Multiple-Material Topology Optimization of Compliant Mechanisms Created Via PolyJet Three-Dimensional Printing

Andrew T. Gaynor, Nicholas A. Meisel, Christopher B. Williams, James K. Guest

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

224 Scopus citations


Compliant mechanisms are able to transfer motion, force, and energy using a monolithic structure without discrete hinge elements. The geometric design freedoms and multimaterial capability offered by the PolyJet 3D printing process enables the fabrication of compliant mechanisms with optimized topology. The inclusion of multiple materials in the topology optimization process has the potential to eliminate the narrow, weak, hingelike sections that are often present in single-material compliant mechanisms and also allow for greater magnitude deflections. In this paper, the authors propose a design and fabrication process for the realization of 3-phase, multiple-material compliant mechanisms. The process is tested on a 2D compliant force inverter. Experimental and numerical performance of the resulting 3-phase inverter is compared against a standard 2-phase design.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number061015
JournalJournal of Manufacturing Science and Engineering, Transactions of the ASME
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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