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The permanent magnet in a hybrid stepping motor (HSM) is magnetized in the axial direction. Accordingly, 2D analysis methods such as the 2D finite element method cannot guarantee accurate analysis. In this article, the characteristics of HSM are analyzed using the 3D equivalent magnetic circuit network method (3D EMCNM). The 3D EMCNM supplements the magnetic equivalent circuit by a numerical technique using distributed magnetic circuit parameters. Formerly, the 3D EMCNM based on the hexahedron element or the fan shaped element has usually been applied for linear motor analysis or rotary machine analysis. However, the use of these elements carries a serious permeance calculation error in complex shaped machinery such as a HSM. Therefore, to overcome this weakness, a new trapezoidal element is used. © 2002 American Institute of Physics.