Year of Publication


Document Type





Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

R. Ryan Vallance


A method for allocating tolerances to exactly constrained assemblies is developed. The procedure is established as an optimization subject to constraints. The objective is to minimize the manufacturing cost of the assembly while respecting an acceptable level of performance. This method is particularly interesting for exactly constrained components that should be mass-produced. This thesis presents the different concepts used to develop the method. It describes exact constraint theory, manufacturing variations, optimization concepts, and the related mathematical tools. Then it explains how to relate these different topics in order to perform a tolerance allocation. The developed method is applied on two relevant exactly constrained examples: multi-fiber connectors, and kinematic coupling. Every time a mathematical model of the system and its corresponding manufacturing variations is established. Then an optimization procedure uses this model to minimize the manufacturing cost of the system while respecting its functional requirements. The results of the tolerance allocation are verified with Monte Carlo simulation.