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T-Splines and Sculptor Print E-mail
"I feel strongly that T-Splines' technology will help Optimal Solutions introduce a very powerful Sculptor software tool and maintain a significant competitive advantage in CFD and FEA shape optimization." — Mark D. Landon, Ph.D., President, Optimal Solutions Software, LLC


Optimal Solutions Software is an industry leader in arbitrary shape deformation and shape optimization, a technology that is becoming an increasingly important part in computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and structural finite element analysis (FEA). CFD allows product designers to analyze how their designed objects will interact with air/fluids before the part is actually manufactured. For example, Lockheed Martin performs CFD on aircraft models in simulated wind tunnels to analyze pressure distributions and the resulting forces such as lift and drag. Ford Motor Co. uses CFD to analyze airflow in air conditioning ducts and windshield defrosters and many other components.

Ford defroster

Original Ford defroster design (left) and the improved defroster design after CFD
Images courtesy Optimal Solutions Software

If part of the design is found to be deficient, it must be deformed and reshaped until it can satisfactorily perform its function. These deformations can be made using a tool like Optimal Solution's Sculptor. Sculptor creates an arbitrarily shaped NURBS volume around the object being designed. It allows the user to make deformations manually, or automatically performs the deformations to find an optimal shape. Sculptor is used by many companies and government agencies including Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Ford, Honda Formula-1 Racecar Team, NASA, and the U.S. Air Force.


While NURBS volumes can be satisfactorily used to manipulate the simpler objects that go through CFD and FEA, most objects that pass through these processes have arbitrary levels of detail or extrusions. Although deformations can be performed using a regular NURBS grid, this is inefficient. Unnecessary time and computations are required to complete the job to the exacting standards of Optimal Solution's customers.


T-Splines was a natural solution for Optimal Solutions. T-Splines-based free-form deformation will allow Sculptor to accommodate high detail or extrusions in arbitrary areas of the mesh. This allows for a more accurate representation of the mesh, and also saves time by eliminating unnecessary control points from the ASD volume. By introducing their new T-Spline deformations, Optimal Solutions is remaining on the cutting-edge of shape deformation software.

"Sculptor is synonymous with quality, innovation, and optimization in deformation, and we are pleased that T-Splines technology is being integrated as an important part of this product," said Matt Sederberg, CEO of T-Splines, LLC. "Seeing customers such as Optimal Solutions use T-Splines in their products is the best possible confirmation of the value of the T-Splines technology."


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