Energy-based modeling may be appropriate for physical systems or parts thereof which are awkward to model directly. Many of these models are nonholonomic, use quasi coordinates, require unconventional coordinates, or involve energy types not conventionally modeled in this way. Confusions arising from the literature are clarified, particularly the identification of proper coordinates and other variables for discrete models. A general medium-free derivation of Lagrange’s and related equations is given, and the use of kinetic coenergy is reviewed. Examples include the incorporation of heat transfer as a nonholonomic constraint. The results are interpreted also with bond graphs.

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