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Research Papers: Design of Mechanisms and Robotic Systems

Determinate Design and Analytical Analysis of a Class of Symmetrical Flexure Guiding Mechanisms for Linear Actuators

[+] Author and Article Information
Guangbo Hao

Mem. ASME
School of Engineering-Electrical and
Electronic Engineering,
University College Cork,
Cork, Ireland
e-mail: G.Hao@ucc.ie

Contributed by the Mechanisms and Robotics Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF MECHANICAL DESIGN. Manuscript received March 5, 2016; final manuscript received August 15, 2016; published online October 5, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Oscar Altuzarra.

J. Mech. Des 139(1), 012301 (Oct 05, 2016) (12 pages) Paper No: MD-16-1185; doi: 10.1115/1.4034579 History: Received March 05, 2016; Revised August 15, 2016

This paper designs and analyses a class of single-axis translational flexure guiding mechanisms for linear actuators. The proposed flexure mechanisms have symmetrical configurations to eliminate parasitic motion for better precision and can provide large stiffness in the constraint directions and low stiffness in the actuation direction. Each flexure linear mechanism is composed of identical wire beams uniformly distributed in two planes (perpendicular to the actuation direction) with the minimal number of over-constraints. Analytical (symbolic) models are derived to quickly reflect effects of different parameters on performance characteristics of the flexure mechanism, enabling dimensional synthesis of different types of mechanisms. An optimal, compact, and symmetrical, flexure linear mechanism design is finally presented and prototyped with focused discussions on its primary motion.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

A wire beam as a basic flexure/compliant module

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Fig. 2

Nonsymmetrical five-beam and six-beam flexure linear mechanisms with orthogonal arrangement: (a) five-beam mechanism, and (b) six-beam mechanism

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Fig. 3

An original nonsymmetrical eight-beam flexure linear mechanism: (a) 3D view of the original mechanism and (b) top view in the Z-direction of the original mechanism

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Fig. 4

Two traditional symmetrical (noncompact) flexure linear mechanisms (top view in the Z-direction) with orthogonal arrangement: (a) 12-beam mechanism and (b) 16-beam mechanism

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Fig. 5

General layouts for four in-plane 3DOC four-beam symmetrical designs: (a) case I: orientation θ within [0,π/2), (b) case II: orientation θ within [π/2, π), (c) case III: orientation θ within [π,3π/2), and (d) case IV: orientation θ within [3π/2, 2π)

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Fig. 6

Special in-plane four-beam cases

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Fig. 7

Compliance ratio (|c33/c11|) associated with the translational DOC in the X-axis

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Fig. 8

Compliance ratio (|c33/c22|) associated with the translational DOC in the Y-axis

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Fig. 9

Compliance ratio (|c33/c44|) associated with the rotational DOC in the X-axis

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Fig. 10

Compliance ratio (|c33/c55|) associated with the rotational DOC in the Y-axis

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Fig. 11

Compliance ratio (|c33/c66|) associated with the rotational DOC in the Z-axis

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Fig. 12

Distances of two intersection points along the Y-axis

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Fig. 13

A compact and symmetrical eight-beam flexure linear mechanism: (a) CAD model before and after linear actuation by FEA and (b) prototype

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Fig. 14

Maximal stress over primary motion for E = 69 GPa

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Fig. 15

Effect of the beam thickness on primary motion

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Fig. 16

Comparison of primary motion results of the prototype

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Fig. 17

Prototype testing rig of primary motion

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Fig. 18

Linear-stiffness flexure guiding mechanism: (a) CAD model before and after linear actuation by FEA and (b) prototype

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Fig. 19

Two classes of symmetrical flexure linear mechanisms with 12 and 16 wire beams (top view Z-direction): (a) 12-beam mechanism: type I, (b) 12-beam mechanism: type II, (c) 12-beam mechanism: type III, (d) 16-beam mechanism: type I, (e) 16-beam mechanism: type II, and (f) 16-beam mechanism: type III

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