Current design feature recognition mainly depends on the connective attributes of edges or faces in the CAD models, such as convexity, concavity, and tangency. However, it is difficult to uniquely define the mixed connective attributes of the generic features in some cases. A novel generic design feature recognition approach by detecting the hint of topology variation is presented in this study. The core idea includes: 1) the resulting CAD model of a complex part is regarded as formed from an initial basic shape such as roughcast and has been operated by introducing generic design features, which subsequently may cause topology variation; 2) Such topology variations, e.g. vertex elimination, edge partition and face alteration, are utilized to obtain generalized properties of the generic design features, dispensing with the connective attributes.

Finally, 1) we demonstrate in the experiments that the approach successfully recognizes the main types of generic design features, both isolate and hybrid features. 2) Furthermore, we exhibit the application of the approach in some engineering examples.

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