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Kinematics of beam flexure four-bar linkages with applications in a compound bow
This thesis is a study in the application of kinematics coupled with elastic body
mechanics. Most studies in kinematics assume all mechanism links to be inelastic.
Furthermore, the methods of kinematic synthesis have generally been developed to meet
requirements of displacement, velocity and acceleration. The work presented in this
thesis differs in two important aspects. First, one grounded link of a four-bar linkage is
replaced by a cantilevered beam in flexure to produce a force generating mechanism.
Second, the synthesis method presented here allows the generation of these mechanisms
in closed form for prescribed force generation.
A compound archery bow that incorporates four-bar linkages has been developed as an
example. This design relies on the non-linear mechanical advantage of the four-bar
linkage and the bow mechanics to provide a resistance curve that is more compatible
with the human strength curve. In addition, by modifying the bow kinematics, more
potential energy can be stored, and thus potentially more kinetic energy can be
transferred to the arrow than with previous bows.