This paper describes a solid modeling and interactive graphics computer system which is being used for conceptual and detailed design by the mechanical design community at IBM's Data Systems Division Laboratory in Poughkeepsie, New York. The system has evolved from research on solid modeling begun at IBM's Thomas J. Watson Research Center in the mid-70s. Its development has resulted in one of the first major production uses of solid modeling in industry. The system was first tested in pilot and limited production environments in 1981, and is now in production use as the primary design tool for mechanical portions of IBM's large computer mainframes. Its introduction, development, integration, and use are described, and its functional and performance characteristics as well as requirements for future enhancements are discussed. We conclude from our experience that solid modeling has become a significant new production tool for mechanical design.
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