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Maximum Flow Networks for Stability Analysis of LEGO Structures

Martin Waßmann, Karsten Weicker
In: Algorithms - ESA 2012, Leah Epstein, Paolo Ferragina (eds.), Springer, pp. 813-824, 2012.



To determine the stability of LEGO structures is an interesting problem because the special binding mechanism prohibits the usage of methods of structural frame design or dynamic physics engines. We propose a new two-phase approach where instances of maximum-flow networks are constructed. In a first phase, the distribution of compressive and tensile forces is computed which is used in a second phase to model the moments within the structure. By solving the maximum-flow networks we can use the resulting flow as a suffcient criterion for the stability of the structure. The approach is demonstrated for two exemplary structures which outperform previous results using a multi-commodity flow network.



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