Open CASCADE, the 3D modelling kernel
3D modeling & numerical simulation


Shape factory

This page demonstrates fundamental functionality of Open CASCADE Technology. Click on the images for the enlarged animations.

Modeling Data

Structure of Open CASCADE Technology
Open CASCADE Technology provides the following elementary building parts:
- Vertex (a point in 3D space),
- Edge (a linear or curved segment),
- Wire (a set of consequently connected edges),
- Face (a surface limited by wire(s)),
- Shell (a set of connected faces),
- Solid (a shell with material assigned inside),
- Compound (a group of any objects).

Any creation of an object, whether manually or automatically, always deals with these elements.

Open CASCADE Technology Geometry
Open CASCADE Technology is rich in tools for creating and modifying 2D and 3D geometry and subsequently building parts on it. Various curves - from simple lines and polylines up to complicated 3D Bezier and Bspline curves - are available for Open CASCADE Technology user and developer. Appropriate operations to process curves, such as trimming, are also widely provided.

Open CASCADE Technology provides a really big palette of tools for creating and modifying surfaces, from simple planes and extrusion surfaces up to complex Bezier and BSpline surfaces. Surfaces created are then used for geometric analysis and for building parts. Numerous tools are provided for processing surfaces, for instance trimming surfaces and creating offset surfaces.

Construction of Primitives

Creating Solid Parts with Open CASCADE Technology
Solid parts in Open CASCADE Technology are created automatically, using powerful Open CASCADE algorithms of extrusions, revolutions, lofts or pipes. Nevertheless, it is also possible in some exceptional cases, creating all elements, from vertices though edges, wires, faces, shells to solids, to do this manually.

Open CASCADE Technology Primitives
Open CASCADE Technology primitives provide capabilities of creating solid primitives, such as Boxes, Wedges, Cylinders, Cones, Spheres, and Torii. Varying the parameters of solids allows you to create numerous sizes of solids, as well as partial solids, such as a partial sphere by longitude. In real models, primitives can be used easily for creation of specific sub-parts.

Boolean Operations

Topological operations
The basic topological (Boolean) operations are fuse (adding one part to another), cut (subtracting one part from another), and common (creating the part on the region where both parts exist). In the way of additional topological tools, there are topological operations followed by blending (putting fillets onto edges created after the topological operation). Topological operations are the most convenient way to create real industrial parts. As most industrial parts consist of several simple elements such as gear wheels, arms, holes, ribs, tubes and pipes. It is usually easy to create those elements separately and then to combine them by boolean operations in the whole final part.

Fillets and Chamfers

Fillets are widely used in any industrial design. The term " Fillet " means that the edge between two surfaces is rounded using a certain radius. Fillets are usually easy to explain but very complicated to realize in mathematics, taking into account all possible bonds and intersections of different fillets, so successful filleting capability is a real achievement of Open CASCADE Technology. Capability of building variable fillets is also a great thing, very powerful tool to create freeform shapes. In creating fillets, it should be kept in mind that the fillet runs along the edge onto adjacent edges going over all tangent joints of edges until it encounters a non-tangency.

A chamfer is a linear surface that removes sharp edges from a part. It is popular in all industrial designs, and often nothing else can replace it. Chamfers with different sizes and angles can be created in Open CASCADE Technology. From the target edge, the chamfer goes to other edges until non-tangency is encountered.

Offsets and Drafts

Offset Shapes (Shells)
Offset shapes, or "shells", are used to create shell-like parts, such as packing cases made of sheeting material. The "Offset shape" function is very convenient for creation of housings. It requires a solid part as input and returns a shell-like part made from this base.

A draft is a slope in a surface or several surfaces of a part. It is required the most in the field of molding, where it allows you to extract ready parts from the mold. Nevertheless, it can be used for creation of any other parts, multiplying the power of the designer part.

Features are high-level algorithms of Open CASCADE Technology creating specific sub-parts on the parent parts. In real life, features facilitate your work, allowing you to easily make quite complex typical industrial parts. There are many types of features. Features are sequences of more elementary Open CASCADE commands. For instance, to create a bosse manually, you would have to create an extrusion on the given section, place a draft, then fuse the new sub-part with the main part. The bosse feature makes it possible to do the same thing much faster. The "Industrial Hole" advanced feature allows you to easily create most of the possible cases of drilled holes that industrial technology can produce, thereby replacing a long sequence of actions.

Open CASCADE Technology allows to display parts in different modes, such as wireframe, shading, hidden lines removal. Colors and materials can be set for each part or entity. Transparency of parts can be set, allowing to show complex assemblies clearly. Dynamical pre-selection is implemented in most Open CASCADE viewers, that means highlighting parts when mouse pointer moves over. Selected parts are highlighted with specific color. The whole set of displaying tools ensures you highly efficient work.

Latest news
  • Open CASCADE CAD Assistant for iOS platform is available!
  • Open CASCADE Technology 6.9.0 is available for download!
  • JT Assistant for Android

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