Jacobian and Stiffness Analysis of a Novel Class of Six-DOF Parallel Minimanipulators
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The Jacobian and stiffness matrices of two types of novel, six- DOF parallel minimanipulators are derived. A minimanipulator consists of three inextensible limbs, each of which is driven by a two-DOF driver. Bilinear stepper motors are used as drivers in the first type minimanipulator, whereas five-bar linkages are used as drivers in the second type minimanipulator. all of the minimanipulator actuators are base-mounted. Inextensible limbs (and five-bar linkage drivers in the second type minimanipulator) improve positional resolution and stiffness of the minimanipulators in certain directions. It is shown that, at the central configuration, the stiffness matrix of the first type minimanipulator can be diagonalized (decoupled). It is also shown that the first type minimanipulator can be designed to posses direct or torsional isotropic stiffness properties. Moreover, guidelines for designing the drivers of the second type minimanipulator are established.