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An experimental investigation of fixture–workpiece contact behaviour for the dynamic simulation of complex fixture–workpiece systemsRatchev, Svetan; Phuah, K.; Lämmel, G.; Huang, Wei; University of Nottingham (Elsevier, 2005-05)To reduce the overall costs and lead-times of new fixture development, an efficient and accurate fixture design verification methodology would have to be developed. This paper presents an innovative simulation methodology that is capable of predicting the dynamic behaviour of fixture–workpiece systems and is compatible with any commercially available FEA platforms. This is through the implementation of an innovative technique which utilises spring and damper elements to represent every point where the fixture is in contact with the workpiece. Previous verification of the technique has yielded promising results but a key element that needs to be addressed is the description of the spring behaviour in the FEA environment so that it could reflect the real-world behaviour of fixture–workpiece contacts. This paper reports on the experimental work to produce the required spring profiles for a range of fixture and workpiece contact scenarios. The entire experiment was planned and executed using design of experiment (DOE) techniques, ensuring that the results can be tested for statistical significance.