Semi-analytical sensitivity analysis for multibody system dynamics described by differential–algebraic equations

Haijun Peng*, Mengru Zhang, Lidan Zhang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


A large number of deployable space structures involve multibody system dynamics, and in order to effectively analyze and optimize dynamic performance, the sensitivity information of multibody systems is often required. At present, the sensitivity analysis methods of multibody systemdynamics, which have been widely used, are mainly finite difference method, direct differentiation method, and adjoint variable method. Among them, the finite difference method is an approximate method; the direct differentiation method and the adjoint variable method are analytical methods. Based on the dynamic problems of the multibody system in the form of differential–algebraic equations, the semi-analytical sensitivity analysis method for multibody system dynamics is proposed in this paper, which combines the simplicity of the finite difference method with the accuracy of the analytical methods. It includes the local semianalytical method based on the element level and the global semi-analytical method based on the system level, of which the latter has higher computational efficiency. Through two numerical examples, the effectiveness and numerical stability of the method are verified. This method not only retains the accuracy and efficiency of the analytical methods, but also simplifies the derivation and coding of analytical formulas by combining with the existing programs. It has stronger versatility and is beneficial to the sensitivity calculation of large-scale complex multibody systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)893-904
JournalAIAA Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2021


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