dr.ir. R.G.K.M. Aarts (Ronald)

Associate Professor

About Me

Ronald Aarts is an Associate Professor in the Applied Mechanics and Data Analysis (AMDA) research group, which is part of the Faculty of Engineering Technology (ET). He is trained in Applied Physics, obtaining both an MSc and a PhD from the Eindhoven University of Technology. He joined the University of Twente in 1994, and initially worked on fluid-induced forces in centrifugal pumps. From 1997 onwards, he supervised various projects in the area of robotic laser welding.

Dr Aarts’ current research is in the area of flexible multibody dynamics, with a focus on numerically efficient modelling, system identification, parameter estimation and links to control and design challenges. He also coordinates the in-house development of the SPACAR software package. This implements a non-linear finite element formulation that offers unique benefits in terms of the analysis and simulation of devices in which rigid and flexible parts are interconnected, such as manipulators. He is also developing low-order and reduced-order models for use in design optimization. Fully non-linear models or linearized models are integrated with control systems to capture the dominant behaviour of mechatronic systems.

Ronald Aarts teaches elements of second-year and third-year Bachelor’s modules. The above-mentioned research topics feature in more specialized Master’s and post-Master’s courses, which can be tailored to specific audiences (e.g. from the industrial sector).



Engineering & Materials Science
Compliant Mechanisms
Laser Beam Welding
Physics & Astronomy
Laser Welding
Flexible Multibody Systems


Heerze, E. , Rosic, B. , & Aarts, R. (2024). Feedforward Control for a Manipulator with Flexure Joints Using a Lagrangian Neural Network. In K. Nachbagauer , & A. Held (Eds.), Optimal Design and Control of Multibody Systems: Proceedings of the IUTAM Symposium (pp. 130-141). (IUTAM Bookseries; Vol. 42). Springer Nature. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-50000-8_12
Stoffels, P. , & Aarts, R. G. K. M. (Accepted/In press). A compliant and redundantly actuated 3-DOF 4RRR PKM: First step to full planar motion. In Proceedings of the11th ECCOMAS Thematic Conference on MULTIBODY DYNAMICS Instituto Superior Técnico Lisbon.
Dwarshuis, K. (2022). Beam-based analysis of flexure mechanisms: Increasing computational efficiency, accuracy and design freedom. [PhD Thesis - Research UT, graduation UT, University of Twente]. University of Twente. https://doi.org/10.3990/1.9789036554831
Aarts, R. G. K. M. , & Hakvoort, W. (2022). Sensorless force control with a Disturbance Observer for a compliant manipulator. Abstract from 6th Joint International Conference on Multibody System Dynamics + 10th Asian Conference on Multibody Dynamics, New Delhi, India.
Heerze, E. , Aarts, R. G. K. M. , & Rosic, B. (2022). Feedforward control for a manipulator with flexure joints using a Lagrangian Neural Network. 1. Abstract from IUTAM Symposium on Optimal Design and Control of Multibody Systems 2022, Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany.

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University of Twente
Faculty of Engineering Technology
Horst Complex (building no. 20), room N123
De Horst 2
7522LW  Enschede
The Netherlands

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University of Twente
Faculty of Engineering Technology
Horst Complex  N123
P.O. Box 217
7500 AE Enschede
The Netherlands

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