Abstract

The present paper outlines a method of shape synthesis using intrinsic geometry to be used for two-dimensional shape optimization problems. It is observed that the shape of a curve can be defined in terms of intrinsic parameters such as the curvature as a function of the arc length. The method of shape synthesis, proposed here, consists of selecting a shape model, defining a set of shape design variables and then evaluating Cartesian coordinates of a curve. A shape model is conceived as a set of continuous piecewise linear segments of the curvature; each segment defined as a function of the arc length. The shape design variables are the values of curvature and/or arc lengths at some of the end-points of the linear segments. The proposed method of shape synthesis and optimization is general in nature. It has been shown how the proposed method can be used to find the optimal shape of a planar Variable Geometry Truss (VGT) manipulator for a pre-specified position and orientation of the end-effector. In conclusion, it can be said that the proposed approach requires fewer design variables as compared to the methods where shape is represented using spline-like functions.

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