Limited resources are currently available to assist engineers in implementing compliant members into mechanical designs. As a result, engineers often have little to no direction incorporating compliance, though compliant mechanisms have characteristics that prove to be more advantageous in some circumstances. This paper proposes a classification scheme for compliant elements and mechanisms that can be used to compose a reference source intended to help engineers find existing compliant designs they can incorporate in their own designs. The classification scheme decomposes compliant mechanisms and elements of compliant mechanisms according to their respective functions.

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