Abstract: The objective of this research is to develop a mathematical theory and computational framework for the automatic generation of context-dependent simplified models to support interactive virtual assembly applications. 1. Background: Interactive virtual assembly is emerging as an important method for evaluating ease-of assembly of proposed products, and training assembly operators. With the advent of low cost personal virtual environments, interactive virtual assembly holds the promise of replacing expensive, and time consuming, physical prototyping and training. Achieving realistic interactions in virtual environment demands computationally fast simulations. Fast simulations are hampered by the presence of small geometric features within CAD models, since such features can significantly increase the computational complexity and the condition number of the underlying discrete problem. Therefore, prior to computational analysis, one needs to suppress small features, a process often referred to as defeaturing. 2. Challenges: While simplification for geometric computations such as collision detection is now well understood, the focus of the ongoing research is on simplification (i.e. defeaturing) for physical modeling computations. Defeaturing within this context poses numerous challenges since the impact of suppressing features on physical parameters is not well understood. Consequently: (a) non-critical features are often retained, needlessly increasing the complexity of the simulation, and more seriously (b) critical features might be erroneously deleted, leading to erroneous physical results. Furthermore, defeaturing strategies today do not distinguish between various simplification contexts, and therefore is not suitable for virtual assembly simulation where, numerous 'contact scenarios ' may arise for the same component. 3. PIs ' Prior Work: The Maryland team has developed a personal virtual environment (PVE) based virtual assembly system called Virtual Training Studio (VTS) [Brou06, Schw07, Brou07]. This current system mainly focuses on the cognitive aspects (e.g., ability t
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