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Shock and Vibration
Volume 2018 (2018), Article ID 9016028, 9 pages
Research Article

Deformation Control in Rest-to-Rest Motion of Mechanisms with Flexible Links

Dipartimento di Tecnica e Gestione dei Sistemi Industriali (DTG), Università degli Studi di Padova, Padova, Italy

Correspondence should be addressed to Alberto Trevisani

Received 31 August 2017; Revised 12 January 2018; Accepted 8 February 2018; Published 11 March 2018

Academic Editor: Kumar V. Singh

Copyright © 2018 Roberto Caracciolo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper develops and validates experimentally a feedback strategy for the reduction of the link deformations in rest-to-rest motion of mechanisms with flexible links, named Delayed Reference Control (DRC). The technique takes advantage of the inertial coupling between rigid-body motion and elastic motion to control the undesired link deformations by shifting in time the position reference through an action reference parameter. The action reference parameter is computed on the fly based on the sensed strains by solving analytically an optimization problem. An outer control loop is closed to compute the references for the position controllers of each actuator, which can be thought of as the inner control loop. The resulting multiloop architecture of the DRC is a relevant advantage over several traditional feedback controllers: DRC can be implemented by just adding an outer control loop to standard position controllers. A validation of the proposed control strategy is provided by applying the DRC to the real-time control of a four-bar linkage.