Motion Platform Designer is a tool which is a result of more that 6 years of research and development of software and hardware for motion systems for flight simulators. It is a simple and yet powerful tool for designing, evaluating and driving 2, 3 and 6 degrees of freedom (DOF) motion systems.
Designing and building a motion system is a serious and difficult process. At least the following requirements have to be considered during the design phase:
- The required degrees of freedom of the top motion platform
- The motion volume of the top motion platform
- The speed and acceleration of the top motion platform
- The frequency response of the top motion platform
- Position and the orientation of the motors
- The position of the bottom and top joins
- Required motors speed, acceleration, torque and power
- The position and required mass of the payload
All the requirements influence each other in a positive or a negative ways. Making the right choice always requires a detailed analysis of the influence of the each single requirement item on the total motion platform performance. Ex.: Maximizing the motion volume almost always requires maximizing the motor arms length when the motors position is unchanged. But maximizing the motor arm length requires more motor torque and power to be able to move the same payload weight.
Motion Platform Designer to vary the mechanical properties of the motion system and to measure and analyse:
- The top motion platform position, speed and acceleration
- Motors position, speed, acceleration, torque and power
The motion platform can be exited in three possible modes:
- Forward kinematics mode: In this mode the independent motors positions are driven by the input signals. A forward kinematics algorithms are employed to calculate the top platform position and rotation (speed and acceleration) and motors speed, acceleration, torque and power.
- Inverse kinematics mode: In this mode the independent degrees of freedom are driven by the input signals. An inverse kinematics algorithms are employed to calculate the required motors positions, speeds, acceleration, torque and power. The speed an acceleration of the top motion platform is calculated as well.
- Specific forces mode: In this mode the independent specific forces and angular velocities are processed by a classical washout filter to produce the required platform position and rotation. The output of the washout filters are used as an input to the inverse kinematics mode. The position, speed and acceleration of the top motion platform and the position, speed, acceleration, torque and power of the motors is calculated.
Motion Platform Designer provides the following ways to input the data signals in one of the three possible modes:
- Signal generators (configurable sin, square, triangle, ramp and constant)
- File (text line-oriented file)
- Network (UDP data packet)
Motion Platform Designer can output the motors positions, top platform position/rotation and the platform specific forces and angular velocities. Data can be outputted to a:
- File (text line-oriented file)
- Network (UDP packet)
- Shared memory (SHMEM)
The build-in classical washout filter can be configured independently per motion axis (surge, sway, heave, roll, pitch, yaw). For every axis, the input signal can be shaped by configurable gain and limiters. The cut-off frequencies of the independent filters can be configured to achieve the best washout effects considering the limited motion platform volume.