Our group's education goal is to broadly disseminate the knowledge necessary to design and fabricate flexible structures, mechanisms, and materials among a diverse population at UCLA and throughout the world by pioneering innovative teaching techniques, creating online educational resources, and fostering collaborative research opportunities for minorities and underrepresented groups in engineering with industry and academia.
UCLA Courses Currently Taught by Professor Hopkins
MAE 294A: Compliant Mechanism Design
Course Description: This course introduces students to leading compliant mechanism analysis and synthesis theories via animated PowerPoint lectures, hands-on exercises, homework problem sets, exams, and group projects that involve the advancement of compliant mechanism design research. Each group gives a final presentation on their research and submits a manuscript to a professional conference as a final report. Stellar manuscripts are submitted to peer-reviewed journals.
Topics Covered: (1) Introduction and classification of compliant mechanisms and flexible structures, (2) Screw theory kinematics, (3) Modeling general flexible structures and mechanisms using mechanics of materials, beam theories, and matrix-based equations, (4) Traditional compliant mechanism design theories (e.g., psuedo-rigid body model, topology optimization, and the instant center approach, (5) Introduction to the Freedom And Constraint Topologies (FACT) synthesis approach, (6) Analyzing and synthesizing parallel, serial, and hybrid flexure systems and elements, (7) Compliant transmission-based mechanisms, (8) Projective geometry and FACT spaces displaced to infinity, (9) Compliant mechanism actuation theory: static and dynamic actuation space, (10) Analyzing and synthesizing compliant mechanisms that decouple actuators.
Level: Graduate course
Typical Class Size: 70 students
Typical Instructor Evalution Rating for Prof. Hopkins: 8.75/9.00
MAE 162A: Introduction to Mechanisms and Mechanical Systems
Course Description: This course introduces students to the fundamentals of traditional mechanism analysis and synthesis via animated PowerPoint lectures, hands-on exercises, homework problem sets, exams, and a project that involves the design of a practical mechanism that solves a real-world problem. Students are introduced to a variety of classical machine elements and a number of famous mechanisms.
Topics Covered: (1) Introduction and classification of useful mechanisms, linkages, and machines, (2) Position, velocity, and acceleration analysis of mechanisms using graphical, analytical, and numerical approaches, (3) Rolling contact kinematics, (4) Gears, cams, levers, belts, pulleys, and other transmission-based machine elements, (5) Mechanical and geometric advantage, (6) Power equations, (7) Static force analysis, (8) Dynamic force analysis, (9) Planar, spherical, and spatial mechanism synthesis.
Level: Undergraduate course
Typical Class Size: 100 students
Typical Instructor Evalution Rating for Prof. Hopkins: 8.43/9.00
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