# Screws (Part 2): Application to Kinematics

### 1. Definition: Kinematic Screw

Since the velocity field \(P\in {\cal B} \mapsto {\bf v}_{P/{\cal E}}\) of a rigid body \({\cal B}\) satisfied \({\bf v}_{Q/{\cal E}} = {\bf v}_{P/{\cal E}} + \boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}\times {\bf r}_{PQ}\), it defines a screw, called
**kinematic screw** of body \({\cal B}\) relative to referential \({{\cal E}}\). Recall that \(\boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}\) is the **angular velocity** of \({\cal B}\) relative to \({{\cal E}}\), defined
as the unique vector satisfying
\[
\Big(\frac{d{\bf U}}{dt}\Big)_{\cal E}= \boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}\times {\bf U}
\]
for all vectors \(\bf U\) fixed relative to \({\cal B}\).

Notation: \[ \{ {\cal V}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}} \} = \begin{Bmatrix} \boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}} \\ {\bf v}_{A/{\cal E}} \end{Bmatrix} \] Recall that:

the scalar \(\boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}\cdot{\bf v}_{A/{\cal E}}\) is an invariant, that is, it is independent of the choice of point \(A\in{\cal B}\).

the velocity field is

*equiprojective*: \({\bf v}_{A/{\cal E}}\cdot{\bf r}_{AB} = {\bf v}_{B/{\cal E}}\cdot{\bf r}_{AB}\) for any two points \(A\) and \(B\) of \({\cal B}\).

### 2. Examples

A body \({\cal B}\) in **translational motion** relative to \({\cal E}\) is characterized by the following kinematic screw
(a couple in language of screws)
\[
\{ {\cal V}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}} \}
=
\begin{Bmatrix}
{\bf 0}
\\
{\bf v}_A
\end{Bmatrix}
\]
A body \({\cal B}\) in **rotational motion** relative \({\cal E}\) is characterized by the following kinematic screw
(a slider in language of screws)
\[
\{ {\cal V}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}} \}
=
\begin{Bmatrix}
\boldsymbol{\omega}
\\
{\bf 0}
\end{Bmatrix}_A
\]
The axis \(\Delta (A, \boldsymbol{\omega})\) represents the axis of rotation of the body. If this representation is only
valid at a specific time, the body will be said to be in instantaneous rotation.

### 3. Instantaneous Screw Axis:

If angular velocity \(\boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}\neq {\bf 0}\) at a given instant, then the kinematic screw can be characterized by the set \(\Delta\) of points of \({\cal B}\) which satisfy \({\bf v}_{Q/{\cal E}} = p \boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}\): we call this set the
**instantaneous screw axis** of the body. The pitch \(p\) is given by \(p = \boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}\cdot{\bf v}_{A/{\cal E}}/\boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}^2\).

Then kinematic screw \(\{ {\cal V}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}} \}\) can be uniquely represented as the sum
\[
\{ {\cal V}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}} \} =
\underbrace
{
\begin{Bmatrix}
{\bf 0}
\\
p \, \boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}
\end{Bmatrix}
}_{\text{translation along }\Delta}
+\,
\underbrace
{
\begin{Bmatrix}
\boldsymbol{\omega}_{{\cal B}/{\cal E}}
\\
{\bf 0}
\end{Bmatrix}_{H\in\Delta}
}_{\text{rotation about }\Delta}
\qquad\qquad (1)
\]
This sum shows that body \({\cal B}\) is in *instantaneous helical motion* about \(\Delta\).
Axis \(\Delta\) is neither fixed in \({\cal B}\) nor in \({\cal E}\). Hence, this characterization of the motion
of \({\cal B}\) is only true for the velocity field (rather that the acceleration field).
At any given time, the distribution of velocities of points located in a plane \(\Pi\) perpendicular to \(\Delta\)
can be sketched in accordance to (1):

This distribution is invariant under a translation along \(\Delta\) or under a rotation about \(\Delta\).