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Importing Airfoil Shapes

Developer: RhinoScript
Summary: How to read point files that describe airfoils and create interpolated curves.


The wiki already has a sample of how to read a point file, and create an interpolated curve.

Importing an Interpolated Curve

But, to import a points file that contains airfoil information requires a little more parsing. The following code sample demonstrates how to read a text file containing point coordinates in “Selig” format to draw airfoil shapes.

The following script, along with over 1500 airfoil shapes, can be downloaded here:

The airfoil shapes data is from the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the University of Illinois.

To use this Rhino script, drag and drop the .rvb file into an open Rhino viewport and then use the command RunScript to select and run the script.

 Option Explicit
 ' Subroutine to import "Selig" formatted airfoil shapes
 Sub ImportAirfoil
   ' Local constants
   Const ForReading = 1
   ' Local variables
   Dim objFSO, objFile
   Dim strFileName, strAirfoil, strLine, strCurve
   Dim arrPt, arrPoints(), nCount
   ' Prompt for an airfoil data file
   strFileName = Rhino.OpenFileName("Open", "Airfoil Data File (*.dat)|*.dat|")
   If IsNull(strFileName) Then Exit Sub
   ' Create a file system object
   Set objFSO = CreateObject("Scripting.FileSystemObject")
   ' Open the data file for reading
   On Error Resume Next
   Set objFile = objFSO.OpenTextFile(strFileName, ForReading)
   If Err Then
     MsgBox Err.Description
     Exit Sub
   End If  
   ' Read the name of the airfoil
   strAirfoil = objFile.ReadLine
   ' Read through the file looking for point coordinates
   nCount = 0 
   Do While objFile.AtEndOfStream <> True
     strLine = objFile.ReadLine
     ' Convert the string to a point
     arrPt = PointFromString(strLine)
     If IsArray(arrPt) Then
       ReDim Preserve arrPoints(nCount)
       arrPoints(nCount) = arrPt
       nCount = nCount + 1
     End If
   ' Close the curve
   ReDim Preserve arrPoints(nCount)
   arrPoints(nCount) = arrPoints(0)
   ' Add the named interpolated curve
   If IsArray(arrPoints) Then
     strCurve = Rhino.AddInterpCurveEx(arrPoints)
     Rhino.ObjectName strCurve, strAirfoil
   End If
   ' Close the file and release objects
   Set objFile = Nothing
   Set objFSO = Nothing
 End Sub
 ' Function to generate a point from a string
 Function PointFromString( strLine )
   Dim arrTokens, arrPoint, x, y
   PointFromString = Null
   If VarType(strLine) = vbString Then
     strLine = Trim(strLine)
     arrTokens = Rhino.StrTok(strLine, " ")
     If IsArray(arrTokens) And UBound(arrTokens) = 1 Then
       x = CDbl(arrTokens(0))
       y = CDbl(arrTokens(1))
       arrPoint = Array(x, y, 0.0)
       PointFromString = arrPoint
     End If
   End If 
 End Function

developer/scriptsamples/airfoil.txt · Last modified: 2020/08/14 (external edit)