ENGRMAE 183 Computer-Aided Mechanism Design (2013-2014)

ENGRMAE 183 Computer-Aided Mechanism Design

(Not required for any major. Selected Elective for ME.)
Catalog Data:

ENGRMAE 183 Computer-Aided Mechanism Design (Credit Units: 4) Focuses on design of planar, spherical, and spatial mechanisms using computer algebra and graphics. Topics include: exact and approximate analytical design techniques. Students are required to use existing software (or develop new algorithms) to design various mechanisms for new applications. Prerequisite: Mathematics 3A. Mechanical Engineering majors have first consideration for enrollment. (Design units: 4)

Required Textbook:
. Edition, , 1969, ISBN-13 978-0387989839.

Recommended Textbook:
J. Michael McCarthy
Relationship to Student Outcomes
This course relates to Student Outcomes: EAC a, EAC b.
Course Learning Outcomes. Students will:

1. Use kinematic geometry to formulate and solve algebraic constraint equations (EAC a)

2. Use the solutions of constraint equations to design linkages for specified tasks (EAC b)

3. Eliminate solutions for polynomial constraint equations. ME-2

4. Mechanism design for actuation of aerospace components . AE-1

5. Formulate and solve five-position synthesis problems for planar and spherical four-bar linkages.

6. Analyze and animate the movement of planar and spherical four-bar linkages.

Prerequisites by Topic

Introduction to Linear Algebra

Lecture Topics:
  • The analysis of planar linkages
  • Limit positions and linkage type
  • Planar displacements
  • Algebraic synthesis, 2-5 positions
  • Computer graphics animation
  • The analysis of spherical linkages
  • Limit positions and linkage type
  • Rotation matrices
  • Algebraic synthesis, 2-5 positions
  • Computer graphics animation
Class Schedule:

Meets for 3 hours of lecture and 2 hours of laboratory each week for 10 weeks.

Computer Usage:

The computer software Mathematica will be used by the students to write analysis and synthesis routines for linkage design.

Laboratory Projects:

Woodworking equipment will be made available by appointment for the construction of planar and spherical linkages, as well as for the final project.

Professional Component

Contributes toward the Engineering Topics and/or Design experience for both Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering majors.

Design Content Description

The class focuses on the use of graphical and algebraic methods for the design of planar linkages, and on algebraic and computer techniques for the design of spherical linkages. Thus all the lectures contain design content. There are two midterm exams on the design and analysis of planar and spherical mechanisms. There are also four homework assignments that consist of the design, analysis and simulation of a geometric model of a linkage system A final project has the student identify the design goal formulate the constraint equations, obtain the analytical solution, simulate the movement of the device and revise it to achieve the final design. In summary all homeworks and examinations as well as the final project are related to design. The design is expected to accomplish an interesting task and incorporate a planar or spherical linkage. The grade is based on quality and performance of the resulting linkage or linkage system.

Lectures: 60%
Laboratory Portion: 40%
Grading Criteria:
  • Homework: 25%
  • Midterm Exam: 50%
  • Final: 25%
  • Total: 100%
Estimated ABET Category Content:

Mathematics and Basic Science: 0.0 credit units

Computing: 0.0 credit units

Engineering Topics: 4.0 credit units

Engineering Science: 0.0 credit units

Engineering Design: 4.0 credit units

May 22, 2013
Senate Approved:
April 29, 2013
Approved Effective:
2013 Fall Qtr