Entries by Prof. McCarthy

2021 UCI Baja Race Team

Final Report: I have seen intercollegiate engineering competitions like the Baja Validation Event organized by SAE International become important educational experiences. Working together to accomplish a complex task, forces students to become engineers. They see first-hand the benefits of integrated design, simulation, fabrication and testing. And perhaps, more importantly, they learn to work as a team, communicating […]

Wing Mechanisms

Repurposing Jansen’s Leg Mechanism: Innovative mechanical flyers were designed by student teams in my Kinematic Synthesis class based on a repurposed version of Jansen’s leg mechanism. The artist Theo Jansen has inspired many of my students with his dramatic assemblies of leg mechanisms to form his Strandbeest wandering on a beach under the power of a sea […]

21st Century Kinematics: NSF Workshop

I am pleased to provide the presentations from the 2012 National Science Foundation Workshop on 21st Century Kinematics. These presentations provide insight to the challenges and opportunities for research in mechanical systems and robotics. The NSF Workshop on 21st Century Kinematics at the 2012 ASME IDETC Conference in Chicago, IL on August 11-12, 2012 consisted […]

How to Fix SW Motion Analysis Error: Too Many Redundant Constraints

Kevin Chen,  J. Michael McCarthy,  Shaun Bentley The design and assembly of our four-legged mechanical walkers can yield single degree-of-freedom systems with so many redundant mates that it stalls SolidWorks’ Motion Analysis.  For example, the walker shown in Figure 1 had 782 redundant mates.   The procedure outlined below reduced the number of redundant mates […]

The Design of Mechanical Walkers: Spring 2020 Student Projects

While isolated to slow infections of the Coronavirus, over 60 UCI students learned how to apply the principles of Curvature Theory and Finite-Position Synthesis to the design leg mechanisms for mechanical walkers. Their first team project was a four-legged walker that used the coupler curve of a four-bar linkage positioned using a skew-pantograph as the […]