Cable-driven parallel robot




Numerous applications in state-of-the-art production environments call for the use of robots in order to achieve short cycle times for handling tasks involving long transport distances and high speeds –with low system costs, of course. cable-driven parallel robots are an innovative concept for automation solutions in intralogistics - even where requirements are extremely high. Fraunhofer IPA has been working on perfecting this technology for some years now. The load-bearing capacity and workspace are far superior to those of standard robot systems. Cable robots are also more energy-efficient and their modular construction allows them to be flexibly installed.


  • In discussions with you, we identify concepts demonstrating how the strengths of a cable-driven parallel robot can be used to improve productivity in your factory.
  • Design and simulation of task-specific cable robots
  • Experimental setups, realization and start-up in your production facilities

Technologies and innovations

The latest development at Fraunhofer IPA is the demonstrator “IPAnema 3”. Compared to conventional industrial robots, the cable-driven parallel robot IPAnema features:

  • A large work space (17m x 12m x 4.5m)
  • High speeds of up to 10 m/s and extreme acceleration >10 g with a payload of 4 kg (IPAnema 1) or
  • Speeds of up to 1.7 m/s with a payload of 250 kg (IPAnema 3)

Furthermore, these features can be individually adapted to suit requirements. The robot is controlled by a realtime-capable NC control system that is easy to program using the tried and tested G-Code (DIN 66025). A programmable logic controller (PLC) can be optionally connected for easy integration into existing systems.

Advantages of cable-driven parallel robots

Cable robots are not only extremely robust but also portable and can be implemented flexibly. This enables them to be used in a wide range of working environments. Depending on the application, a work space of up to 100m x 100m x 30m is achievable. The efficient transmission of power through the cables and the use of crane winches allow each cable to bear a load of up to several tons. In applications where safety is a critical factor, such as when lifting extremely heavy or fragile loads, additional cables can be easily added to offer more protection against the failure of individual components. Alternatively, the work space can be extended. This enables manufacturing processes involving very large components to be automated, such as rotor blades for wind turbines, or aircraft fuselages.




Mini Cable Robot IPAnema – Haptic Interaction using Admittance Control

Cable-Driven Parallel Robot IPAnema 2 at Automatica 2010

IPAnema -- a high dynamic parallel cable robot

MPI CableRobot Simulator