Investigation on Dynamics of Mechanical System with Clearance Joint

Zheng-Feng Bai*, 1, Bin-jiu Yang1, Yi Sun2
2 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology at Weihai, Weihai 264209, P.R. China
3 Department of Astronautic Science and Mechanics, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150001, P.R. China

© 2014 Bai et al

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: ( This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the No.2, Wen-hua West Road, Weihai, Shandong. Postcard: 264209, China; Tel: +86-631-5687026; E-mail:


In this work, the dynamic responses and vibration characteristics of mechanical system with revolute clearance joints are investigated numerically. Considering clearance in joint, the intra-joint contact model that is generated at clearance joints is established using a nonlinear continuous contact force model and the friction effect is considered by using a modified Coulomb friction model. A well-known slider-crank mechanism with a revolute clearance joint is utilized to perform the investigation. The effects of clearance on dynamics of mechanical system are analyzed by timedomain responses and frequency domain analysis. The investigation results show that the dynamic responses of mechanical system with clearance are obviously vibration and the amplitude increases from the mechanism without clearance. The results also indicate that the behavior of mechanism with clearance is nonlinear.

Keywords: Clearance joint, mechanical system, numerical simulation, vibration characteristics.