Formulation of Multibody Dynamics as Complementarity Problems

J. C. Trinkle
2003 Volume 5: 19th Biennial Conference on Mechanical Vibration and Noise, Parts A, B, and C   unpublished
Multibody systems with rigid bodies and unilateral contacts are difficult to simulate due to discontinuities associated with gaining and losing contacts and stick-slip transitions. Methods for simulating such systems fall into two categories: penalty methods and complementarity methods. The former calculate penetration depths of virtual rigid bodies at every time step and compute restoring forces to repair penetrations, while the latter assume that the bodies are truly rigid and compute contact
more » ... and compute contact forces that prevent penetration from occurring at all. In this paper, we are concerned with complementarity methods. We present an instantaneous formulation of the equations of motion of multi-rigid-body systems with frictional contacts as a complementarity problem. The unknowns in this formulation are accelerations and forces at the contacts. Since it is known that this model does not always admit a finite solution, it is problematic to use it directly in an integration scheme. This fact motivates the discrete-time formulation presented second. Although the discrete-time formulation also takes the form of a complementarity problem, it does not suffer from non-existence, and thus it is suitable for simulation. Numerical results are compared to the exact solution for a sphere initially sliding, then rolling, on a horizontal plane.
doi:10.1115/detc2003/vib-48342 fatcat:mjtbdvqzbrhddep3gqbsxwcx2i