Digital Enterprise Technology Studies Of The Saarinen Arch
For their studio projects while learning DET, undergraduate and graduate students modelled the St. Louis Arch using the exact mathematical relationships of Eero Saarinen. They used that digital model to do finite element stress analyses for stresses, deflections, and vibrations. They investigated the challenging construction methodology used in building the Arch. They confirmed Saarinen’s uniform stress assumptions using computing power that he never dreamed of. They checked out what was needed in the way of hydraulic force and piston travel to expand the two legs for “keystone” placement. They conceived and analyzed different tool-path strategies for the possible three- and five-axis cutting of exact physical models of that arch geometry. Most recently, using DELMIA to electronically model not only the tool path but also the machine tool operation and plant layout itself, precise 1/1000-sized models of the Arch are being cut and cast in aluminium and other materials. This paper is a follow-up of the paper submitted at the 2004 DET in Seattle entitled “CATIA Studies of the St. Louis Arch by OIT Students.” As a final step, the studies are focused on a physical model to be produced with the assistance of Freightliner LLC - a DaimlerChrysler Company, and the Precision Castparts Corporation. The long-term institutional objective for the overall project was not just to have courses in DET but also to position DET centrally within the undergraduate and graduate manufacturing and mechanical curricula, and finally to use it to its full power and functionality.
KeywordsTool Path Tool Path Generation Plant Layout Numerical Control Program Finite Element Stress Analysis
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