This paper describes a variant shape model and its application to tolerance analysis. To realize a high-precision mechanism at low cost, designers specify various types of tolerances selectively, often in combination on a single face.
We propose a solid model that has attributes at points scattered over its faces. In this model, the macroscopic geometry is represented as a B-rep solid model, and the microscopic geometry (manufacturing errors and clearances) as attributes. The model can represent a wide variational class, such as shapes with form errors. We use it to present a method for generating a deviant shape model having a specified set of geometric errors.
After deviant part shapes have been generated, they are assembled virtually in such a way that they do not interfere with each other and that the physical conditions of the attachment are satisfied. Through a large number of deviant assemblies, a product’s performance is analyzed statistically and quantitatively.