Generating FE mesh automatically from STL file model

Jung Min Park, Ki Youn Kwon, Byung Chai Lee, Soo Won Chae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recently, models in STL files are widely used in reverse engineering processes, CAD systems and analysis systems. However the models have poor geometric quality and include only triangles, so the models are not suitable for the finite element analysis. This paper presents a general method that generates finite element mesh from STL file models. Given triangular meshes, the method estimates triangles and makes clusters which consist of triangles. The clusters are merged by some geometric indices. After merging clusters, the method applies plane meshing algorithm, based on domain decomposition method, to each cluster and then the result plane mesh is projected into the original triangular set. Because the algorithm uses general methods to generate plane mesh, we can obtain both tri and quad meshes unlike previous researches. Some mechanical part models are used to show the validity of the proposed method.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)739-746
Number of pages8
JournalTransactions of the Korean Society of Mechanical Engineers, A
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Jul


  • Face clustering
  • Meshing algorithm
  • QEM (Quadric error metric)
  • STL (Stereolithography file)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering


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