Reverse Engineering

Component digitalisation and CAD preparation

The creation of a digital visualisation of a real component in order to prepare a CAD model is a task with a high relevance for everyday practice. Among experts, this procedure is called reverse engineering. A reverse engineering project is for example called for if there is no (current) drawing or a consistently maintained CAD dataset available for a component. In most cases, the construction of a CAD model based on a drawing is very time-consuming and therefore associated with high costs. The same applies to changing an existing CAD model that does not fully comply with the real component. In general, reverse engineering is a more efficient and faster approach with digitalisation of the component being the first step that is required. In dependence of the component, Microvista uses the optimal digitalisation procedure (optical 3D scanning, CT scanning or a combination of both) and uses the data resulting from the scan to create a surface model (STL) consisting of many triangular meshes.

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The second step of the reverse engineering process is creating the CAD model in dependence of task formulation which has been precisely defined in advance. In compliance with customer-specific requirements for the CAD model, Microvista will choose the method which is best suited to the task. Experience has shown that one of the following three procedures or a combination thereof can always be applied to achieve the desired results.

1. Automatic surface reconstruction (automatic generation of patch layout)
2. Manual surface reconstruction (manual generation of patch layout)
3. Constructive surface reconstruction (patch layout is reconstructed by means of sections)


It is possible to transfer the final CAD model in all current CAD formats into a surface model (e.g. .prt, .CATPart) or a closed-volume surface model (e.g. .stp / .step, .igs / .iges). The targeted implementation enables Microvista to guarantee an optimal cost-benefit-ratio for each reverse engineering project, which is reflected by customer satisfaction.