Geometric Modeling of Knitted Fabrics Using Helicoid Scaffolds

P. Wadekar, P. Goel, C. Amanatides, G. Dion, R.D. Kamien and D.E. Breen, "Geometric Modeling of Knitted Fabrics Using Helicoid Scaffolds," Journal of Engineered Fibers and Fabrics, Vol. 15, pp. 1-15, April 2020.

We present a bicontinuous, minimal surface (the helicoid) as a scaffold on which to define the topology and geometry of yarns in a weft-knitted fabric. Modeling with helicoids offers a geometric approach to simulating a physical manufacturing process, which should generate geometric models suitable for downstream mechanical and validity analyses. The centerline of a yarn in a knitted fabric is specified as a geodesic path, with constrained boundary conditions, running along a helicoid at a fixed distance. The shape of the yarn’s centerline is produced via an optimization process over a polyline. The distances between the vertices of the polyline are shortened and a repulsive potential keeps the vertices at a specified distance from the helicoid. These actions and constraints are formulated into a single "energy" function, which is then minimized. The yarn geometry is generated as a tube around the centerline. The optimized configuration, defined for a half loop, is duplicated, reflected, and shifted to produce the centerlines for the multiple stitches that make up a fabric. In addition, the parameters of the helicoid may be used to control the size and shape of the fabric's stitches. We show that helicoid scaffolds may be used to define both knit and purl stitches, which are then combined to produce models of all-knit, rib, and garter fabrics.

Last modified on April 30, 2020.