Understanding and Modeling the Behavior of a Harmonic Drive Gear Transmission

Unknown author (1992-05-01)

In my research, I have performed an extensive experimental investigation of harmonic-drive properties such as stiffness, friction, and kinematic error. From my experimental results, I have found that these properties can be sharply non-linear and highly dependent on operating conditions. Due to the complex interaction of these poorly behaved transmission properties, dynamic response measurements showed surprisingly agitated behavior, especially around system resonance. Theoretical models developed to mimic the observed response illustrated that non-linear frictional effects cannot be ignored in any accurate harmonic-drive representation. Additionally, if behavior around system resonance must be replicated, kinematic error and transmission compliance as well as frictional dissipation from gear-tooth rubbing must all be incorporated into the model.