This article presents the actuation strategy of a 2-DOF tensegrity type mechanism that employs three tension springs and a passive universal joint. This mechanism is proposed to be incorporated as an articulation unit for a piping inspection robot in order to overcome pipe bends and junctions. In the event of a junction, external actuations are required to allow the mechanism as well as the robot to follow a certain direction. Using DC-motors coupled with encoders, experiments are carried out on a test bench of the tensegrity mechanism. The actuation of the mobile platform is performed using cables that pass through each spring. By correlating the architecture to a 3-SPS-U parallel mechanism, the singularity-free workspace of the mechanism is analyzed to identify the tilt limits. A closed-loop PID controller is implemented using a microcomputer to perform a linear trajectory within the singularity-free workspace. The Inverse Kinematic Problem (IKP) is solved by passing input tilt angles to the controller. With the help of a force control algorithm, the experiments are carried out under no-load conditions for vertical and horizontal orientations of the mechanism. The error data of the joint positions and the motor torques are then interpreted for both orientations of the mechanism.

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