Stiffness performance is of importance for the use of parallel manipulators in the industrial applications. For this consideration, this paper proposes to realize the desired stiffness properties of parallel mechanism by adding redundantly-actuated limbs. Based on the stiffness mapping models of both the full-DOF and limited-DOF parallel mechanisms, the stiffness variation rules when redundant limbs is introduced into the mechanism are discussed. Moreover, an algorithm for designing the types and configurations of redundant limbs is studied. Two cases are investigated to validate the presented approach. One is about the stiffness decoupling of the Stewart platform, the other is focused on the enhancement of normal stiffness of a Tricept supporting mechanism used in a mirror milling machine designed by us. The result shows that the stiffness performance of Stewart platform can be decoupled when adding six redundantly-actuated limbs that are symmetric with the original active limbs. Besides, the normal stiffness of Tricept mechanism can be enhanced significantly by transforming the passive UP chain to be a redundant actuated chain.

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