Backlash (deadzone) and gear train resonances limit geared drive accuracy and dynamic performance. Although
direct drives provide a solution, there are many applications where torque requirements, configuration,
weight, and cost prevent practical application. In the past, a number of methods have been utilized to
minimize the negative effects of backlash, usually on a specific application basis, with the results poorly
reported and correlated. Through proper characterization of the drive problem, selection of mechanical and
electrical drive components and utilization of modem control techniques, high performance zero backlash
geared servo mechanisms can be designed and manufactured with predictable results. The purpose of this
paper is to present an approach to accomplish this task. The steps in this task are listed as follows:
1 . Definition of the available methods of implementation.
2. Presentation of factors in selecting the most effective approach for the specific application.
3. Selection of drive components and definition of system parameters including the necessary control
requirements, determining performance limits, and setting the maximum backlash and torque-bias
4. Performance analysis of a representative system.
5. Generation of a simulation program representing a test system.
6. Utilization of the simulation program to determine performance of future requirements to include
capability of parameter variance to evaluate "what if" conditions.