Ph.D. Proposal Presentation by Philip A. Voglewede
Friday, January 31, 2003

(Dr. Imme Ebert-Uphoff, advisor)

"Design of Redundant Actuation for Parallel Manipulators"

Abstract

Parallel manipulators are not prevalent in industry and academia due in part to their complexity as well as singularities. One type of these singularities, commonly known as platform singularities, can occur at places inside the workspace of the manipulator. This proposal will present methods to eliminate these singularities by redundant actuation. Redundant actuation is the process of adding an extra actuator in an existing leg or a new leg. Several researchers have designed redundant manipulators for a small class of manipulators.

This proposal will create general techniques for designing redundant actuation for parallel manipulators. Before devising an elimination method, the effects of the singularities must be studied and understood - a process that has not been fully completed to this date. As part of this process, measures of the problems with singularities will be investigated and developed. After developing the measures, a general procedure for the design of redundant actuation will be undertaken. Again, measures for effectiveness of singularity elimination will need to be derived. These methods will be variations on the measures of the singularity symptoms. A comparison of all the proposed methods will be performed, and if time permits, a fully functional prototype will be developed to prove the redundant actuation effectiveness.