On the Geometry and Dynamics of Floating Four-Bar Linkages
Krishnaprasad, Perinkulam S.
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In this paper, we investigate the kinematics and dynamics of floating, planar four-bar linkages. The geometry of configuration space is analyzed through the classical theory of mechanisms due to Grashof. The techniques of symplectic and Poisson reduction are used to understand the dynamics of the system. Bifurcations of relative equilibria for linkages admitting symmetric shapes are studied using the techniques of singularity theory. The problem of reconstruction of the full dynamics and its relation to geometric phases is discussed through some examples. This research reveals that a coupled mechanical system with kinematic loops possesses richer and more complicated dynamical aspects in comparison with systems which have the same number of degrees of freedom, but no kinematic loops.