Robotic manipulators for Limited Access WorkSpaces, or LAWS manipulators, must operate in unalterable, confined environments accessed through constrictive portals. The characteristics of these manipulators distinguish them from currently accepted classes of industrial robots and field robots and evoke a particular design strategy. Special consideration must be given to the ability of the LAWS manipulator to service a target workspace while constrained within the boundaries of a confined environment. Applications for robots that can operate in limited access workspaces exist in the nuclear, construction, mining, and medical industries, among others. This paper characterizes LAWS manipulators and develops a strategy for their kinematic design. This strategy is then applied to the design and analysis of a typical LAWS manipulator.

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