Attitude Behavior of a Variable Mass Cylinder

[+] Author and Article Information
F. O. Eke, Song-Min Wang

Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, University of California, Davis, CA 95616

J. Appl. Mech 62(4), 935-940 (Dec 01, 1995) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2896025 History: Received November 27, 1993; Revised June 10, 1994; Online October 30, 2007


This paper examines the attitude motion of a cylindrical body with mass loss. It is found that mass variation can have a substantial influence on the behavior of such a system. Specifically, the initial dimensions as well as the manner in which mass loss affects system inertia are found to be key factors in the determination of the characteristics of the lateral motion of the system. In great contrast to the attitude behavior of spinning rigid bodies, oblate variable mass cylinders exhibit divergent transverse attitude motion, while the transverse motion of prolate variable mass cylinders is found to be bounded in general.

Copyright © 1995 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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