A high precision redundant robotic manipulator for overcoming contents imposed by obstacles or imposed by a highly congested work space. One embodiment of the manipulator has four degrees of freedom and another embodiment has seven degreed of freedom. Each of the embodiments utilize a first selective compliant assembly robot arm (SCARA) configuration to provide high stiffness in the vertical plane, a second SCARA configuration to provide high stiffness in the horizontal plane. The seven degree of freedom embodiment also utilizes kinematic redundancy to provide the capability of avoiding obstacles that lie between the base of the manipulator and the end effector or link of the manipulator. These additional three degrees of freedom are added at the wrist link of the manipulator to provide pitch, yaw and roll. The seven degrees of freedom embodiment uses one revolute point per degree of freedom. For each of the revolute joints, a harmonic gear coupled to an electric motor is introduced, and together with properly designed based servo controllers provide an end point repeatability of less than 10 microns.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.