The sensitivity of the eigenvalues of a manipulator’s generalized inertia matrix with respect to the geometric parameters are used to form a set of indices as a measure of manipulator performance. The effects due to the geometric parameters and those due to purely mass characteristics of the manipulator’s links are separated by using the Denavit-Hartenberg representation and expressing each link’s local ineratia tensor in terms of principal moments about its center of mass. A global measure of the indices is defined and correlated with quantities such as workspace volume and reach.

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