The use of the image space of planar displacements for planar motion approximation is a well studied subject. While the constraint manifolds associated with planar four-bar linkages are algebraic, geometric (or normal) distances have been used as default metric for nonlinear least squares fitting of these algebraic manifolds. This paper presents a new formulation for the manifold fitting problem using algebraic distance and shows that the problem can be solved by fitting a pencil of quadrics with linear coefficients to a set of image points of a given set of displacements. This linear formulation leads to a simple and fast algorithm for kinematic synthesis in the image space.

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