ROBOTICA, cilt.34, sa.9, ss.2027-2038, 2016 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi)
When compared to serial manipulators, parallel manipulators have small workspaces mainly due to their closed-loop structure. As opposed to type I singularities (or inverse kinematic singularities) that are generally encountered at the workspace boundaries, type II singularities characteristically arise within the workspace, and around them, the inverse dynamic solution becomes unbounded. Hence, a desired trajectory passing through a type II singular position cannot be achieved by the manipulator, and its useful workspace becomes further and substantially reduced. It has been previously shown in the literature that if the trajectory is replanned in such a way that the dynamic equations of motion of the manipulator are consistent at a type II singularity, i.e. if the trajectory is consistent, then the manipulator passes through this singular configuration in a controllable manner, while the inverse dynamic solution remains finite. An inconsistent trajectory, on the other hand, is stated in the literature to be unrealizable. However, although seems a promising technique, trajectory replanning itself is also a deviation from the originally desired trajectory, and there might be cases in applications where, due to some task-specific reasons, the desired trajectory, although inconsistent, is not allowed to be replanned to satisfy the consistency conditions. In this paper, a method of singularity robust balancing is proposed for parallel manipulators passing through type II singular configurations while following inconsistent trajectories. By this means, an originally unrealizable inconsistent trajectory passing through a type II singularity can be followed without any deviation, while the required actuator forces remain bounded after the manipulator is balanced according to the design methodology presented in this study. The effectiveness of the introduced method is shown through numerical simulations considering a planar 3-DOF 2-PRR parallel manipulator under different balancing scenarios.