Solving the Kinematics of Planar Mechanisms

[+] Author and Article Information
C. W. Wampler

Enterprise Systems Laboratory, General Motors Research and Development, 30500 Mound Road, Warren, Michigan 48090-9055

J. Mech. Des 121(3), 387-391 (Sep 01, 1999) (5 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2829473 History: Received February 01, 1998; Revised May 01, 1999; Online December 11, 2007


This paper presents a general method for the analysis of planar mechanisms consisting of rigid links connected by rotational and/or translational joints. After describing the links as vectors in the complex plane, a simple recipe is outlined for formulating a set of polynomial equations which determine the locations of the links when the mechanism is assembled. It is then shown how to reduce this system of equations to a generalized eigenvalue problem, or in some cases, a single resultant polynomial. Both input/output problems and tracing-curve equations are treated.

Copyright © 1999 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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