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Proceedings of CAD'15, 2015, 377-382
Visuo-Tactile System for 3D Digital Models Rendering

Alessandro Mansutti, Mario Covarrubias Rodriguez, Giandomenico Caruso, Monica Bordegoni, Umberto Cugini, Politecnico di Milano

Abstract. The product design process is based on a sequence of phases where the concept of the shape of a product is typically developed through a 3D Computer Aided Design (CAD) model, and often also by means of a corresponding physical prototype. The digital CAD model allows designers to perform visual evaluation of the shape, while the physical model is used to better evaluate the aesthetic properties, such as symmetry, roundness, of the product by touching and interacting with it. If the new shape, either in its digital or physical form, does not satisfy the designer, it has to be modified. A modification of the digital model requires a new physical prototyping of the shape for further evaluation, often developed through a traditional manufacturing process of through modern rapid manufacturing techniques. Conversely, a modification of the physical prototype requires the consequent update of the digital model, which may require the use of reverse engineering. Design and evaluation activities are typically cyclical, i.e. repeated many times before reaching the optimal and desired shape. This reiteration leads to an increase of the time-to-market and also of the overall product development cost. The aim of the research work described in this paper is to develop a novel system for the simultaneous visual and tactile rendering of product shapes, thus allowing product designers to both touch and see new shapes already during the creative initial conceptual phase of product development.

Keywords. Tactile display, Virtual prototyping, Shape rendering, Augmented reality

DOI: 10.14733/cadconfP.2015.377-382