Experienced gear molders caution design engineers to avoid common pitfalls with plastic gears. One old problem, says ABA/PGT, is misaligned mating parallel-axis (spur and helical) gear tooth surfaces. The solution is the modification of gear flanks by making them full thickness at mid-face-width and tapering them to each edge, as shown in the drawing below. This modification, extending over the full height of the gear tooth, is referred to as crowning. Other useful advice comes from UFE of Stillwater, MN. Operating temperature must be factored into designs using dissimilar materials. If a gearcase is made of metal and the gears are plastic, the distance between the gears will change because of the differing coefficients of linear thermal expansion.
One way to keep a Formula One racing team moving at breakneck speed in the pit and at the test facility is to bring CAD drawings of the racing vehicleís parts down to the test facility and even out to the track.
Most of us would just as soon step on a cockroach rather than study it, but thatís just what researchers at UC Berkeley did in the pursuit of building small, nimble robots suitable for disaster-recovery and search-and-rescue missions.
Design engineers need to prepare for a future in which their electronic products will use not just one or two, but possibly many user interfaces that involve touch, vision, gestures, and even eye movements.
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