Fusion API and Scripts
Got a new add-in to share? Need something specialized to be scripted? Ask questions or share what you’ve discovered with the community.
Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Airfoil Utilities (lots!) - Does anyone want to help integrate into Fusion360?

Message 1 of 3
228 Views, 2 Replies

Airfoil Utilities (lots!) - Does anyone want to help integrate into Fusion360?

For more than 10 years, I've been building and improving a command line utility which does "all things airfoil" - like particle-swarm-shape-optimisation for specific kinds of fluids and flows, import and export with optimised spline matching, propellor/turbine creation, and so on.


Last year, I connected this to a fusion360 script which imports optimised airfoils and it's added a whole world of new awesome to my work (previously - I was manually outputting RML code to mill these things - ugh!)


The last month, I've create an add-in which makes it a lot easier to use my code, without jumping into the command line and shuffling text files around - it's all integrated.  In the Solid workspace, you click "Create" then "Airfoil" and it pops up a panel, runs my utility, and - magic!!  kind-of.  *Almost* everything needed is there, but I'm not a python guy, and the tinkering with UI stuff is driving me nuts...




Is anyone out there interested in collaborating on this?  What I think I need is this (*=done  %=need)


* A button on the "Solid -> Create" dropdown

% A Button on the "Sketch -> Create" dropdown

* A button on the tools menu bar (not necessary, but nice as a reminder that it's installed)

% A popup message upon install, that tells people where to find the new airfoil commands (with a [] don't show again checkbox, and images)

* A popup panel when the button is clicked

% 4 tabs on this popup panel: Utilities, Wing, Cowling, Propellor

% panel design with controls etc; things like ability to select "Air" or "Water" (plus altitude/temp) with manual override for Kinematic Viscosity.  Entry for Cord / Thicknes and/or ability to select a sketch or similar from which I can derive those things.  Shape selection, insertion plane selection, prop/turbine blade counts, input/motor power / torque, flow "cleanliness", and optimisation strategies (least drag, best lift, best L/D, with a mechanism to specify priorities - e.g. a fast plane might want enough lift to take off, but still optimised for high speed), units, and so on.

* mechanism to insert the resulting 2d-splined shape(s) into the sketch

% mechanism to insert the resulting 3d-lofted shape(s) into the component (seems easy - I can probably do this)

% way to communicate a selected geometry to my external script (requires converting whatever the user selected (e.g. the triangle-shape of a delta-wing aircraft in a sketch) into JSON to pass to my script)

* communication of huge amounts of data back and forth between python and my command line program (this works nicely already)

% background-process support - optimisation for conditions that are not pre-computed in my script can take days or weeks to run, and some users might wish to offload that work to cloud machines (I support amazon compute right now) - so some way to notify them when it's all done would be helpful - and/or to let them monitor the progress.


The panel stuff would need some back-and-forth with me: working out the best way for everyday-users as well as aeronautical-experts to communicate to my script exactly what they're trying to do is the key here.  "Air" or "Water" with "size" and "speed" for example go a huge way to where everyone needs to be, but the tools to help them get even closer to "perfect" will take some UI/UX fiddling...


Video shows an example of a (7+ years old version) of my code working on part of a propellor section:

Tags (3)
Message 2 of 3
in reply to: OceanHydroAU

Hi Chris,


Have you heard of yet?

Scott Moyse
Did you find this post helpful? Feel free to Like this post.
Did your question get successfully answered? Then click on the ACCEPT SOLUTION button.


Design & Manufacturing Technical Services Manager at Cadpro New Zealand

Co-founder of the Grumpy Sloth full aluminium billet mechanical keyboard project

Message 3 of 3
in reply to: scottmoyse

Well - that looks very interesting.


Since I posted this question, I've been working full-time on building the UI myself... it's very slow going, but it is turning out far better than I imagined so far!


I've got my toolbar button working when clicked.

I've got a working drop-down menu linked to my tool bar button

I've got working "sideways sliding" menus now working from the Solid and Sketch "create" panels - inserting airfoils is the exact same user experience as inserting a cube or a rectangle etc - pick where to put it, fill in the conditions it needs to work under, and - well - that's where I'm upto.  The magic works and the UI works: I am now connecting those two parts together to complete performing of the actions.


I've not yet done all my icons or tool-clips, but the attached screen shots will give you an idea.


I'm undecided about publication details - I like free things myself, so most of this will be free - but it *is* 18+ years of development "under the hood" and the particle-swarm optimization is very heavy on compute - common pre-computed solutions with thousands of hours of CPU time and $100k+ of amazon credits (and my cash) are already included, as is the ability to do new ones on your own high-end machines - but users with specific goals are going to want to get results in hours, rather than weeks/months - so some kind of cloud-processing backend is likely to be needed, which is expensive, so a way to make that happen where users pay for what they use is needed.


Basically - I like the idea of "optimising sales" as much as I like optimising fluid-flows - whatever gets this into the most hands and spread widest, so that it *reaches* people who have needs that require payment seems the best plan?  What do you think?


Screen Shot 2020-04-17 at 6.51.52 pm.png


Toolbar support tooToolbar support too


Can't find what you're looking for? Ask the community or share your knowledge.

Post to forums  

Autodesk DevCon in Munich May 28-29th

Autodesk Design & Make Report