Cable-driven mechanisms can be used as fast pickup-and-place manipulators due to the low inertia of the cables. Maintaining cable tension can be achieved by cylinders applying forces on the mobile platform to generate tensile forces in the cables to prevent cable slack during the operation. This paper presents an optimization approach to determine the optimum layout of the cylinders in the manipulator, i.e., the optimum positions of the cylinders connection points on the mobile platform and the base. The goal of this optimization is to achieve the desired distribution of the generated tension across the cables. An example 6-degree-of-freedom spatial manipulator is presented where this approach is applied to optimize the layout of one, two and three cylinders.

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