Shape and Function in Mechanical Devices

Leo Joskowicz

This paper describes a two-step algorithm for the qualitative analysis of mechanical devices. The first step takes the geometrical description of the parts and their initial position and produces a description of the possible relative motions of pairs in contact by computing the configuration space of those pairs with respect to selected motions. Given the possible relative motions and an input motion, the second step computes the actual motion of each object for fixed axis mechanisms using a constraint propagation, label inferencing technique. The output is a state diagram describing the motion of each part in the mechanism.

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