A redundant mechanism is one that contains more degrees of freedom than are needed to perform a given task. Redundant mechanisms can solve a given primary task in an infinite number of ways. This feature allows the robot to simultaneously solve additional secondary tasks. The system of differential equations defining the kinematics of a redundant mechanism is underdetermined. This requires special mathematical approaches to solve the inverse kinematics problem. One of these is the so-called task-priority approach, in which the secondary task is subordinated to the primary task. We show in this chapter that humans and animals also take advantage of kinematic redundancy to optimize their motion.
KeywordsJacobian Matrix Weighting Matrix Primary Task Null Space Secondary Task
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