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A New Butterfly-Inspired Compliant Joint with 3-DOF In-plane Motion, Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering

Authors: 

Ngoc Thoai Tran, Ngoc Le Chau, Thanh‑Phong Dao*

Source title: 
Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering, 2020 (ISI)
Academic year of acceptance: 
2019-2020
Abstract: 

This paper proposes a new butterfly-inspired compliant joint by combining a butterfly’s profile and a foldable mechanism. The joint can achieve three degrees of freedom in its fabrication plane, including two translations in the x- and y-axes and a rotary motion around the z-axis. Equivalent spring stiffness of the joint is easy to be adjusted by adopting a foldable mechanism, while a butterfly’s profile gives better compliance. Closed-form model of the joint is established to calculate stiffness, displacement, and rotational angle. Performances and effectiveness of the proposed joint are verified by comparing with other joints. A prototype is fabricated, and experiments are conducted. The results show a good agreement between the analytical model, simulation, and experiment. Compared with a conventional rectangular flexure joint in terms of bending displacement and compressive displacement, the results found that performances of the joint are greatly improved. Bending displacement and angular displacement of the joint are increased by up to 14.6% and 12.6%, respectively. The proposed joint can be considered as a potential candidate for a precise positioning system.