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29: The work volume of a cylindrical robot 49 Structure, Control and Operation Spherical Robot Work Volume The spherical robot carries out two rotary motions and one linear motion, which combine to form a spherical work volume. Figure 2-30 illustrates the motions and work volume of a spherical robot. RESTRICTED WORK AREA DUE TO -.. 30: The work volume of a spherical robot 50 The mechanical arm If L is the length of the robot arm when the third link is "telescoped" inside the second link, and A is the extent of motion of the prismatic joint, then the work volume of the spherical robot is a hollow sphere.

By contrast, the smallest work volume is that of Cartesian robots. 33: The work volume of a robot manufactured by Unimation 57 Structure, Control and Operation Open and Closed Kinematic Structures In order to complete the description of robot kinematic structures, we will now consider a type of structure which differs in one important respect from all the structures described above. All the structures described above are open kinematic structures - that is, structures in which each link is connected to the next by a joint, forming a single chain of links.

The robot structure with the highest degree of mechanical rigidity is the Cartesian structure. For this reason, many machine tools are designed in this form. Machining requires the exertion of considerable forces on workpieces, and non-rigid structures tend to be distorted by strong forces leading, of course, to defective products. When considering non-Cartesian kinematic structures, it is generally understood that a prismatic joint may afford more mechanical rigidity than a revolute joint. Given the above facts, it is evident why Cartesian robots are used in many applications requiring a high degree of precision, such as certain assembly tasks.

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