Assembly models can be regarded as a kernel for product development processes where they can efficiently contribute to many product simulation behaviors. Assembly models are often containing 3D B-Rep CAD models, possibly with geometric constraints between the components and bill of materials. However, these models are often difficult to process for simulations because algorithms often face a very large diversity of configurations. One origin of such difficulties can be found in companies’ practice where components may be represented differently from one company to another and their interfaces as well. In any case, interfaces between components are not explicit, which leads to tedious model processing tasks. This paper illustrates preparation of assembly models to ease CAE through an analysis of company practices, showing that a concept of conventional representations is an important starting point to efficient treatments of assemblies. In addition, it is described how interfaces and conventional representations can be combined to derive functional and mechanical information from geometric models of components. Illustrations of the proposed approach is given throughout the paper using various standard components.

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