Skip to Main Content
Redundancy can, in general, improve the ability and performance of parallel manipulators by implementing the redundant degrees of freedom to optimize a secondary objective function. Almost all published researches in the area of parallel manipulators redundancy were focused on the design and analysis of redundant parallel manipulators with rigid (nonconfigurable) platforms and on grasping hands to be attached to the platforms. Conventional grippers usually are not appropriate to grasp irregular or large objects. Very few studies focused on the idea of using a configurable platform as a grasping device. This paper highlights the idea of using configurable platforms in both planar and spatial redundant parallel manipulators, and generalizes their analysis. The configurable platform is actually a closed kinematic chain of mobility equal to the degree of redundancy of the manipulator. The additional redundant degrees of freedom are used in reconfiguring the shape of the platform itself. Several designs of kinematically redundant planar and spatial parallel manipulators with configurable platform are presented. Such designs can be used as a grasping device especially for irregular or large objects or even as a micro-positioning device after grasping the object. Screw algebra is used to develop a general framework that can be adapted to analyze the kinematics of any general-geometry planar or spatial kinematically redundant parallel manipulator with configurable platform.