Shift: A Dynamics Engine for Simulation and Motion Visualization of Complex Mechanisms and Robotic Systems

  • Kristopher WehageEmail author
  • Bahram Ravani
Conference paper
Part of the Mechanisms and Machine Science book series (Mechan. Machine Science, volume 73)


This paper describes the Shift dynamics engine, a new general purpose software for rigid body dynamic simulation of complex mechanisms and robotic systems. The underlying structure and algorithms of the software are described together with its input file format and other system features. The file format uses a hierarchical organizational structure which facilitates model reuse and allows for rapidly building complex models from simpler models. The software is extensible via force modules that can support feeding back external forces into a model such as from springs, dampers, tire models and PID (Proportional Integral Derivative) controllers. The capabilities of Shift are illustrated by simulating a passenger vehicle rolling with 51 joints and 45 bodies, including an appropriate tire model.


Robotic Simulation and Visualization Multibody Simulation Software Complex Mechanisms Vehicle Simulation Dynamics Engine Automatic Generation of Kinematic and Dynamic Equations 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of California – DavisDavisUSA

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