This paper describes the development of a virtual reality environment which facilitates the design of spherical four-bar mechanisms. The virtual environment allows the user to naturally interact with the input data and specify the design parameters while operating in a three-dimensional environment. We see this development as a logical extension of existing graphics-based spatial design software. The need for a three-dimensional design space is driven by the difficulty in specifying design inputs and constraints for a spatial problem using a two-dimensional interface. In addition, once the mechanism has been created, the virtual environment provides the opportunity for the user to visually verify that the mechanism will perform the desired three-dimensional motion.

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