Integration of AI in Computer Aided Design (CAx)

The challenge: As product complexity and the number of product variants increase, the task of searching for identical and similar parts becomes more challenging.
The solution: The establishment of a knowledge database with CAD models is aimed at implementing an intelligent identical parts management system.
The added value: The reuse of components aims to save manufacturing, development, and inventory costs, as well as reduce the number of parts in the inventory database in the medium term.

AI for intelligent standard part management.

The international agricultural machinery manufacturer CLAAS is testing a specific use case for integrating AI into Computer-Aided Design (CAx) in the AI Marketplace. With the increasing complexity and variety of products, reusing components is an important opportunity to save manufacturing, development, and storage costs.

Product complexity can make finding standard parts difficult

However, finding standard parts can be a major challenge as they are often developed specifically for a project and are not suitable for reuse. Additionally, standard parts may not be found due to incorrect data maintenance. If “too many” similar parts are found, human intelligence is currently required, which also takes a lot of time to reduce the search results to a usable level.

AI methods help identify standard parts

The goal of the project is to develop and prototype an intelligent standard part management system. CAD models are first examined for their geometry and later for their function, and then classified. Missing master data or additional metadata are also added, creating a knowledge database for the models. With this data, AI methods such as Case-Based Reasoning (CBR) can be used to identify common parts based on their geometry and functionality. Using the CBR approach, CLAAS can also incorporate feedback on the components and gain insights into their reuse, adaptation, or rejection in the production process. This knowledge can in turn help improve the performance of the tools.

CLAAS aims to enhance similarity search to reduce or manage the number of parts in the inventory database in the medium term. For example, during the design phase, potential standard parts or evolutionary stages can be suggested to the designer, reducing the design effort. The AI solution developed in the project will eventually be made available to other users in a generic form on the AI Marketplace.

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