The primary compliance vector captures the predominant kinematic degree of freedom of a mechanism. Its displacement describes large deformation mechanism behavior and can be an optimization objective in detailed compliant mechanism design. This paper presents a general framework for the optimization of the PCV path of compliant mechanisms using unified stiffness characterization, Fourier descriptors, and surrogate-based optimization. We found a meaningful objective formulation that evaluates PCV path shape independently. Furthermore, we reason that design variables should effect mechanism shape. Lastly, we apply the framework to a design example.

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