This paper describes a digital simulation of the vibration and impact in a dual drive branched gear system during the engagement and disengagement of the prime movers. A nonlinear transient response analysis is carried out to illustrate the influence of system inertia, the tooth backlash, rate of clutch engagement and disengagement, friction etc. on tooth separation and dynamic tooth loads. The simulation procedure which is based on the phase-plane-δ method provides a general and effective tool of analysis for this class of problems. The existence of an optimal backlash condition for the idle pinion, which minimizes the dynamic tooth load, is illustrated.

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