CharAT  Machine Plug-in



The CharAT Ergonomics Expert Version is now delivered with the CharAT Machine plug-in, a powerful software tool for virtual simulation and analysis of kinematic systems. CharAT Machine facilitates the simulation of controlled mechanical systems. With the aid of CharAT Human and CharAT Machine Objects very complex human-controlled mechanical systems can be modeled and analyzed comfortably.







Machines can be implemented in the three dimensional virtual space as pure 3dsMax geometry models or as CharAT Machine Objects as well. The advantage of CharAT Machine models is the fact, that the effectors of the kinematic chain of CharAT Human Objects, such as hands, feet or line of sight, can be linked to the kinematic chain of CharAT Machine Objects by control units and that way the interdependency of the kinematic behavior of man and machine can be easily represented and analyzed. Using this method it is possible to create complex kinematic models in which the focus of the analysis is the interaction of man and machine mechanics. The way how the human controls the movement of machine segments can be simulated and the human->control unit->machine interface can be monitored and analyzed dynamically.





The CharAT Ergonomics Expert Version provides several powerful analysis tools for the following purposes:

  • Simulation of the interface between control units and controlled moving segments of a machine

  • Simulation of direct control of machine elements by the interpretation of the interface between effectors of the human model and control units of the machine.

  • Control of machine movements through representative collectives and dynamic user analysis of the following effects:

  • Assessment of the limits of movement regarding different body parts of the human while operating the control unit of the machine

  • Space required for certain movements

  • Compatibility of movement directions

  • Assessment of body forces related to certain movements

  • Visual analysis (visual fields, collision of visual ray with objects in the scene) in relation to various movements

  • The impact of motion sequences on body postures




CharAT Machine is just like CharAT Human an organic part of CharAT Ergonomics Expert Version. Technically, both software modules are implemented as a 3dsMax plug-in. 3D geometric models of machines can be assembled from several modules  that can be either imported from CAD systems using standard import formats or be directly modeled in 3dsmax. The modules are linked with CharAT Machine Modules in which the kinematics is described.


For example, it is possible to simulate the kinematic behavior of the articulated arm - consisting of boom, dipper and bucket - of a backhoe coupled with the corresponding control unit in a way that the movement of the joystick controls the movement of the attachments directly.

The steps necessary to create and handle CharAT Machine and CharAT Human Objects are similar. There are appropriate 'Create' buttons and  Control Panels for both type of objects available. The simulation of complex man-machine interfaces for the purpose of ergonomic analysis is facilitated substantially with the aid of these two object types. Results of the analysis can be used during planning phase to improve the construction or for the evaluation of existing constructions. Results can be documented in the form of images, data tables, and video recordings.

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