Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
A general treatment is presented for modelling the dynamics of a flexible multibody system, using a lumped mass finite element approach. The system topology considered here is defined as an arbitrary combination of both rigid and flexible bodies, connected together by joints that permit translation and compliance, in a general tree configuration. An extension to handle closed loop kinematic chains is also indicated. Kane's theory of generalized speeds, which is based on the Lagrange-D'Alembert principle, is used to derive the equations of motion, and this results in a very efficient computer oriented methodology for solving the dynamics of such large mechanical systems. To facilitate numerical computations, these dynamical equations are transformed into a system of first-order differential equations for an explicit formulation of the problem. The accuracy of the proposed formulation is assessed via three examples with known solutions. The results obtained indicate the method is accurate, efficient and versatile for the analysis of a general, flexible multibody system.
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