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Complex Contact Modeling: Multi-Body Assembly Dynamic Model

Often simulation techniques are used on single components under simplified conditions.  These simplifications can lead to uncertainty in the results for a component, entire system, or device.  Complex interactions that occur in the full assembly condition and actual operation are not accounted for.

In the example shown here a toggle clamp mechanism is simulated in a fully assembled condition including the work piece to be clamped.  The toggle mechanism components are controlled exclusively by contact with friction. The only boundary conditions involved the fixture of the base of the work piece and clamp base bolt holes.  All components are modeled with elastic-plastic material properties.  This ensures that any local plastic deformations that could occur would be captured as this will drastically affect the efficiency of the mechanism.

The simulation also takes advantage of the capability to control interactions between components.  Components are selectively removed from contact (or other interactions) and then reintroduced as shown by the clamp mechanism passing through the work piece at the start of the simulation.  Then upon closure it contacts and clamps the work piece.

This technique provides a wide range of capability in simulation of products and processes that involve complex interactions such as assembly steps, or multiple functions.  Results include the full assembly functional behavior as well as that of each component.  Weak areas can be detected and a focused effort can be placed only where it is needed.  This saves cost, time and effort in a project.

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