The workspaces and kinematic characterization of serial chain manipulator geometries and the geometric optimization have been studied extensively. Much less is known about workspaces for manipulation systems which possess several serial chains arranged in parallel. In this paper, two well known workspaces, the reachable workspace and the dexterous workspace, are investigated for parallel manipulators. A general method for obtaining these workspaces is presented. The existence of numerous special configurations in the workspace present problems in manipulator control. Therefore the controllably dexterous workspace is proposed as a useful measure of kinematic performance. The methodology of delineating the workspaces and its limitations are illustrated with examples.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.