Research Papers

Geometric Constraint Solving With Solution Selectors

[+] Author and Article Information
Bernhard Bettig

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
West Virginia University Institute of Technology,
Montgomery, WV 25136
e-mail: bpbettig@mail.wvu.edu

Vaibhav Kale

Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Department,
Michigan Technological University,
Houghton, MI 49931
e-mail: vskale@mtu.edu

For a curve C(u), the forward direction for any point on the curve is the direction in which u is increasing (i.e., forward direction is given by the vector (C(u))/u). For a surface S(u, v), the front direction of any point on the surface is given by the direction of the vector (S(u,v))/u×(S(u,v))/v.

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Computers and Information Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF COMPUTING AND INFORMATION SCIENCE IN ENGINEERING. Manuscript received December 21, 2011; final manuscript received August 4, 2012; published online September 18, 2012. Assoc. Editor: Xiaoping Qian.

J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng 12(4), 041002 (Sep 18, 2012) (12 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4007403 History: Received December 21, 2011; Revised August 04, 2012

Current parametric CAD systems are based on solving equality types of constraints between geometric objects and parameters. This includes algebraic equations constraining the values of variables, and geometric constraints constraining the positions of geometric objects. However, to truly represent design intent, next-generation CAD systems must also allow users to input other types of constraints such as inequality constraints. Inequality constraints are expressed as inequality expressions on variables, or as geometric constraints that force geometric objects to be on specific sides or have specific orientations with respect to other objects. The research presented here investigates whether the frontier algorithm can be extended to solve geometry positioning problems involving systems of equality- and inequality-based declarations in which the inequality-based declarations are used as solution selectors to choose from multiple solutions inherently arising when solving these systems. It is found that these systems can be decomposed by the frontier algorithm in a manner similar to purely equality-based constraint systems, however they require tracking and iterating through multiple solutions and in many cases may require backtracking through the solution sequence. The computational complexity of the new algorithm is found to be the same as the frontier algorithm in the planning phase and linear in the execution phase with respect to the size of the problem but exponential with respect to the distance of solution selection steps from the satisfaction steps they control.

Copyright © 2012 by ASME
Topics: Algorithms
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Fig. 1

A multiple solution problem that cost a designer much aggravation [1]

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Fig. 2

(a) A geometric constraint problem and (b) its constraint graph [3]

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Fig. 3

(a) Initial subsystem identified and (b) final cluster [27]

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Fig. 4

(a) Constrained geometry and (b) two possible solutions

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Fig. 5

Constraint graph for problem from Fig. 4

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Fig. 6

Step by step operation shown in constraint graphs

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Fig. 7

Parallel lines example

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Fig. 8

The windows implementation

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Fig. 9

Representation and solving with two different design intents (Note change in step across figures): (a) keep circles to left of vertical line and (b) keep circles on same side as step

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Fig. 11

A problem with increasing d

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Fig. 12

Execution time for backtracking algorithm for problem of Fig. 11

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Fig. 13

Increasing d values estimates for problem of Fig. 11

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Fig. 14

A more realistic example with automatically generated constraints (not shown)

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Fig. 10

Execution time for backtracking algorithm for problem of Fig. 9




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