## Are you sure?

This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?

**Ownership and Copyright
**

© 2003 Springer-Verlag London Limited

Machining Fixture Veriﬁcation for Nonlinear Fixture Systems

J. J.-X. Liu and D. R. Strong

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, The University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

This paper presents a ﬁxture conﬁguration veriﬁcation method-

ology for nonlinear ﬁxture systems, which is developed on the

basis of optimal clamping forces and total restraint. This

method can be applied for validating the feasibility of a ﬁxture

with point, line and area contacts in two stages: ﬁxturing and

machining. The “ϱ-ϱ-ϱ” principle for nonlinear ﬁxture

location is proposed. The automatic ﬁxture veriﬁcation system

is modelled as a nonlinear optimisation problem with respect

to minimum clamping forces. The method provides a simple

and effective means for: (a) verifying whether a particular

ﬁxturing conﬁguration is valid with respect to locating stability,

deterministic workpiece location, clamping stability and total

restraint and (b) determining minimum variable clamping

forces over the entire machining time. Two case studies are

presented to demonstrate the effectiveness and the capabilities

of the methodology.

Keywords: Fixture analysis; Fixture design; Fixture veriﬁ-

cation

1. Introduction

The function of a machining ﬁxture is to establish the required

position and orientation of a workpiece with respect to the

machining tool or cutter and maintain its position during

machining through a set of ﬁxture elements in contact with

the workpiece. Common contact types between the workpiece

and ﬁxture elements can be reduced to point, line and surface

contacts, determined by the various sizes and shapes of work-

piece and ﬁxturing elements. A viable ﬁxture conﬁguration

veriﬁcation system should be able to analyse a ﬁxture system

with these types of location contacts. Round pin, vee-block

and plate locators are examples of point, line and surface

contacts in a ﬁxture system.

Several ﬁxture veriﬁcation approaches were developed in the

past. In the frictionless case, Chou et al. [1] developed a

Correspondence and offprint requests to: Prof. D. R. Strong,

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, The University

of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3T 5V6. E-mail:

strong@ms.umanitoba.ca

methodology for determining the locating and clamping points

and clamping forces, based on state space representation and

linear programming. Using a nonlinear programming method,

Trappey and Liu [2] derived a quadratic model for the veriﬁ-

cation of the ﬁxture conﬁguration. Fuh et al. [3] developed a

ﬁxture analysis module for veriﬁcation and rationalisation of a

ﬁxturing scheme. To identify adequate clamping forces an

iterative method was used. These approaches treated machining

conditions as static and considered point contact for mechan-

ical restraint.

Taking dynamic machining conditions into account, Meyer

and Liou [4] proposed a ﬁxture generation methodology for

prismatic workpieces based on linear programming techniques

without considering frictional forces. The ﬁxture layout was

generated on the basis of part stability, deterministic pos-

itioning, good accessibility, positive clamping sequence and

total restraint. Their method found that a valid ﬁxture has six

locators. Tao et al. [5] presented an approach for verifying the

total restraint of the workpiece based on force closure and

clamping equilibrium under a dynamic external load. A friction

methodology of clamping analysis was developed based on

nonlinear programming. Gravity and the centre of gravity

under dynamic machining in both approaches were considered

constant for determining whether a set of point contacts

provides total restraint.

Using a minimum energy principle, Li et al. [6] developed

a model for analysing ﬁxtures with large contact areas such

as mechanical vices. The contact area between the vice and

workpiece is approximated by four squares, each having a

uniform pressure distribution. Static machining conditions were

assumed in their method. Taking into account line and surface

contacts for ﬁxturing DeMeter [7] presented a linear program

which uses static equilibrium constraints to prove the existence

of the restraint of workpiece motion in the absence of external

loads, i.e. machining forces. Utilising the surface contact

wrench representation proposed by DeMeter, Tao et al. believed

that their proposed method is readily applicable to the ﬁxturing

problems with polygonal supports. Demeter and Tao et al.

assumed that the positions of point contact forces are at the

end points of the line segments for line contacts and at the

vertices of a polygon for planar contacts.

The veriﬁcation method presented in this paper demonstrates

that the positions of reactions on locators are not at the end

Machining Fixture Veriﬁcation for Nonlinear Systems 427

points for these contacts. Figure 1(a) illustrates a ﬁxture system

in 2-D with an edge locator. The part is subjected to a

machining force of [Ϫ100 N, Ϫ150 N]

T

. If two reactions R1

and R2 on an edge locator are assumed, the positions of these

reactions are not at the end points of the line segments as

shown in Fig. 1(b).

In many ﬁxture applications, line and surface contacts are

relied upon for location and restraint. In the same operation,

a ﬁxture conﬁguration for the machining process may not have

the same conﬁguration in the ﬁxturing process, e.g. removable

locating pins. Thus, it is desirable to develop a ﬁxture veriﬁ-

cation system that can validate the feasibility of ﬁxture con-

ﬁgurations with these contacts for location throughout the

operation in both the ﬁxturing and machining stages. This

paper addresses the problem of validating ﬁxture location

conﬁgurations with point, line and surface contacts based on

locating stability, deterministic workpiece location, clamping

stability, total restraint, and minimum clamping forces. The

ﬁrst three functions are veriﬁed at the ﬁxturing stages. The

fourth function, total restraint, that requires the minimum

clamping force is veriﬁed in the machining stages. The ﬁxture

veriﬁcation methodology also takes into account dynamic

machining conditions, including the effect of dynamic gravi-

tational forces on the ﬁxture system. Vibration under dynamic

machining is not considered in this paper. Both the ﬁxture

and the workpiece system are assumed to be rigid bodies in

this research.

2. Development of a Nonlinear Fixture

Veriﬁcation System

2.1 Workpiece Static Equilibrium Constraints

Dynamic machining conditions occur when the machining

forces and moments travel or change in magnitude or direction

with respect to time. The variation of machining forces may

be due to the alteration of the depth of the cut, the feedrates,

and the machining directions. As a result, the magnitudes of

all ﬁxturing forces, including locating, clamping, friction, and

gravitational, will vary with respect to machining time. The

ﬁxture–workpiece system must be in static equilibrium for a

Fig. 1. Positions of reaction forces for a line contact. (a) A ﬁxture conﬁguration in 2-D. (b) Resulting ﬁxture forces and positions.

stable ﬁxture conﬁguration to be realised over the machining

time. The static equilibrium equations for every force and

moment involved in a ﬁxture–workpiece system, located in

Cartesian coordinate space, over machining time, can be math-

ematically expressed:

F

→

(t) = 0 (1)

r

→

(t) ϫ F

→

(t) = 0 (2)

where t denotes the machining time; F

→

(t) denotes the forces

with respect to machining time, which comprise the locating,

clamping, friction, machining, and gravitational forces; and

r

→

(t) denotes the moment arms of the forces at time t.

Locating, clamping, and frictional forces are the ﬁxturing

forces to be determined. When the moment arms of the ﬁxtur-

ing forces in the equation are known, the ﬁxture system is

deﬁned as a linear system because it consists of six linear

equations. Point contacts such as pins for locations are an

example of a linear system. When the moment arms of the

ﬁxturing forces in the equation are unknown, the ﬁxture system

is deﬁned as a nonlinear system because the equation become

nonlinear. Fixture systems with line or area contacts such as

vee-blocks and plate locators for locations are examples of

nonlinear systems.

2.2 “ؕ-ؕ-ؕ” Principle for Nonlinear Fixture

Location

The purpose of location is to achieve the desired positional

and orientational relationship between the workpiece and the

machine tool or cutter, by depriving the workpiece of its six

degrees of freedom in space. Various locating methods have

been developed based on this purpose, which can be boiled

down to point, line and area contacts for location. One degree

of freedom of the workpiece can be constrained by a round

pin–point contact. Two degrees of freedom of the workpiece

can be constrained by an edge locator–line contact. Three

degrees of freedom of the workpiece can be constrained by a

plate locator–area contact.

428 J. J.-X. Liu and D. R. Strong

The most basic form of workpiece location is the six-point

or the “3-2-1” locating method [8]. With increasing numbers

of pins in the base (primary datum plane) from 3 to N, the

“3-2-1” locating principle may be expanded to the “N-2-1”

principle. If the locating plane conﬁgured by N pins is within

the requirements of the locating accuracy, which is obtainable,

the “N-2-1” principle for location is tenable. Using the same

method for secondary and tertiary datum planes the “N-2-1”

principle for location may be expanded to the “N-N-N” prin-

ciple. When the number of pins used in the datum plane tends

to approach inﬁnity, an edge or plate locator may replace the

location pins. A line contact for location can be modelled as

a workpiece supported by an inﬁnite number of pins along the

line. The area contact for location can be modelled as a

workpiece supported by an inﬁnite number of pins in 2-D.

Hence, the “N-N-N” principle for location may be expanded

to the “ϱ-ϱ-ϱ” principle for nonlinear ﬁxture location.

2.3 Positive Reaction Constraints

According to Newton’s third law [9], the forces of action and

reaction between bodies in contact have the same magnitude,

same line of action, and opposite sense. This law may be

applied to the ﬁxture–workpiece system where locators with

point, line and area contacts are involved. The locators for

point contacts may be involved in locating the workpiece with

rough or machined surfaces. The locators for line or area

contacts may be involved in locating the workpiece with

machined surfaces. As proposed, a locating element with line

or area contacts for location, can be viewed as an element

made of an inﬁnite number of tiny pins, each having a reaction.

The reaction distribution within a contact region is usually

unknown and completely dependent upon the magnitude and

point of application of all the acting forces. To simplify ﬁxture

analysis, a resultant reaction of all the inﬁnite number of

reaction forces is assumed for a ﬁxture with line or area

contacts in the research. If the resultant reaction is positive, it

means that two rigid bodies (workpiece and locator) remain

in contact.

When the reaction is resolved into two components, one

perpendicular and the other tangent to the contact surface, the

perpendicular force is the normal force and the component

tangent to the surface is the frictional force. The frictional

force is then resolved into two components with respect to two

axes. The maximum frictional force which can be developed is

independent of the size of the contact area. To maintain the

workpiece stability during the ﬁxturing and machining pro-

cesses, positive reactions on the locators are required. This is

realised by the normal vector at the contact being deﬁned as

directed towards the workpiece. The normal force of the Car-

tesian component of the reaction must remain positive to

ensure the workpiece stays in contact with the locators. Fixture

veriﬁcation checks if the total restraint of the workpiece in

dynamic machining is maintained at all times. The position

variables of the reaction can be determined through the static

equilibrium equations of the ﬁxture system.

2.4 Fixturing Force Magnitude Constraints

When a particular clamp or locator is selected during the

ﬁxture design, the ﬁxture element has a certain holding or

supporting capacity. Hence, the maximum allowable ﬁxturing

forces that locators and clamps can withstand are speciﬁed as

constraints. The maximum allowable clamping or locating force

may be deﬁned as

F

max

= s ؒ F

limit

, 0 Ͻ s Յ 1 (3)

where s is a safety factor, and F

limit

is the largest possible

clamping or locating force a clamp or a locator could provide

in terms of its speciﬁcations.

During ﬁxture setup and machining, the orientation of the

ﬁxture placement might change from a horizontal position to

a vertical position or vice versa. As a result, friction forces

may become the only holding forces for the part, as the weight

of the workpiece may no longer be supported by the ﬁxture

base, or clamps or locators. The ﬁxtured workpiece might also

experience unexpected disturbing forces. Hence, the minimum

clamping force is set in such a way that the magnitudes of the

friction forces involved in holding the part must be sufﬁcient to

maintain the stability of the workpiece in the ﬁxture when it

is subject to the weight of the workpiece and unexpected

disturbing forces. The minimum allowable clamping F

min,C

may

be deﬁned as:

F

min,C

=

W

2n

f

ؒ

+ F

d

(4)

where W is the weight of the workpiece, n

f

is the number of

clamps involved in holding the part with friction forces, is

static friction coefﬁcient, and F

d

is the disturbing force.

For the case where the weight of the workpiece is supported

by the ﬁxture element other than the base, the minimum

allowable clamping force F

min,C

may be deﬁned as:

F

min,C

=

W

(n

s

+ 2n

f

ؒ )

+ F

d

(5)

where n

s

denotes the number of clamps involved in supporting

the weight.

To ensure the workpiece stays in contact with the locator

during machining, the minimum allowable locating force F

min,l

(10–20 N) is speciﬁed.

2.5 Position Variable Constraints

To ensure that the reaction force on the locators is originating

from the locating element in contact with the workpiece, the

position variables for locators must lie on the contact line or

within the contact region. Figure 2 illustrates common line or

area contacts, and constraints.

2.6 Fixture Veriﬁcation with Respect to Optimal

Clamping Forces

If a resultant reaction force on the locator with line or area

contacts is assumed in a ﬁxture–workpiece system, a valid

ﬁxture conﬁguration usually consists of an inﬁnite number of

Machining Fixture Veriﬁcation for Nonlinear Systems 429

Fig. 2. Position variable constraints for common line and area contacts.

feasible solutions to the static equilibrium equations of the

ﬁxture–workpiece system with regard to reaction forces, clamp-

ing forces, and the positions of reactions on the locators.

However, there exists one solution for the minimum clamp-

ing force.

Theorem 1. There must exist one solution to the static equilib-

rium equations of a nonlinear ﬁxture system under external

loads if the position variables of the reaction are determined

based on the minimum clamping force.

Proof: Fig. 3(a) illustrates a ﬁxture conﬁguration of a 2-D part

with line contact for location. The following inequalities can be

derived based on static equilibrium equations of the ﬁxture system

and the relations between the friction force and normal force:

C Ն

F

x

2

Ϫ

1

2

(F

y

+ W) (6)

Fig. 3. Optimisation of clamping forces for ﬁxtures. (a) A 2-D part with an edge locator. (b) A 3-D part with a plane locator.

C Ն

F

y

(x

F

Ϫ x

c

+ ؒ y

c

) + F

x

y

F

+ W(x

w

Ϫ x

c

+ ؒ y

c

)

x

N

Ϫ x

c

+ ؒ y

c

(7)

Ϫ (F

y

+ W)

where F

x

, F

y

, C, and W are the x, y components of machining

force, clamping force and weight, respectively; x

F

, y

F

, x

C

, y

C

,

x

w

, and x

N

are the coordinates for those forces; and is the

friction coefﬁcient.

For each given x

N

, there are inﬁnite numbers of solutions

of C which satisfy the inequalities, but there exists a minimum

clamping force C

min

and an x

N

, correspondingly:

C

min

=

F

x

2

Ϫ

1

2

(F

y

+ W) (8)

x

N

=

F

y

(x

F

Ϫ x

c

+ ؒ y

c

) + F

x

y

F

+ W(x

w

Ϫ x

c

+ ؒ y

c

)

F

x

2

+

1

2

(F

y

+ W)

(9)

+ x

c

Ϫ ؒ y

c

430 J. J.-X. Liu and D. R. Strong

Therefore, the position variable x

N

of the reaction for line

contact can be determined based on the minimum clamping

force.

Figure 3(b) illustrates a ﬁxture conﬁguration of a 3-D part

with area contact for location. The following inequalities can

be derived also based on the static equilibrium equations of

the ﬁxture system, and the relations between the friction force

and normal force:

C Ն

1

2

ͱF

2

x

+ F

2

y

Ϫ

1

2

(F

z

+ W) (10)

C Ն

(F

y

x

F

Ϫ F

x

y

F

) Ϫ (W + F

z

)(x

N

cos Ϫ y

N

sin )

(x

N

cos Ϫ y

N

sin ) + (x

c

cos Ϫ y

c

sin )

(11)

C Ն

(y

N

+ x

N

)(W + F

z

) Ϫ W(y

w

+ x

w

) + z

F

(F

x

+ F

y

) Ϫ F

z

(y

F

Ϫ x

F

)

ؒ z

c

(cos + sin ) + (y

c

+ x

c

) Ϫ (y

N

+ x

N

)

(12)

where sin = F

x

(F

2

x

+ F

2

y

)

Ϫ1/2

, cos = F

y

(F

2

x

+ F

2

y

)

Ϫ1/2

; F

x

, F

y

,

F

z

, C, and W are the machining force components, clamping

force and weight, respectively; x

F

, y

F

, z

F

, x

C

, y

C

, z

C

, x

w

, y

w

,

x

N

and y

N

are the coordinates for those forces; and is the

friction coefﬁcient.

For each given x

N

and y

N

, there are inﬁnite numbers of

feasible solutions of C which satisfy the inequalities, but there

exists a minimum clamping force C

min

:

C

min

=

1

2

ͱF

2

x

+ F

2

y

Ϫ

1

2

(F

z

+ W) (13)

According to Eq. (13), the position variables x

N

and y

N

of the

reaction N can be determined through the inequalities (11) and

(12) by substituting the C’s in the inequalities with C

min

.

Therefore, there is one optimal solution to the static equilib-

rium equations of a nonlinear ﬁxture system under external

loads, based on the minimum clamping force.

If multiple clamps (C

i

, i = 1, 2, %, n) are exerted on the

3-D part in the same direction, but at a different locations, the

following inequalities can be similarly derived.

n

i=1

C

i

Ն

1

2

ͱF

2

x

+ F

2

y

Ϫ

1

2

(F

z

+ W) (14)

min

n

i=1

C

i

=

1

2

ͱF

2

x

+ F

2

y

Ϫ

1

2

(F

z

+ W) (15)

From Eq. (15), it can be seen that the optimisation problem

is to minimise the summation of the magnitudes of all clamping

forces acting on the workpiece.

2.7 Fixture Veriﬁcation Model for Nonlinear Fixture

Systems

Following the theoretical discussion in previous sections, the

ﬁxture veriﬁcation is modelled as a nonlinear optimisation

problem. The optimal solution is the one that minimises the

magnitudes of all of the clamping forces acting on the work-

piece during the machining process. The objective function V

is to minimise the sum of the clamping force magnitudes C

j

with respect to machining time t:

MinV(t) =

n

j=1

C

j

(t) (j = 1, 2, 3, %, n) (16)

If F

i

(t) denotes a ﬁxture force (locating, clamping or friction)

magnitude at certain time t, and F

j

(t) denotes a clamping force

magnitude at certain time t when i = j % n, the objective

function V(t) can be rewritten as follows:

MinV(t) =

n

i=j

F

i

(t) (i = 1, 2, 3, %j, %, n) (17)

Subject to:

1. Static equilibrium constraints – the ﬁxture–workpiece system

must be in static equilibrium for a stable ﬁxture conﬁgur-

ation to be realised over the machining time.

΄

a

11

a

12

% a

1n

00 %0 00 %0

00 %0 b

21

b

22

% b

2n

00 %0

00 %0 00 %0 c

31

c

32

%c

3n

00 %0 b

41

b

42

% b

4n

c

41

c

42

%c

4n

a

51

a

52

%a

5n

00 %0 c

51

c

52

%c

5n

a

61

a

62

% a

6n

b

61

b

62

% b

6n

00 %0

΅

ؒ (18)

΄

F

x,1

(t)F

x,2

(t) %F

x,n

(t)

F

y,1

(t)F

y,2

(t) %F

y,n

(t)

F

z,1

(t)F

z,2

(t) %F

z,n

(t)

΅

= Ϫ

΄

R

x

(t)

R

y

(t)

R

z

(t)

M

x

(t)

M

y

(t)

M

z

(t)

΅

where t is the machining time when the cutter is removing

the material from the part; a

ij

, b

ij

and c

ij

are the x, y and

z components of the direction and position vectors for each

ﬁxture element (when i Յ 3, they are the direction coef-

ﬁcients; when i Ͼ 3, they are the position variables); F

x,1

(t)

%, F

y,1

(t) %, and F

z,1

(t) % are components of the n

ﬁxturing forces with respect to time, which comprise the

locating, clamping and frictional forces; R

x

(t), R

y

(t) and R

z

(t)

are the axial components of the resultant cutting force and

weight at time t; M

x

(t), M

y

(t) and M

z

(t) are the components

of the resultant moment of cutting forces and weight at

time t.

2. Coulomb friction constraints – the static friction forces f

x,i

,

f

y,i

, and f

z,i

must be positive over machining time t as:

f

x,i

(t)Ն0; f

y,i

(t)Ն0; and f

z,i

(t) (19)

Ն0 (i = 1, 2, 3, %n)

If the is the coefﬁcient of static friction, the resultant

magnitude of the friction force can be less than or equal

to the magnitude of the fractional normal force (͉F

i

(t)͉)

over time t.

Machining Fixture Veriﬁcation for Nonlinear Systems 431

Fig. 4. A ﬂowchart of the ﬁxture conﬁguration veriﬁcation program.

ͱf

2

x,i

(t) + f

2

y,i

(t) + f

2

z,i

(t) (20)

Յ|F

i

(t)| (i = 1, 2, 3, %, n)

3. Fixturing force magnitude constraints:

F

min,i

Յ F

i

(t) Յ F

max,i

(i = 1, 2, 3, %, n) (21)

4. Positive normal reaction constraints:

F

i

(t) Ն 0 (i = 1, 2, 3, %, n) (22)

5. Position variable constraints:

A

LB,ij

Յ a

ij

Յ A

UB,ij

; B

LB,ij

Յ b

ij

(23)

Յ B

UB,ij

; and C

LB,ij

Յ c

ij

Յ C

UB,ij

where A

LB,ij

, B

LB,ij

, and C

LB,ij

denote lower bounds, and

A

UB,ij

, B

UB,ij

, and C

UB,ij

denote upper bounds for the

position variables.

2.8 Fixture Veriﬁcation for the Fixturing Process

From a mechanistic point of view [1], ﬁxtures must satisfy the

following four functional requirements for holding workpiece:

locating stability, deterministic workpiece location, clamping

stability and total restraint. The ﬁrst three functions are required

at the ﬁxturing stages. The last function is required in the

machining stages. Using the ﬁxture conﬁguration veriﬁcation

model developed previously in Section 2.7, locating stability,

deterministic workpiece location and clamping stability in the

ﬁxturing process for a given ﬁxture conﬁguration is ﬁrst

validated by running the veriﬁcation model on LINGO7.0 [10],

a commercial nonlinear programming package.

During the ﬁxturing process, machining time and machining

forces in the model are set to zero. Checking for locating

stability is accomplished by setting all the allowable clamping

forces to zero and the minimum locating forces to a given

value in the model. If a feasible solution to the model exists,

the workpiece is at equilibrium resting in the ﬁxture. Physically,

432 J. J.-X. Liu and D. R. Strong

this means that static equilibrium of the ﬁxture system is

achieved and no detaching forces on the locators are found.

The magnitudes of the locating forces can also be determined

by the model. If a feasible solution cannot be found, it is

veriﬁed that the workpiece is unstable due to its gravity acting

out of the ﬁxture support. When there is no physical contact

on the line of action of gravity, three reactions on the contact

area are assumed in the model. If a feasible solution exists, it

is veriﬁed that locating stability of the workpiece is achieved.

Checking for deterministic workpiece location and clamping

stability is accomplished by setting all minimum and maximum

allowable clamping and locating forces to a known value. If

a feasible solution to the model exists, the workpiece is

deterministically located and the clamping forces do not upset

the stable and accurate position previously determined by the

locators. The result demonstrates that workpiece equilibrium is

maintained when the workpiece is subject to clamping forces

and weight. The solutions of the positive locating forces on

the locators in the model can be found. The magnitudes of

the minimum clamping forces to maintain workpiece stability

in the ﬁxture can also be found. If a feasible solution to the

model cannot be found, the ﬁxture in the ﬁxturing stages is

veriﬁed to be invalid.

2.9 Fixture Veriﬁcation for a Machining Process

Fixture veriﬁcation for a machining process consists of two

main tasks: total restraint of the workpiece and determination

of minimum clamping forces. During machining, the ﬁxture

should completely restrain the workpiece to counter dynamic

and unpredicted machining forces and moments. To ensure

total restraint of the workpiece under dynamic machining, the

ﬁxture conﬁguration is validated for all possible machining

paths or for the worst case, which is the machining path with

Fig. 5. A ﬁxture conﬁguration with point, line and area contacts. (All coordinates in centimetres.)

cutting forces acting against the clamps. Since total restraint

that determines the minimum clamping force is veriﬁed in the

machining stages, one of outputs from the model is a set

of variable clamping forces that is just enough to always

counterbalance the machining forces over the entire machin-

ing time.

During the veriﬁcation of the machining processes, all

unknown forces such as reaction, gravitational, friction, and

clamping as well as position variables of reaction and gravi-

tational forces are determined, over the machining time.

The discrete dynamic ﬁxturing solutions to the model over

machining time can be obtained by running the model on

LINGO7.0. If a feasible solution to the model is found, the

ﬁxture conﬁguration is veriﬁed to be valid because all ﬁxture

forces on the locators are positive. This means that the

workpiece maintains contact with ﬁxture elements during the

entire machining process. A set of variable clamping forces

is also determined to be sufﬁcient to counterbalance the

dynamic machining forces. If a feasible solution to the model

cannot be found, the ﬁxture is veriﬁed to be invalid because

it has not restrained the workpiece completely. To identify

which locator yields a negative value, all the reactions and

allowable locating forces would be reset to allow them to

have negative values and then the model is run again. This

assists in identifying which locator would actually detach

from the workpiece so that the invalid ﬁxture conﬁguration

can be corrected. As long as the position variables of the

resultant reaction force on edge or plate locators are con-

strained within the area in contact with the workpiece during

the veriﬁcation process, the validation of the ﬁxture system

is performed correctly.

Machining Fixture Veriﬁcation for Nonlinear Systems 433

3. Implementation

The automatic ﬁxture conﬁguration veriﬁcation system has

been implemented on a Pentium III Dell laptop computer. An

overall outline of the methodology is shown in Fig. 4. The

optimisation program for veriﬁcation is run in a commercial

optimisation tool, LINGO7.0, which can solve linear, nonlinear,

and integer optimisation models. Data input and output as well,

as other models, are run in an Excel spreadsheet that is linked

to LINGO7.0. If the ﬁxture conﬁguration is valid, a feasible

solution is output with optimal values, in less than 30 seconds.

If there is no feasible solution, the ﬁxture conﬁguration being

veriﬁed is invalid. By resetting the reaction force constraints

to allow negative values, the system will identify that the

workpiece is detaching from a speciﬁc locator in a few seconds.

Results of the two case studies are summarised in the following

the section.

4. Fixture Conﬁguration Veriﬁcation Case

Studies

4.1 Case Study One

A ﬁxture conﬁguration, as shown in Fig. 5, consists of three

locators, pin, edge, and plate for location as well as two

horizontal clamps for clamping to secure a prismatic part with

a step feature on its top and with an elliptical pocket feature

on its base. A slot milling operation is going to be performed

on the part to produce a through slot.

During the ﬁrst half of the cutting path, the depth of cut is

1 cm and the part is to undergo a machining force of [100

N, Ϫ100 N, Ϫ100 N]

T

at the middle of the axial depth of the

cut. During the second half of the cutting path, the depth of

cut is 2 cm and the part is to undergo a machining force of

Fig. 6. Normal reactions and clamping forces over time.

[200 N, Ϫ200 N, Ϫ200 N]

T

at the middle of the axial depth

of the cut. The diameter of the end mill is 2 cm. The cutter

travels along the positive x-direction with a feedrate of 0.5

cm/s. The total machining time for the entire cutting path is

40 seconds with machining forces and moments calculated

every 2 seconds, which translates into 21 dynamic ﬁxturing

solutions. The part is subjected to an initial body force of [0,

0, Ϫ48 N]

T

at its centroid (10.3, 5, 5.1). It is required to verify

whether the ﬁxture conﬁguration is valid and to determine the

minimum clamping forces over the entire machining time.

Fixture veriﬁcation for the ﬁxturing process was performed

as follows. Under a gravitational force of 48 N, a feasible

solution to the veriﬁcation model is found when three reactions

on the plate locator are assumed. All three reaction forces on

the plate locator are found to be positive: 11.4 N at (0, 10,

0), 24.7 N at (20, 3.5, 0) and 11.9 N at (0, 3.4, 0), respectively.

Therefore, the locating stability for the ﬁxture conﬁguration

is veriﬁed.

The minimum and maximum allowable locating forces were

set to 10 N and 800 N. The minimum and maximum allowable

clamping forces were set to 40 N and 600 N. It is veriﬁed

that the workpiece is deterministically located, and the clamp-

ing forces do not upset the stable and accurate position pre-

viously determined by locators when one reaction force on the

plate locator is assumed. A feasible solution to the nonlinear

veriﬁcation model under the gravitational and clamping forces

was found, since all ﬁxturing forces C1 = C2 = 40 N, L1 =

20.6 N at (8.8, 8.9, 0), L2 = 32.2 N at (11.3, 10, 8), and L3

= 40 N at (0, 2, 8) are positive. Friction forces involved in

the y-direction are 4.1 N at locator 1, and 3.7 N at locator 3.

Friction forces involved in the z-direction are 6.4 N at locator

2, 5.1 N at locator 3, 8 N at clamp 1, and 7.99 N at clamp 2.

Fixture veriﬁcation for the machining process was carried

out as follows. Dynamic gravitational forces of the workpiece

are taken into account in the veriﬁcation process. One reaction

434 J. J.-X. Liu and D. R. Strong

Fig. 7. Positions of the reaction on plate locator over time (Z = 0).

force on the plate locator and one reaction force on the edge

locator are assumed. Since feasible solutions to the nonlinear

veriﬁcation model were found, total restraint of the workpiece

for a given machining direction in positive x is achieved.

Figure 6 illustrates that reaction forces on all three locators

under the variable clamping forces are positive. Figures 7 and

8 show the positions of reaction forces on the plate and

edge locators over time. It can be concluded that the ﬁxture

conﬁguration is valid for machining the slot. The required

minimum variable clamping forces C1 and C2 over time are

determined as shown in Fig. 6. If a dynamic clamp is

employed, the clamp should provide variable clamping forces

on the workpiece with respect to machining time. If a constant

clamping force rather than a variable clamping setting is

employed, the static minimum clamping forces for clamps C1

and C2 throughout the operation should be set to be 469.3 N

and 167.1 N, respectively. Under the proposed clamping

forces, the part stability under the dynamic machining will

be maintained.

Fig. 8. Positions of the reaction of edge locator over time (Y = 10).

4.2 Case Study Two

A ﬁxture conﬁguration as shown in Fig. 9 is to undergo a

peripheral milling operation. Figure 9(a) shows the ﬁxture set-

up during the ﬁxturing process with two removable pins used

for locating the part. Figure 9(b) illustrates the ﬁxture set-up

during the machining process in the absence of the two remov-

able locating pins. Four clamps are applied on the workpiece

to maintain workpiece stability under the milling operations.

The workpiece is subjected to an initial body force of [0

N, 0 N, Ϫ56.4 N]

T

at its centroid (20, 5, 4.3), and machining

forces of [100 N, 50 N, Ϫ100 N]

T

, [Ϫ50 N, 100 N, Ϫ100

N]

T

, [Ϫ100 N, Ϫ50 N, Ϫ100 N]

T

, and [50 N, Ϫ100 N, Ϫ100

N]

T

for cutting paths 1, 2, 3, and 4, respectively, at the middle

of the axial depth of the cut. The cutter travels: path 1 from

(6, 2, 9) to (34, 2, 9), path 2 from (34, 3, 9) to (34, 8, 9),

path 3 from (33, 8, 9) to (6, 8, 9), and path 4 from (6, 7, 9)

to (6, 3, 9) with a feedrate of 0.25 cm/s during machining.

The total machining time is 268 seconds with machining forces

Machining Fixture Veriﬁcation for Nonlinear Systems 435

Fig. 9. Fixture conﬁguration with removable locators: (a) ﬁxturing process; (b) machining process. (All coordinates in centimetres.)

and moments calculated every 4 seconds, which produces 68

dynamic ﬁxturing solutions. It is required to verify whether

the ﬁxture conﬁguration is valid, and to determine the minimum

clamping forces to hold the workpiece during machining.

Fixture veriﬁcation for the ﬁxturing process was performed

as follows. Under a gravitational force of 56.4 N, locating

stability for the given ﬁxture conﬁguration is achievable, since

a feasible solution to the nonlinear veriﬁcation model was

436 J. J.-X. Liu and D. R. Strong

Fig. 10. Normal reactions on plane locators 1 and 2 over time.

found when three reactions on two plate locators are assumed.

Positive locating forces L1, L2 and L3 are found, which are

19.1 N at (0, 4.1, 0), 27 N at (30.3, 3.8, 0), and 10.3 N at

(30.3, 10, 0), respectively. The minimum and maximum allow-

able locating forces were set to 10 N and 600 N. The minimum

and maximum allowable clamping forces were set to 40 N

and 400 N. The coefﬁcient of static friction is 0.2 for all

contacts between the workpiece and the ﬁxture element. It has

been veriﬁed that the workpiece is deterministically located

and the clamping forces do not upset the stable and accurate

position previously determined by locators. This is because a

Fig. 11. Minimum clamping forces over time.

feasible solution to the model under the gravitational and

clamping forces was found. All ﬁxturing forces C1 = C2 =

C3 = C4 = 40 N, L1 = 108.2 N at (9.9, 9.9, 0), and L2 =

108.2 N at (30, 0, 0) are positive.

Fixture conﬁguration for the machining process is veriﬁed

to be viable because all reaction forces on the plane locators

under the variable clamping forces are positive as shown in

Fig. 10. The variable minimum clamping forces required to

maintain the part stability over time are determined as shown

in Fig. 11. Figure 12 shows the positions of reactions on the

plane locators. If a dynamic clamp is employed, the clamp

Machining Fixture Veriﬁcation for Nonlinear Systems 437

Fig. 12. Positions of reactions on plane locators over time (Z = 0).

should provide variable clamping forces on the workpiece with

respect to machining time. If a constant clamping force rather

than a variable clamping setting is employed, the static mini-

mum clamping forces for clamps C1, C2, C3 and C4 through-

out the operation should be set to 139.7 N, 101 N, 142.4 N,

and 102.4 N, respectively.

5. Conclusions

This paper has presented a ﬁxture conﬁguration veriﬁcation

approach for nonlinear ﬁxture systems where edge locators,

inclined locators, and plate locators are involved in locating

the part. A validation of the ﬁxture conﬁguration has been

performed in two stages: both in ﬁxturing and in machining

to ensure the ﬁxture is viable throughout the operation. The

ﬁxture veriﬁcation model can be embedded into an automatic

ﬁxture design system. The proposed method can be applied

in validating the feasibility of a ﬁxture with point, line

and surface contacts for location. A “ϱ-ϱ-ϱ” principle for

nonlinear ﬁxture location was proposed based on the locating

line or area represented by an inﬁnite number of pins. The

ﬁxture veriﬁcation method provides a simple and effective

means for: (1) validating a ﬁxture conﬁguration with respect

to locating stability, deterministic workpiece location, clamp-

ing stability and total restraint and (2) for determining

minimum variable clamping forces over the entire machining

time. Two case studies have demonstrated the effectiveness

and the capabilities of the methodology for verifying nonlin-

ear ﬁxture systems.

Acknowledgements

This research was supported by the Natural Sciences and

Engineering Research Council of Canada, and Manitoba

Hydro.

References

1. Y.-C. Chou, V. Chandru and M. M. Barash, “A mathematical

approach to automatic conﬁguration of machining ﬁxtures: analysis

and synthesis”, Journal of Engineering for Industry, 111, pp. 299–

306, 1989.

2. A. J. C. Trappey and C. R. Liu, “An automatic workholding

veriﬁcation system”, Journal of Robotics and Computer-Integrated

Manufacturing, 9(4/5), pp. 321–326, 1992.

3. J. Y. H. Fuh, C-H. Chang and M. A. Melkanoff, “An integrated

ﬁxture planning and analysis system for machining process”,

Journal of Robotics and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing,

10(5), pp. 339–353, 1993.

4. R. T. Meyer and F. W. Liou, “Fixture analysis under dynamic

machining”, International Journal of Production Research, 5(5),

pp. 1471–1489, 1997.

5. Z. J. Tao, A. S. Kumar and A. Y. C. Nee, “Automatic generation

of dynamic clamping forces for machining ﬁxtures”, International

Journal of Production Research, 37(12), pp. 2755–2776, 1999.

6. B. Li, S. N. Melkote and S. Y Liang, “Analysis of reactions and

minimum clamping force for machining ﬁxtures with large contact

areas”, International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing tech-

nology, 16, pp. 79–84, 2000.

7. E. C. DeMeter, “Restraint analysis of ﬁxtures which rely on

surface contact”, Journal of Engineering for Industry, 116, pp.

207–215, 1994.

8. E. K. Henriksen, Jig and Fixture Design Manual, Industrial Press,

New York, 1973.

9. F. P. Beer and E.R. Johnston, Jr. Vector Mechanics for Engineers:

Statics, SI metric edn, McGraw-Hill Ryerson, Canada, 1981.

10. LINDO Systems Inc. LINGO User’s Guide, Chicago, 2001.

- 10th Wseas Int. Conf. on Automatic Control, Modelling & Simulationuploaded byJohn_Ada
- jigs mini project.pdfuploaded byZahid Pocie
- 4-str-05-07uploaded bySiva Ranjani
- 5th Smesteruploaded byArun Goyal
- 01-Introduction of Jigs &Fixturesuploaded byVanaja Jadapalli
- Puma 450uploaded byCezar Balașei
- optimizing an advertising campaign2 1uploaded byapi-342141871
- 14092402uploaded byPraveen Kumar Arjala
- Trimuploaded byLane Claudio
- Mayank Singh and Scott Schaefer- Triangle Surfaces with Discrete Equivalence Classesuploaded byJemnasee
- Chapter 3uploaded byAustin Fritzke
- Physics Requirementuploaded byVinky Santos
- MET_50_1_17_20uploaded byKasey Cole
- CHAPTER 6 - Transportationuploaded byshirley lyn
- 7 Chapter 6uploaded byCharan Teja Devarapalli
- NR 311303 Operations Researchuploaded bySrinivasa Rao G
- Influence of Cutting Tool Geometry on Cutting Forcesuploaded byNicolás Ríos Gómez
- Optimization Algorithmuploaded byKritika Mohanty
- 07553457uploaded byMiguel Lopez
- Application Note - Optimization-Enabled PSCAD Transient Simulationuploaded byAdilson Leite Proença
- Game Theory GAMS Matlab interfaceuploaded byBehrouz Azimian
- MNRK-curs8&9.pptuploaded byandreea143
- pipeline project andrew campbelluploaded byapi-232795397
- Mechanisms of the Autonomous Controluploaded bySEP-Publisher
- PRODUCT DESIGN AND MANUFACTURING(2013)uploaded bybhat93
- Result All Algouploaded bynarottam jangir
- ExecutiveSummary_ElectricCarGearDesignOptimisation(Code Accompaniment)uploaded bySubhrodip Sengupta
- ECM6Lecture11cVietnam_2014uploaded byduyvu
- Fresado de Bolsillouploaded byErnesto112358
- caplibuploaded byibkhan80

- Top 20 - Great Grammar for Great Writing - 304p.pdfuploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Inventario Sillasuploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Ficha Tecnica Pulpa Maracuyauploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Fluidos Hidraulicos (1)uploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Ma527 Solution Sample Finaluploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Fluidos Hidraulicos Finaluploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Book Pythonuploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Basamentouploaded byCamilo Duarte
- plano piñonuploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Tiquete Ciro Albertouploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Licenseuploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Wiiuploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Copia de Libro1uploaded byCamilo Duarte
- Taller Gerencia Financierauploaded byCamilo Duarte

Close Dialog## Are you sure?

This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?

Loading