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Volume 22 Issue 1 - Publication Date: 1 January 2003
 
Type Synthesis of Symmetrical Lower-mobility Parallel Mechanisms Using the Constraint-synthesis Method
 
Z. Huang and Q.C. Li Robotics Research Center, Yanshan University, Qinhuangdao, Hebei, 066004 China
 
The lower-mobility parallel mechanism (PM) has fewer than six degrees of freedom (DoFs) and requires fewer links, joints and actuators than its 6-DoF counterpart. Hence, the use of the lower-mobility PMmay save much cost in those applications requiring less mobility. In this paper, the type synthesis of symmetrical lower-mobility PMs is performed systematically using the constraint-synthesis method. First, some important theoretical fundamentals of type synthesis of lower-mobility PMs are investigated, including a classification of symmetry of lower-mobility PMs, the identification of instantaneous mechanisms and input selection method. Moreover, the difficult problem of how to correctly apply the general Grübler-Kutzbach criterion to lower-mobility PMs is solved. A mobility analysis of PMs with a closed loop in the limbs is also presented to demonstrate the validity. The type synthesis of 5-DoF and 4-DoF PMs is then dealt with in detail. Enumerations of novel 5-DoF and 4-DoF PMs are presented. The characteristics of constraint and structure of 5-DoF and 4-DoF PMs are also proposed. In addition, some novel 3-DoF PMs are presented.
 
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