Abstract

Numerous publications have been devoted to the development of analytical and computational models for predicting the dynamic response of mechanical systems comprising assemblages of rigid-bodies with clearance at the joints. However, there is a dearth of experimental investigations in this area which focus on furnishing complementary response data, consequently the predictive capabilities of these theoretical models are largely unknown. The experimental investigation presented herein, is motivated by this observation and is directed towards partially filling this significant void in the literature. In order to accomplish this goal, a comprehensive experimental study was undertaken of a slider-crank mechanism in which the radial clearance at the gudgeon-pin bearing was carefully controlled. Response data at different operating speeds are presented, along with an investigation of the bearing characteristics from which the coefficient of restitution, which features in many of the proposed mathematical models, was evaluated. Finally, design guidelines are distilled from the experimental data to relate the response of the system to the response of a similar system without bearing clearance.

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