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Volume 27 Issue 8 - Publication Date: 1 August 2008
 
Kinematic and Static Analysis of a Three-degree-of-freedom Spatial Modular Tensegrity Mechanism
 
M. Arsenault Department of mechanical engineering, The Royal Military College of Canada, Kingston, Ontario, Canada K7K 7B4, C. M. Gosselin Département de génie mécanique, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada G1K 7P4
 
Tensegrity mechanisms benefit from a reduced inertia due to their extensive use of cables and springs. However, they must be prestressed at all times in order to keep the cables in tension. For a given mechanism architecture, this is only possible in a specific set of configurations such that the analysis of these mechanisms is relatively complex. This paper presents the development and analysis of a new three-degree-of-freedom positional tensegrity mechanism that has a modular architecture. The mechanism, actuated by cables, has a relatively large workspace. For the special case where external and gravitational forces are neglected, solutions are given for the mechanism’s equilibrium configuration both for given actuator positions as well as for a specified position of its effector. It is shown that the mechanism can be considered as an assembly of construction elements based on Snelson’s X-shape tensegrity system and that these behave independently from one another.
 
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