A framework of web-based conceptual design

Shengfeng Qin, Richard Harrison, Andrew A. West, Ivan Jordanov, David Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A web-based conceptual design prototype system is presented. The system consists of four parts which interpret on-line sketches as 2D and 3D geometry, extract 3D hierarchical configurations, allow editing of component behaviours, and produce VRML-based behavioural simulations for design verification and web-based application. In the first part, on-line freehand sketched input is interpreted as 2D and 3D geometry, which geometrically represents conceptual design. The system then infers 3D configuration by analysing 3D modelling history. The configuration is described by a parent–child hierarchical relationship and relative positions between two geometric components. The positioning information is computed with respect to the VRML97 specification. In order to verify the conceptual design of a product, the behaviours can be specified interactively on different components. Finally, the system creates VRML97 formatted files for behavioural simulation and collaborative design application over the Internet. The paper gives examples of web-based applications. This work forms a part of a research project into the design and establishing of modular machines for automation manufacture. A consortium of leading automotive companies is collaborating on the research project.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-164
Number of pages12
JournalComputers in Industry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2003


  • sketch
  • conceptual design
  • behavioural simulation
  • web application


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