Towards the design of monolithic decoupled XYZ compliant parallel mechanisms for multi-function applications
Abstract. This paper deals with the monolithic decoupled XYZ compliant parallel mechanisms (CPMs) for multi-function applications, which can be fabricated monolithically without assembly and has the capability of kinetostatic decoupling. At first, the conceptual design of monolithic decoupled XYZ CPMs is presented using identical spatial compliant multi-beam modules based on a decoupled 3-PPPR parallel kinematic mechanism. Three types of applications: motion/positioning stages, force/acceleration sensors and energy harvesting devices are described in principle. The kinetostatic and dynamic modelling is then conducted to capture the displacements of any stage under loads acting at any stage and the natural frequency with the comparisons with FEA results. Finally, performance characteristics analysis for motion stage applications is detailed investigated to show how the change of the geometrical parameters can affect the performance characteristics, which provides initial optimal estimations. Results show that the smaller thickness of beams and larger dimension of cubic stages can improve the performance characteristics excluding natural frequency under allowable conditions. In order to improve the natural frequency characteristic, a monolithic decoupled configuration that is achieved through employing more beams in the spatial modules or reducing the mass of each cubic stage mass can be adopted. In addition, an isotropic variation with different motion range along each axis and same payload in each leg is proposed. The redundant design for monolithic fabrication is introduced in this paper, which can overcome the drawback of monolithic fabrication that the failed compliant beam is difficult to replace, and extend the CPM's life.