Introduction to Kinematics
Kinematics is the study of motion without considering forces. It is the most fundamental engineering study in mechanical system design. This chapter helps the reader to gain a central understanding regarding kinematics and its use in engineering design, distinctions between kinematic chains and mechanisms, planar and spatial mechanism mobility, types of mechanism motion, distinctions between kinematic analysis and kinematic synthesis, and categories of kinematic synthesis. The conversion of circular motion to linear motion is commonly required for the operation of mechanical systems. A kinematic chain, an overarching classification that includes mechanisms, is an assembly of links interconnected by joints where the motion of one link compels the motion of another link. The mobility or the number of degrees of freedom of a mechanism is the number of independent parameters required to uniquely define its position in space.