Precision tracking control of a horizontal arm coordinate measuring machine in the presence of dynamic flexibilities

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


One of the major sources that affect measurement accuracy and limit the use of high motion speeds in coordinate measuring machines (CMM) is the position error. In fact, static and dynamic probe errors are more direct factors in measuring machine accuracy, but are not the subject of this research. However the accuracy of acquisition of component position errors using a CMM in motion is also of importance, hence the dynamics of a CMM need to be considered. Therefore, this research aims to model the dynamics of a horizontal arm CMM by considering drive flexibility at joints and evaluates the characteristics of the system for fine motion control purposes. Design of a precision tracking controller (PTC) to perform superior tracking for enhancing the measurement accuracy and the probing speed in providing less inspection time at high motion speeds is carried out. A dynamic model for the CMM is developed including drive flexibilities represented with lumped springs at the joints. Due to the non-collocated nature of the control scheme in the flexible CMM dynamics, a non-minimum phase system is observed in the proposed CMM model. Using the derived CMM model with joint flexibilities, tracking motion control simulations are conducted at different probing speeds for the cases where a PI controller and a feedback PTC are employed. A comparison of the PI controller with the feedback PTC is also performed. Results demonstrate that the effects of joint flexibilities on the contour error and probing speeds are significant and the PI controller is not capable of providing good accuracy during challenging tasks such as corner tracking. However, the simulation results indicated that by using the proposed feedback precision tracking controller, contour errors in corner tracking that are caused by joint flexibilities can be reduced effectively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)960-968
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Issue number9-10
StatePublished - Feb 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

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


  • Coordinate measuring machines
  • Precision tracking control


Dive into the research topics of 'Precision tracking control of a horizontal arm coordinate measuring machine in the presence of dynamic flexibilities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this