An intuitive approach for the structural synthesis of serial robotic manipulator subject to specific motion constraints is presented in this paper. According to the required f-DOF αRβT motion of the end-effector, for f = 2, 3, … or 6 and α, β = 0, 1, 2 or 3, all feasible serial-type robot structures can be systematically generated via the proposed method. The approach begins at the enumeration of joint connectivity, proceeds with the assignment of joint types, and continues by the consideration of motion constraints for the robot. A couple of examples, including the synthesis of the 3-, 4- and 5-DOF serial manipulators, are furnished for illustration. It shows that this method is especially exploitable when the end-effector is required to be immovable in certain orientations or directions with respect to either local coordinate system or global coordinate system. The result is particularly beneficial for practical industrial applications.

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