Marine Link
Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Propeller Design Software Upgraded

November 4, 2014

  • Image: HydroComp
  • Image: HydroComp
  • Image: HydroComp Image: HydroComp
  • Image: HydroComp Image: HydroComp

HydroComp PropCad 2014 released

HydroComp PropCad is software for geometric modeling of marine propellers for design and manufacture that provides automatic preparation of 2D design drawings, 3D offsets, thickness classification reports and CAD/CAM data. Used in more than 40 countries for quickly generating propellers and design variants from small outboard production lines to large merchant ship propellers, manufacturers, researchers and designers rely on PropCad for their modeling needs. The latest 2014 release of PropCad features a new table-driven interface, updated classification society rules, expanded 3D CAD exports, new smoothing tools and more, HydroComp announced today.

For the past three years, HydroComp has been developing enhancements to the PropCad software to update and expand PropCad’s propeller design capabilities. According to the developer, a substantial effort has focused on data entry and visualization, and as a result, PropCad has moved to a table-driven interface that allows users to quickly enter and modify data in their designs. The content of the interface has been consolidated so that principle dimensions, radial distributions and 2D section offsets are now all visible on the main screen. A new summary table displays the derived characteristics of the design, including weight, mass moment of inertia, total skew and mean pitch. The display mode enables graphing of any radial distribution, such as chord, skew or pitch angle. One-click graphing allows quick visualization of blade outlines, thickness profiles, and 2D section offsets.

PropCad 2014 features an improved, fully-parametric Builder that allows users to define radial distributions of parameters from HydroComp’s library propellers, from user-generated distribution files, or by entering the data directly into the sections spreadsheet. In 2014, the Builder includes presets for standard propeller designs. The Builder includes new options, including radial control of leading and trailing edge thickness, chordwise position of maximum thickness for Gawn-type sections, a CAD-friendly tip correction and additional control of cup (with the ability to set the cup sweep angle, enable face-only cupping and allowing cup around the tip).

PropCad’s table-driven entry supports cell formulas for on-the-fly calculations while improved data tools allow users to quickly visualize and smooth user-entered data. The 3D window includes hardware-accelerated anti-aliasing, smoothed 3D renders, new visualization modes and video recording. Users can also now add root fillets between the blade and hub, detect required hub length and automatically set the blade position relative to the hub.

In addition to new features, PropCad 2014 includes updates to existing Classification Societies and 3D CAD exports. CCS, NK and Swedish/Finish rules for propeller thickness have been added to PropCad 2014. Additionally, ice class designations are available for ABS Steel, BV/RINA, LR Ship and LR Naval and Swedish/Finnish rules. The Classification Thickness reports have been overhauled to include all intermediate calculations and data in addition to the required calculations for submittal and approval.

All 3D CAD exports have been updated for compatibility with the latest versions of the major CAD tools. A new export dialog allows the user to select the exported surfaces (face/back, root, tip, LE, TE, and root fillet) and also to increase the density of the model without altering their design. Lastly, a new IGES export has been included for universal CAD compatibility.

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