F. Sarraga
Analytic Process Department
General Motors Research and Development Center

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