Freeform modeling tools like Rhino and Grasshopper make it easy for designers to explore irregular, curvilinear design concepts. As the design process moves toward later phases of a project, it can be a challenge to rationalize complex curves while maintaining the desired appearance. An under-the-radar LunchBox component called “ArcDivide” can simplify and streamline the rationalization process.
The ArcDivide component is designed to divide an interpolated curve into segments and rebuild them as geometric Arcs, tangential segments of circles with known radii. The component requires a curve to analyze and a list of curve parameters (locations along the curve expressed as a percentage of the curve’s length) at which to split the curve into separate arcs.
The ellipse rationalization example below is based on a real world project. In order for this design to be built, it was necessary for the ellipse to be rationalized into a series of arcs. Each arc’s center point, radius, and length needed to be communicated in the architect’s drawings. This sketch shows how this design challenge can be accommodated with ease using this component.