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Mechanical Sciences An open-access journal for theoretical and applied mechanics
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Volume 4, issue 2
Mech. Sci., 4, 357–369, 2013
https://doi.org/10.5194/ms-4-357-2013
© Author(s) 2013. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Special issue: Advances in compliant mechanisms: theories, tools and...

Mech. Sci., 4, 357–369, 2013
https://doi.org/10.5194/ms-4-357-2013
© Author(s) 2013. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Review article 01 Nov 2013

Review article | 01 Nov 2013

On understanding of design problem formulation for compliant mechanisms through topology optimization

L. Cao1,2, A. Dolovich2, and W. J. Zhang2,* L. Cao et al.
  • 1Complex and Intelligent Systems Center, East China University of Science and Technology, Shanghai, China
  • 2Mechanical Engineering, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada
  • *now at: Saskatoon, Canada

Abstract. General problems associated with the design of compliant mechanisms through the topology optimization technique are defined in this paper due to the lack of comprehensive definitions for these problems in the literature. Standard design problems associated with rigid body mechanisms, i.e. function generation, path generation and motion generation, are extended to compliant mechanisms. Functional requirements and the associated 25 formulations in the literature are comprehensively reviewed along with their limitations. Based on whether the output is controlled quantitatively or not, these formulations are categorized into two types: (1) formulations for quantitative design; and (2) formulations for qualitative design. In addition, formulations that aim to solve the point flexure problem are also discussed. Future work is identified based on the discussion of each topic.

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