Abstract

Compliant mechanism synthesis is an automated design procedure which allows the designer to systematically generate the optimal structural form for a particular set of loading and motion requirements. The synthesis method presented here solves a particular class of design problems, where the compliant mechanism is required to be both flexible to meet motion requirements, and stiff to withstand external loads. A two-part problem formulation is proposed using mutual and strain energies, whereby the conflicting design objectives of required flexibility and stiffness are handled via multi-criteria optimization. The resulting compliant mechanism topologies satisfy both kinematic and structural requirements. The problem formulation is implemented using a truss ground structure and SLP algorithm. Several design examples are presented to illustrate this method.

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