A new hybrid cable-driven manipulator is introduced. The manipulator is composed of a Cartesian mechanism to provide three translational degrees of freedom and a cable system to drive the mechanism. The end-effector is driven by three rotational motors through the cables. The cable drive system in this mechanism is self-stressed meaning that the pre-tension of the cables which keep them taut is provided internally. In other words, no redundant actuator or external force is required to maintain the tensile force in the cables. This simplifies the operation of the mechanism by reducing the number of actuators and also avoids their continuous static loading. It also eliminates the redundant work of the actuators which is usually present in cable-driven mechanisms. Forward and inverse kinematics problems are solved and shown to have explicit solutions. Static and stiffness analysis are also performed. The effects of the cable’s compliance on the stiffness of the mechanism is modeled and presented by a characteristic cable length. The characteristic cable length is calculated and analyzed in representative locations of the workspace.

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