Web-Based Service 'Heals' 3-D CAD Models

Many 3-D CAD models created by designers are translated into IGES, a universal "language" that allows the models to be shared among companies and used in other applications. In the translation process, models can lose some of their mathematical integrity, resulting in surfaces not touching or lose of small fillets. While design engineers can repair the models, it is a time-consuming process. Now the models can be 'healed' in minutes via a new service provided by Spatial Inc., Boulder, Colo. Models are sent over the Web and evaluated by Spatial repair software. Areas on the model that cannot be repaired or are unclear, are flagged by the system, and an alert is included when the file is returned. The system also can repair SAT files, which are generated by any CAD system with an ACIS design kernel. By year end, STEP files, a popular, proprietary format used in non-ACIS-enabled systems will be supported as well.

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