Mechanism Theory and Kinematics


The team of Mechanism Theory and Kinematics researches the innovative use of methods from the field of Mechanism Theory and Motion Technology. This includes research projects regarding the use of cutting-edge technologies for the design of mechatronic motion systems, for the detailed kinematic analysis of new structures and for the use of transmissions with new requirements.

Both interdisciplinary fundamental projects as well as research projects with industrial partners are conducted.


Development for motion devices

Development for motion devices

The typical development process of a gearbox begins with structural synthesis. The mechanism is then designed in the mass synthesis and iteratively dimensioned with regard to kinetostatics and dynamics. After the selection of the drives, prototype production can follow. Through this systematic approach, new specialized solutions can also be found that would remain hidden in a heuristic approach. Especially for completely new applications with complex requirements, this procedure is indispensable.


Structural synthesis and structure selection

Structural synthesis

Structural synthesis involves the systematic development of kinematic chains that are basically suitable for solving the given motion task. It makes sense to investigate all possible solutions, especially in less researched fields of application. The application results in requirements and evaluation criteria on which basis the best structures can be selected. These include the classification into guide or transmission gears, the degree of freedom, the number of links and joints and other characteristics.


Mass synthesis of mechanisms

Mass synthesis

Mass synthesis is a classical task of mechanism theory and there are numerous analytical and numerical methods. Optimization processes, combined processes, interactive software and task-specific software programs allow the possibilities of the methods to be exhausted and optimal solutions to be found. In addition, the IGMR integrates the design of the drive system, the task planning or the stiffness modelling into the synthesis in order to find a holistic solution.


Mechanism analysis, optimization and tolerance management

Often existing mechanism solutions are not modified, even if the boundary conditions or surrounding components change. The mechanism analysis offers the possibility to uncover further optimization potential. With increasing requirements, the analysis of tolerance management or the use of a new drive concept can also be advantageous.


Projects in the field of Mechanism Theory and Kinematics

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Kintop - Software for kinematic analysis of crank gears and gear wheels


The KINTOP program was developed at IGMR for kinematic analysis of flat crank gears and gear wheels. With the program it is possible to calculate the motion parameters (position, speed, acceleration) of all transmission elements and to generate motion animations. Trajectories, velocity and acceleration vectors as well as velocity hodographs of any point can be displayed. All result data can be stored and processed in text files.

The KINTOP program is characterised by its ease of use and enables the user to determine the motion parameters of a gear unit in the shortest possible time. It can be installed on current Windows PCs and will be expanded in the near future with modules for force calculation and tolerance analysis.

To use KINTOP and to assign the installation files, please contact Prof. Hüsing.


IGMR mechanism lexicon: interactive, internet-based knowledge repository

gt lexikon

The IGMR mechanism lexicon [Ni00, Ni03] was the first step towards an interactive, internet-based knowledge repository (Fig. 1). It is based on the IGMR's large collection of mechanism models, which was systematically collected at an early stage and is intended to provide assistance in the development of kinematic designs for solving motion tasks. The main focus is on the principle synthesis of non-uniform transmissions. The mechanism lexicon therefore includes a collection of gearing solution principles as well as numerous application examples. Thanks to its computer-based implementation, the gear lexicon offers considerable advantages over knowledge stores in the form of books and catalogues in paper form, which can be utilised to advantage in the design of non-uniformly translated gear units.

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Mechatronics in hollow glass forming


Due to the mostly uneven movements of the active movement devices in hollow glass processing machines together with the non-linear behaviour of the drives used, time-variable inertia forces and moments occur there which can lead to undesirable loads and vibrations. In order to counteract this with suitable problem solutions, the behaviour of the entire system must be simulated as well as possible. In addition to the dynamic behavior of the drives, the modeling required for this must also take into account the dynamic behavior of the non-uniformly translating mechanisms and the retroactive processes.

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E²F - Design and development of convertible folders


A central advantage of the folding design principle is that it combines two fundamental technical functionalities, namely that of changeability and that of induction of statically usable stiffness. By inserting folds, highly stressable structures can be produced from flat panels with a thin cross-section, which can also be modified if the folding edges are designed accordingly. A distinction is made between rigid folds as structural design principle for self-supporting lightweight constructions and variable folds as construction principle for movable structures. Both properties - reinforcement and changeability - predestine folding structures for applications in architecture and engineering.

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Institute of Mechanism Theory, Machine Dynamics and Robotics

RWTH Aachen University

Eilfschornsteinstraße 18

52062 Aachen



Phone: +49 241 80 95546

Fax:      +49 241 80 92263


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