New software speeds origami structure designs

ScienceDaily | 10/11/2017 | Staff
Mireille (Posted by) Level 3
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Origami paper folding techniques in recent years have been at center of research efforts focused on finding practical engineering applications for the ancient art, with ideas ranging from deployable antennas to robotic arms.

"Our work provides a means to predict computationally the real origami behavior of a design -- something that up to now has not been easily done," said Glaucio Paulino, a professor in the Georgia Tech School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. "With the new software, we can easily visualize and, most importantly, engineer the behavior of deployable, self-assembling, and adaptable origami systems."

Research - National - Science - Foundation - October

The research, which was supported by the National Science Foundation and reported October 11th in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society A, involved building a computer model to simulate the interaction between the two facets of a folded sheet, including how easily and how far the folds would bend and how much the flat planes would deform during movement.

Once all sections were connected together and digitally represented a piece of origami, the model could simulate how the structure would behave based on what type of material -- from soft paper to hard plastic or metal -- would be used to create the object.

Type - Modeling - Element - Analysis - Process

"This type of modeling was possible already using finite element analysis, but that is a time-consuming process that could take hours or days and provides a lot of unnecessary data," said Ke Liu, a Georgia Tech graduate student who worked on the project. "Our new process is much faster and gives...
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