compound-curved plate expansion for Windows
Flattener is the compound-curved plate expansion utility offers you these
1. considerable acceleration of the assembly process
2. accurate lofting and NC machining
3. minimal material scrapping
Plate expansion is the process of designing a flat blank to be cut from
stock and subjected to a compounding process in order to form a curved plate. The primary
product of plate expansion is an expanded outline for each individual plate. It is
extremely valuable in the manufacturing process to have accurate expansions for plates,
because accurate cutting is relatively simple while the material is flat, and having
formed 3D parts which fit to each other accurately without trial and error or field trim
greatly accelerates the assembly process. It is also useful to be able to mark on the
expanded blank the mapped positions of 3D features such as points (MultiSurf magnets),
curves (MultiSurf snakes), and contours (stations, waterlines, etc.).
Flattener is a compound plate expansion utility
based on AeroHydro’s unique flattening technology which was developed in
1988-89 and patented (U.S. and Canada) in 1990. The unique feature of the
AeroHydro plate expansion technology is that
it takes explicit account of the variable distribution
of in-plane strain required to produce the specified 3D curvatures.
This solution enables accurate lofting and NC cutting of blanks which,
through application of a suitable compounding process (e.g. die pressing, roller
planishing, peening, line heating, etc.), evolve into curved plates precisely fitting
their prescribed positions on the hull.
Flattener is fully integrated MultiSurf. The basic process to
follow is to design the 3D plates in MultiSurf, then run Flattener to calculate the flat
plate shapes. MSPLEX output is in the form of DXF and/or 2DD files which include (for each
- the expanded plate outline
- specified point, curve, and contour markings on the plate
- a contour map of strain distribution
- the triangular mesh utilized for the solution
Other features include:
- options for expansion only, contraction only, as well as both expansion
- strain may be isotropic (equal in all directions), or anisotropic
- plates may be expanded individually or in groups
- specification of the ratio of least to greatest strain
And, as always with AeroHydro products,
Flattener comes with comprehensive
and illustrated documentation including examples.
Click here for an example and sample output
to see how the Flattener integrates with SurfaceWorks and SolidWorks
NOTE: Anyone using Flattener
with MultiSurf 5.0
should contact us and a new installation of MS-PLEX will be e mailed to them.
Price: See Pricelist
Reference: The mathematical basis and validating calculations for the
AeroHydro compound-curved plate expansion process are presented in Letcher, J. S. Jr.:
"Lofting and Fabrication of Compound-Curved Plates," Journal of Ship Research,
vol. 37, (1993), pp. 166-175.