The Multibody Systems Approach to Vehicle Dynamics

1st Edition

Authors: Michael Blundell Damian Harty
Paperback ISBN: 9780750651127
eBook ISBN: 9780080473529
Imprint: Butterworth-Heinemann
Published Date: 14th July 2004
Page Count: 288
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Multibody Systems Approach to Vehicle Dynamics aims to bridge a gap between the subject of classical vehicle dynamics and the general-purpose computer-based discipline known as multibody systems analysis (MBS). The book begins by describing the emergence of MBS and providing an overview of its role in vehicle design and development. This is followed by separate chapters on the modeling, analysis, and post-processing capabilities of a typical simulation software; the modeling and analysis of the suspension system; tire force and moment generating characteristics and subsequent modeling of these in an MBS simulation; and the modeling and assembly of the rest of the vehicle, including the anti-roll bars and steering systems. The final two chapters deal with the simulation output and interpretation of results, and a review of the use of active systems to modify the dynamics in modern passenger cars.

This book intended for a wide audience including not only undergraduate, postgraduate and research students working in this area, but also practicing engineers in industry who require a reference text dealing with the major relevant areas within the discipline.

Key Features

  • Full of practical examples and applications
  • Uses industry standard ADAMS software based applications
  • Guides readers from modelling suspension movement through to full vehicle models able to perform handling manoeuvres


Practicing vehicle design engineers and analysts; Postgraduates in Automotive Engineering. Other undergraduates in civil engineering or transport studies studying automotive option units.

Table of Contents

Preface Acknowledgments Nomenclature 1 Introduction 1.1 Overview 1.2 What is Vehicle Dynamics? 1.3 Why Analyze? 1.4 Classical Methods 1.5 Analytical Process 1.6 Computational Methods 1.7 Computer-Based Tools 1.8 Commercial Computer Packages 1.9 Benchmarking Exercises 2 Kinematics and Dynamics of Rigid Bodies 2.1 Introduction 2.2 Theory of Vectors 2.2.1 Position and Relative Position Vectors 2.2.2 The Dot (Scalar) Product 2.2.3 The Cross (Vector) Product 2.2.4 The Scalar Triple Product 2.2.5 The Vector Triple Product 2.2.6 Rotation of a Vector 2.2.7 Vector Transformation 2.2.8 Differentiation of a Vector 2.2.9 Integration of a Vector 2.2.10 Differentiation of the Dot Product 2.2.11 Differentiation of the Cross Product 2.2.12 Summary 2.3 Geometry Analysis 2.3.1 Three Point Method 2.3.2 Vehicle Suspension Geometry Analysis 2.4 Velocity Analysis 2.5 Acceleration Analysis 2.6 Static Force and Moment Definition 2.7 Dynamics of a Particle 2.8 Linear Momentum of a Rigid Body 2.9 Angular Momentum 2.10 Moments of Inertia 2.11 Parallel Axes Theorem 2.12 Principal Axes 2.13 Equations of Motion 3 Multibody Systems Simulation Software 3.1 Overview 3.2 Modeling Features 3.2.1 Planning the Model 3.2.2 Reference Frames 3.2.3 Basic Model Components 3.2.4 Parts and Markers 3.2.5 Equations of Motion for a Part 3.2.6 Basic Constraints 3.2.7 Standard Joints 3.2.8 Degrees of Freedom 3.2.9 Force Elements 3.2.10 Summation of Forces and Moments 3.3 Analysis Capabilities 3.3.1 Overview 3.3.2 Solving Linear


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About the Author

Michael Blundell

Mike Blundell is Professor of Vehicle Dynamics and Impact, Mechanical & Automotive Engineering, Coventry University, UK. He specializes in vehicle dynamics and safety teaching and research, and has worked with multibody systems applications in vehicle dynamics in industry and academia, publishing many papers on the topic.

Affiliations and Expertise

University of Coventry, UK

Damian Harty

Damian Harty is a Senior Staff Engineer at Polaris Industries based in Minnesota. He was formerly Director of the Vehicle & System Dynamics Group at Coventry University, a Technical Specialist for vehicle dynamics with Prodrive on the Mini WRC, as well as a freelance consultant.

Affiliations and Expertise

Senior Staff Engineer at Polaris Industries, Minnesota, USA.