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EDIT: The sentence is what I would consider a minimum working example and is originally followed by some subordinate clause. I am not looking to simply reduce word count but to improve intelligibility without rephrasing. If there is no legal way to do that, that's fine. What I am looking for is a either the correct way of hyphenating this noun, "No, that doesn't work" or "Fun fact: here's why you cannot do everything you can do with a simple noun with an open compound noun, like making it the first component of a closed compound noun."


I am writing my master's thesis and I regularly stumble across situations where I want to use the word "rigid body" as the first component of a compound noun.

An example is the following:

There are kinematic chains of rigid body linked revolute joints.

meaning:

There are kinematic chains which consist of revolute joints which in turn are linked by rigid bodies.

My intuition would be "rigid body-linked" but that makes it even less readable.

Personally, I am at war with using the - apparently correct - orthography of "rigid body" over "rigidbody", as there is no inherent disambiguation between the well defined mathematical construct and the colloquial term for, well, a body that's rigid.

In Germany, where we know no shame when it comes to compound words and can

append and append
to our hearts' content
with no need to repent, :D

I would just draw two components together and write "rigidbody-linked".

Any suggestions on what's correct here?

P.S.: I believe that There are kinematic chains of rigid body linked revolute joints is correct, but it makes me uneasy that someone could interpret this as claiming the existence of revolute franchise locations which could be linked to a criminal syndicate of the name "chains of rigid body".

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  • link requires the preposition to. Also: compound
    – Lambie
    Jun 12, 2021 at 21:07

1 Answer 1

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If you take your gloss phrase (after meaning:) and remove unnecessary stuff, you have a clear, compact expression:
There are kinematic chains of revolute joints linked by rigid bodies.

That has only one more word than the phrase giving rise to doubts.

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  • Yeah, but does one really need there are?? Kinematic chains of revolute joints link rigid bodies.
    – Lambie
    Jun 12, 2021 at 22:10

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