Compliant Mechanism: Advantages & Challenges
Updated: Mar 30
Each coin has two sides. Likewise, every concept will have advantages as well as challenges. Compliant mechanism seems an exciting concept as it has a lot of benefits. But still, why doesn’t everyone move to it? Let’s first cover the advantages of a compliant mechanism and then the challenges faced by it.
Reduced part count reduces the cost of the product
A niche application will generate high revenue
Simpler production process and lower manufacturing cost
Reduced maintenance costs
Improved durability and increased portability
Uninterrupted and improved performance
Light weighted and noise free mechanism
COMBINATION OF COMPLEX SYSTEMS
The main barriers to analyzing and designing compliant mechanisms are:
Lack of expertise in Compliant Design.
Lack of knowledge in mechanism analysis methods and the deflection of flexible links.
Fear of changing the status quo from traditional mechanical engineering design.
LIMITATIONS OF LIMITED MOTION IN COMPLIANT SYSTEMS
The motion from the deflection of compliant links is limited by the strength of the deflecting component. Unlike a pin joint, a compliant link is unable to reproduce a continuous rotational motion. We take this into account in our design process.
NON LINEAR EQUATIONS HENCE DIFFICULT TO MODEL
Since flexible links undergo large deflections, linearized beam equations are no longer valid.
Nonlinear equations must be used that account for the geometric nonlinearity caused by large deflections. Compliant mechanism analysis and design are tougher than that of rigid-body mechanisms.
FATIGUE LIFE UNDERSTANDING/DESIGN NECESSARY
Compliant members are loaded cyclically when a compliant mechanism is used. And hence, it is essential to design those members such that they will have sufficient fatigue life to perform their prescribed functions.