A parallel manipulator is a mechanical system that uses several computer-controlled serial chains to support a single platform or end-effector. Perhaps, the best known parallel manipulator is formed from six linear actuators that support a movable base for devices such as flight simulators. This device is called a Stewart platform or the Gough-Stewart platform in recognition of the engineers who first designed and used them.
Parallel robots are usually more limited in the workspace; for instance, they generally cannot reach around obstacles. The calculations involved in performing the desired manipulation (forward kinematics) are also usually more difficult and can lead to multiple solutions.