Sample records for tetherless thermobiochemically actuated

  1. Novel method for quantitative assessment of physical workload of healthcare workers by a tetherless ergonomics workstation. (United States)

    Smith, Warren D; Alharbi, Kamal A; Dixon, Jeremy B; Reggad, Hind


    Healthcare workers are at risk of physical injury. Our laboratory has developed a tetherless ergonomics workstation that is suitable for studying physicians' and nurses' physical workloads in clinical settings. The workstation uses wearable sensors to record multiple channels of body orientation and muscle activity and wirelessly transmits them to a base station laptop computer for display, storage, and analysis. The ergonomics workstation generates long records of multi-channel data, so it is desired that the workstation automatically process these records and provide graphical and quantitative summaries of the physical workloads experienced by the healthcare workers. This paper describes a novel method of automated quantitative assessment of physical workload, termed joint cumulative amplitude-duration (JCAD) analysis, that has advantages over previous methods and illustrates its use in a comparison of the physical workloads of robotically-assisted surgery versus manual video-endoscopic surgery.

  2. Tetherless ergonomics workstation to assess nurses' physical workload in a clinical setting. (United States)

    Smith, Warren D; Nave, Michael E; Hreljac, Alan P


    Nurses are at risk of physical injury when moving immobile patients. This paper describes the development and testing of a tetherless ergonomics workstation that is suitable for studying nurses' physical workload in a clinical setting. The workstation uses wearable sensors to record multiple channels of body orientation and muscle activity and wirelessly transmits them to a base station laptop computer for display, storage, and analysis. In preparation for use in a clinical setting, the workstation was tested in a laboratory equipped for multi-camera video motion analysis. The testing included a pilot study of the effect of bed height on student nurses' physical workload while they repositioned a volunteer posing as a bedridden patient toward the head of the bed. Each nurse subject chose a preferred bed height, and data were recorded, in randomized order, with the bed at this height, at 0.1 m below this height, and at 0.1 m above this height. The testing showed that the body orientation recordings made by the wearable sensors agreed closely with those obtained from the video motion analysis system. The pilot study showed the following trends: As the bed height was raised, the nurses' trunk flexion at both thoracic and lumbar sites and lumbar muscle effort decreased, whereas trapezius and deltoid muscle effort increased. These trends will be evaluated by further studies of practicing nurses in the clinical setting.

  3. An acoustically controlled tetherless underwater vehicle for installation and maintenance of neutrino detectors in the deep ocean

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ballou, Philip J.


    The task of installing and servicing high energy neutrino detectors in the deep ocean from a surface support vessel is problematic using conventional tethered systems. An array of multiple detector strings rising 500 m from the ocean floor, and forming a grid with 50 m spacing between the strings, presents a substantial entanglement hazard for equipment cables deployed from the surface. Such tasks may be accomplished with fewer risks using a tetherless underwater remotely operated vehicle that has a local acoustic telemetry link to send control commands and sensor data between the vehicle and a stationary hydrophone suspended above or just outside the perimeter of the work site. The Phase I effort involves the development of an underwater acoustic telemetry link for vehicle control and sensor feedback, the evaluation of video compression methods for real-time acoustic transmission of video through the water, and the defining of local control routines on board the vehicle to allow it to perform certain basic maneuvering tasks autonomously, or to initiate a self-rescue if the acoustic control link should be lost. In Phase II, a prototype tetherless vehicle system will be designed and constructed to demonstrate the ability to install cable interconnections within a detector array at 4 km depth. The same control technology could be used with a larger more powerful vehicle to maneuver the detector strings into desired positions as they are being lowered to the ocean floor.

  4. An acoustically controlled tetherless underwater vehicle for installation and maintenance of neutrino detectors in the deep ocean

    CERN Document Server

    Ballou, P J


    The task of installing and servicing high energy neutrino detectors in the deep ocean from a surface support vessel is problematic using conventional tethered systems. An array of multiple detector strings rising 500 m from the ocean floor, and forming a grid with 50 m spacing between the strings, presents a substantial entanglement hazard for equipment cables deployed from the surface. Such tasks may be accomplished with fewer risks using a tetherless underwater remotely operated vehicle that has a local acoustic telemetry link to send control commands and sensor data between the vehicle and a stationary hydrophone suspended above or just outside the perimeter of the work site. The Phase I effort involves the development of an underwater acoustic telemetry link for vehicle control and sensor feedback, the evaluation of video compression methods for real-time acoustic transmission of video through the water, and the defining of local control routines on board the vehicle to allow it to perform certain basic m...

  5. Tetherless ROV offers major advantage

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Russell, G.T.


    Tethers supply the current generation of remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) with power, navigational commands and data links. The power required by ROVs to carry long tethers increases rapidly in proportion to depth, and additionally, snagging on subsea obstacles is very common. A technical advancement could come with the development of autonomous subsea vehicles with onboard power and an acoustic, rather than hard wire, data link to the surface. Important research in this area presently is being conducted at Scotland's Heriot-Watt University. The feasibility of the system is discussed.

  6. Electromagnetic rotational actuation.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hogan, Alexander Lee


    There are many applications that need a meso-scale rotational actuator. These applications have been left by the wayside because of the lack of actuation at this scale. Sandia National Laboratories has many unique fabrication technologies that could be used to create an electromagnetic actuator at this scale. There are also many designs to be explored. In this internship exploration of the designs and fabrications technologies to find an inexpensive design that can be used for prototyping the electromagnetic rotational actuator.

  7. AMSD Cryo Actuator Testing (United States)

    Mullette, Mark; Matthews, Gary; Russell, Kevin (Technical Monitor)


    The actuator technology required for AMSD and subsequently NGST are critical in the successful development for future cryogenic systems. Kodak has undertaken an extensive test plan to determine the performance of the force actuators developed under the AMSD program. These actuators are currently in testing at MSFC and are expected to finish this test cycle in early June 2002.

  8. Extended DNA Tile Actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristiansen, Martin; Kryger, Mille; Zhang, Zhao


    A dynamic linear DNA tile actuator is expanded to three new structures of higher complexity. The original DNA actuator was constructed from a central roller strand which hybridizes with two piston strands by forming two half-crossover junctions. A linear expansion of the actuator is obtained...

  9. Minimally Actuated Serial Robot


    Mann, Moshe P.; Damti, Lior; Zarrouk, David


    In this paper, we propose a novel type of serial robot with minimal actuation. The robot is a serial rigid structure consisting of multiple links connected by passive joints and of movable actuators. The novelty of this robot is that the actuators travel over the links to a given joint and adjust the relative angle between the two adjacent links. The joints passively preserve their angles until one of the actuators moves them again. This actuation can be applied to any serial robot with two o...

  10. Soft buckling actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Dian; Whitesides, George M.


    A soft actuator is described, including: a rotation center having a center of mass; a plurality of bucklable, elastic structural components each comprising a wall defining an axis along its longest dimension, the wall connected to the rotation center in a way that the axis is offset from the center of mass in a predetermined direction; and a plurality of cells each disposed between two adjacent bucklable, elastic structural components and configured for connection with a fluid inflation or deflation source; wherein upon the deflation of the cell, the bucklable, elastic structural components are configured to buckle in the predetermined direction. A soft actuating device including a plurality of the soft actuators and methods of actuation using the soft actuator or soft actuating device disclosed herein are also described.

  11. Magnetic actuators and sensors

    CERN Document Server

    Brauer, John R


    An accessible, comprehensive guide on magnetic actuators and sensors, this fully updated second edition of Magnetic Actuators and Sensors includes the latest advances, numerous worked calculations, illustrations, and real-life applications. Covering magnetics, actuators, sensors, and systems, with updates of new technologies and techniques, this exemplary learning tool emphasizes computer-aided design techniques, especially magnetic finite element analysis, commonly used by today's engineers. Detailed calculations, numerous illustrations, and discussions of discrepancies make this text an inva

  12. Remote switch actuator (United States)

    Haas, Edwin Gerard; Beauman, Ronald; Palo, Jr., Stefan


    The invention provides a device and method for actuating electrical switches remotely. The device is removably attached to the switch and is actuated through the transfer of a user's force. The user is able to remain physically removed from the switch site obviating need for protective equipment. The device and method allow rapid, safe actuation of high-voltage or high-current carrying electrical switches or circuit breakers.

  13. Spherically Actuated Motor (United States)

    Peeples, Steven


    A three degree of freedom (DOF) spherical actuator is proposed that will replace functions requiring three single DOF actuators in robotic manipulators providing space and weight savings while reducing the overall failure rate. Exploration satellites, Space Station payload manipulators, and rovers requiring pan, tilt, and rotate movements need an actuator for each function. Not only does each actuator introduce additional failure modes and require bulky mechanical gimbals, each contains many moving parts, decreasing mean time to failure. A conventional robotic manipulator is shown in figure 1. Spherical motors perform all three actuation functions, i.e., three DOF, with only one moving part. Given a standard three actuator system whose actuators have a given failure rate compared to a spherical motor with an equal failure rate, the three actuator system is three times as likely to fail over the latter. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory reliability studies of NASA robotic spacecraft have shown that mechanical hardware/mechanism failures are more frequent and more likely to significantly affect mission success than are electronic failures. Unfortunately, previously designed spherical motors have been unable to provide the performance needed by space missions. This inadequacy is also why they are unavailable commercially. An improved patentable spherically actuated motor (SAM) is proposed to provide the performance and versatility required by NASA missions.

  14. Soft Robotic Actuators (United States)

    Godfrey, Juleon Taylor

    In this thesis a survey on soft robotic actuators is conducted. The actuators are classified into three main categories: Pneumatic Artificial Muscles (PAM), Electronic Electroactive Polymers (Electric EAP), and Ionic Electroactive Polymers (Ionic EAP). Soft robots can have many degrees and are more compliant than hard robots. This makes them suitable for applications that are difficult for hard robots. For each actuator background history, build materials, how they operate, and modeling are presented. Multiple actuators in each class are reviewed highlighting both their use and their mathematical formulation. In addition to the survey the McKibben actuator was chosen for fabrication and in-depth experimental analysis. Four McKibben actuators were fabricated using mesh sleeve, barbed hose fittings, and different elastic bladders. All were actuated using compressed air. Tensile tests were performed for each actuator to measure the tension force as air pressure increased from 20 to 100 psi in 10 psi increments. To account for material relaxation properties eleven trials for each actuator were run for 2-3 days. In conclusion, the smallest outer diameter elastic bladder was capable of producing the highest force due to the larger gap between the bladder and the sleeve.

  15. Micro magnetic-actuators; Micro jiki actuator

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arai, K. [Tohoku University, Sendai (Japan). Research Institute of Electrical Communication; Honda, T. [Tokin Corporation, Tokyo (Japan)


    As the micromachine technology has attracted higher attention, the research and development of the technology is increasing. This paper describes the typical trial production samples of the electromagnetic type and magnetostrictive type actuators. The development of electromagnetic motors of the order of millimeters using the mechanical working technology is actively progressing. A report announced the axial gap motor 0.8 mm in outside diameter and 1.2 mm in height. The semiconductor micro machining technology was used to fabricate the reluctance motor (with the rotor 285 {mu}m in diameter). In this case, the LIGA process through the X-ray lithography was adopted. Some other types of micro magnetic-actuators were produced by using magnetic field gradient and magnetic torque. The magnetostrictive actuator is emerging to the market, drawing attention of the industry. This type of actuator utilizes the phenomenon that the dimensions vary when a magnetic field is applied to a magnetic substance. Samples applying high magnetic thin film include the cantilever type actuator and the travelling machine. 19 refs., 9 figs.

  16. Electrochemical micro actuator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hamberg, M.W.; Hamberg, M.W.; Rusu, C.R.; Gardeniers, Johannes G.E.; Ijntema, D.J.; IJntema, D.J.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt


    In this paper an investigation of the feasibility of a new electrochemical micro actuator is presented. The actuator is fabricated using silicon micro-machining techniques. A gas pressure is generated by electrolysis of an aqueous electrolyte solution. The build up pressure is used to change the

  17. Sensors and actuators, Twente

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bergveld, Piet


    This paper describes the organization and the research programme of the Sensor and Actuator (S&A) Research Unit of the University of Twente, Enschede, the Netherlands. It includes short descriptions of all present projects concerning: micromachined mechanical sensors and actuators, optical sensors,

  18. Pneumatically actuated hand tool

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cool, J.C.; Rijnsaardt, K.A.


    Abstract of NL 9401195 (A) Pneumatically actuated hand tool for carrying out a mechanical operation, provided with an exchangeable gas cartridge in which the gas which is required for pneumatic actuation is stored. More particularly, the hand tool is provided with at least one pneumatic motor, at

  19. Conjugated Polymers as Actuators: Modes of Actuation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skaarup, Steen

    The physical and chemical properties of conjugated polymers often depend very strongly on the degree of doping with anions or cations. The movement of ions in and out of the polymer matrix as it is redox cycled is also accompanied by mechanical changes. Both the volume and the stiffness can exhibit...... significant differences between the oxidized and reduced states. These effects form the basis of the use of conjugated polymers as actuators (or “artificial muscles”) controllable by a small (1-10 V) voltage. Three basic modes of actuation (bending, linear extension and stiffness change) have been proposed....... This work discusses their relative merits and possible areas of application....

  20. Conjugated polymers as actuators: modes of actuation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skaarup, Steen


    The physical and chemical properties of conjugated polymers often depend very strongly on the degree of doping with anions or cations. The movement of ions in and out of the polymer matrix as it is redox cycled is also accompanied by mechanical changes. Both the volume and the stiffness can exhibit...... significant differences between the oxidized and reduced states. These effects form the basis of the use of conjugated polymers as actuators (or “artificial muscles”) controllable by a small (1-10 V) voltage. Three basic modes of actuation (bending, linear extension and stiffness change) have been proposed....... This work discusses their relative merits and possible areas of application....

  1. Cryogenic Piezoelectric Actuator (United States)

    Jiang, Xiaoning; Cook, William B.; Hackenberger, Wesley S.


    In this paper, PMN-PT single crystal piezoelectric stack actuators and flextensional actuators were designed, prototyped and characterized for space optics applications. Single crystal stack actuators with footprint of 10 mm x10 mm and the height of 50 mm were assembled using 10 mm x10mm x0.15mm PMN-PT plates. These actuators showed stroke > 65 - 85 microns at 150 V at room temperature, and > 30 microns stroke at 77 K. Flextensional actuators with dimension of 10mm x 5 mm x 7.6 mm showed stroke of >50 microns at room temperature at driving voltage of 150 V. A flextensional stack actuator with dimension of 10 mm x 5 mm x 47 mm showed stroke of approx. 285 microns at 150 V at room temperature and > 100 microns at 77K under driving of 150 V should be expected. The large cryogenic stroke and high precision of these actuators are promising for cryogenic optics applications.

  2. Magnetically Actuated Seal Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — FTT proposes development of a magnetically actuated dynamic seal. Dynamic seals are used throughout the turbopump in high-performance, pump-fed, liquid rocket...

  3. Magnetically Actuated Seal (United States)

    Pinera, Alex


    This invention is a magnetically actuated seal in which either a single electromagnet, or multiple electromagnets, are used to control the seal's position. This system can either be an open/ close type of system or an actively controlled system.

  4. Rotary Series Elastic Actuator (United States)

    Ihrke, Chris A. (Inventor); Mehling, Joshua S. (Inventor); Parsons, Adam H. (Inventor); Griffith, Bryan Kristian (Inventor); Radford, Nicolaus A. (Inventor); Permenter, Frank Noble (Inventor); Davis, Donald R. (Inventor); Ambrose, Robert O. (Inventor); Junkin, Lucien Q. (Inventor)


    A rotary actuator assembly is provided for actuation of an upper arm assembly for a dexterous humanoid robot. The upper arm assembly for the humanoid robot includes a plurality of arm support frames each defining an axis. A plurality of rotary actuator assemblies are each mounted to one of the plurality of arm support frames about the respective axes. Each rotary actuator assembly includes a motor mounted about the respective axis, a gear drive rotatably connected to the motor, and a torsion spring. The torsion spring has a spring input that is rotatably connected to an output of the gear drive and a spring output that is connected to an output for the joint.

  5. Tendon Driven Finger Actuation System (United States)

    Ihrke, Chris A. (Inventor); Reich, David M. (Inventor); Bridgwater, Lyndon (Inventor); Linn, Douglas Martin (Inventor); Askew, Scott R. (Inventor); Diftler, Myron A. (Inventor); Platt, Robert (Inventor); Hargrave, Brian (Inventor); Valvo, Michael C. (Inventor); Abdallah, Muhammad E. (Inventor); hide


    A humanoid robot includes a robotic hand having at least one finger. An actuation system for the robotic finger includes an actuator assembly which is supported by the robot and is spaced apart from the finger. A tendon extends from the actuator assembly to the at least one finger and ends in a tendon terminator. The actuator assembly is operable to actuate the tendon to move the tendon terminator and, thus, the finger.

  6. Automated stopcock actuator


    Vandehey, N. T.; O\\'Neil, J. P.


    Introduction We have developed a low-cost stopcock valve actuator for radiochemistry automation built using a stepper motor and an Arduino, an open-source single-board microcontroller. The con-troller hardware can be programmed to run by serial communication or via two 5–24 V digital lines for simple integration into any automation control system. This valve actuator allows for automated use of a single, disposable stopcock, providing a number of advantages over stopcock manifold systems ...

  7. Laser Initiated Actuator study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Watson, B.


    The program task was to design and study a laser initiated actuator. The design of the actuator is described, it being comprised of the fiber and body subassemblies. The energy source for all experiments was a Spectra Diode 2200-H2 laser diode. The diode is directly coupled to a 100 micron core, 0.3 numerical aperture fiber optic terminated with an SMA connector. The successful testing results are described and recommendations are made.

  8. Soft actuators and soft actuating devices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Dian; Whitesides, George M.


    A soft buckling linear actuator is described, including: a plurality of substantially parallel bucklable, elastic structural components each having its longest dimension along a first axis; and a plurality of secondary structural components each disposed between and bridging two adjacent bucklable, elastic structural components; wherein every two adjacent bucklable, elastic structural components and the secondary structural components in-between define a layer comprising a plurality of cells each capable of being connected with a fluid inflation or deflation source; the secondary structural components from two adjacent layers are not aligned along a second axis perpendicular to the first axis; and the secondary structural components are configured not to buckle, the bucklable, elastic structural components are configured to buckle along the second axis to generate a linear force, upon the inflation or deflation of the cells. Methods of actuation using the same are also described.

  9. Digital Actuator Technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ken Thomas; Ted Quinn; Jerry Mauck; Richard Bockhorst


    There are significant developments underway in new types of actuators for power plant active components. Many of these make use of digital technology to provide a wide array of benefits in performance of the actuators and in reduced burden to maintain them. These new product offerings have gained considerable acceptance in use in process plants. In addition, they have been used in conventional power generation very successfully. This technology has been proven to deliver the benefits promised and substantiate the claims of improved performance. The nuclear industry has been reluctant to incorporate digital actuator technology into nuclear plant designs due to concerns due to a number of concerns. These could be summarized as cost, regulatory uncertainty, and a certain comfort factor with legacy analog technology. The replacement opportunity for these types of components represents a decision point for whether to invest in more modern technology that would provide superior operational and maintenance benefits. Yet, the application of digital technology has been problematic for the nuclear industry, due to qualification and regulatory issues. With some notable exceptions, the result has been a continuing reluctance to undertake the risks and uncertainties of implementing digital actuator technology when replacement opportunities present themselves. Rather, utilities would typically prefer to accept the performance limitations of the legacy analog actuator technologies to avoid impacts to project costs and schedules. The purpose of this report is to demonstrate that the benefits of digital actuator technology can be significant in terms of plant performance and that it is worthwhile to address the barriers currently holding back the widespread development and use of this technology. It addresses two important objectives in pursuit of the beneficial use of digital actuator technology for nuclear power plants: 1. To demonstrate the benefits of digital actuator

  10. Hydraulically actuated artificial muscles (United States)

    Meller, M. A.; Tiwari, R.; Wajcs, K. B.; Moses, C.; Reveles, I.; Garcia, E.


    Hydraulic Artificial Muscles (HAMs) consisting of a polymer tube constrained by a nylon mesh are presented in this paper. Despite the actuation mechanism being similar to its popular counterpart, which are pneumatically actuated (PAM), HAMs have not been studied in depth. HAMs offer the advantage of compliance, large force to weight ratio, low maintenance, and low cost over traditional hydraulic cylinders. Muscle characterization for isometric and isobaric tests are discussed and compared to PAMs. A model incorporating the effect of mesh angle and friction have also been developed. In addition, differential swelling of the muscle on actuation has also been included in the model. An application of lab fabricated HAMs for a meso-scale robotic system is also presented.

  11. Nonmagnetic driver for piezoelectric actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ekhtiari, Marzieh


    Piezoelectric actuator drive aims to enable reliable motor performance in strong magnetic fields for magnetic res- onance imaging and computed tomography treatment tables. There are technical limitations in operation of these motors and drive systems related to magnetic interference. Piezoelectric...... actuators. Therefore, piezoelectric transformer-based power converters are used for driving piezoelectric actuator drive motor in the presence of high electromagnetic field....

  12. A Magnetic Bead Actuator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Derks, R.; Prins, M.W.J.; Wimberger-Friedl, R.


    Actuation principles of superparamagnetic beads applicable on biosensing (at single beads and chain orderning) are studied in this report. This research can be used to develop new techniques that are able to accelerate bio-assays. An experimental setup containing a sub-microliter fluid volume

  13. The Actuated Guitar

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Jeppe Veirum; Overholt, Daniel; Moeslund, Thomas B.


    Playing a guitar is normally only for people with fully functional hands. In this work we investigate alternative interaction concepts to enable or re-enable people with non-functional right hands or arms to play a guitar via actuated strumming. The functionality and complexity of right hand...

  14. Bistable microelectromechanical actuator (United States)

    Fleming, J.G.


    A bistable microelectromechanical (MEM) actuator is formed on a substrate and includes a stressed membrane of generally rectangular shape that upon release assumes a curvilinear cross-sectional shape due to attachment at a midpoint to a resilient member and at opposing edges to a pair of elongate supports. The stressed membrane can be electrostatically switched between a pair of mechanical states having mirror-image symmetry, with the MEM actuator remaining in a quiescent state after a programming voltage is removed. The bistable MEM actuator according to various embodiments of the present invention can be used to form a nonvolatile memory element, an optical modulator (with a pair of mirrors supported above the membrane and moving in synchronism as the membrane is switched), a switchable mirror (with a single mirror supported above the membrane at the midpoint thereof) and a latching relay (with a pair of contacts that open and close as the membrane is switched). Arrays of bistable MEM actuators can be formed for applications including nonvolatile memories, optical displays and optical computing. 49 figs.

  15. Thermally Actuated Hydraulic Pumps (United States)

    Jones, Jack; Ross, Ronald; Chao, Yi


    Thermally actuated hydraulic pumps have been proposed for diverse applications in which direct electrical or mechanical actuation is undesirable and the relative slowness of thermal actuation can be tolerated. The proposed pumps would not contain any sliding (wearing) parts in their compressors and, hence, could have long operational lifetimes. The basic principle of a pump according to the proposal is to utilize the thermal expansion and contraction of a wax or other phase-change material in contact with a hydraulic fluid in a rigid chamber. Heating the chamber and its contents from below to above the melting temperature of the phase-change material would cause the material to expand significantly, thus causing a substantial increase in hydraulic pressure and/or a substantial displacement of hydraulic fluid out of the chamber. Similarly, cooling the chamber and its contents from above to below the melting temperature of the phase-change material would cause the material to contract significantly, thus causing a substantial decrease in hydraulic pressure and/or a substantial displacement of hydraulic fluid into the chamber. The displacement of the hydraulic fluid could be used to drive a piston. The figure illustrates a simple example of a hydraulic jack driven by a thermally actuated hydraulic pump. The pump chamber would be a cylinder containing encapsulated wax pellets and containing radial fins to facilitate transfer of heat to and from the wax. The plastic encapsulation would serve as an oil/wax barrier and the remaining interior space could be filled with hydraulic oil. A filter would retain the encapsulated wax particles in the pump chamber while allowing the hydraulic oil to flow into and out of the chamber. In one important class of potential applications, thermally actuated hydraulic pumps, exploiting vertical ocean temperature gradients for heating and cooling as needed, would be used to vary hydraulic pressures to control buoyancy in undersea research

  16. Active Polymer Gel Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuji Hashimoto


    Full Text Available Many kinds of stimuli-responsive polymer and gels have been developed and applied to biomimetic actuators or artificial muscles. Electroactive polymers that change shape when stimulated electrically seem to be particularly promising. In all cases, however, the mechanical motion is driven by external stimuli, for example, reversing the direction of electric field. On the other hand, many living organisms can generate an autonomous motion without external driving stimuli like self-beating of heart muscles. Here we show a novel biomimetic gel actuator that can walk spontaneously with a wormlike motion without switching of external stimuli. The self-oscillating motion is produced by dissipating chemical energy of oscillating reaction. Although the gel is completely composed of synthetic polymer, it shows autonomous motion as if it were alive.

  17. Microfabricated therapeutic actuators (United States)

    Lee, Abraham P.; Northrup, M. Allen; Ciarlo, Dino R.; Krulevitch, Peter A.; Benett, William J.


    Microfabricated therapeutic actuators are fabricated using a shape memory polymer (SMP), a polyurethane-based material that undergoes a phase transformation at a specified temperature (Tg). At a temperature above temperature Tg material is soft and can be easily reshaped into another configuration. As the temperature is lowered below temperature Tg the new shape is fixed and locked in as long as the material stays below temperature Tg. Upon reheating the material to a temperature above Tg, the material will return to its original shape. By the use of such SMP material, SMP microtubing can be used as a release actuator for the delivery of embolic coils through catheters into aneurysms, for example. The microtubing can be manufactured in various sizes and the phase change temperature Tg is determinate for an intended temperature target and intended use.

  18. Dissolution actuated sample container (United States)

    Nance, Thomas A.; McCoy, Frank T.


    A sample collection vial and process of using a vial is provided. The sample collection vial has an opening secured by a dissolvable plug. When dissolved, liquids may enter into the interior of the collection vial passing along one or more edges of a dissolvable blocking member. As the blocking member is dissolved, a spring actuated closure is directed towards the opening of the vial which, when engaged, secures the vial contents against loss or contamination.

  19. Cylindrical Piezoelectric Fiber Composite Actuators (United States)

    Allison, Sidney G.; Shams, Qamar A.; Fox, Robert L.


    The use of piezoelectric devices has become widespread since Pierre and Jacques Curie discovered the piezoelectric effect in 1880. Examples of current applications of piezoelectric devices include ultrasonic transducers, micro-positioning devices, buzzers, strain sensors, and clocks. The invention of such lightweight, relatively inexpensive piezoceramic-fiber-composite actuators as macro fiber composite (MFC) actuators has made it possible to obtain strains and displacements greater than those that could be generated by prior actuators based on monolithic piezoceramic sheet materials. MFC actuators are flat, flexible actuators designed for bonding to structures to apply or detect strains. Bonding multiple layers of MFC actuators together could increase force capability, but not strain or displacement capability. Cylindrical piezoelectric fiber composite (CPFC) actuators have been invented as alternatives to MFC actuators for applications in which greater forces and/or strains or displacements may be required. In essence, a CPFC actuator is an MFC or other piezoceramic fiber composite actuator fabricated in a cylindrical instead of its conventional flat shape. Cylindrical is used here in the general sense, encompassing shapes that can have circular, elliptical, rectangular or other cross-sectional shapes in the planes perpendicular to their longitudinal axes.

  20. Microelectromechanical (MEM) thermal actuator (United States)

    Garcia, Ernest J [Albuquerque, NM; Fulcher, Clay W. G. [Sandia Park, NM


    Microelectromechanical (MEM) buckling beam thermal actuators are disclosed wherein the buckling direction of a beam is constrained to a desired direction of actuation, which can be in-plane or out-of-plane with respect to a support substrate. The actuators comprise as-fabricated, linear beams of uniform cross section supported above the substrate by supports which rigidly attach a beam to the substrate. The beams can be heated by methods including the passage of an electrical current through them. The buckling direction of an initially straight beam upon heating and expansion is controlled by incorporating one or more directional constraints attached to the substrate and proximal to the mid-point of the beam. In the event that the beam initially buckles in an undesired direction, deformation of the beam induced by contact with a directional constraint generates an opposing force to re-direct the buckling beam into the desired direction. The displacement and force generated by the movement of the buckling beam can be harnessed to perform useful work, such as closing contacts in an electrical switch.

  1. Integrated sensing and actuation of dielectric elastomer actuator (United States)

    Ye, Zhihang; Chen, Zheng


    Dielectric elastomer (DE) is a type of soft actuating material, the shape of which can be changed under electrical voltage stimuli. DE materials have great potential in applications involving energy harvesters, micro-manipulators, and adaptive optics. In this paper, a stripe DE actuator with integrated sensing and actuation is designed and fabricated, and characterized through several experiments. Considering the actuator's capacitor-like structure and its deform mechanism, detecting the actuator's displacement through the actuator's circuit feature is a potential approach. A self-sensing scheme that adds a high frequency probing signal into actuation signal is developed. A fast Fourier transform (FFT) algorithm is used to extract the magnitude change of the probing signal, and a non-linear fitting method and artificial neural network (ANN) approach are utilized to reflect the relationship between the probing signal and the actuator's displacement. Experimental results showed this structure has capability of performing self-sensing and actuation, simultaneously. With an enhanced ANN, the self-sensing scheme can achieve 2.5% accuracy.

  2. Telescoping cylindrical piezoelectric fiber composite actuator assemblies (United States)

    Allison, Sidney G. (Inventor); Shams, Qamar A. (Inventor); Fox, Robert L. (Inventor); Fox, legal representative, Christopher L. (Inventor); Fox Chattin, legal representative, Melanie L. (Inventor)


    A telescoping actuator assembly includes a plurality of cylindrical actuators in a concentric arrangement. Each cylindrical actuator is at least one piezoelectric fiber composite actuator having a plurality of piezoelectric fibers extending parallel to one another and to the concentric arrangement's longitudinal axis. Each cylindrical actuator is coupled to concentrically-adjacent ones of the cylindrical actuators such that the plurality of cylindrical actuators can experience telescopic movement. An electrical energy source coupled to the cylindrical actuators applies actuation energy thereto to generate the telescopic movement.

  3. Actuator technology and market outlook: where does the actuator move

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aleksanin Sergei Andreevich


    There are made conclusions about the "migration" of demand from hydraulic and pneumatic solutions to electromechanical actuators in the aerospace and manufacturing industries. Identify advantages of electromechanics over more traditional actuators in terms of energy efficiency and reliability. Also identify the most promising areas of the drive technological development.

  4. Piezoelectric actuated gimbal (United States)

    Tschaggeny, Charles W [Woods Cross, UT; Jones, Warren F [Idaho Falls, ID; Bamberg, Eberhard [Salt Lake City, UT


    A gimbal is described and which includes a fixed base member defining an axis of rotation; a second member concentrically oriented relative to the axis of rotation; a linear actuator oriented in immediate, adjoining force transmitting relation relative to the base member or to the second member, and which applies force along a linear axis which is tangential to the axis of rotation so as to cause the second member to rotate coaxially relative to the fixed base member; and an object of interest mounted to the second member such that the object of interest is selectively moved relative to the base member about the axis of rotation.

  5. Robotic Arm Actuated by Electroactie Polymers (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Y.; Xue, T.; Shaninpoor, M.; Simpson, J. O.; Smith, J.


    Actuators are used for many planetary and space applications. To meet the NASA goal to reduce the actuators size, mass, cost and power consumption, electroactie polymers (EAP) are being developed to induce large bending and longitudinal actuation strains.

  6. Electromagnetic actuation in MEMS switches

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Oliveira Hansen, Roana Melina de; Mátéfi-Tempfli, Mária; Chemnitz, Steffen

    . Electromagnetic actuation is a very promising approach to operate such MEMS and Power MEMS devices, due to the long range, reproducible and strong forces generated by this method, among other advantages. However, the use of electromagnetic actuation in such devices requires the use of thick magnetic films, which...

  7. Novel ionic polymeric hydraulic actuators (United States)

    Shahinpoor, Mohsen; Kim, Kwang J.


    It is now well recognized that a strip of ionic polymer- metal composite (IPMC) exhibits a spontaneous bending capability under the influence of an electric potential. A key observation is the appearance and disappearance of water on the expansion and contraction surfaces of the strip, respectively. Such water appearing/disappearing activities occur near the permeable metal electrodes. The imposition of en elctric field causes the mobile cations that are conjugated to the polymeric anions to undergo electrophoretic dynamic migration that can result in local deformation of the material. Such an electrophoretic behavior of the IPMC causes the water to leak out of the permeable electroded boundary so as to lower the actuation performance. This situation is similar to a leaking hydraulic actuator (hydraulic jack), which has the highest force density notwithstanding the compressor unit weight. Herein, a new category of actuators as ionic polymeric hydraulic actuators (IPHA's) is defined. The IPMC is a good example of such ionic polymeric hydraulic actuators. The advantage of ionic polymeric hydraulic actuators is their potential to generate substantially high force densities, theoretically better than current hydraulic actuators. Based upon this ionic polymer hydraulic actuator concept, a certain manufacturing technique was developed to increase the force density of the conventional IPMC's by a factor of two (100% improvement in force). This technology and associated experimental results are presented in this paper.

  8. T-Slide Linear Actuators (United States)

    Vranish, John


    T-slide linear actuators use gear bearing differential epicyclical transmissions (GBDETs) to directly drive a linear rack, which, in turn, performs the actuation. Conventional systems use a rotary power source in conjunction with a nut and screw to provide linear motion. Non-back-drive properties of GBDETs make the new actuator more direct and simpler. Versions of this approach will serve as a long-stroke, ultra-precision, position actuator for NASA science instruments, and as a rugged, linear actuator for NASA deployment duties. The T slide can operate effectively in the presence of side forces and torques. Versions of the actuator can perform ultra-precision positioning. A basic T-slide actuator is a long-stroke, rack-and-pinion linear actuator that, typically, consists of a T-slide, several idlers, a transmission to drive the slide (powered by an electric motor) and a housing that holds the entire assembly. The actuator is driven by gear action on its top surface, and is guided and constrained by gear-bearing idlers on its other two parallel surfaces. The geometry, implemented with gear-bearing technology, is particularly effective. An electronic motor operating through a GBDET can directly drive the T slide against large loads, as a rack and pinion linear actuator, with no break and no danger of back driving. The actuator drives the slide into position and stops. The slide holes position with power off and no brake, regardless of load. With the T slide configuration, this GBDET has an entire T-gear surface on which to operate. The GB idlers coupling the other two T slide parallel surfaces to their housing counterpart surfaces provide constraints in five degrees-of-freedom and rolling friction in the direction of actuation. Multiple GB idlers provide roller bearing strength sufficient to support efficient, rolling friction movement, even in the presence of large, resisting forces. T-slide actuators can be controlled using the combination of an off

  9. The static actuation of dielectric elastomer actuators: how does pre-stretch improve actuation?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kofod, Guggi [University of Potsdam, Institute of Physics, Advanced Condensed-Matter Physics, 14476 Potsdam (Germany)], E-mail:


    It has previously been shown that providing dielectric elastomer actuators with a level of pre-stretch can improve properties such as breakdown strength, actuation strain and efficiency. The actuation in such actuators depends on an interplay between the highly nonlinear hyperelastic stress-strain behaviour with the electrostatic Maxwell's stress; however, the direct effects of pre-stretch on the electromechanical coupling have still not been investigated in detail. We compare several experimental results found in the literature on the hyperelastic parameters of the Ogden model for the commonly used material VHB 4910, and introduce a more detailed and thus more accurate fit to a previous uniaxial stress-strain experiment. Electrostatic actuation models for a pure shear cuboid dielectric elastomer actuator with pre-stretch are introduced, for both intensive and extensive variables. For both intensive and extensive variables the constant strain (blocked stress or force) as well as the actuation strain is presented. It is shown how in the particular case of isotropic amorphous elastomers the pre-stretch does not affect the electromechanical coupling directly, and that the enhancement in actuation strain due to pre-stretch occurs through the alteration of the geometrical dimensions of the actuator. Also, the presence of the optimum load is explained as being due to the plateau region in the force-stretch curve, and it is shown that pre-stretch is not able to affect its position. Finally, it is shown how the simplified Ogden fit leads to entirely different conclusions for actuation strain in terms of extensive variables as does the detailed fit, emphasizing the importance of employing accurate hyperelastic models for the stress-stretch behaviour of the elastomer.

  10. The static actuation of dielectric elastomer actuators: how does pre-stretch improve actuation? (United States)

    Kofod, Guggi


    It has previously been shown that providing dielectric elastomer actuators with a level of pre-stretch can improve properties such as breakdown strength, actuation strain and efficiency. The actuation in such actuators depends on an interplay between the highly nonlinear hyperelastic stress-strain behaviour with the electrostatic Maxwell's stress; however, the direct effects of pre-stretch on the electromechanical coupling have still not been investigated in detail. We compare several experimental results found in the literature on the hyperelastic parameters of the Ogden model for the commonly used material VHB 4910, and introduce a more detailed and thus more accurate fit to a previous uniaxial stress-strain experiment. Electrostatic actuation models for a pure shear cuboid dielectric elastomer actuator with pre-stretch are introduced, for both intensive and extensive variables. For both intensive and extensive variables the constant strain (blocked stress or force) as well as the actuation strain is presented. It is shown how in the particular case of isotropic amorphous elastomers the pre-stretch does not affect the electromechanical coupling directly, and that the enhancement in actuation strain due to pre-stretch occurs through the alteration of the geometrical dimensions of the actuator. Also, the presence of the optimum load is explained as being due to the plateau region in the force-stretch curve, and it is shown that pre-stretch is not able to affect its position. Finally, it is shown how the simplified Ogden fit leads to entirely different conclusions for actuation strain in terms of extensive variables as does the detailed fit, emphasizing the importance of employing accurate hyperelastic models for the stress-stretch behaviour of the elastomer.

  11. Gear-Driven Turnbuckle Actuator (United States)

    Rivera, Ricky N.


    This actuator design allows the extension and contraction of turnbuckle assemblies. It can be operated manually or remotely, and is extremely compact. It is ideal for turnbuckles that are hard to reach by conventional tools. The tool assembly design solves the problem of making accurate adjustments to the variable geometry guide vanes without having to remove and reinstall the actuator system back on the engine. The actuator does this easily by adjusting the length of the turnbuckles while they are still attached to the engine.

  12. Embodying Desired Behavior in Variable Stiffness Actuators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, L.C.; Stramigioli, Stefano; Bicchi, Antonio


    Variable stiffness actuators are a class of actuators with the capability of changing their apparent output stiffness independently from the actuator output position. This is achieved by introducing internally a number of compliant elements, and internal actuated degrees of freedom that determine

  13. Energy-Efficient Variable Stiffness Actuators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, L.C.; Carloni, Raffaella; Stramigioli, Stefano


    Variable stiffness actuators are a particular class of actuators that is characterized by the property that the apparent output stiffness can be changed independent of the output position. To achieve this, variable stiffness actuators consist of a number of elastic elements and a number of actuated

  14. Variable Valve Actuation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jeffrey Gutterman; A. J. Lasley


    Many approaches exist to enable advanced mode, low temperature combustion systems for diesel engines - such as premixed charge compression ignition (PCCI), Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) or other HCCI-like combustion modes. The fuel properties and the quantity, distribution and temperature profile of air, fuel and residual fraction in the cylinder can have a marked effect on the heat release rate and combustion phasing. Figure 1 shows that a systems approach is required for HCCI-like combustion. While the exact requirements remain unclear (and will vary depending on fuel, engine size and application), some form of substantially variable valve actuation is a likely element in such a system. Variable valve actuation, for both intake and exhaust valve events, is a potent tool for controlling the parameters that are critical to HCCI-like combustion and expanding its operational range. Additionally, VVA can be used to optimize the combustion process as well as exhaust temperatures and impact the after treatment system requirements and its associated cost. Delphi Corporation has major manufacturing and product development and applied R&D expertise in the valve train area. Historical R&D experience includes the development of fully variable electro-hydraulic valve train on research engines as well as several generations of mechanical VVA for gasoline systems. This experience has enabled us to evaluate various implementations and determine the strengths and weaknesses of each. While a fully variable electro-hydraulic valve train system might be the 'ideal' solution technically for maximum flexibility in the timing and control of the valve events, its complexity, associated costs, and high power consumption make its implementation on low cost high volume applications unlikely. Conversely, a simple mechanical system might be a low cost solution but not deliver the flexibility required for HCCI operation. After modeling more than 200 variations of

  15. Enzyme actuated bioresponsive hydrogels (United States)

    Wilson, Andrew Nolan

    Bioresponsive hydrogels are emerging with technological significance in targeted drug delivery, biosensors and regenerative medicine. Conferred with the ability to respond to specific biologically derived stimuli, the design challenge is in effectively linking the conferred biospecificity with an engineered response tailored to the needs of a particular application. Moreover, the fundamental phenomena governing the response must support an appropriate dynamic range and limit of detection. The design of these systems is inherently complicated due to the high interdependency of the governing phenomena that guide the sensing, transduction, and the actuation response of hydrogels. To investigate the dynamics of these materials, model systems may be used which seek to interrogate the system dynamics by uni-variable experimentation and limit confounding phenomena such as: polymer-solute interactions, polymer swelling dynamics and biomolecular reaction-diffusion concerns. To this end, a model system, alpha-chymotrypsin (Cht) (a protease) and a cleavable peptide-chromogen (pro-drug) covalently incorporated into a hydrogel, was investigated to understand the mechanisms of covalent loading and release by enzymatic cleavage in bio-responsive delivery systems. Using EDC and Sulfo-NHS, terminal carboxyl groups of N-succinyl-Ala-Ala-Pro-Phe p-nitroanilide, a cleavable chromogen, were conjugated to primary amines of a hydrated poly(HEMA)-based hydrogel. Hydrogel discs were incubated in buffered Cht causing enzyme-mediated cleavage of the peptide and concomitant release of the chromophore for monitoring. To investigate substrate loading and the effects of hydrogel morphology on the system, the concentration of the amino groups (5, 10, 20, and 30 mol%) and the cross-linked density (1, 5, 7, 9 and 12 mol%) were independently varied. Loading-Release Efficiency of the chromogen was shown to exhibit a positive relation to increasing amino groups (AEMA). The release rates demonstrated a

  16. Novel Cryogenic Actuator Development Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration —  New thin film low friction coating technologies have recently been developed and matured to the point for use in this IRAD actuator work.The new novel...

  17. Meso scale flextensional piezoelectric actuators (United States)

    York, Peter A.; Jafferis, Noah T.; Wood, Robert J.


    We present an ultra-thin meso scale piezoelectric actuator consisting of a piezoceramic beam and a carbon fiber displacement-amplification frame. We show that the actuator can be designed to achieve a wide range of force/displacement characteristics on the mN/μm scales. The best performing design achieved a free displacement of 106 μm and a blocked force of 73 mN, yielding a total energy density of 0.51 {{Jkg}}-1 for the 7.6 mg system. We describe a printed circuit MEMS process for fabricating the actuator that incorporates laser micromachining, chemical vapor deposition, and precision carbon fiber lamination. Lastly, we report the incorporation of the actuator into a microgripper and describe other promising application opportunities in micro-optics and micro-laser systems.

  18. Modeling and control of precision actuators

    CERN Document Server

    Kiong, Tan Kok


    IntroductionGrowing Interest in Precise ActuatorsTypes of Precise ActuatorsApplications of Precise ActuatorsNonlinear Dynamics and ModelingHysteresisCreepFrictionForce RipplesIdentification and Compensation of Preisach Hysteresis in Piezoelectric ActuatorsSVD-Based Identification and Compensation of Preisach HysteresisHigh-Bandwidth Identification and Compensation of Hysteretic Dynamics in Piezoelectric ActuatorsConcluding RemarksIdentification and Compensation of Frict

  19. Soft Pneumatic Actuators for Rehabilitation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guido Belforte


    Full Text Available Pneumatic artificial muscles are pneumatic devices with practical and various applications as common actuators. They, as human muscles, work in agonistic-antagonistic way, giving a traction force only when supplied by compressed air. The state of the art of soft pneumatic actuators is here analyzed: different models of pneumatic muscles are considered and evolution lines are presented. Then, the use of Pneumatic Muscles (PAM in rehabilitation apparatus is described and the general characteristics required in different applications are considered, analyzing the use of proper soft actuators with various technical properties. Therefore, research activity carried out in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering in the field of soft and textile actuators is presented here. In particular, pneumatic textile muscles useful for active suits design are described. These components are made of a tubular structure, with an inner layer of latex coated with a deformable outer fabric sewn along the edge. In order to increase pneumatic muscles forces and contractions Braided Pneumatic Muscles are studied. In this paper, new prototypes are presented, based on a fabric construction and various kinds of geometry. Pressure-force-deformation tests results are carried out and analyzed. These actuators are useful for rehabilitation applications. In order to reproduce the whole upper limb movements, new kind of soft actuators are studied, based on the same principle of planar membranes deformation. As an example, the bellows muscle model and worm muscle model are developed and described. In both cases, wide deformations are expected. Another issue for soft actuators is the pressure therapy. Some textile sleeve prototypes developed for massage therapy on patients suffering of lymph edema are analyzed. Different types of fabric and assembly techniques have been tested. In general, these Pressure Soft Actuators are useful for upper/lower limbs treatments

  20. Dielectric Elastomer Actuators for Microfluidics


    Maffli, Luc; Rosset, Samuel; Shea, Herbert


    One of the goals of microfluidics is to bring a whole laboratory processing chain on a few square centimeters, Lab-On-Chips (LOC). But current LOCs require many heavy and power-consuming off-chip controls like pneumatics, pumps and valves, which keep the small chip bound to the lab. Miniaturized Dielectric Elastomer Actuators (DEA) are excellent candidates to make LOC truly portable, since they combine electrical actuation, large stroke volumes and high output forces. We report on the use of ...

  1. Control of Adjustable Compliant Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Berno J.E. Misgeld


    Full Text Available Adjustable compliance or variable stiffness actuators comprise an additional element to elastically decouple the actuator from the load and are increasingly applied to human-centered robotic systems. The advantages of such actuators are of paramount importance in rehabilitation robotics, where requirements demand safe interaction between the therapy system and the patient. Compliant actuator systems enable the minimization of large contact forces arising, for example, from muscular spasticity and have the ability to periodically store and release energy in cyclic movements. In order to overcome the loss of bandwidth introduced by the elastic element and to guarantee a higher range in force/torque generation, new actuator designs consider variable or nonlinear stiffness elements, respectively. These components cannot only be adapted to the walking speed or the patient condition, but also entail additional challenges for feedback control. This paper introduces a novel design method for an impedance-based controller that fulfills the control objectives and compares the performance and robustness to a classical cascaded control approach. The new procedure is developed using a non-standard positive-real Η2 controller design and is applied to a loop-shaping approach. Robust norm optimal controllers are designed with regard to the passivity of the actuator load-impedance transfer function and the servo control problem. Classical cascaded and positive-real Η2 controller designs are validated and compared in simulations and in a test bench using a passive elastic element of varying stiffness.

  2. Stable electroosmotically driven actuators (United States)

    Sritharan, Deepa; Motsebo, Mylene; Tumbic, Julia; Smela, Elisabeth


    We have previously presented "nastic" actuators based on electroosmotic (EO) pumping of fluid in microchannels using high electric fields for potential application in soft robotics. In this work we address two challenges facing this technology: applying EO to meso-scale devices and the stability of the pumping fluid. The hydraulic pressure achieved by EO increases with as 1/d2, where d is the depth of the microchannel, but the flow rate (which determines the stroke and the speed) is proportional to nd, where n is the number of channels. Therefore to get high force and high stroke the device requires a large number of narrow channels, which is not readily achievable using standard microfabrication techniques. Furthermore, for soft robotics the structure must be soft. In this work we present a method of fabricating a three-dimensional porous elastomer to serve as the array of channels based on a sacrificial sugar scaffold. We demonstrate the concept by fabricating small pumps. The flexible devices were made from polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and comprise the 3D porous elastomer flanked on either side by reservoirs containing electrodes. The second issue addressed here involves the pumping fluid. Typically, water is used for EO, but water undergoes electrolysis even at low voltages. Since EO takes place at kV, these systems must be open to release the gases. We have recently reported that propylene carbonate (PC) is pumped at a comparable rate as water and is also stable for over 30 min at 8 kV. Here we show that PC is, however, degraded by moisture, so future EO systems must prevent water from reaching the PC.

  3. Advancements in Actuated Musical Instruments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Overholt, Daniel; Berdahl, Edgar; Hamilton, Robert


    This article presents recent developments in actuated musical instruments created by the authors, who also describe an ecosystemic model of actuated performance activities that blur traditional boundaries between the physical and virtual elements of musical interfaces. Actuated musical instruments...... are physical instruments that have been endowed with virtual qualities controlled by a computer in real-time but which are nevertheless tangible. These instruments provide intuitive and engaging new forms of interaction. They are different from traditional (acoustic) and fully automated (robotic) instruments...... in that they produce sound via vibrating element(s) that are co-manipulated by humans and electromechanical systems. We examine the possibilities that arise when such instruments are played in different performative environments and music-making scenarios, and we postulate that such designs may give rise to new...

  4. Elastic actuation for legged locomotion (United States)

    Cao, Chongjing; Conn, Andrew


    The inherent elasticity of dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) gives this technology great potential in energy efficient locomotion applications. In this work, a modular double cone DEA is developed with reduced manufacturing and maintenance time costs. This actuator can lift 45 g of mass (5 times its own weight) while producing a stroke of 10.4 mm (23.6% its height). The contribution of the elastic energy stored in antagonistic DEA membranes to the mechanical work output is experimentally investigated by adding delay into the DEA driving voltage. Increasing the delay time in actuation voltage and hence reducing the duty cycle is found to increase the amount of elastic energy being recovered but an upper limit is also noticed. The DEA is then applied to a three-segment leg that is able to move up and down by 17.9 mm (9% its initial height), which demonstrates the feasibility of utilizing this DEA design in legged locomotion.

  5. Polypyrrole Actuators for Tremor Suppression

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skaarup, Steen; Mogensen, Naja; Bay, Lasse


    for the change of length and for the stiffness change are significantly different - the stiffness change being about 10 times faster. Both force measurements and Electrochemical Quartz Crystal Microbalance measurements indicate that the actuation process is complex and involves at least two different processes...... enter the polymer in a slower process driven by osmotic pressure. Earlier work has tended to focus on achieving the maximum length change, therefore taking the time needed to include all processes. However, since the slower process described above is associated with the lowest strength of the actuator...

  6. Modular Actuators for Space Applications Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Rocketstar Robotics is proposing the development of a modern dual drive actuator. Rocketstar has put together numerous modern concepts for modular actuators that...

  7. Transputer Control of Hydraulic Actuators and Robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Conrad, Finn


    Results from a Danish mechatronics research program entitled IMCIA - Intelligent Control and Intelligent Actuators. The objective is development of intelligent actuators for intelligent motion control. A mechatronics test facility with a transputer controlled hydraulic robot suiteable for real...

  8. More Electric Landing Gear Actuation Study


    Li, Wei


    This report addresses the problem of landing gear actuation system design on more-electric aircraft (MEA). Firstly, information about more-electric aircraft and more-electric actuators was gathered and sorted. Current more-electric landing actuation system applications and researches were also summarized. Then several possible more-electric landing gear actuation concepts were identified. To evaluate these concepts, the case study method has been used. A concept aircraft “MR...

  9. Experimental identification of piezo actuator characteristic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ľ. Miková


    Full Text Available This paper deals with piezoelectric material, which can be used as actuator for conversion of electrical energy to mechanical work. Test equipment has been developed for experimental testing of the piezoactuators. Piezoactivity of this actuator has non-linear characteristic. This type of actuator is used for in-pipe mechanism design.

  10. Design of a piezoelectric rotation actuator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Holterman, J.; de Vries, Theodorus J.A.; Babakhani, B.; Brouwer, Dannis Michel


    In order to facilitate active damping within a linear motion system, a self-sensing piezoelectric rotation actuator has been designed. The rotation actuator consists of two piezoelectric stacks that function as linear actuators, embedded in a mechanical interface with several elastic elements, thus

  11. Carbon nanotube-polymer composite actuators (United States)

    Gennett, Thomas [Denver, CO; Raffaelle, Ryne P [Honeoye Falls, NY; Landi, Brian J [Rochester, NY; Heben, Michael J [Denver, CO


    The present invention discloses a carbon nanotube (SWNT)-polymer composite actuator and method to make such actuator. A series of uniform composites was prepared by dispersing purified single wall nanotubes with varying weight percents into a polymer matrix, followed by solution casting. The resulting nanotube-polymer composite was then successfully used to form a nanotube polymer actuator.

  12. Compliant actuation of rehabilitation robots

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vallery, Heike; Veneman, J.F.; van Asseldonk, Edwin H.F.; Ekkelenkamp, R.; Buss, Martin; van der Kooij, Herman


    This article discusses the pros and cons of compliant actuation for rehabilitation robots on the example of LOPES, focusing on the cons. After illustrating the bandwidth limitations, a new result has been derived: if stability in terms of passivity of the haptic device is desired, the renderable

  13. Electro-active paper actuators (United States)

    Kim, Jaehwan; Seo, Yung B.


    In this paper, the actuation mechanism of electro-active paper (EAPap) actuators is addressed and the potential of the actuators is demonstrated. EAPap is a paper that produces large displacement with small force under an electrical excitation. EAPap is made with a chemically treated paper by constructing thin electrodes on both sides of the paper. When electrical voltage is applied on the electrodes the EAPap produces bending displacement. However, the displacement output has been unstable and degraded with timescale. To improve the bending performance of EAPap, different paper fibers - softwood, hardwood, bacteria cellulose, cellophane, carbon mixture paper, electrolyte containing paper and Korean traditional paper, in conjunction with additive chemicals, were tested. Two attempts were made to construct the electrodes: the direct use of aluminum foil and the gold sputtering technique. It was found that a cellophane paper exhibits a remarkable bending performance. When 2 MV m-1 excitation voltage was applied to the paper actuator, more than 3 mm tip displacement was observed from the 30 mm long paper beam. This is quite a low excitation voltage compared with that of other EAPs. Details of the experiments and results are addressed.

  14. The actuation of sound change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pinget, A.C.H.


    This dissertation is a sociophonetic study on sound change in progress. It addresses the actuation problem, i.e. the question as to why a particular change takes place in a particular language at a given time. The study is implemented in the framework of exemplar-based theories, which incorporates

  15. Explosive micro-bubble actuator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van den Broek, D.M.


    Microactuators are key components in numerous microsystems, and in many applications strong and fast microactuators are required. The principles used to generate forces in the current actuators are not capable of fulfilling both requirements at the same time, so new principles have to be

  16. Stick and slip actuators (SSA) (United States)

    Schmitt, Carl; Breguet, Jean-Marc; Bergander, Arvid; Clavel, Reymond


    Stick and Skip Actuators (SSA) are particularly well adapted to micro- robotics. A simple design, a very high intrinsic resolution (a few nanometers) and a high rigidity make them especially interesting in high precision micro-manipulations. Moreover, a smart design allows to combine the guiding and actuating function. The mechanical interface between the piezo-elements and the guiding mechanisms in an important point of the stick and slip actuators. The design of this interface and the choice of the material are very important. Both aspects have an impact on the rigidity, which has an influence on the behavior of the actuator. They have also an incidence onf the reliability (lifetime) because the design gives the contact condition and the material the wear resistance. In addition, a loading system allowing to keep the mechanical contact at this interface has a direct effect on the contact pressure. In order to confirm the performance of SSA, prototypes have been developed at the ISR. Their designs have bene made for application in optical microscopy, for manipulators in industrial assembly of micro- engineering products, for micro-factory, chemical and bio-engineering equipment for research or routine tasks, such as testing, screening etc. This paper presents a short description of several SSA made by the IRS and describes the parameters characterizing the stick and slip motion and the mechanical interface.

  17. Flexible printed circuit board actuators (United States)

    Lee, Junseok; Cha, Youngsu


    Out-of-plane actuators are made possible by the breaking of planar symmetry. In this paper, we present a thin-film out-of-plane electrostatic actuator for a flexible printed circuit board (FPCB) that can be fabricated with a single step of the conventional manufacturing process. No other components are required for actuation except a single sheet of the FPCB, and it works based on the planar asymmetry resulting from asymmetrically patterned top and bottom electrodes on each side of the polyimide film. With the structural asymmetry, the application of a high voltage in the order of kilovolts results in the asymmetry of the electric fields and the body force density, which generates the bending moment that leads to macroscopic deformations. We applied the finite element method to examine the asymmetry induced by the difference in the electrodes. In the experiment, the displacement responses to step input and square wave input of various frequencies were analyzed. It was found that our actuator constitutes an underdamped system, exhibiting resonance characteristics. The maximum oscillatory amplitude was determined at resonance, and the relationship between the displacement and the applied voltage was investigated.

  18. Multilayer Piezoelectric Stack Actuator Characterization (United States)

    Sherrit, Stewart; Jones, Christopher M.; Aldrich, Jack B.; Blodget, Chad; Bao, Xioaqi; Badescu, Mircea; Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Future NASA missions are increasingly seeking to use actuators for precision positioning to accuracies of the order of fractions of a nanometer. For this purpose, multilayer piezoelectric stacks are being considered as actuators for driving these precision mechanisms. In this study, sets of commercial PZT stacks were tested in various AC and DC conditions at both nominal and extreme temperatures and voltages. AC signal testing included impedance, capacitance and dielectric loss factor of each actuator as a function of the small-signal driving sinusoidal frequency, and the ambient temperature. DC signal testing includes leakage current and displacement as a function of the applied DC voltage. The applied DC voltage was increased to over eight times the manufacturers' specifications to investigate the correlation between leakage current and breakdown voltage. Resonance characterization as a function of temperature was done over a temperature range of -180C to +200C which generally exceeded the manufacturers' specifications. In order to study the lifetime performance of these stacks, five actuators from one manufacturer were driven by a 60volt, 2 kHz sine-wave for ten billion cycles. The tests were performed using a Lab-View controlled automated data acquisition system that monitored the waveform of the stack electrical current and voltage. The measurements included the displacement, impedance, capacitance and leakage current and the analysis of the experimental results will be presented.

  19. Lifetime of dielectric elastomer stack actuators (United States)

    Lotz, Peter; Matysek, Marc; Schlaak, Helmut F.


    Dielectric elastomer stack actuators (DESA) are well suited for the use in mobile devices, fluidic applications and small electromechanical systems. Despite many improvements during the last years the long term behavior of dielectric elastomer actuators in general is not known or has not been published. The first goal of the study is to characterize the overall lifetime under laboratory conditions and to identify potential factors influencing lifetime. For this we have designed a test setup to examine 16 actuators at once. The actuators are subdivided into 4 groups each with a separate power supply and driving signal. To monitor the performance of the actuators driving voltage and current are measured continuously and additionally, the amplitude of the deformations of each actuator is measured sequentially. From our first results we conclude that lifetime of these actuators is mainly influenced by the contact material between feeding line and multilayer electrodes. So far, actuators themselves are not affected by long term actuation. With the best contact material actuators can be driven for more than 2700 h at 200 Hz with an electrical field strength of 20 V/μm. This results in more than 3 billion cycles. Actually, there are further actuators driven at 10 Hz for more than 4000 hours and still working.

  20. Electrical actuators applications and performance

    CERN Document Server

    De Fornel, Bernard


    This helpful resource covers a large range of information regarding electrical actuators. In particular, robustness, a very problematic issue, is fully explored in a dedicated chapter. The text also deals with he estimate of non-measurable mechanical variables by examining the estimate of load moment, then observation of the positioning of a command without mechanical sensor. Finally, it examines the conditions needed to measure variables and real implementation of numerical algorithms. This is a key working resource for electrical engineers.

  1. An Innovative Shape Memory Actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cappellini Valter


    Full Text Available The work describes a NiTi linear actuator. This material is able to realize a contraction with heating produced through Joule effect. Then a cooling of the active device is realized with forced air. Finally the lengthening is realized with another active element. The particular structure of the geometry allows for an increment of reliability, because the electrical connections are mechanically stabilized and the active elements are compelled to avoid undesired electrical contacts through an insulated cylindrical core.

  2. Plasma actuators for bluff body flow control (United States)

    Kozlov, Alexey V.

    The aerodynamic plasma actuators have shown to be efficient flow control devices in various applications. In this study the results of flow control experiments utilizing single dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuators to control flow separation and unsteady vortex shedding from a circular cylinder in cross-flow are reported. This work is motivated by the need to reduce landing gear noise for commercial transport aircraft via an effective streamlining created by the actuators. The experiments are performed at Re D = 20,000...164,000. Circular cylinders in cross-flow are chosen for study since they represent a generic flow geometry that is similar in all essential aspects to a landing gear oleo or strut. The minimization of the unsteady flow separation from the models and associated large-scale wake vorticity by using actuators reduces the radiated aerodynamic noise. Using either steady or unsteady actuation at ReD = 25,000, Karman shedding is totally eliminated, turbulence levels in the wake decrease significantly and near-field sound pressure levels are reduced by 13.3 dB. Unsteady actuation at an excitation frequency of St D = 1 is found to be most effective. The unsteady actuation also has the advantage that total suppression of shedding is achieved for a duty cycle of only 25%. However, since unsteady actuation is associated with an unsteady body force and produces a tone at the actuation frequency, steady actuation is more suitable for noise control applications. Two actuation strategies are used at ReD = 82,000: spanwise and streamwise oriented actuators. Near field microphone measurements in an anechoic wind tunnel and detailed study of the near wake using LDA are presented in the study. Both spanwise and streamwise actuators give nearly the same noise reduction level of 11.2 dB and 14.2 dB, respectively, and similar changes in the wake velocity profiles. The contribution of the actuator induced noise is found to be small compared to the natural shedding

  3. Thermal vertical bimorph actuators and their applications

    CERN Document Server

    Sehr, H J


    In this thesis, a novel concept for lateral actuators based on vertical bimorphs is presented. Vertical bimorphs consist of silicon beams side-coated with aluminium, which bend when heated due to the different thermal expansion coefficients of the two materials causing a displacement in the wafer plane. The heating of the actuator is provided by an electrical current through the silicon beam. The simplest implementation of a vertical bimorph actuator is a clamped-clamped beam. To obtain higher deflections, a meander shaped actuator has been designed. By combining four meander actuators, a two-dimensional positioning stage has been realised. The meander actuator has also been applied for normally closed and normally open micro-relays. Analytical calculations and ANSYS simulations have been carried out to predict the physical behaviour of the bimorph devices, including temperature distribution, static deflection, vertical stiffness, thermal time constant and lateral resonances. For both the clamped-clamped beam...

  4. Series Elastic Actuators for legged robots (United States)

    Pratt, Jerry E.; Krupp, Benjamin T.


    Series Elastic Actuators provide many benefits in force control of robots in unconstrained environments. These benefits include high force fidelity, extremely low impedance, low friction, and good force control bandwidth. Series Elastic Actuators employ a novel mechanical design architecture which goes against the common machine design principal of "stiffer is better." A compliant element is placed between the gear train and driven load to intentionally reduce the stiffness of the actuator. A position sensor measures the deflection, and the force output is accurately calculated using Hooke"s Law (F=Kx). A control loop then servos the actuator to the desired output force. The resulting actuator has inherent shock tolerance, high force fidelity and extremely low impedance. These characteristics are desirable in many applications including legged robots, exoskeletons for human performance amplification, robotic arms, haptic interfaces, and adaptive suspensions. We describe several variations of Series Elastic Actuators that have been developed using both electric and hydraulic components.

  5. Microwave Power for Smart Membrane Actuators (United States)

    Choi, Sang H.; Song, Kyo D.; Golembiewski, Walter T.; Chu, Sang-Hyon; King, Glen C.


    The concept of microwave-driven smart membrane actuators is envisioned as the best option to alleviate the complexity associated with hard-wired control circuitry. A large, ultra-light space structure, such as solar sails and Gossamer spacecrafts, requires a distribution of power into individual membrane actuators to control them in an effective way. A patch rectenna array with a high voltage output was developed to drive smart membrane actuators. Networked patch rectenna array receives and converts microwave power into a DC power for an array of smart actuators. To use microwave power effectively, the concept of a power allocation and distribution (PAD) circuit is developed and tested for networking a rectenna/actuator patch array. For the future development, the PAD circuit could be imbedded into a single embodiment of rectenna and actuator array with the thin-film microcircuit embodiment. Preliminary design and fabrication of PAD circuitry that consists of a sixteen nodal elements were made for laboratory testing.

  6. Study on the graphene-based actuator (United States)

    Xu, Liang; Oh, Il Kwon


    Bilayer actuators comprising of MWCNT (Multi-walled carbon nanotubes) and Graphene oxide (GO) were studied for their actuation performance by using induction heating system. A simple fabrication method namely, filtration of the colloidal suspensions of MWCNT and GO through an Anodisc membrane was used to fabricate the actuators. In case of bilayer actuators, sequential filtration of MWCNTs and Graphene oxide dispersions through a membrane filter membrane was used. Morphological studies by SEM showed that the bilayer paper did not delaminate at the macro-scale and a certain degree of adhesion between MWCNT and GO can be achieved even without any functionalization of either of the constituents of bilayer actuators. Actuation was tested by using the induction heating system, operated at different current densities. Substantial degree of deformation, as much as 0.128 mm-1 at 300 A was measured. The degree of actuation was defined in terms of bending curvature, because the deformation was too large to be detected by conventional displacement laser sensors. An attempt has been made to explain the basic mechanism of bilayer actuator in terms of the differential thermal expansion rates and eddy current which was confirmed from images obtained from thermal camera wherein the variation in bilayer actuator's surface temperature were monitored. Finally the deformation trend under different pulses is also examined.

  7. Stimuli-Responsive Polymers for Actuation. (United States)

    Zhang, Qiang Matthew; Serpe, Michael J


    A variety of stimuli-responsive polymers have been developed and used as actuators and/or artificial muscles, with the movement being driven by an external stimulus, such as electrical potential. This Review highlights actuators constructed from liquid-crystal elastomers, dielectric elastomers, ionic polymers, and conducting polymers. The Review covers recent examples of a variety of actuators generated from these materials and their utility. The mechanism of actuation will be detailed for most examples in order to stimulate possible future research, and lead to new applications and advanced applications. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  8. High Reliability Cryogenic Piezoelectric Valve Actuator Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Cryogenic fluid valves are subject to harsh exposure and actuators to drive these valves require robust performance and high reliability. DSM's piezoelectric...

  9. A porous actuator for an Isfet-based coulometric sensor-actuator system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Luo, J.; Luo, J.; Olthuis, Wouter; Bergveld, Piet; van der Linden, W.E.; Bos, M.


    The previously developed prototype ISFET (ion-sensitive field effect transistor)-based coulometric sensor-actuator system suffers from delay in response due to the nonzero distance between the sensor and actuator. The authors describe a novel configuration of a sensor-actuator device which employs a

  10. Toward standardization of EAP actuators test procedures (United States)

    Fernandez, Diego; Moreno, Luis; Baselga, Juan


    Since the field of Electroactive Polymers (EAP) actuators is fairly new there are no standard testing processes for such intelligent materials. This drawback can seriously limit the scope of application of EAP actuators, since the targeted industrial sectors (aerospace, biomedical...) demand high reliability and product assurance. As a first iteration two elements are required to define a test standard for an EAP actuator: a Unit Tester, and a Component Specification. In this paper a EAP Unit Tester architecture is presented along with the required classification of measurements to be included in the EAP actuator Component Specification. The proposed EAP Unit Tester allows on-line monitoring and recording of the following properties of the specimen under test: large deformation, small tip displacement, temperature at the electrodes, weight of the specimen, voltage and current driven into the EAP, load being applied to the actuator, output voltage of the EAP in sensing operation and mode of operation (structure/sensor/actuator/smart). The measurements are taken simultaneously, in real-time. The EAP Unit Tester includes a friendly Graphical User Interface. It uses embedded Excel tools to visualize data. In addition, real-time connectivity with MATLAB allows an easy testing of control algorithms. A novel methodology to measure the properties of EAP specimens versus a variable load is also presented. To this purpose a force signals generator in the range of mN was developed. The device is based on a DC mini-motor. It generates an opposing force to the movement of the EAP actuator. Since the device constantly opposes the EAP actuator movement it has been named Digital Force Generator (DFG). The DFG design allows simultaneous length and velocity measuring versus different load signals. By including such a device in the EAP Unit Tester the most suitable application for the specimen under test can be easily identified (vibration damper, large deformation actuator, large

  11. Synthetic Jet Actuator Performance Enhancement (United States)

    Pikcilingis, Lucia; Housley, Kevin; Whalen, Ed; Amitay, Michael; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Collaboration; Boeing Company Collaboration


    Over the last 20 years synthetic jets have been studied as a means for aerodynamic flow control. Specifically, synthetic jets provide momentum transfer with zero-net mass flux, which has been proven to be effective for controlling flow fields. A synthetic jet is created by the periodic formation of vortex rings at its orifice due to the periodic motion of a piezoelectric disk(s). The present study seeks to optimize the performance of a synthetic jet actuator by utilizing different geometrical parameters such as disk thickness, orifice width and length, cavity height and cavity diameter, and different input parameters such as voltage and frequency. Experiments were conducted using a synthetic jet apparatus designed for various geometrical parameters utilizing a dual disk configuration. Velocity and temperature measurements were acquired at the center of the synthetic jet orifice using a temperature compensated hotwire and thermocouple probe. The disk displacement was measured at the center of the disk with a laser displacement sensor. It was shown that the synthetic jet actuators are capable of exceeding peak velocities of 200 m/s with a relatively large orifice. Data suggests that jet velocities greater than 200 m/s are attainable.

  12. Actuator Fault Detection and Diagnosis for Quadrotors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lu, P.; Van Kampen, E.J.; Yu, B.


    This paper presents a method for fault detection and diagnosis of actuator loss of effectiveness for a quadrotor helicopter. This paper not only considers the detection of the actuator loss of effectiveness faults, but also addresses the diagnosis of the faults. The detection and estimation of the

  13. Active vibration control using DEAP actuators (United States)

    Sarban, Rahimullah; Jones, Richard W.


    Dielectric electro-active polymer (DEAP) is a new type of smart material, which has the potential to be used to provide effective actuation for a wide range of applications. The properties of DEAP material place it somewhere between those of piezoceramics and shape memory alloys. Of the range of DEAP-based actuators that have been developed those having a cylindrical configuration are among the most promising. This contribution introduces the use of a tubular type DEAP actuator for active vibration control purposes. Initially the DEAP-based tubular actuator to be used in this study, produced by Danfoss PolyPower A/S, is introduced along with the static and dynamic characteristics. Secondly an electromechanical model of the tubular actuator is briefly reviewed and its ability to model the actuator's hysteresis characteristics for a range of periodic input signals at different frequencies demonstrated. The model will be used to provide hysteresis compensation in future vibration isolation studies. Experimental active vibration control using the actuator is then examined, specifically active vibration isolation of a 250 g mass subject to shaker generated 'ground vibration'. An adaptive feedforward control strategy is used to achieve this. The ability of the tubular actuator to reject both tonal and broadband random vibratory disturbances is then demonstrated.

  14. Artificial Cilia : Mimicking Nature Through Magnetic Actuation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Khaderi, S. N.; Baltussen, M. G. H. M.; Anderson, P. D.; Ioan, D.; den Toonder, J.M.J.; Onck, P. R.; Murthy, SK; Khan, SA; Ugaz, VM; Zeringue, HC


    Manipulation of bio-fluids in microchannels faces many challenges in the development of lab-on-a-chip devices. We propose magnetically actuated artificial cilia which can propel fluids in microchannels. These cilia are magnetic films which can be actuated by an external magnetic field, leading to an

  15. Conducting Polymer Actuators: Prospects and Limitations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skaarup, Steen

    Actuators constructed with a conjugated polymer as the active part have been predicted to have a number of highly desirable properties: Large mechanical strength, high power density, i.e. high actuation speeds possible, sufficient maximum strain values, high reversibility and safe, low voltages (1...

  16. Conjugated Polymer Actuators: Prospects and Limitations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skaarup, Steen


    Actuators constructed with a conjugated polymer as the active part have been predicted to have a number of highly desirable properties: Large mechanical strength, high power density, i.e. high actuation speeds possible, sufficient maximum strain values, high reversibility and safe, low voltages (1...

  17. Design optimization of a linear actuator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rechenbach, B.; Willatzen, Morten; Preisler, K. Lorenzen


    The mechanical contacting of a dielectric elastomer actuator is investigated. The actuator is constructed by coiling the dielectric elastomer around two parallel metal rods, similar to a rubber band stretched by two index fingers. The goal of this paper is to design the geometry and the mechanical...

  18. Fault Detection for Diesel Engine Actuator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blanke, M.; Bøgh, S.A.; Jørgensen, R.B.


    Feedback control systems are vulnerable to faults in control loop sensors and actuators, because feedback actions may cause abrupt responses and process damage when faults occur.......Feedback control systems are vulnerable to faults in control loop sensors and actuators, because feedback actions may cause abrupt responses and process damage when faults occur....

  19. Numerical investigation of aerodynamic flow actuation produced by surface plasma actuator on 2D oscillating airfoil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minh Khang Phan


    Full Text Available Numerical simulation of unsteady flow control over an oscillating NACA0012 airfoil is investigated. Flow actuation of a turbulent flow over the airfoil is provided by low current DC surface glow discharge plasma actuator which is analytically modeled as an ion pressure force produced in the cathode sheath region. The modeled plasma actuator has an induced pressure force of about 2 kPa under a typical experiment condition and is placed on the airfoil surface at 0% chord length and/or at 10% chord length. The plasma actuator at deep-stall angles (from 5° to 25° is able to slightly delay a dynamic stall and to weaken a pressure fluctuation in down-stroke motion. As a result, the wake region is reduced. The actuation effect varies with different plasma pulse frequencies, actuator locations and reduced frequencies. A lift coefficient can increase up to 70% by a selective operation of the plasma actuator with various plasma frequencies and locations as the angle of attack changes. Active flow control which is a key advantageous feature of the plasma actuator reveals that a dynamic stall phenomenon can be controlled by the surface plasma actuator with less power consumption if a careful control scheme of the plasma actuator is employed with the optimized plasma pulse frequency and actuator location corresponding to a dynamic change in reduced frequency.

  20. Advanced Actuator Concepts for High Precision Deformable Mirrors Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — TRS Technologies proposes to develop a variety of single crystal actuators for adaptive optics deformable mirrors. Single crystal piezoelectric actuators are...

  1. Microfabrication of stacked dielectric elastomer actuator fibers (United States)

    Corbaci, Mert; Walter, Wayne; Lamkin-Kennard, Kathleen


    Dielectric elastomer actuators (DEA) are one of the best candidate materials for next generation of robotic actuators, soft sensors and artificial muscles due to their fast response, mechanical robustness and compliance. However, high voltage requirements of DEAs have impeded their potential to become widely used in such applications. In this study, we propose a method for fabrication of silicon based multilayer DEA fibers composed of microlevel dielectric layers to improve the actuation ratios of DEAs at lower voltages. A multi-walled carbon nanotube - polydimethylsiloxane (MWCNT/PDMS) composite was used to fabricate mechanically compliant, conductive parallel plates and electrode connections for the DEA actuators. Active surface area and layer thickness were varied to study the effects of these parameters on actuation ratio as a function of applied voltage. Different structures were fabricated to assess the flexibility of the fabrication method for specific user-end applications.

  2. Actuators Using Piezoelectric Stacks and Displacement Enhancers (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph; Sherrit, Stewart; Bao, Xiaoqi; Badescu, Mircea; Lee, Hyeong Jae; Walkenmeyer, Phillip; Lih, Shyh-Shiuh


    Actuators are used to drive all active mechanisms including machines, robots, and manipulators to name a few. The actuators are responsible for moving, manipulating, displacing, pushing and executing any action that is needed by the mechanism. There are many types and principles of actuation that are responsible for these movements ranging from electromagnetic, electroactive, thermo-mechanic, piezoelectric, electrostrictive etc. Actuators are readily available from commercial producers but there is a great need for reducing their size, increasing their efficiency and reducing their weight. Studies at JPL’s Non Destructive Evaluation and Advanced Actuators (NDEAA) Laboratory have been focused on the use of piezoelectric stacks and novel designs taking advantage of piezoelectric’s potential to provide high torque/force density actuation and high electromechanical conversion efficiency. The actuators/motors that have been developed and reviewed in this paper are operated by various horn configurations as well as the use of pre-stress flexures that make them thermally stable and increases their coupling efficiency. The use of monolithic designs that pre-stress the piezoelectric stack eliminates the use of compression stress bolt. These designs enable the embedding of developed solid-state motors/actuators in any structure with the only macroscopically moving parts are the rotor or the linear translator. Finite element modeling and design tools were used to determine the requirements and operation parameters and the results were used to simulate, design and fabricate novel actuators/motors. The developed actuators and performance will be described and discussed in this paper.

  3. Optothermally actuated capillary burst valve (United States)

    Eriksen, Johan; Bilenberg, Brian; Kristensen, Anders; Marie, Rodolphe


    We demonstrate the optothermal actuation of individual capillary burst valves in an all-polymer microfluidic device. The capillary burst valves are realised in a planar design by introducing a fluidic constriction in a microfluidic channel of constant depth. We show that a capillary burst valve can be burst by raising the temperature due to the temperature dependence of the fluid surface tension. We address individual valves by using a local heating platform based on a thin film of near infrared absorber dye embedded in the lid used to seal the microfluidic device [L. H. Thamdrup et al., Nano Lett. 10, 826-832 (2010)]. An individual valve is burst by focusing the laser in its vicinity. We demonstrate the capture of single polystyrene 7 μm beads in the constriction triggered by the bursting of the valve.

  4. Characterization of kink actuators as compared to traditional chevron shaped Bent-Beam electrothermal actuators

    KAUST Repository

    Rawashdeh, E.


    This paper compares the design and performance of kink actuators, a modified version of the bent-beam thermal actuator, to the standard chevron-shaped designs. A variety of kink and chevron actuator designs were fabricated from polysilicon. While the actuators were electrically probed, these designs were tested using a probe station connected to a National Instruments (NI) controller that uses LabVIEW to extract the displacement results via image processing. The displacement results were then used to validate the thermal-electric-structural simulations produced by COMSOL. These results, in turn, were used to extract the stiffness for both actuator types. The data extracted show that chevron actuators can have larger stiffness values with increasing offsets, but at the cost of lower amplification factors. In contrast, kink actuators showed a constant stiffness value equivalent to the chevron actuator with the highest amplification factor. The kink actuator also had larger amplification factors than chevrons at all designs tested. Therefore, kink actuators are capable of longer throws at lower power levels than the standard chevron designs.

  5. Characterization of Kink Actuators as Compared to Traditional Chevron Shaped Bent-Beam Electrothermal Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian G. Foulds


    Full Text Available This paper compares the design and performance of kink actuators, a modified version of the bent-beam thermal actuator, to the standard chevron-shaped designs. A variety of kink and chevron actuator designs were fabricated from polysilicon. While the actuators were electrically probed, these designs were tested using a probe station connected to a National Instruments (NI controller that uses LabVIEW to extract the displacement results via image processing. The displacement results were then used to validate the thermal-electric-structural simulations produced by COMSOL. These results, in turn, were used to extract the stiffness for both actuator types. The data extracted show that chevron actuators can have larger stiffness values with increasing offsets, but at the cost of lower amplification factors. In contrast, kink actuators showed a constant stiffness value equivalent to the chevron actuator with the highest amplification factor. The kink actuator also had larger amplification factors than chevrons at all designs tested. Therefore, kink actuators are capable of longer throws at lower power levels than the standard chevron designs.

  6. High-Performance Multiresponsive Paper Actuators. (United States)

    Amjadi, Morteza; Sitti, Metin


    There is an increasing demand for soft actuators because of their importance in soft robotics, artificial muscles, biomimetic devices, and beyond. However, the development of soft actuators capable of low-voltage operation, powerful actuation, and programmable shape-changing is still challenging. In this work, we propose programmable bilayer actuators that operate based on the large hygroscopic contraction of the copy paper and simultaneously large thermal expansion of the polypropylene film upon increasing the temperature. The electrothermally activated bending actuators can function with low voltages (≤ 8 V), low input electric power per area (P ≤ 0.14 W cm-2), and low temperature changes (≤ 35 °C). They exhibit reversible shape-changing behavior with curvature radii up to 1.07 cm-1 and bending angle of 360°, accompanied by powerful actuation. Besides the electrical activation, they can be powered by humidity or light irradiation. We finally demonstrate the use of our paper actuators as a soft gripper robot and a lightweight paper wing for aerial robotics.

  7. Characterization of a Lorentz Force Actuator (United States)

    Donovan, John F.; Kral, Linda D.; Cary, Andrew W.


    To develop a detailed understanding of the effect of a Lorentz force actuator in seawater, both experiments and numerical simulations are conducted in an environment with no mean flow. The Lorentz force actuator is comprised of a pair of magnets and a pair of electrodes and produces a volumetric body force. A pressurized water vessel contains a uniform water/electrolyte solution. Particle image velocimetry and laser sheet flow visualization are used to obtain snapshots of the induced flow for different orientations of the laser sheet. Simulations are also performed in a static water/electrolyte solution with the same current levels as in the experiments. Flow is induced upward at the center of the actuator, even though a downward Lorentz force is applied there. Both the simulations and the experiments show that the Lorentz force actuator creates a complex three-dimensional interaction resulting in a upward flow over the actuator. Two wall jets directed toward one another are created by the forces over the electrodes that impinge in the center of the actuator and fluid is pushed up and away from the wall. In terms of vorticity production, the actuator exhibits local maxima in the curl of the Lorentz force away from the wall in a region above the magnets. Comparison between simulation and experiment is remarkably good. This work is supported by Mr. Gary Jones at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

  8. Saturated poroelastic actuators generated by topology optimization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreasen, Casper Schousboe; Sigmund, Ole


    In this paper the fluid-structure interaction problem of a saturated porous media is considered. The pressure coupling properties of porous saturated materials change with the microstructure and this is utilized in the design of an actuator using a topology optimized porous material. By maximizing...... the coupling of internal fluid pressure and elastic shear stresses a slab of the optimized porous material deflects/deforms when a pressure is imposed and an actuator is created. Several phenomenologically based constraints are imposed in order to get a stable force transmitting actuator....

  9. Refreshable Braille displays using EAP actuators (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Refreshable Braille can help visually impaired persons benefit from the growing advances in computer technology. The development of such displays in a full screen form is a great challenge due to the need to pack many actuators in small area without interferences. In recent years, various displays using actuators such as piezoelectric stacks have become available in commercial form but most of them are limited to one line Braille code. Researchers in the field of electroactive polymers (EAP) investigated methods of using these materials to form full screen displays. This manuscript reviews the state of the art of producing refreshable Braille displays using EAP-based actuators.

  10. Modeling of a Dielectric Elastomer Bender Actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul White


    Full Text Available The current smallest self-contained modular robot uses a shape memory alloy, which is inherently inefficient, slow and difficult to control. We present the design, fabrication and demonstration of a module based on dielectric elastomer actuation. The module uses a pair of bowtie dielectric elastomer actuators in an agonist-antagonist configuration and is seven times smaller than previously demonstrated. In addition, we present an intuitive model for the bowtie configuration that predicts the performance with experimental verification. Based on this model and the experimental analysis, we address the theoretical limitations and advantages of this antagonistic bender design relative to other dielectric elastomer actuators.

  11. FEM assisted design and simulation of novel electrothermal actuators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Deladi, S.; Krijnen, Gijsbertus J.M.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt


    In this work the authors present the design, simulation, and experimental results of novel electrothermal actuators, such as the trimorph actuator for out-of-plane motion, the coupled in-plane actuator for in-plane motion and an actuator providing combined in- and out-of-plane motion that have been

  12. High Reliability Cryogenic Piezoelectric Valve Actuator Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Piezoelectric actuators constructed with the "smart material" PZT offer many potential advantages for use in NASA cryo-valve missions relative to conventional...

  13. Robust Tracking Control for a Piezoelectric Actuator

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Salah, M; McIntyre, M; Dawson, D; Wagner, J


    In this paper, a hysteresis model-based nonlinear robust controller is developed for a piezoelectric actuator, utilizing a Lyapunov-based stability analysis, which ensures that a desired displacement...

  14. Serpentine Robot Arm Contains Electromagnetic Actuators (United States)

    Moya, Israel A.; Studer, Philip A.


    Identical modules assembled into flexible robot arm configured in serpentlike fashion to manipulate objects while avoiding obstacles. Each module includes integral electromagnetic actuators energized selectively to produce variety of motions, stationary configurations, and combinations thereof.

  15. Considerations for Contractile Electroactive Materials and Actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lenore Rasmussen, David Schramm, Paul Rasmussen, Kevin Mullaly, Ras Labs, LLC, Intelligent Materials for Prosthetics & Automation, Lewis D. Meixler, Daniel Pearlman and Alice Kirk


    Ras Labs produces contractile electroactive polymer (EAP) based materials and actuators that bend, swell, ripple, and contract (new development) with low electric input. In addition, Ras Labs produces EAP materials that quickly contract and expand, repeatedly, by reversing the polarity of the electric input, which can be cycled. This phenomenon was explored using molecular modeling, followed by experimentation. Applied voltage step functions were also investigated. High voltage steps followed by low voltage steps produced a larger contraction followed by a smaller contraction. Actuator control by simply adjusting the electric input is extremely useful for biomimetic applications. Muscles are able to partially contract. If muscles could only completely contract, nobody could hold an egg, for example, without breaking it. A combination of high and low voltage step functions could produce gross motor function and fine manipulation within the same actuator unit. Plasma treated electrodes with various geometries were investigated as a means of providing for more durable actuation.

  16. Performance Characterization of HT Actuator for Venus (United States)

    Rehnmark, F.; Bailey, J.; Cloninger, E.; Zacny, K.; Hall, J.; Sherrill, K.; Melko, J.; Kriechbaum, K.; Wilcox, B.


    A high temperature (HT) actuator capable of operating in the harsh environment found on the surface of Venus has been built and tested in rock drilling trials at JPL’s Venus Materials Test Facility.

  17. MEMS Sensors and Actuators Laboratory (MSAL) (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The MEMS Sensors and Actuators Laboratory (MSAL) in the A.J. Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland (UMD) was established in January 2000. Our lab...

  18. Light-actuated microrobots for biomedical science

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Glückstad, Jesper; Villangca, Mark Jayson; Palima, Darwin Z.


    Light can be used to fabricate, handle, power, and actuate microrobotics functionalities, such as the loading and unloading of micro-cargo, showing promise for drug delivery and biological-testing applications.......Light can be used to fabricate, handle, power, and actuate microrobotics functionalities, such as the loading and unloading of micro-cargo, showing promise for drug delivery and biological-testing applications....

  19. Microelectromechanical Systems Actuator Based Reconfigurable Printed Antenna (United States)

    Simons, Rainee N. (Inventor)


    A polarization reconfigurable patch antenna is disclosed. The antenna includes a feed element, a patch antenna element electrically connected to the feed element, and at least one microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) actuator, with a partial connection to the patch antenna element along an edge of the patch antenna element. The polarization of the antenna can be switched between circular polarization and linear polarization through action of the at least one MEMS actuator.

  20. Electrostatically actuated torsional resonant sensors and switches

    KAUST Repository

    Younis, Mohammad I.


    Embodiments in accordance of a torsional resonant sensor disclosure is configured to actuate a beam structure using electrostatic actuation with an AC harmonic load (e.g., AC and DC voltage sources) that is activated upon detecting a particular agent having a mass above a predefined level. In various embodiments, the beam structure may be different types of resonant structures that is at least partially coated or layered with a selective material.

  1. Linear peristaltic pump based on electromagnetic actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maddoui Lotfi


    Full Text Available In this paper a study and design of a linear peristaltic pump are presented. A set of electromagnetic (solenoid actuators is used as the active tools to drag the liquid by crushing an elastic tube. The pump consists of six serially-connected electromagnetic actuators controlled via an electronic board. This may be considered as a simulated peristalsis action of intestines. The dynamic performances of the pump are investigated analytically and experimentally.

  2. SparkJet Actuators for Flow Control (United States)


    GED-L-07-0137 Aqsi Recording Comute I, rm) /117 ~ Lens (f=105m) X2Photodiode Kodak ES4.0 (2amera 2K) Oscilloscope 300 MHz, Camera 2.5 GS/s and Laser...actuator arrays. 19 SparkJet Actuators for Flow Control Enclosure to: Final Report GED-L-07-0137 From a mathematical standpoint, CFD formulations will

  3. Design and fabrication of a hybrid actuator (United States)

    Fu, Yao; Ghantasala, Muralidhar K.; Harvey, Erol; Qin, Lijiang


    The necessity to reduce the size of actuators and at the same time increase the force and the air gap has placed severe constraints on the suitability of current microactuator technology for various applications. This has led to the development of new actuator technologies based on novel materials or modifying existing systems. As an effort in this direction, we are reporting on the design and fabrication of a hybrid actuator employing a combination of electromagnetic and piezoelectric actuation methods for the first time. This actuator was designed and optimized by using the piezoelectric and electromagnetic solvers of commercially available FEM software packages (CoventorWare and ANSYS). The device consists of a shaped piezoelectric composite cantilever on the top and a copper coil wound around a permalloy core assembled on a silicon substrate with a permanent magnet at the bottom. The composite cantilever consists of polarized piezoelectric polymer polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) with an electroplated permalloy layer on one side. Microstructures in the required shape are introduced using novel methodologies including laser micromachining and microembossing. The hybrid actuator has been fabricated and tested using standard testing procedures. The experimental data are compared with the simulation results from both the finite element methods and the analytical model. There is excellent agreement between the results obtained in simulation and by experiment. A maximum total deflection of 400 µm with a typical contact force of 200 µN has been achieved.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Moosavi


    Full Text Available An actuator is a device that converts input energy into mechanical energy. According to various types of input energy, various actuators have been advanced. Displacement in the electromagnetic, hydraulic and pneumatic actuators achieve by moving a piston via electromagnetic force or pressure, however the piezoelectric actuator (piezoceramic plates displace directly. Therefore, accuracy and speed in the piezoelectric device are higher than other types of actuators. In the present work, the high-field electromechanical response of high-quality (1−x(Bi 0.5Na0.5TiO3–x(Bi0.5K0.5TiO3 samples abbreviated to BNKTx with x = 0.18, 0.20, 0.22 and 0.24 ceramic materials across its MPB was investigated. The piezoelectrics and actuation characteristics were characterized. Ourresults indicate that x = 0.20, indeed, constitutes the best choice for the MPB composition in the system. Maximum of remanent polarization (37.5 μC cm−2 was obtained for x=0.20. High-field electromechanical responses were also obtained for BNKT0.20 samples. This material exhibited giant field induced strains of 0.13% under 1 kV mm -1 at room temperature.

  5. High-displacement spiral piezoelectric actuators (United States)

    Mohammadi, F.; Kholkin, A. L.; Jadidian, B.; Safari, A.


    A high-displacement piezoelectric actuator, employing spiral geometry of a curved piezoelectric strip is described. The monolithic actuators are fabricated using a layered manufacturing technique, fused deposition of ceramics, which is capable of prototyping electroceramic components with complex shapes. The spiral actuators (2-3 cm in diameter) consisted of 4-5 turns of a lead zirconate titanate ceramic strip with an effective length up to 28 cm. The width was varied from 0.9 to 1.75 mm with a height of 3 mm. When driven by the electric field applied across the width of the spiral wall, the tip of the actuator was found to displace in both radial and tangential directions. The tangential displacement of the tip was about 210 μm under the field of 5 kV/cm. Both the displacement and resonant frequency of the spirals could be tailored by changing the effective length and wall width. The blocking force of the actuator in tangential direction was about 1 N under the field of 5 kV/cm. These properties are advantageous for high-displacement low-force applications where bimorph or monomorph actuators are currently employed.

  6. Networked Rectenna Array for Smart Material Actuators (United States)

    Choi, Sang H.; Golembiewski, Walter T.; Song, Kyo D.


    The concept of microwave-driven smart material actuators is envisioned as the best option to alleviate the complexity associated with hard-wired control circuitry. Networked rectenna patch array receives and converts microwave power into a DC power for an array of smart actuators. To use microwave power effectively, the concept of a power allocation and distribution (PAD) circuit is adopted for networking a rectenna/actuator patch array. The PAD circuit is imbedded into a single embodiment of rectenna and actuator array. The thin-film microcircuit embodiment of PAD circuit adds insignificant amount of rigidity to membrane flexibility. Preliminary design and fabrication of PAD circuitry that consists of a few nodal elements were made for laboratory testing. The networked actuators were tested to correlate the network coupling effect, power allocation and distribution, and response time. The features of preliminary design are 16-channel computer control of actuators by a PCI board and the compensator for a power failure or leakage of one or more rectennas.

  7. Dielectric Elastomer Actuated Systems and Methods (United States)

    Dubowsky, Steven (Inventor); Hafez, Moustapha (Inventor); Lichter, Matthew (Inventor); Weiss, Peter (Inventor); Wingert, Andreas (Inventor)


    The system of the present invention includes an actuator having at least two electrodes, an elastomeric dielectric film disposed between the two electrodes, and a frame attached to the elastomeric dielectric film. The frame provides a linear actuation force characteristic over a displacement range. The displacement range is preferably the stroke of the actuator. The displacement range can be about 5 mm and greater. Further, the frame can include a plurality of configurations, for example, at least a rigid members coupled to a flexible member wherein the frame provides an elastic restoring force. In preferred embodiments, the rigid member can be, but is not limited to, curved beams, parallel beams, rods and plates. In a preferred embodiment the actuator can further include a passive element disposed between two flexible members such as, for example, links to tune a stiffness characteristic of the actuator. The passive element can be a bi-stable element. Further, the actuator can include a plurality of layers of the elastomeric dielectric film integrated into the frame. The elastomeric film can be made of different materials such as, for example, acrylic, silicone and latex.

  8. Electrowetting dynamics of microfluidic actuation. (United States)

    Wang, K-L; Jones, T B


    When voltage is suddenly applied to vertical, parallel dielectric-coated electrodes dipped into a liquid with finite conductivity, the liquid responds by rising up to reach a new hydrostatic equilibrium height. On the microfluidic scale, the dominating mechanism impeding this electromechanically induced actuation appears to be a dynamic friction force that is directly proportional to the velocity of the contact line moving along the solid surface. This mechanism has its origin in the molecular dynamics of the liquid coming into contact with the solid surface. A simple reduced-order model for the rising column of liquid is used to quantify the magnitude of this frictional effect by providing estimates for the contact line friction coefficient. Above some critical threshold of voltage, the electromechanical force is clamped, presumably by the same mechanism responsible for contact angle saturation and previously reported static height-of-rise limits. The important distinction for the dynamic case is that the onset of the saturation effect is delayed in time until the column has risen more than about halfway to its static equilibrium height.

  9. Fabrication and actuation of electro-active polymer actuator based on PSMI-incorporated PVDF (United States)

    Lu, Jun; Kim, Sang-Gyun; Lee, Sunwoo; Oh, Il-Kwon


    In this study, an ionic networking membrane (INM) of poly(styrene-alt-maleimide) (PSMI)-incorporated poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) was applied to fabricate electro-active polymer. Based on the same original membrane of PSMI-incorporated PVDF, various samples of INM actuator were prepared for different reduction times with the electroless-plating technique. The as-prepared INM actuators were tested in terms of surface resistance, platinum morphology, resonance frequency, tip displacement, current and blocked force, and their performances were compared to those of the widely used traditional Nafion actuator. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) revealed that much smaller and more uniform platinum particles were formed on the surfaces of the INM actuators as well as within their polymer matrix. Although excellent harmonic responses were observed for the newly developed INM actuators, they were found to be sensitive to the applied reduction times during the fabrication. The mechanical displacement of the INM actuator fabricated after the optimum reduction times was much larger than that of its Nafion counterpart of comparable thickness under the stimulus of constant and alternating current voltage. The PSMI-incorporated PVDF actuator can become a promising smart material to be used in the fields of biomimetic robots, biomedical devices, sensors and actuator, haptic interfaces, energy harvesting and so on.

  10. Position and torque tracking: series elastic actuation versus model-based-controlled hydraulic actuation. (United States)

    Otten, Alexander; van Vuuren, Wieke; Stienen, Arno; van Asseldonk, Edwin; Schouten, Alfred; van der Kooij, Herman


    Robotics used for diagnostic measurements on, e.g. stroke survivors, require actuators that are both stiff and compliant. Stiffness is required for identification purposes, and compliance to compensate for the robots dynamics, so that the subject can move freely while using the robot. A hydraulic actuator can act as a position (stiff) or a torque (compliant) actuator. The drawback of a hydraulic actuator is that it behaves nonlinear. This article examines two methods for controlling a nonlinear hydraulic actuator. The first method that is often applied uses an elastic element (i.e. spring) connected in series with the hydraulic actuator so that the torque can be measured as the deflection of the spring. This torque measurement is used for proportional integral control. The second method of control uses the inverse of the model of the actuator as a linearizing controller. Both methods are compared using simulation results. The controller designed for the series elastic hydraulic actuator is faster to implement, but only shows good performance for the working range for which the controller is designed due to the systems nonlinear behavior. The elastic element is a limiting factor when designing a position controller due to its low torsional stiffness. The model-based controller linearizes the nonlinear system and shows good performance when used for torque and position control. Implementing the model-based controller does require building and validating of the detailed model. © 2011 IEEE

  11. Optoelectrowetting for continuous microdroplet actuation (United States)

    Collier, Christopher M.; Hill, Kyle A.; DeWachter, Mark A.; Huizing, Alex M.; Holzman, Jonathan F.


    Microfluidics technologies have received great attention and appear in many bioanalyses applications. A recent microfluidics subset has appeared as droplet-based digital microfluidics (DMF). Here, microdroplets are manipulated in a two-dimensional on-chip plane using electric fields, contrasting the one-dimensional pressure-based channel flow of continuous flow microfluidics. These DMF systems fundamentally offer reconfigurability, whereby one device performs many bioanalysis tasks. A subset of DMF systems called optoelectrowetting is also of recent interest due to its ability for intricate microdroplet routing processes in the on-chip plane. For an optoelectrowetting chip, the DMF structure is modified with optically triggered electrodes with arrayed photoconductive switches. The arrayed photoconductive switches are optically-activated so microdroplets in the vicinity are routed to the illuminated switch. Unfortunately, such systems still require intricate electrode arrays, limiting microdroplet actuation resolution by the electrode size. This work proposes an on-chip optofluidic device with a continuous and planar semiconductor layer as the photoconductive mechanism. An illuminated section of the semiconductor layer acts as a localized electrode, with the photogenerated charge-carriers attracting nearby microdroplets. Given this planar topology, the illuminating beam is used to move the microdroplets continuously over the on-chip plane with precise optical control. The resolution for such a process is ultimately limited by charge-carrier diffusion, so an alternative material, a nanocomposite, is introduced to the on-chip device design. The nanocomposite consists of 20 nm semiconductor nanoparticles embedded in an insulative polymer host. This gives restricted diffusion length, being on the nanometer-scale of the nanoparticle diameter. Experimental device operation is demonstrated.

  12. Improved electromechanical behavior in castable dielectric elastomer actuators (United States)

    Akbari, Samin; Rosset, Samuel; Shea, Herbert R.


    Non-viscoelastic castable elastomers are replacing the polyacrylate VHB films in the new generations of dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) to achieve fast and reliable actuation. We introduce the optimum prestretch conditions to enhance the electromechanical behavior of the castable DEAs resulting in large actuation strain. For castable actuator in which the thickness is selected independent of the prestretch, uniaxial prestretch mode offers the highest actuation strain in the transverse direction compared to biaxial and pure shear. We experimentally demonstrate that miniaturization hinders the loss of tension and up to 85% linear actuation strain is generated with a 300 × 300 μm2 polydimethylsiloxanes-based DEA.

  13. Laminar composite structures for high power actuators (United States)

    Hobosyan, M. A.; Martinez, P. M.; Zakhidov, A. A.; Haines, C. S.; Baughman, R. H.; Martirosyan, K. S.


    Twisted laminar composite structures for high power and large-stroke actuators based on coiled Multi Wall Carbon Nanotube (MWNT) composite yarns were crafted by integrating high-density Nanoenergetic Gas Generators (NGGs) into carbon nanotube sheets. The linear actuation force, resulting from the pneumatic force caused by expanding gases confined within the pores of laminar structures and twisted carbon nanotube yarns, can be further amplified by increasing NGG loading and yarns twist density, as well as selecting NGG compositions with high energy density and large-volume gas generation. Moreover, the actuation force and power can be tuned by the surrounding environment, such as to increase the actuation by combustion in ambient air. A single 300-μm-diameter integrated MWNT/NGG coiled yarn produced 0.7 MPa stress and a contractile specific work power of up to 4.7 kW/kg, while combustion front propagated along the yarn at a velocity up to 10 m/s. Such powerful yarn actuators can also be operated in a vacuum, enabling their potential use for deploying heavy loads in outer space, such as to unfold solar panels and solar sails.

  14. Investigation of electrochemical actuation by polyaniline nanofibers (United States)

    Mehraeen, Shayan; Alkan Gürsel, Selmiye; Papila, Melih; Çakmak Cebeci, Fevzi


    Polyaniline nanofibers have shown promising electrical and electrochemical properties which make them prominent candidates in the development of smart systems employing sensors and actuators. Their electrochemical actuation potential is demonstrated in this study. A trilayer composite actuator based on polyaniline nanofibers was designed and fabricated. Cross-linked polyvinyl alcohol was sandwiched between two polyaniline nanofibrous electrodes as ion-containing electrolyte gel. First, electrochemical behavior of a single electrode was studied, showing reversible redox peak pairs in 1 M HCl using a cyclic voltammetry technique. High aspect ratio polyaniline nanofibers create a porous network which facilitates ion diffusion and thus accelerates redox reactions. Bending displacement of the prepared trilayer actuator was then tested and reported under an AC potential stimulation as low as 0.5 V in a variety of frequencies from 50 to 1000 mHz, both inside 1 M HCl solution and in air. Decay of performance of the composite actuator in air is investigated and it is reported that tip displacement in a solution was stable and repeatable for 1000 s in all selected frequencies.

  15. An algorithm for LQ optimal actuator location (United States)

    Darivandi, Neda; Morris, Kirsten; Khajepour, Amir


    The locations of the control hardware are typically a design variable in controller design for distributed parameter systems. In order to obtain the most efficient control system, the locations of control hardware as well as the feedback gain should be optimized. These optimization problems are generally non-convex. In addition, the models for these systems typically have a large number of degrees of freedom. Consequently, existing optimization schemes for optimal actuator placement may be inaccurate or computationally impractical. In this paper, the feedback control is chosen to be an optimal linear quadratic regulator. The optimal actuator location problem is reformulated as a convex optimization problem. A subgradient-based optimization scheme which leads to the global solution of the problem is used to optimize actuator locations. The optimization algorithm is applied to optimize the placement of piezoelectric actuators in vibration control of flexible structures. This method is compared with a genetic algorithm, and is observed to be faster and more accurate. Experiments are performed to verify the efficacy of optimal actuator placement.

  16. Evolutionary flight and enabling smart actuator devices (United States)

    Manzo, Justin; Garcia, Ephrahim


    Recent interest in morphing vehicles with multiple, optimized configurations has led to renewed research on biological flight. The flying vertebrates - birds, bats, and pterosaurs - all made or make use of various morphing devices to achieve lift to suit rapidly changing flight demands, including maneuvers as complex as perching and hovering. The first part of this paper will discuss these devices, with a focus on the morphing elements and structural strong suits of each creature. Modern flight correlations to these devices will be discussed and analyzed as valid adaptations of these evolutionary traits. The second part of the paper will focus on the use of active joint structures for use in morphing aircraft devices. Initial work on smart actuator devices focused on NASA Langley's Hyper-Elliptical Cambered Span (HECS) wing platform, which led to development of a discretized spanwise curvature effector. This mechanism uses shape memory alloy (SMA) as the sole morphing actuator, allowing fast rotation with lightweight components at the expense of energy inefficiency. Phase two of morphing actuator development will add an element of active rigidity to the morphing structure, in the form of shape memory polymer (SMP). Employing a composite structure of polymer and alloy, this joint will function as part of a biomimetic morphing actuator system in a more energetically efficient manner. The joint is thermally actuated to allow compliance on demand and rigidity in the nominal configuration. Analytical and experimental joint models are presented, and potential applications on a bat-wing aircraft structure are outlined.

  17. Polypyrrole Actuator Based on Electrospun Microribbons. (United States)

    Beregoi, Mihaela; Evanghelidis, Alexandru; Diculescu, Victor C; Iovu, Horia; Enculescu, Ionut


    The development of soft actuators by using inexpensive raw materials and straightforward fabrication techniques, aiming at creating and developing muscle like micromanipulators, represents an important challenge nowadays. Providing such devices with biomimetic qualities, for example, sensing different external stimuli, adds even more complexity to the task. We developed electroactive polymer-coated microribbons that undergo conformational changes in response to external physical and chemical parameters. These were prepared following three simple steps. During the first step nylon-6/6 microribbons were fabricated by electrospinning. In a second step the microribbons were one side coated with a metallic layer. Finally, a conducting layer of polypyrrole was added by means of electrochemical deposition. Strips of polypyrrole-coated aligned microribbon meshes were tested as actuators responding to current, pH, and temperature. The electrochemical activity of the microstructured actuators was investigated by recording cyclic voltammograms. Chronopontentiograms for specific current, pH, and temperature values were obtained in electrolytes with different compositions. It was shown that, upon variation of the external stimulus, the actuator undergoes conformational changes due to the reduction processes of the polypyrrole layer. The ability of the actuator to hold and release thin wires, and to collect polystyrene microspheres from the bottom of the electrochemical cell, was also investigated.

  18. Curved Piezoelectric Actuators for Stretching Optical Fibers (United States)

    Allison, Sidney G.; Shams, Qamar A.; Fox, Robert L.


    Assemblies containing curved piezoceramic fiber composite actuators have been invented as means of stretching optical fibers by amounts that depend on applied drive voltages. Piezoceramic fiber composite actuators are conventionally manufactured as sheets or ribbons that are flat and flexible, but can be made curved to obtain load-carrying ability and displacement greater than those obtainable from the flat versions. In the primary embodiment of this invention, piezoceramic fibers are oriented parallel to the direction of longitudinal displacement of the actuators so that application of drive voltage causes the actuator to flatten, producing maximum motion. Actuator motion can be transmitted to the optical fiber by use of hinges and clamp blocks. In the original application of this invention, the optical fiber contains a Bragg grating and the purpose of the controlled stretching of the fiber is to tune the grating as part of a small, lightweight, mode-hop-free, rapidly tunable laser for demodulating strain in Bragg-grating strain-measurement optical fibers attached to structures. The invention could also be used to apply controllable tensile force or displacement to an object other than an optical fiber.

  19. Processing and characterization of oval piezoelectric actuators (United States)

    Jadidian, B.; Allahverdi, M.; Mohammadi, F.; Safari, A.


    The processing and characterization of piezoelectric actuators with oval geometry are presented. The monolithic actuators were fabricated using the fused deposition of ceramic process. The minor diameter of the ovals varied between 2 and 14 mm and their major diameter, wall thickness, and width were 20, 0.85, and 7 mm, respectively. When driven under electric field, the actuators expanded along their minor diameter. The static and dynamic displacements of ˜7 and ˜5.6 μm were observed at 850 V(dc) and 100 V(ac). The static displacement of the ovals varied almost linearly with voltage and did not change under the application of external load in the range of 1-15 N. However, both dynamic displacement and resonant frequency of the ovals varied, with a maximum of 42 μm and 38 Hz, respectively, under 13 N load.

  20. Electrothermally Actuated Microbeams With Varying Stiffness

    KAUST Repository

    Tella, Sherif Adekunle


    We present axially loaded clamped-guided microbeams that can be used as resonators and actuators of variable stiffness, actuation, and anchor conditions. The applied axial load is implemented by U-shaped electrothermal actuators stacked at one of the beams edges. These can be configured and wired in various ways, which serve as mechanical stiffness elements that control the operating resonance frequency of the structures and their static displacement. The experimental results have shown considerable increase in the resonance frequency and mid-point deflection of the microbeam upon changing the end conditions of the beam. These results can be promising for applications requiring large deflection and high frequency tunability, such as filters, memory devices, and switches. The experimental results are compared to multi-physics finite-element simulations showing good agreement among them.

  1. Optical feedback control for mechatronic actuators (United States)

    Necsulescu, Dan; Khatri, Zubair


    The paper investigates optical implementation of feedback control of mechatronic actuators. The goal is to analyze experimentally the feasibility of optical closed loop control using optical components for signal transmission and control loop implementation. The analysis is carried out for position control of an electric actuator. Angular position and velocity are measured with optical sensors. Measurement signals are transmitted through a fiberglass to an optical controller. Position commands from the optical controller are transmitted through a fiber glass as analog optical signals to a photodetector. A power operational amplifier serves a driver for the electric motor. This feedback controller configuration is designed to have extensive optical implementation and permits to investigate the level of complexity of the control laws which can be implemented optically. Experimental results, obtained using a LabVIEW for data acquisition and processing, illustrate the advantages and the limitations of the proposed optical implementation of a feedback controller for mechatronic actuators.

  2. Air Muscle Actuated Low Cost Humanoid Hand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Scarfe


    Full Text Available The control of humanoid robot hands has historically been expensive due to the cost of precision actuators. This paper presents the design and implementation of a low-cost air muscle actuated humanoid hand developed at Curtin University of Technology. This hand offers 10 individually controllable degrees of freedom ranging from the elbow to the fingers, with overall control handled through a computer GUI. The hand is actuated through 20 McKibben-style air muscles, each supplied by a pneumatic pressure-balancing valve that allows for proportional control to be achieved with simple and inexpensive components. The hand was successfully able to perform a number of human-equivalent tasks, such as grasping and relocating objects.

  3. Air Muscle Actuated Low Cost Humanoid Hand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Scarfe


    Full Text Available The control of humanoid robot hands has historically been expensive due to the cost of precision actuators. This paper presents the design and implementation of a low-cost air muscle actuated humanoid hand developed at Curtin University of Technology. This hand offers 10 individually controllable degrees of freedom ranging from the elbow to the fingers, with overall control handled through a computer GUI. The hand is actuated through 20 McKibben-style air muscles, each supplied by a pneumatic pressure-balancing valve that allows for proportional control to be achieved with simple and inexpensive components. The hand was successfully able to perform a number of human-equivalent tasks, such as grasping and relocating objects.

  4. Recent developments on SMA actuators: predicting the actuation fatigue life for variable loading schemes (United States)

    Wheeler, Robert W.; Lagoudas, Dimitris C.


    Shape memory alloys (SMAs), due to their ability to repeatably recover substantial deformations under applied mechanical loading, have the potential to impact the aerospace, automotive, biomedical, and energy industries as weight and volume saving replacements for conventional actuators. While numerous applications of SMA actuators have been flight tested and can be found in industrial applications, these actuators are generally limited to non-critical components, are not widely implemented and frequently one-off designs, and are generally overdesigned due to a lack of understanding of the effect of the loading path on the fatigue life and the lack of an accurate method for predicting actuator lifetimes. In recent years, multiple research efforts have increased our understanding of the actuation fatigue process of SMAs. These advances can be utilized to predict the fatigue lives and failure loads in SMA actuators. Additionally, these prediction methods can be implemented in order to intelligently design actuators in accordance with their fatigue and failure limits. In the following paper, both simple and complex thermomechanical loading paths have been considered. Experimental data was utilized from two material systems: equiatomic Nickel-Titanium and Nickelrich Nickel-Titanium.

  5. Interference in axisymmetric synthetic jet actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smyk Emil


    Full Text Available The paper presents research of phenomena of mechanical wave interference during generate synthetic jets in actuator with two executive elements (speakers. Two speakers work with the same or other phase using the phenomenon of mechanical wave interference (sound wave. In effect the volume of ingestion and expulsion flow is a sum of two speakers' work. In this paper is presented analysis of operation so constructed axisymetric actuator and influence of phase shift - between work of the speakers - on actuator’s operation.

  6. Optical nano and micro actuator technology

    CERN Document Server

    Knopf, George K


    In Optical Nano and Micro Actuator Technology, leading engineers, material scientists, chemists, physicists, laser scientists, and manufacturing specialists offer an in-depth, wide-ranging look at the fundamental and unique characteristics of light-driven optical actuators. They discuss how light can initiate physical movement and control a variety of mechanisms that perform mechanical work at the micro- and nanoscale. The book begins with the scientific background necessary for understanding light-driven systems, discussing the nature of light and the interaction between light and NEMS/MEMS d

  7. Ceramic-Metal Interfaces in Multilayer Actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engell, John; Pedersen, Henrik Guldberg; Andersen, Bjørn


    on the quality and strength of this interface. In the case of a weak ceramic-metal interface, delaminations will occur under severe working conditions.Work has been carried out on a commercial PZT type ceramic and various types of Pt electrode paste. The present study involves characterization of the interface......Multilayer actuators consist of a number of piezoelectric or electrostrictive ceramic layers, separated by thin metal electrodes. Thus, the ceramic-metal interface plays an even more important role than for bulk piezoceramics. The performance and durability of the actuator depends closely...

  8. High Performance Piezoelectric Actuated Gimbal (HIERAX)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Charles Tschaggeny; Warren Jones; Eberhard Bamberg


    This paper presents a 3-axis gimbal whose three rotational axes are actuated by a novel drive system: linear piezoelectric motors whose linear output is converted to rotation by using drive disks. Advantages of this technology are: fast response, high accelerations, dither-free actuation and backlash-free positioning. The gimbal was developed to house a laser range finder for the purpose of tracking and guiding unmanned aerial vehicles during landing maneuvers. The tilt axis was built and the test results indicate excellent performance that meets design specifications.

  9. A dynamic linearization concept for piezoelectric actuators. (United States)

    Biancuzzi, Giovanni; Haller, Daniel; Lemke, Thomas; Wischke, Martin; Goldschmidtboeing, Frank; Woias, Peter


    We present a linearization circuit based on a capacitive Wheatstone bridge that is able to set a desired polarization in a piezoactuator. The system is meant to be used for dynamic actuation in a broad frequency range. A general nonlinear model for piezoactuators is presented in which two nonlinear sub-systems are cascaded: the electric-field-to-polarization (E-P) and the polarization-to-strain (P-x) blocks. The inversion of the latter sub-system in combination with the linearization bridge results in a reduction of up to 19 dB of the harmonic distortion of the actuator's mechanical displacement. © 2011 IEEE

  10. Supporting scalable Bayesian networks using configurable discretizer actuators

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Osunmakinde, I


    Full Text Available The authors propose a generalized model with configurable discretizer actuators as a solution to the problem of the discretization of massive numerical datasets. Their solution is based on a concurrent distribution of the actuators and uses dynamic...

  11. Actuator assembly including a single axis of rotation locking member (United States)

    Quitmeyer, James N.; Benson, Dwayne M.; Geck, Kellan P.


    An actuator assembly including an actuator housing assembly and a single axis of rotation locking member fixedly attached to a portion of the actuator housing assembly and an external mounting structure. The single axis of rotation locking member restricting rotational movement of the actuator housing assembly about at least one axis. The single axis of rotation locking member is coupled at a first end to the actuator housing assembly about a Y axis and at a angle to an X and Z axis providing rotation of the actuator housing assembly about the Y axis. The single axis of rotation locking member is coupled at a second end to a mounting structure, and more particularly a mounting pin, about an X axis and at a angle to a Y and Z axis providing rotation of the actuator housing assembly about the X axis. The actuator assembly is thereby restricted from rotation about the Z axis.

  12. Prognostic Health-Management System Development for Electromechanical Actuators (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Electro-mechanical actuators (EMAs) have been gaining increased acceptance as safety-critical actuation devices in the next generation of aircraft and spacecraft....

  13. Structure-property relations of gold and graphene nanoporous actuators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Saane, Siva Shankar Reddy


    Electrochemical nanoporous actuators have low weight, large specific surface areas and low voltage operating capabilities, making them attractive for application in small-scale electromechanical devices. The actuation strain of these materials at the macroscopic scale is a manifestation of

  14. Evaluation of encapsulating coatings on the performance of polypyrrole actuators (United States)

    Naficy, Sina; Stoboi, Nicholas; Whitten, Philip G.; Spinks, Geoffrey M.; Wallace, Gordon G.


    Conjugated polymer actuators are electroactive materials capable of generating force and movement in response to an applied external voltage. Many potential biomedical and industrial applications require these actuators to operate in a liquid environment. However, immersion of uncoated conducting polymer actuators in non-electrolyte liquids greatly reduces their operating lifetime. Here, we demonstrate the use of spray coating as an effective and simple method to encapsulate polypyrrole (PPy) tri-layer bending actuators. Poly(styrene-b-isobutylene-b-styrene) (SIBS) was used as an encapsulating, compliant spray coating on PPy actuators. A significant enhancement in actuator lifetime in both air and water was observed by encapsulating the actuators. The change in stiffness and reduction in bending amplitude for coatings of different thickness was studied. A simple beam mechanics model describes the experimental results and highlights the importance of coating compliance for actuator coatings. The model may be used to evaluate other possible encapsulating materials.

  15. Mathematical modeling of a V-stack piezoelectric aileron actuation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ioan URSU


    Full Text Available The article presents a mathematical modeling of aileron actuation that uses piezo V-shaped stacks. The aim of the actuation is the increasing of flutter speed in the context of a control law, in order to widen the flight envelope. In this way the main advantage of such a piezo actuator, the bandwidth is exploited. The mathematical model is obtained based on free body diagrams, and the numerical simulations allow a preliminary sizing of the actuator.

  16. Paper Actuators Made with Cellulose and Hybrid Materials


    Mohammad Maniruzzaman; Sang Yeol Yang; Kiju Yun; Mahadeva, Suresha K.; Sungryul Yun; Jaehwan Kim


    Recently, cellulose has been re-discovered as a smart material that can be used as sensor and actuator materials, which is termed electro-active paper (EAPap). This paper reports recent advances in paper actuators made with cellulose and hybrid materials such as multi-walled carbon nanotubes, conducting polymers and ionic liquids. Two distinct actuator principles in EAPap actuators are demonstrated: piezoelectric effect and ion migration effect in cellulose. Piezoelectricity of cellulose EAPa...

  17. Preisach model of hysteresis for the Piezoelectric Actuator Drive

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zsurzsan, Tiberiu-Gabriel; Andersen, Michael A. E.; Zhang, Zhe


    The Piezoelectric Actuator Drive (PAD) is a precise piezoelectric motor generating high-torque rotary motion, which employs piezoelectric stack actuators in a wobblestyle actuation to generate rotation. The piezoelectric stacked ceramics used as the basis for motion in the motor suffer from...

  18. Thermal Actuation for Precision Micro Motion and Positioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Paalvast, S.L.


    The primary goal of this research was to study the feasibility of a thermal micro actuator for improved tracking performance of a Hard Disk Drive (HDD), and the feasibility of thermal actuation for precision micro motion and positioning in general. The fast dynamics of the micro actuator allows it

  19. Evaluation of pneumatic cylinder actuators for hand prostheses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Peerdeman, B.; Smit, Gerwin; Stramigioli, Stefano; Plettenburg, Dick; Misra, Sarthak


    DC motors are currently the preferred actuation method for externally powered hand prostheses. However, they are often heavy and large, which limits the number of actuators that can be integrated into the prosthesis. Alternative actuation methods are being researched, but have not yet found wide

  20. A Review of High Voltage Drive Amplifiers for Capacitive Actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Huang, Lina; Zhang, Zhe; Andersen, Michael A. E.


    This paper gives an overview of the high voltage amplifiers, which are used to drive capacitive actuators. The amplifiers for both piezoelectric and DEAP (dielectric electroactive polymer) actuator are discussed. The suitable topologies for driving capacitive actuators are illustrated in detail...

  1. Steering Micro-Robotic Swarm by Dynamic Actuating Fields

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chao, Q.; Yu, J; Dai, C.; Xu, T; Zhang, L.; Wang, C.C.; Jin, X.


    We present a general solution for steering microrobotic
    swarm by dynamic actuating fields. In our approach, the
    motion of micro-robots is controlled by changing the actuating
    direction of a field applied to them. The time-series sequence
    of actuating field’s directions can be

  2. An H-module linear actuator for medical equipment applications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, Xiao; Wu, Keyuan; ye, yunyue


    An H-module linear actuator (HMLA) is proposed in this paper for medical equipment applications. Compared to the existing linear actuators used in medical equipment, the proposed H-module linear actuator has much lower normal force, which makes use of an additional air-suspension system unnecessary...

  3. A series elastic- and Bowden-cable-based actuation system for use as torque actuator in exoskeleton-type robots

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veneman, J.F.; Ekkelenkamp, R.; Kruidhof, R.; van der Helm, F.C.T.; van der Kooij, Herman


    Within the context of impedance controlled exoskeletons, common actuators have important drawbacks. Either the actuators are heavy, have a complex structure or are poor torque sources, due to gearing or heavy nonlinearity. Considering our application, an impedance controlled gait rehabilitation

  4. Novel Highly Efficient Compact Rotary-Hammering Planetary Sampler Actuated by a Single Piezoelectric Actuator Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We had two objectives in this task: 1. Develop effective single low-mass, low-power piezoelectric drive that can actuate rotary-hammer samplers through walls. 2....

  5. Numerical simulation of mechatronic sensors and actuators

    CERN Document Server

    Kaltenbacher, Manfred


    Focuses on the physical modeling of mechatronic sensors and actuators and their precise numerical simulation using the Finite Element Method (FEM). This book discusses the physical modeling as well as numerical computation. It also gives a comprehensive introduction to finite elements, including their computer implementation.

  6. Selecting Actuator Configuration for a Benson Boiler

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kragelund, Martin Nygaard; Leth, John-Josef; Wisniewski, Rafal


    with particular focus on a boiler in a power plant operated by DONG Energy - a Danish energy supplier. The problem has been reformulated using mathematic notions from economics. The selection of actuator configuration has been limited to the fuel system which in the considered plant consists of three different...

  7. MSM actuators: design rules and control strategies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holz, Benedikt; Janocha, Hartmut [Laboratory of Process Automation (LPA), Saarland University, Saarbruecken (Germany); Riccardi, Leonardo; Naso, David [Department of Electronics and Electrical Science (DEE), Politecnico di Bari (Italy)


    Magnetic shape memory (MSM) alloys are comparatively new active materials which can be used for several industrial applications, ranging from precise positioning systems to advanced robotics. Beyond the material research, which deals with the basic thermo-magneto-mechanical properties of the crystals, the design as well as the control of the actuators displacement is an essential challenge. This paper addresses those two topics, trying to give to the reader a useful overview of existing results, but also presents new ideas. First, it introduces and discusses in details some possible designs, with a special emphasis on innovative actuator design concepts which are able to exploit the particular potentialities of MSM elements. The second focus of the paper is on the problem of designing a controller, i.e., an algorithm that allows to obtain a required performance from the actuator. The proposed control strategies try to take into account two main characteristics of MSM elements: the hysteresis and the temperature dependence. The effectiveness of the strategies is emphasized by experimental results performed on a commercially available MSM actuator demonstrator. (Copyright copyright 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim)

  8. Comb-drive actuators for large displacements

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Legtenberg, Rob; Legtenberg, R.; Groeneveld, A.W.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt

    The design, fabrication and experimental results of lateral-comb-drive actuators for large displacements at low driving voltages is presented. A comparison of several suspension designs is given, and the lateral large deflection behaviour of clamped-clamped beams and a folded flexure design is

  9. Actuation response of polyacrylate dielectric elastomers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kofod, G.; Kornbluh, R.; Pelrine, R.


    Polyacrylate dielectric elastomers have yielded extremely large strain and elastic energy density suggesting that they are useful for many actuator applications. A thorough understanding of the physics underlying the mechanism of the observed response to an electric field can help develop improve...

  10. Piezoelectric actuators control applications of smart materials

    CERN Document Server

    Choi, Seung-Bok


    Newer classes of smart materials are beginning to display the capacity for self-repair, self-diagnosis, self-multiplication, and self-degradation. While there are other candidates, piezoelectric actuators and sensors are proving to be the best choice. This title details the authors' research and development in this area.

  11. Influencing the naval mine actuation location

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veldhoven, J. van; Beckers, A.L.D.


    During a naval mine sweeping operation, there is a risk of damage to the sweeping gear due to mine detonations. To reduce this risk, we mention five different methods to influence the actuation location of naval mines relative to a sweeping system. Three of these are discussed in more detail, using

  12. Actuator topology design using the controllability Gramian

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alves da Silveira, Otávio Augusto; Ono Fonseca, Jun Sérgio; Santos, Ilmar


    This work develops a methodology for the optimal design of actuators for the vibration control of flexible structures. The objective is the maximization of a measure of the controllability Gramian. The test case is the embedding of piezoelectric inserts in elastic structures for vibration control...

  13. Plant-based torsional actuator with memory (United States)

    Nayomi Plaza; Samuel L. Zelinka; Don S. Stone; Joseph E. Jakes


    A bundle of a few loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) cells are moisture-activated torsional actuators that twist multiple revolutions per cm length in direct proportion to moisture content. The bundles generate 10 N m kg􀀀1 specific torque during both twisting and untwisting, which is higher than an electric motor. Additionally, the bundles exhibit a moisture-...

  14. A breath actuated dry powder inhaler

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Boer, Anne; Frijlink, Henderik W.; Hagedoorn, Paul


    A breath actuated dry powder inhaler with a single air circulation chamber for de-agglomeration of entrained powdered medicament using the energy of the inspiratory air stream. The chamber has a substantially polygonal sidewall, a plurality of air supply channels entering the chamber substantially

  15. Math Machines: Using Actuators in Physics Classes (United States)

    Thomas, Frederick J.; Chaney, Robert A.; Gruesbeck, Marta


    Probeware (sensors combined with data-analysis software) is a well-established part of physics education. In engineering and technology, sensors are frequently paired with actuators--motors, heaters, buzzers, valves, color displays, medical dosing systems, and other devices that are activated by electrical signals to produce intentional physical…

  16. Mechanisms and actuators for rotorcraft blade morphing (United States)

    Vocke, Robert D., III

    The idea of improved fight performance through changes in the control surfaces dates back to the advent of aviation with the Wright brothers' pioneering work on "wing warping," but it was not until the recent progress in material and actuator development that such control surfaces seemed practical for modern aircraft. This has opened the door to a new class of aircraft that have the ability to change shape or morph, which are being investigated due to the potential to have a single platform serve multiple mission objectives, as well as improve performance characteristics. While the majority of existing research for morphing aircraft has focused on fixedwing aircraft, rotary-wing aircraft have begun to receive more attention. The purpose of this body of work is to investigate the current state of morphing actuation technology for rotorcraft and improve upon it. Specifically, this work looks at two types of morphing: Pneumatic Artificial Muscle (PAM) actuated trailing edge flaps and conformal variable diameter morphing. First, active camber changes through the use of PAM powered trailing edge flaps were investigated due to the potential for reductions in power requirements and vibration/noise levels. A PAM based antagonistic actuation system was developed utilizing a novel combination of mechanism geometry and PAM bias contraction optimization to overcome the natural extension stiffening characteristics of PAMs. In open-loop bench-top testing against a "worst-case" constant torsional loading, the system demonstrated actuation authority suitable for both primary control and vibration/noise reduction. Additionally, closed-loop test data indicated that the system was capable of tracking complex waveforms consistent with those needed for rotorcraft control. This system demonstrated performance on-par with the state of the art pneumatic trailing edge flap actuators, yet with a much smaller footprint and impact on the rotor-blade. The second morphing system developed in

  17. Failure of cargo aileron’s actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Zucca


    Full Text Available During a ferry flight, in a standard operation condition and at cruising level, a military cargo experienced a double hydraulic system failure due to a structural damage of the dual booster actuator. The booster actuator is the main component in mechanism of aileron’s deflection. The crew was able to arrange an emergency landing thanks to the spare oil onboard: load specialists refilled the hydraulic reservoirs. Due to safety concerns and in order to prevent the possibility of other similar incidents, a technical investigation took place. The study aimed to carry out the analysis of root causes of the actuator failure. The Booster actuator is composed mainly by the piston rod and its aluminum external case (AA7049. The assembly has two bronze caps on both ends. These are fixed in position by means of two retainers. At one end of the actuator case is placed a trunnion: a cylindrical protrusion used as a pivoting point on the aircraft. The fracture was located at one end of the case, on the trunnion side, in correspondence to the cap and over the retainer. One of the two fracture surfaces was found separated to the case and with the cap entangled inside. The fracture surfaces of the external case indicated fatigue crack growth followed by ductile separation. The failure analysis was performed by means of optical, metallographic, digital and electronic microscopy. The collected evidences showed a multiple initiation fracture mechanism. Moreover, 3D scanner reconstruction and numerical simulation demonstrated that dimensional non conformances and thermal loads caused an abnormal stress concentration. Stress concentration was located along the case assy outer surface where the fatigue crack originated. The progressive rupture mechanism grew under cyclical axial load due to the normal operations. Recommendations were issued in order to improve dimensional controls and assembly procedures during production and overhaul activities.

  18. Printing low-voltage dielectric elastomer actuators (United States)

    Poulin, Alexandre; Rosset, Samuel; Shea, Herbert R.


    We demonstrate the fabrication of fully printed thin dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs), reducing the operation voltage below 300 V while keeping good actuation strain. DEAs are soft actuators capable of strains greater than 100% and response times below 1 ms, but they require driving voltage in the kV range, limiting the possible applications. One way to reduce the driving voltage of DEAs is to decrease the dielectric membrane thickness, which is typically in the 20-100 μm range, as reliable fabrication becomes challenging below this thickness. We report here the use of pad-printing to produce μm thick silicone membranes, on which we pad-print μm thick compliant electrodes to create DEAs. We achieve a lateral actuation strain of 7.5% at only 245 V on a 3 μm thick pad-printed membrane. This corresponds to a ratio of 125%/kV2, by far the highest reported value for DEAs. To quantify the increasing stiffening impact of the electrodes on DEA performance as the membrane thickness decreases, we compare two circular actuators, one with 3 μm- and one with 30 μm-thick membranes. Our experimental measurements show that the strain uniformity of the 3 μm-DEA is indeed affected by the mechanical impact of the electrodes. We developed a simple DEA model that includes realistic electrodes of finite stiffness, rather than assuming zero stiffness electrodes as is commonly done. The simulation results confirm that the stiffening impact of the electrodes is an important parameter that should not be neglected in the design of thin-DEAs. This work presents a practical approach towards low-voltage DEAs, a critical step for the development of real world applications.

  19. Actuator development for the Instrument Pointing System (IPS) (United States)

    Suttner, K.


    The mechanisms of the instrument pointing system (IPS) are described. Particular emphasis is placed on the actuators which are necessary for operating the IPS. The actuators are described as follows: (1) two linear actuators that clamp the gimbals down during ascent and descent; (2) two linear actuators that attach the payload to the IPS during the mission, and release it into the payload clamps; (3) one rotational actuator that opens and closes the payload clamps; and (4) three identical drive units that represent the three orthogonal gimbal axes and are the prime movers for pointing. Design features, manufacturing problems, test performance, and results are presented.

  20. Printing 3D dielectric elastomer actuators for soft robotics (United States)

    Rossiter, Jonathan; Walters, Peter; Stoimenov, Boyko


    We present a new approach to the fabrication of soft dielectric elastomer actuators using a 3D printing process. Complete actuators including active membranes and support structures can be 3D printed in one go, resulting in a great improvement in fabrication speed and increases in accuracy and consistency. We describe the fabrication process and present force and displacement results for a double-membrane antagonistic actuator. In this structure controlled prestrain is applied by the simple process of pressing together two printed actuator halves. The development of 3D printable soft actuators will have a large impact on many application areas including engineering, medicine and the emerging field of soft robotics.

  1. Another Lesson from Plants: The Forward Osmosis-Based Actuator (United States)

    Sinibaldi, Edoardo; Argiolas, Alfredo; Puleo, Gian Luigi; Mazzolai, Barbara


    Osmotic actuation is a ubiquitous plant-inspired actuation strategy that has a very low power consumption but is capable of generating effective movements in a wide variety of environmental conditions. In light of these features, we aimed to develop a novel, low-power-consumption actuator that is capable of generating suitable forces during a characteristic actuation time on the order of a few minutes. Based on the analysis of plant movements and on osmotic actuation modeling, we designed and fabricated a forward osmosis-based actuator with a typical size of 10 mm and a characteristic time of 2–5 minutes. To the best of our knowledge, this is the fastest osmotic actuator developed so far. Moreover, the achieved timescale can be compared to that of a typical plant cell, thanks to the integrated strategy that we pursued by concurrently addressing and solving design and material issues, as paradigmatically explained by the bioinspired approach. Our osmotic actuator produces forces above 20 N, while containing the power consumption (on the order of 1 mW). Furthermore, based on the agreement between model predictions and experimental observations, we also discuss the actuator performance (including power consumption, maximum force, energy density and thermodynamic efficiency) in relation to existing actuation technologies. In light of the achievements of the present study, the proposed osmotic actuator holds potential for effective exploitation in bioinspired robotics systems. PMID:25020043

  2. Mechatronics and Bioinspiration in Actuator Design and Control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. L. Pons


    Full Text Available Actuators are components of motion control systems in which mechatronics plays a crucial role. They can be regarded as a paradigmatic case in which this mechatronic approach is required. Furthermore, actuator technologies can get new sources of inspiration from nature (bioinspiration. Biological systems are the result of an evolutionary process and show excellent levels of performance. In this paper, we analyse the actuator as a bioinspired mechatronic system through analogies between mechatronics and biological actuating mechanisms that include hierarchical control of actuators, switched control of power flow and some transduction principles. Firstly, some biological models are introduced as a source of inspiration for setting up both actuation principles and control technologies. Secondly, a particular actuator technology, the travelling wave ultrasonic motor, is taken to illustrate this approach. Eventually, the last section draws some conclusions and points out future directions.

  3. The Energy Amplification Characteristic Research of a Multimodal Actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Han Yali


    Full Text Available A multimodal actuator is proposed to fulfil the different walking patterns of a power-assisted knee exoskeleton. With this actuator, the exoskeleton leg can realize several modes of operation, including series elastic actuation, stiff position control and energy storage and release. The energy amplification characteristics of the multimodal actuator in the series elastic mode are analysed. A dynamics model was established to study how series elasticity and the equivalent mass of transmission influence a power source, such as an electric motor. The results, in both simulation and experiment, show that series elasticity can amplify actuator power output, and the power output of a multimodal actuator is greater when the equivalent mass of the transmission mechanism is smaller. This research into multimodal actuator energy amplification supplies important insights into the design of artificial systems that can more closely approximate the performance of biological systems.

  4. Note: A SMA wire actuated extremely long-lifetime release actuator using two ball-lock mechanisms (United States)

    Huang, Dawei; Yan, Xiaojun; Zhang, Xiaoyong; Bai, Haibo; Wang, Xian; Liu, Ying


    A shape memory alloy (SMA)-wire actuated release actuator with an extremely long lifetime was designed and validated. To ensure the ability of repeated actuation, two stages of ball-lock mechanisms were adopted to reduce the load in the SMA wire. In addition, a length-increasing design of the SMA wire was employed. Validation tests, including function tests, vibration tests, shock tests, and thermal vacuum tests were conducted on prototypes. According to the test results, the actuator can release a maximum preload of 15 kN and has a lifetime of more than 693 cycles. Furthermore, the actuator can function well, even under severe thermal and vibration environments.

  5. Biomimetic jellyfish-inspired underwater vehicle actuated by ionic polymer metal composite actuators (United States)

    Najem, Joseph; Sarles, Stephen A.; Akle, Barbar; Leo, Donald J.


    This paper presents the design, fabrication, and characterization of a biomimetic jellyfish robot that uses ionic polymer metal composites (IPMCs) as flexible actuators for propulsion. The shape and swimming style of this underwater vehicle are based on the Aequorea victoria jellyfish, which has an average swimming speed of 20 mm s-1 and which is known for its high swimming efficiency. The Aequorea victoria is chosen as a model system because both its bell morphology and kinematic properties match the mechanical properties of IPMC actuators. This medusa is characterized by its low swimming frequency, small bell deformation during the contraction phase, and high Froude efficiency. The critical components of the robot include the flexible bell that provides the overall shape and dimensions of the jellyfish, a central hub and a stage used to provide electrical connections and mechanical support to the actuators, eight distinct spars meant to keep the upper part of the bell stationary, and flexible IPMC actuators that extend radially from the central stage. The bell is fabricated from a commercially available heat-shrinkable polymer film to provide increased shape-holding ability and reduced weight. The IPMC actuators constructed for this study demonstrated peak-to-peak strains of ˜0.7% in water across a frequency range of 0.1-1.0 Hz. By tailoring the applied voltage waveform and the flexibility of the bell, the completed robotic jellyfish with four actuators swam at an average speed 0.77 mm s-1 and consumed 0.7 W. When eight actuators were used the average speed increased to 1.5 mm s-1 with a power consumption of 1.14 W.

  6. More than 10-fold increase in the actuation strain of silicone dielectric elastomer actuators by applying prestrain (United States)

    Akbari, S.; Rosset, Samuel; Shea, Herbert R.


    Silicone based dielectric elastomer actuators are preferred for reliable and fast actuation due to their negligible viscoelastic behavior. However, it is more challenging to achieve large deformation actuation using this class of polymers compared to the traditionally used VHB films. In this paper, we present theoretical guidelines for improving actuation strain of silicone based dielectric elastomer actuators. The electromechanical behavior of two different silicones is compared and it is demonstrated that the softest elastomer is not necessarily the best choice to achieve large deformation. Lastly, we have experimentally shown that uniaxially prestretching the elastomer with an optimum prestretch ratio enhances the actuation strain up to 10 times. Actuation strain of up to 80% on 100 × 100 μm2 microactuators is generated.

  7. (abstract) NDE and Advanced Actuators at JPL (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    JPL is responsible for deep space exploration using spacecraft and telerobotic technologies. Since all JPL's missions are one of a kind and hardware dependent, the requirements for nondestructive evaluation (NDE) of the materials and structures that are employed are significantly more stringent than the ones for conventional aerospace needs. The multidisciplinary technologies that are developed at JPL, particularily the ones for the exploration of Mars, are finding applications to a wide variety of NDE applications. Further, technology spin-offs are enabling the development of advanced actuators that are being used to drive various types of telerobotic devices. A review will be given of the recent JPL NDE and advanced actuators activity and it will include several short videos.

  8. A bistable electromagnetically actuated rotary gate microvalve (United States)

    Luharuka, Rajesh; Hesketh, Peter J.


    Two types of rotary gate microvalves are developed for flow modulation in microfluidic systems. These microvalves have been tested for an open flow rate of up to 100 sccm and operate under a differential pressure of 6 psig with flow modulation of up to 100. The microvalve consists of a suspended gate that rotates in the plane of the chip to regulate flow through the orifice. The gate is suspended by a novel fully compliant in-plane rotary bistable micromechanism (IPRBM) that advantageously constrains the gate in all degrees of freedom except for in-plane rotational motion. Multiple inlet/outlet orifices provide flexibility of operating the microvalve in three different flow configurations. The rotary gate microvalve is switched with an external electromagnetic actuator. The suspended gate is made of a soft magnetic material and its electromagnetic actuation is based on the operating principle of a variable-reluctance stepper motor.

  9. Considerations for contractile electroactive materials and actuators (United States)

    Rasmussen, Lenore; Meixler, Lewis D.; Gentile, Charles A.


    Electroactive polymers (EAPs) that bend, swell, ripple (first generation materials), and now contract with low electric input (new development) have been produced. The mechanism of contraction is not well understood. Radionuclide-labeled experiments, molecular modeling, electrolyte experiments, pH experiments, and an ionic concentration experiment were used to determine the chain of events that occur during contraction and, reciprocally, expansion when the polarity is reversed, in these ionic EAPs. Plasma treatment of the electrodes, along with other strategies, allows for the embedded electrodes and the EAP material of the actuator to work and move as a unit, with no detachment, by significantly improving the metal-polymer interface, analogous to nerves and tendons moving with muscles during movement. Challenges involved with prototyping actuation using contractile EAPs are also discussed.

  10. Considerations For Contractile Electroactive Materials and Actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lenore Rasmussen, Lewis D. Meixler and Charles A. Gentile


    Electroactive polymers (EAPs) that bend, swell, ripple (first generation materials), and now contract with low electric input (new development) have been produced. The mechanism of contraction is not well understood. Radionuclide-labeled experiments, molecular modeling, electrolyte experiments, pH experiments, and an ionic concentration experiment were used to determine the chain of events that occur during contraction and, reciprocally, expansion when the polarity is reversed, in these ionic EAPs. Plasma treatment of the electrodes, along with other strategies, allows for the embedded electrodes and the EAP material of the actuator to work and move as a unit, with no detachment, by significantly improving the metal-polymer interface, analogous to nerves and tendons moving with muscles during movement. Challenges involved with prototyping actuation using contractile EAPs are also discussed.

  11. Satellite Attitude Control Using Only Electromagnetic Actuation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wisniewski, Rafal

    of the work was on the class of periodic systems reflecting orbital motion of the satellite. In addition to a theoretical treatment, the thesis contains a large portion of application considerations. The controllers developed were implemented for the Danish Ørsted satellite. The control concept considered......The primary purpose of this work was to develop control laws for three axis stabilization of a magnetic actuated satellite. This was achieved by a combination of linear and nonlinear system theory. In order to reach this goal new theoretical results were produced in both fields. The focus...... was that interaction between the Earth's magnetic field and a magnetic field generated by a set of coils in the satellite can be used for actuation. Magnetic torquing was found attractive for generation of control torques on small satellites, since magnetic control systems are relatively lightweight, require low power...

  12. Soft Actuators for Small-Scale Robotics. (United States)

    Hines, Lindsey; Petersen, Kirstin; Lum, Guo Zhan; Sitti, Metin


    This review comprises a detailed survey of ongoing methodologies for soft actuators, highlighting approaches suitable for nanometer- to centimeter-scale robotic applications. Soft robots present a special design challenge in that their actuation and sensing mechanisms are often highly integrated with the robot body and overall functionality. When less than a centimeter, they belong to an even more special subcategory of robots or devices, in that they often lack on-board power, sensing, computation, and control. Soft, active materials are particularly well suited for this task, with a wide range of stimulants and a number of impressive examples, demonstrating large deformations, high motion complexities, and varied multifunctionality. Recent research includes both the development of new materials and composites, as well as novel implementations leveraging the unique properties of soft materials. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  13. Sensing and actuation of smart chiral honeycombs (United States)

    Abramovitch, H.; Burgard, M.; Edery-Azulay, Lucy; Evans, K. E.; Hoffmeister, M.; Miller, W.; Scarpa, F.; Smith, C. W.; Tee, K. F.; Schönecker, A.; Seffner, L.


    A chiral honeycomb configuration is developed with embedded piezosensors and actuators for smart sandwich panel applications. The chiral honeycomb concept is made of repeating units of cylinders and plates (ligaments), featuring an in-plane negative Poisson's ratio. Rapid Prototyping vacuum-cast and FDM (Fusion Deposition Moulding) techniques are developed to embed micro fibres composites to be used for potential structural health monitoring (SHM) applications, and microwave absorption screens for electromagnetic compatibility. Finite Element models are also developed to prototype and simulate the response, sensing and actuation capability of the honeycombs for design purposes. Dynamic tests using scanning laser vibrometers and acoustic wave propagation are carried out to assess the feasibility of the concept.

  14. Robust PID Controller for a Pneumatic Actuator


    Skarpetis Michael G.; Koumboulis Fotis N.; Panagiotakis George; Kouvakas Nikolaos D.


    In this paper the position control pneumatic actuator using a robust PID controller is presented. The parameters of the PID controller are computed using a Hurwitz invariability technique enriched with a Simulated Annealing Algorithm. The nonlinear model involves uncertain parameters due to linearization of the servo valve, variations of the initial volume of the cylinder and variation of the external load. The problem is proven to be solvable and the controller parameters are chosen to provi...

  15. Azobenzene compound-based photomechanical actuator devices (United States)

    Ye, Xianjun; Kuzyk, Mark G.


    It has been shown that the chromophore disperse red 1 azobenzene (DR1) when doped into poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) optical fiber can be used to make an optical cantilever in which an asymmetrically propagating beam at 633nm causes the fiber to bend. The fast response process is purported to be due to elongation of the material as molecules change between cis and trans isomers. In our work, UV light of 350nm will be used to investigate trans to cis somerization, which should induce contraction. Short fiber segments in a three-contactpoint geometry will be used to control the position and tilt of silver- or aluminum-coated coverslips that together with microscope glass slides as the substrate make optically-actuated beam-controlling mounts and Fabry-Perot interferometers. A Michelson interferometer is used to measure the length change of the fiber actuator. Azodye doped liquid crystal (LC) elastomers have been demonstrated to have a photomechanical effect that is at least ten times bigger than thermoplastic-based polymer fiber. However, the optical quality of thermoplastics are much better, enabling the cascading of devices in series. We will report on visible and UV laser-actuation of LC elastomer and polymer device structures using a quadrant photodetector to record the beam deflection caused by the shape change of the material, which will allow for dynamical measurements of the mechanisms. All measurements will be calibrated against a piezoelectric crystal actuator. Photomechanical devices provide an inexpensive but versatile, small-form factor, vibration free and high precision solution to optomechanics, sensing, positioning and other space applications.

  16. Dynamic Electromechanical Coupling of Piezoelectric Bending Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mostafa R. A. Nabawy


    Full Text Available Electromechanical coupling defines the ratio of electrical and mechanical energy exchanged during a flexure cycle of a piezoelectric actuator. This paper presents an analysis of the dynamic electromechanical coupling factor (dynamic EMCF for cantilever based piezoelectric actuators and provides for the first time explicit expressions for calculation of dynamic EMCF based on arrangement of passive and active layers, layer geometry, and active and passive materials selection. Three main cantilever layer configurations are considered: unimorph, dual layer bimorph and triple layer bimorph. The actuator is modeled using standard constitutive dynamic equations that relate deflection and charge to force and voltage. A mode shape formulation is used for the cantilever dynamics that allows the generalized mass to be the actual mass at the first resonant frequency, removing the need for numerical integration in the design process. Results are presented in the form of physical insight from the model structure and also numerical evaluations of the model to provide trends in dynamic EMCF with actuator design parameters. For given material properties of the active and passive layers and given system overall damping ratio, the triple layer bimorph topology is the best in terms of theoretically achievable dynamic EMCF, followed by the dual layer bimorph. For a damping ratio of 0.035, the dynamic EMCF for an example dual layer bimorph configuration is 9% better than for a unimorph configuration. For configurations with a passive layer, the ratio of thicknesses for the passive and active layers is the primary geometric design variable. Choice of passive layer stiffness (Young’s modulus relative to the stiffness of the material in the active layer is an important materials related design choice. For unimorph configurations, it is beneficial to use the highest stiffness possible passive material, whereas for triple layer bimorph configurations, the passive

  17. Distributed Magnetic Actuators for Fine Shape Control (United States)


    1988 Authors: SatCon Technology Corporation G. Anastas 71 Rogers Street D. Elsenhaure Cambridge, NA 02142 R. Hockney B. Johnson RO1-88 K. Misovec F04611...Security Classification) -2 Distributed Magnetic Actuators for Fine Shape Control (U) 12, PERSONAL AUTHOR(S) George Anastas, David Eisenhaure, Richard... Hockney , Bruce Johnson, Kathleen Misovec 13a. TYPE OF REPORT 13b. TIME COVERED 14. DATE OF"REPORT (ear, Month,Day) 15. PAGE COUNT Final FROM R7/7 TO

  18. Stabilization of Neutral Systems with Saturating Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. El Haoussi


    to determine stabilizing state-feedback controllers with large domain of attraction, expressed as linear matrix inequalities, readily implementable using available numerical tools and with tuning parameters that make possible to select the most adequate solution. These conditions are derived by using a Lyapunov-Krasovskii functional on the vertices of the polytopic description of the actuator saturations. Numerical examples demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed technique.

  19. Challenges and New Trends for Piezoelectric Actuators (United States)

    Sehirlioglu, Alp


    BiScO3-PbTiO3 ceramics with TC greater than 400 C has been successfully processed. Despite the increase in TC, excess Pb addition increases both the bulk conductivity and the grain boundary contribution to conductivity at elevated temperatures. Conductivity at elevated temperatures, that limits the operating temperature for actuators, has been greatly reduced by excess Bi additions. Excess Bi doping improves poling conditions resulting in enhanced piezoelectric coefficient (d(sub 33) = 408 pC/N).

  20. Propellant actuated nuclear reactor steam depressurization valve (United States)

    Ehrke, Alan C.; Knepp, John B.; Skoda, George I.


    A nuclear fission reactor combined with a propellant actuated depressurization and/or water injection valve is disclosed. The depressurization valve releases pressure from a water cooled, steam producing nuclear reactor when required to insure the safety of the reactor. Depressurization of the reactor pressure vessel enables gravity feeding of supplementary coolant water through the water injection valve to the reactor pressure vessel to prevent damage to the fuel core.

  1. Biomimetic photo-actuation: sensing, control and actuation in sun-tracking plants. (United States)

    Dicker, M P M; Rossiter, J M; Bond, I P; Weaver, P M


    Although the actuation mechanisms that drive plant movement have been investigated from a biomimetic perspective, few studies have looked at the wider sensing and control systems that regulate this motion. This paper examines photo-actuation-actuation induced by, and controlled with light-through a review of the sun-tracking functions of the Cornish Mallow. The sun-tracking movement of the Cornish Mallow leaf results from an extraordinarily complex-yet extremely elegant-process of signal perception, generation, filtering and control. Inspired by this process, a concept for a simplified biomimetic analogue of this leaf is proposed: a multifunctional structure employing chemical sensing, signal transmission, and control of composite hydrogel actuators. We present this multifunctional structure, and show that the success of the concept will require improved selection of materials and structural design. This device has application in the solar-tracking of photovoltaic panels for increased energy yield. More broadly it is envisaged that the concept of chemical sensing and control can be expanded beyond photo-actuation to many other stimuli, resulting in new classes of robust solid-state devices.

  2. Actuator characterization of a man-portable precision maneuver concept

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilmars Celmins


    Full Text Available The US Army Research Laboratory is conducting research to explore technologies that may be suitable for maneuvering man-portable munitions. Current research is focused on the use of rotary actuators with spin-stabilized munitions. A rotary actuator holds the potential of providing a low-power solution for guidance of a spinning projectile. This is in contrast to a linear (reciprocating actuator which would need to constantly change direction, resulting in large accelerations which in turn would require large forces, thereby driving up the actuator power. A rotational actuator would be operating at a fairly constant rotation rate once it is up to speed, resulting in much lower power requirements. Actuator experiments conducted over a variety of conditions validate the dynamic models of the actuator and supply the data necessary for model parameter estimation. Actuator performance metrics of spin rate response, friction, and power requirements were derived from the data. This study indicates that this class of maneuver concepts can be driven with these actuators. These results enable actuator design and multi-disciplinary simulation of refined maneuver concepts for a specific application.

  3. Novel compliant actuator for wearable robotics applications. (United States)

    Claros, M; Soto, R; Rodríguez, J J; Cantú, C; Contreras-Vidal, José L


    In the growing fields of wearable robotics, rehabilitation robotics, prosthetics, and walking robots, variable impedance and force actuators are being designed and implemented because of their ability to dynamically modulate the intrinsic viscoelastic properties such as stiffness and damping. This modulation is crucial to achieve an efficient and safe human-robot interaction that could lead to electronically generate useful emergent dynamical behaviors. In this work we propose a novel actuation system in which is implemented a control scheme based on equilibrium forces for an active joint capable to provide assistance/resistance as needed and also achieve minimal mechanical impedance when tracking the movement of the user limbs. The actuation system comprises a DC motor with a built in speed reducer, two force-sensing resistors (FSR), a mechanism which transmits to the FSRs the torque developed in the joint and a controller which regulate the amount of energy that is delivered to the DC motor. The proposed system showed more impedance reduction, by the effect of the controlled contact forces, compared with the ones in the reviewed literature.

  4. Bending fluidic actuator for smart structures (United States)

    Che-Ming Chang, Benjamin; Berring, John; Venkataram, Manu; Menon, Carlo; Parameswaran, M.


    This paper presents a novel silicone-based, millimeter-scale, bending fluidic actuator (BFA). Its unique parallel micro-channel design enables, for the first time, operation at low working pressure while at the same time having a very limited thickness expansion during pressurization. It also enables the actuator to have the highest ratios of angular displacement over length and torque over volume among previously proposed BFAs. In this work, this parallel micro-channel design is implemented by embedding the BFA with an innovative single winding conduit, which yields a simple, single-component configuration suitable for low-cost production and reliable performance. The BFA design can be easily scaled down to smaller dimensions and can be adapted to applications in restricted space, particularly minimally invasive surgery. In this work, the actuator is manufactured in TC-silicone through poly(methyl methacrylate) molds obtained by using laser cutting technology. Repeated angular displacement measurements on multiple prototypes having different stiffness are carried out. The experimental results are compared with an analytical model, which accurately predicts the performance of the device.

  5. Shape memory alloys for micromembrane actuation (United States)

    Surbled, Patrick; Le Pioufle, Bruno; Yang, E. H.; Fujita, Hiroyuki


    More and more technologies and new materials have been combined with silicon process technologies to enhance the performances of microsystems and extend the application fields. Among these technologies, the Shape Memory Alloys (SMA's) as thin films have been developed recently. They have been shown to induce high displacement and large force/mass ratio under low voltage. They can produce work output higher than can be provided with other kinds of actuators. However, such SMA actuators are not easy to make because specific annealing treatments or mechanical bias springs are needed to realize cyclic device operation. Moreover, adhesion problems of SMA thin films may occur during the annealing treatment. We have developed a simple fabrication process allowing a reliable operation principle of a micromembrane. The cyclic actuation is ensured by membrane thickness residual stresses that avoids the assembling steps. These membranes whose surface varies from 200 X 200 micrometer2 up to 2 X 2 mm2 have been successfully tested. As developed, they are very adapted to integration process of microelectronics and can be applied to many applications such as optical, fluidic devices, and especially for biomedical applications as SMA's are biocompatible.

  6. Voice Coil Actuators for two MTG Instruments (United States)

    Bencheikh, N.; Guignabert, A.; Barillot, F.; Benoit, C.; Burgui, C.; Compostizo, C.; Bueno, I.; Spanoudakis, P.; Kiener, L.; Schwab, P.


    While Cedrat Technologies has been active in space for more than 20 years with piezoelectric mechanisms, we have also been increasingly involved over the last few years in the development of magnetic actuators for space projects. In this paper, a focus is made on the case of magnetic actuators that are developed in the frame of the Meteosat Third Generation (MTG) project. The first one is the Scan Assembly (SCA) actuated by Rotating Voice Coil Motors (RVCM) for the East/West (E/W) axes and the North/South (N/S) axes developed in collaboration with Sener and the second one is the Voice Coil Motor (VCM) developed in collaboration with CSEM for the Corner Cube Mechanism (CCM)The motion needs are different for the both motor, linear motion for the CCM and rotational movement for the SCA. Even if the motion is different, the both applications have the same performance requirements such as linearity, low hysteresis, a high power to mass ratio, redundancy and so on.

  7. Considerations for Contractile Electroactive Materials and Actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rasmussen, Lenore; Erickson, Carl J.; Meixler, Lewis D.; Ascione, George; Gentile, Charles A.; Tilson, Carl; Bernasek, Stephen L.; Abelev, Esta


    Ras Labs produces electroactive polymer (EAP) based materials and actuators that bend, swell, ripple and now contract (new development) with low electric input. This is an important attribute because of the ability of contraction to produce life-like motion. The mechanism of contraction is not well understood. Radionuclide-labeled experiments were conducted to follow the movement of electrolytes and water in these EAPs when activated. Extreme temperature experiments were performed on the contractile EAPs with very favorable results. One of the biggest challenges in developing these actuators, however, is the electrode-EAP interface because of the pronounced movement of the EAP. Plasma treatments of metallic electrodes were investigated in order to improve the attachment of the embedded electrodes to the EAP material. Surface analysis, adhesive testing, and mechanical testing were conducted to test metal surfaces and metal-polymer interfaces. The nitrogen plasma treatment of titanium produced a strong metal-polymer interface; however, oxygen plasma treatment of both stainless steel and titanium produced even stronger metal-polymer interfaces. Plasma treatment of the electrodes allows for the embedded electrodes and the EAP material of the actuator to work and move as a unit, with no detachment, by significantly improving the metal-polymer interface.

  8. Microfabricated actuators and their application to optics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sniegowski, J.J.; Garcia, E.J.


    Several authors have given overviews of microelectromechanical systems, including microactuators. In our presentation we will review some of these results, and provide a brief description of the basic principles of operation, fabrication, and application, of a few selected microactuators (electrostatic and surface tension driven). We present a description of a three-level mechanical polysilicon surface-micromachining technology with a discussion of the advantages of this level of process complexity. This technology, is capable of forming complex, batch-fabricated, interconnected, and interactive, microactuated micromechanisms which include optical elements. The inclusion of a third deposited layer of mechanical polysilicon greatly extends the degree of complexity available for micromechanism design. Two examples of microactuators fabricated using this process are provided to illustrate the capabilities and usefulness of the technology. The first actuator is an example of a novel actuation mechanism based on the effect of surface tension at these micro-scale dimensions and of a microstructure within a microstructure. The second is a comb-drive-based microengine which has direct application as a drive and power source for micro optical elements, specifically, micro mirrors and micro shutters. This design converts linear oscillatory motion from electrostatic comb drive actuators into rotational motion via a direct linkage connection. The microengine provides output in the form of a continuously rotating output gear that is capable of delivering drive torque to a micromechanism.

  9. Electrowetting Actuation of Polydisperse Nanofluid Droplets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Crismar Patacsil


    Full Text Available We present results of electrowetting experiments employing droplets formed from aqueous suspensions of Au nanoparticles. A planar electrowetting system, consisting of a Pt wire electrode and a bottom Cu electrode with an insulating silicone layer, is used to observe changes in droplet contact angle when an external electric field is applied. The equilibrium contact angle at 0 V decreases with increasing nanoparticle concentration, dropping from 100.4° for pure deionized water to 94.7° for a 0.5 μM nanofluid. Increasing the nanoparticle content also lowers the required voltage for effective actuation. With actuation at 15 V, contact angle decreases by 9% and 35% for droplets formed from pure water and a 0.5 μM nanoparticle suspension, respectively. Contact angle saturation is observed with nanofluid droplets, with the threshold voltage decreasing as nanoparticle concentration rises. Maximum droplet actuation before contact angle saturation is achieved at only 10 V for a concentration of 0.5 μM. A proposed mechanism for the enhanced electrowetting response of a nanofluid droplet involves a reduction in surface tension of the droplet as nanoparticles accumulate at the liquid-vapor interface.

  10. Highly Tunable Electrothermally and Electrostatically Actuated Resonators

    KAUST Repository

    Hajjaj, Amal Z.


    This paper demonstrates experimentally, theoretically, and numerically for the first time, a wide-range tunability of an in-plane clamped-clamped microbeam, bridge, and resonator actuated electrothermally and electrostatically. Using both actuation methods, we demonstrate that a single resonator can be operated at a wide range of frequencies. The microbeam is actuated electrothermally by passing a dc current through it, and electrostatically by applying a dc polarization voltage between the microbeam and the stationary electrode. We show that when increasing the electrothermal voltage, the compressive stress inside the microbeam increases, which leads eventually to its buckling. Before buckling, the fundamental frequency decreases until it drops to very low values, almost to zero. After buckling, the fundamental frequency increases, which is shown to be as high as twice the original resonance frequency. Adding a dc bias changes the qualitative nature of the tunability both before and after buckling, which adds another independent way of tuning. This reduces the dip before buckling, and can eliminate it if desired, and further increases the fundamental frequency after buckling. Analytical results based on the Galerkin discretization of the Euler Bernoulli beam theory are generated and compared with the experimental data and simulation results of a multi-physics finite-element model. A good agreement is found among all the results. [2015-0341

  11. Electromechanical actuation for thrust vector control applications (United States)

    Roth, Mary Ellen

    At present, actuation systems for the Thrust Vector Control (TVC) for launch vehicles are hydraulic systems. The Advanced Launch System (ALS), a joint initiative between NASA and the Air Force, is a launch vehicle that is designed to be cost effective, highly reliable and operationally efficient with a goal of reducing the cost per pound to orbit. As part of this initiative, an electromechanical actuation system is being developed as an attractive alternative to the hydraulic systems used today. NASA-Lewis is developing and demonstrating an Induction Motor Controller Actuation System with a 40 hp peak rating. The controller will integrate 20 kHz resonant link Power Management and Distribution (PMAD) technology and Pulse Population Modulation (PPM) techniques to implement Field Oriented Vector Control (FOVC) of a new advanced induction motor. Through PPM, multiphase variable frequency, variable voltage waveforms can be synthesized from the 20 kHz source. FOVC shows that varying both the voltage and frequency and their ratio (V/F), permits independent control of both torque and speed while operating at maximum efficiency at any point on the torque-speed curve. The driver and the FOVC will be microprocessor controlled. For increased system reliability, a Built-in Test (BITE) capability will be included. This involves introducing testability into the design of a system such that testing is calibrated and exercised during the design, manufacturing, maintenance and prelaunch activities. An actuator will be integrated with the motor controller for performance testing of the EMA TVC system. The design and fabrication of the motor controller is being done by General Dynamics Space Systems Division. The University of Wisconsin-Madison will assist in the design of the advanced induction motor and in the implementation of the FOVC theory. A 75 hp electronically controlled dynamometer will be used to test the motor controller in all four quadrants of operation using flight type

  12. Patterning process and actuation in open air of micro-beam actuator based on conducting IPNs (United States)

    Khaldi, Alexandre; Plesse, Cédric; Soyer, Caroline; Chevrot, Claude; Teyssié, Dominique; Vidal, Frédéric; Cattan, Eric


    We report on new method to obtain micrometric electroactive polymer actuators operating in air. High speed conducting Interpenetrating Polymer Network (IPN) microactuators are synthesized and fully characterized. The IPN architecture used in this work allows solving the interface and adhesion problems, which have been reported in the design of classical conducting polymer-based actuators. We demonstrated that it is possible to reduce the thickness of these actuators by a specific synthetic pathway. IPN host matrixes based on polyethylene oxide / polytetrahydrofurane have been shaped by hot pressing. Then, the resulting thin host matrixes (below 10 μm) are compatible with the microfabrication technologies. After interpenetration of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) (PEDOT), these electroactive materials are micro-sized using dry etching process. Frequency responses and displacement have been characterized by scanning electronic microscopy. These conducting IPN microactuators can be considered as potential candidates in numerous low frequency applications, including micro-valves, micro-optical instrumentation and micro-robotics.

  13. Dependence on boundary conditions for actuation characteristics of dielectric elastomer actuators (United States)

    Kollosche, Matthias; Stoyanov, Hristiyan; Ragusch, Hülya; Kofod, Guggi


    We present electro-mechanical characterizations of dielectric elastomer actuators (DEA) prepared from polystyrene- ethylene-butadiene-styrene (SEBS) with comparison to the commonly used VHB 4905 tape. This study discusses effects of boundary conditions, stiffness and voltage ramp rate on the actuation properties of both materials. Measurements on samples in pure-shear configuration were made with variation in both load and applied voltage, to achieve so-called '3D-plots'. A strong dependence of the actuation characteristics on the voltage ramp rate was observed, leading to a large shift in the 'optimum load' for VHB, which was not found for SEBS. This is due to the large difference in visco-elastic behavior between materials.

  14. Dielectric Elastomers for Actuation and Energy Harvesting (United States)

    Brochu, Paul A.

    The first part of this work focuses on free-standing linear soft silicone actuators as this configuration is the most relevant for real applications. A particular soft silicone has been isolated a good candidate and was extensively tested in a free-standing linear actuator configuration to determine the effects of pre-stretch and the application of mechanical loads on its actuation performance. It is shown that when the mechanical loads are properly applied, large linear actuation strains of 120% and work density of 0.5 J/cm3 can be obtained. Furthermore, we demonstrate that when coupled with single wall carbon nanotube (SWNT) compliant electrodes, fault-tolerance is introduced via self-clearing leading to significantly improved operational reliability. Driven at moderate electric fields, the actuators display relatively high linear actuation strain (25%) without degradation of the electromechanical performance even after 85,000 cycles. The high performance of the aforementioned soft silicone actuators requires the application of rather large levels of prestrain. In order to eliminate this requirement a novel all-silicone prestrain-locked interpenetrating polymer network (S-IPN) elastomer was developed. The elastomer is fabricated using a combination of two silicones: a soft room temperature vulcanizing silicone that serves as the host elastomer matrix, and a more rigid high temperature vulcanizing silicone that acts to preserve the prestrain in the host network. The free-standing prestrain-locked silicones show a more than twofold performance improvement over standard free-standing silicone films, with a linear strain of 25% and an area strain of 45% when tested in a diaphragm configuration. The S-IPN procedure was leveraged to improve electrode adhesion and stability as well as improve the interlayer adhesion in multilayer actuators. It is demonstrated that strongly bonded SWNT electrodes are capable of fault tolerance through self-clearing, even in multilayer

  15. Low-Stroke Actuation for a Serial Robot (United States)

    Gao, Dalong (Inventor); Ihrke, Chris A. (Inventor)


    A serial robot includes a base, first and second segments, a proximal joint joining the base to the first segment, and a distal joint. The distal joint that joins the segments is serially arranged and distal with respect to the proximal joint. The robot includes first and second actuators. A first tendon extends from the first actuator to the proximal joint and is selectively moveable via the first actuator. A second tendon extends from the second actuator to the distal joint and is selectively moveable via the second actuator. The robot includes a transmission having at least one gear element which assists rotation of the distal joint when an input force is applied to the proximal and/or distal joints by the first and/or second actuators. A robotic hand having the above robot is also disclosed, as is a robotic system having a torso, arm, and the above-described hand.

  16. Self-Sensing Ionic Polymer Actuators: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karl Kruusamäe


    Full Text Available Ionic electromechanically active polymers (IEAP are laminar composites that can be considered attractive candidates for soft actuators. Their outstanding properties such as low operating voltage, easy miniaturization, and noiseless operation are, however, marred by issues related to the repeatability in the production and operation of these materials. Implementing closed-loop control for IEAP actuators is a viable option for overcoming these issues. Since IEAP laminates also behave as mechanoelectrical sensors, it is advantageous to combine the actuating and sensing functionalities of a single device to create a so-called self-sensing actuator. This review article systematizes the state of the art in producing self-sensing ionic polymer actuators. The IEAPs discussed in this paper are conducting (or conjugated polymers actuators (CPA, ionic polymer-metal composite (IPMC, and carbonaceous polymer laminates.

  17. Hierarchically arranged helical fibre actuators driven by solvents and vapours (United States)

    Chen, Peining; Xu, Yifan; He, Sisi; Sun, Xuemei; Pan, Shaowu; Deng, Jue; Chen, Daoyong; Peng, Huisheng


    Mechanical responsiveness in many plants is produced by helical organizations of cellulose microfibrils. However, simple mimicry of these naturally occurring helical structures does not produce artificial materials with the desired tunable actuations. Here, we show that actuating fibres that respond to solvent and vapour stimuli can be created through the hierarchical and helical assembly of aligned carbon nanotubes. Primary fibres consisting of helical assemblies of multiwalled carbon nanotubes are twisted together to form the helical actuating fibres. The nanoscale gaps between the nanotubes and micrometre-scale gaps among the primary fibres contribute to the rapid response and large actuation stroke of the actuating fibres. The compact coils allow the actuating fibre to rotate reversibly. We show that these fibres, which are lightweight, flexible and strong, are suitable for a variety of applications such as energy-harvesting generators, deformable sensing springs and smart textiles.

  18. The Load Capability of Piezoelectric Single Crystal Actuators (United States)

    Xu, Tian-Bing; Su, Ji; Jiang, Xiaoning; Rehrig, Paul W.; Hackenberger, Wesley S.


    Piezoelectric lead magnesium niobate-lead titanate (PMN-PT) single crystal is one of the most promising materials for electromechanical device applications due to its high electrical field induced strain and high electromechanical coupling factor. PMN-PT single crystal-based multilayer stack actuators and multilayer stack-based flextensional actuators have exhibited high stroke and high displacement-voltage ratios. The actuation capabilities of these two actuators were evaluated using a newly developed method based upon a laser vibrometer system under various loading conditions. The measured displacements as a function of mechanical loads at different driving voltages indicate that the displacement response of the actuators is approximately constant under broad ranges of mechanical load. The load capabilities of these PMN-PT single crystal-based actuators and the advantages of the capability for applications will be discussed.

  19. Paper Actuators Made with Cellulose and Hybrid Materials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Maniruzzaman


    Full Text Available Recently, cellulose has been re-discovered as a smart material that can be used as sensor and actuator materials, which is termed electro-active paper (EAPap. This paper reports recent advances in paper actuators made with cellulose and hybrid materials such as multi-walled carbon nanotubes, conducting polymers and ionic liquids. Two distinct actuator principles in EAPap actuators are demonstrated: piezoelectric effect and ion migration effect in cellulose. Piezoelectricity of cellulose EAPap is quite comparable with other piezoelectric polymers. But, it is biodegradable, biocompatible, mechanically strong and thermally stable. To enhance ion migration effect in the cellulose, polypyrrole conducting polymer and ionic liquids were nanocoated on the cellulose film. This hybrid cellulose EAPap nanocomposite exhibits durable bending actuation in an ambient humidity and temperature condition. Fabrication, characteristics and performance of the cellulose EAPap and its hybrid EAPap materials are illustrated. Also, its possibility for remotely microwave-driven paper actuator is demonstrated.

  20. Shape Memory Actuated Normally Open Permanent Isolation Valve (United States)

    Ramspacher, Daniel J. (Inventor); Bacha, Caitlin E. (Inventor)


    A valve assembly for an in-space propulsion system includes an inlet tube, an outlet tube, a valve body coupling the inlet tube to the outlet tube and defining a propellant flow path, a valve stem assembly disposed within the valve body, an actuator body coupled to the valve body, the valve stem assembly extending from an interior of the valve body to an interior of the actuator body, and an actuator assembly disposed within the actuator body and coupled to the valve stem assembly, the actuator assembly including a shape memory actuator member that when heated to a transition temperature is configured to enable the valve stem assembly to engage the outlet tube and seal the propellant flow path.

  1. Paper actuators made with cellulose and hybrid materials. (United States)

    Kim, Jaehwan; Yun, Sungryul; Mahadeva, Suresha K; Yun, Kiju; Yang, Sang Yeol; Maniruzzaman, Mohammad


    Recently, cellulose has been re-discovered as a smart material that can be used as sensor and actuator materials, which is termed electro-active paper (EAPap). This paper reports recent advances in paper actuators made with cellulose and hybrid materials such as multi-walled carbon nanotubes, conducting polymers and ionic liquids. Two distinct actuator principles in EAPap actuators are demonstrated: piezoelectric effect and ion migration effect in cellulose. Piezoelectricity of cellulose EAPap is quite comparable with other piezoelectric polymers. But, it is biodegradable, biocompatible, mechanically strong and thermally stable. To enhance ion migration effect in the cellulose, polypyrrole conducting polymer and ionic liquids were nanocoated on the cellulose film. This hybrid cellulose EAPap nanocomposite exhibits durable bending actuation in an ambient humidity and temperature condition. Fabrication, characteristics and performance of the cellulose EAPap and its hybrid EAPap materials are illustrated. Also, its possibility for remotely microwave-driven paper actuator is demonstrated.

  2. Dielectric elastomer actuators used for pneumatic valve technology (United States)

    Giousouf, Metin; Kovacs, Gabor


    Dielectric elastomer actuators have been investigated for applications in the field of pneumatic automation technology. We have developed different valve designs with stacked dielectric elastomer actuators and with integrated high voltage converters. The actuators were made using VHB-4910 material and a stacker machine for automated fabrication of the cylindrical actuators. Typical characteristics of pneumatic valves such as flow rate, power consumption and dynamic behaviour are presented. For valve construction the force and stroke parameters of the dielectric elastomer actuator have been measured. Further, benefits for valve applications using dielectric elastomers are shown as well as their potential operational area. Finally, challenges are discussed that are relevant for the use of elastomer actuators in valves for industrial applications.

  3. Development of an Autonomous Transfer Machine Using Pneumatic Actuators (United States)

    Hayakawa, Yasuhiro; Pandian, Shunmugham Raj; Kawamura, Sadao

    In this paper, we propose a new type of Autonomous Transfer Machine (ATM) by making use of pneumatic actuators such as pneumatic cylinders and bellows actuators. In the lifting part, the lifting arm which is constructed with a cylinder is rotated by antagonized bellows actuators. Moreover, the support part that a user leans on is supported by antagonized bellows actuators. Since the bellows actuator has a force sensing ability that acts both a force sensor and an actuator, external force that the user leans on the supporter can be estimated. In the standing-up motion, the support part is controlled by both the inclination of the support part and the force difference between holding force and supporting force. Therefore, the lifting trajectory of the supporter can be realized by the posture of the user. In this paper, we clear the effectiveness of the ATM with the standing-up motion from experimental results.

  4. Biomimetic Underwater Robots Based on Dielectric Elastomer Actuators


    Shintake, Jun; Shea, Herbert; Floreano, Dario


    Dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs), a soft actuator technology, hold great promise for biomimetic underwater robots. The high-voltages required to drive DEAs can however make them challenging to use in water. This paper demonstrates a method to create DEA-based biomimetic swimming robots that operate reliably even in conductive liquids. We ensure the insulation of the high-voltage DEA electrodes without degrading actuation performance by laminating silicone layers. A fish and a jellyfish w...

  5. Analysis of Innovative Design of Energy Efficient Hydraulic Actuators


    M Osman Abdalla


    Hydraulic cylinder actuators are used extensively in industrial, construction and agricultural works. The small sized outlet ports of the cylinders resist the flow of discharged oil; and as a result the piston motion is slowed down. This causes a lot of heat generation and energy loss within the actuators. The study investigates and analyzes the possibilities of reducing the hydraulic resistance and increasing efficiency of the hydraulic actuator. Conventional hydraulic cylinders are simulate...

  6. High performance PZT thick film actuators using in plane polarisation


    Ernst, Dörthe; Bramlage, Bernhard; Gebhardt, Sylvia; Schönecker, Andreas


    Piezoceramic thick films offer the possibility of integrated functional components in planar design. They can be applied as sensors, actuators, ultrasonic transducers, transformers and generators. Typically, piezoceramic thick films are excited through the film thickness. In contrast, in-plane mode of excitation will be beneficial especially for actuator applications. The use of interdigitated electrodes (IDEs) enables in-plane excitation of piezoceramic thick films. Actuator performance of c...

  7. A rotary piezoelectric actuator using longitudinal and bending hybrid transducer


    Yingxiang Liu; Xiaohui Yang; Weishan Chen; Junkao Liu


    A rotary piezoelectric actuator using bolt-clamped type transducer with double driving feet is proposed in this study. The first-order longitudinal and fourth-order bending vibration modes are superimposed in the actuator to produce elliptical movements on the driving tips. Longitudinal PZT and bending PZT are clamped between the exponential shape horns and the flange by bolts. The vibration shape changes of the actuator are presented to give a clear explanation of its working principle. Seve...

  8. Multiscale modeling and topology optimization of poroelastic actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreasen, Casper Schousboe; Sigmund, Ole


    This paper presents a method for design of optimized poroelastic materials which under internal pressurization turn into actuators for application in, for example, linear motors. The actuators are modeled in a two-scale fluid–structure interaction approach. The fluid saturated material microstruc...... microstructure is optimized using topology optimization in order to achieve a better macroscopic performance quantified by vertical or torsional deflections. Constraints are introduced to ensure a certain deflection/extension ratio of the actuator....

  9. Pedot and PPy Conducting Polymer Bilayer and Trilayer Actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zainudeen, Umer Lebbe; Careem, Mohamed Abdul; Skaarup, Steen


    Actuators based on conducting polymers are attracting increasing interest due to their desirable features such as large mechanical stress generated, sufficient maximum strain values, high reversibility, good safety properties and the possibility of precise control using small voltages. Many...... attempts have been made to improve the actuator performance. We report electromechanical measurements on actuators of bilayer and trilayer free standing films prepared with polypyrrole (PPy) and poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) (PEDOT) conducting polymers. Both types of conducting polymer are pre...

  10. Piezoelectric stack actuator parameter extraction with hysteresis compensation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zsurzsan, Tiberiu-Gabriel; Mangeot, Charles; Andersen, Michael A. E.


    The Piezoelectric Actuator Drive (PAD) is a type of rotary motor that transforms the linear motion of piezoelectric stack actuators into a precise rotational motion. The very high stiffness of the actuators employed make this type of motor suited for open-loop control, but the inherent hysteresis...... exhibited by piezoelectric ceramics causes losses. Therefore, this paper presents a straightforward method to measure piezoelectric stack actuator equiv- alent parameters that includes nonlinearities. By folding the nonlinearities into a newly-defined cou- pling coefficient, the inherent hysteretic behavior...

  11. Reliable Actuator for Cryo Propellant Fluid Control Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Fluid handling applications in cryogenic and extreme environments require reliable actuation technology that can handle extreme temperatures, mechanical bind-up from...

  12. Advanced Modified High Performance Synthetic Jet Actuator with Curved Chamber (United States)

    Xu, Tian-Bing (Inventor); Su, Ji (Inventor); Jiang, Xiaoning (Inventor)


    The advanced modified high performance synthetic jet actuator with optimized curvature shape chamber (ASJA-M) is a synthetic jet actuator (SJA) with a lower volume reservoir or chamber. A curved chamber is used, instead of the conventional cylinder chamber, to reduce the dead volume of the jet chamber and increase the efficiency of the synthetic jet actuator. The shape of the curvature corresponds to the maximum displacement (deformation) profile of the electroactive diaphragm. The jet velocity and mass flow rate for the ASJA-M will be several times higher than conventional piezoelectric actuators.

  13. Micromachined Piezoelectric Actuators for Cryogenic Adaptive Optics Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — TRS Technologies proposes micromachined single crystal piezoelectric actuator arrays to enable ultra-large stroke, high precision shape control for large aperture,...

  14. Prognostics Enhanced Reconfigurable Control of Electro-Mechanical Actuators (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Actuator systems are employed widely in aerospace, transportation and industrial processes to provide power to critical loads, such as aircraft control surfaces....

  15. Energy Efficient Wireless Vehicular-Guided Actuator Network

    KAUST Repository

    Boudellioua, Imene


    In this paper, we present an energy-efficient vehicular guided system for environmental disaster management using wireless sensor/actuator networks. Sensor nodes within clusters are controlled by a master node that is dynamically selected. Actuators support mobility for every sensor node in the area of interest. The system maintains energy efficiency using statistical, correlation, and confidence for determining actuator actions and implements an adaptive energy scheme to prolong the system lifespan. Experimental results show that the system is capable of saving up to 2.7Watt for every 28KByte of data exchanged. We also show that actuator actions are correct with a 90% confidence.

  16. Electric-Pneumatic Actuator: A New Muscle for Locomotion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maziar Ahmad Sharbafi


    Full Text Available A better understanding of how actuator design supports locomotor function may help develop novel and more functional powered assistive devices or robotic legged systems. Legged robots comprise passive parts (e.g., segments, joints and connections which are moved in a coordinated manner by actuators. In this study, we propose a novel concept of a hybrid electric-pneumatic actuator (EPA as an enhanced variable impedance actuator (VIA. EPA is consisted of a pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM and an electric motor (EM. In contrast to other VIAs, the pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM within the EPA provides not only adaptable compliance, but also an additional powerful actuator with muscle-like properties, which can be arranged in different combinations (e.g., in series or parallel to the EM. The novel hybrid actuator shares the advantages of both integrated actuator types combining precise control of EM with compliant energy storage of PAM, which are required for efficient and adjustable locomotion. Experimental and simulation results based on the new dynamic model of PAM support the hypothesis that combination of the two actuators can improve efficiency (energy and peak power and performance, while does not increase control complexity and weight, considerably. Finally, the experiments on EPA adapted bipedal robot (knee joint of the BioBiped3 robot show improved efficiency of the actuator at different frequencies.

  17. Cryogenic Fluid Transfer Components Using Single Crystal Piezoelectric Actuators Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Cryogenic fluid transfer components using single crystal piezoelectric actuators are proposed to enable low thermal mass, minimal heat leak, low power consumption...

  18. Optimization of Moving Coil Actuators for Digital Displacement Machines

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørgård, Christian; Bech, Michael Møller; Roemer, Daniel Beck


    This paper focuses on deriving an optimal moving coil actuator design, used as force pro-ducing element in hydraulic on/off valves for Digital Displacement machines. Different moving coil actuator geometry topologies (permanent magnet placement and magnetiza-tion direction) are optimized for actu......This paper focuses on deriving an optimal moving coil actuator design, used as force pro-ducing element in hydraulic on/off valves for Digital Displacement machines. Different moving coil actuator geometry topologies (permanent magnet placement and magnetiza-tion direction) are optimized...... for actuating annular seat valves in a digital displacement machine. The optimization objectives are to the minimize the actuator power, the valve flow losses and the height of the actuator. Evaluation of the objective function involves static finite element simulation and simulation of an entire operation...... cycle using a single chamber Digital Displacement lumped parameter model. The optimization results shows that efficient operation is achievable using all of the proposed moving coil geometries, however some geometries require more space and actuator power. The most appealing of the optimized actuator...

  19. The dielectric breakdown limit of silicone dielectric elastomer actuators (United States)

    Gatti, Davide; Haus, Henry; Matysek, Marc; Frohnapfel, Bettina; Tropea, Cameron; Schlaak, Helmut F.


    Soft silicone elastomers are used in a generation of dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) with improved actuation speed and durability compared to the commonly used, highly viscoelastic polyacrylate 3M VHB™ films. The maximum voltage-induced stretch of DEAs is ultimately limited by their dielectric breakdown field strength. We measure the dependence of dielectric breakdown field strength on thickness and stretch for a silicone elastomer, when voltage-induced deformation is prevented. The experimental results are combined with an analytic model of equi-biaxial actuation to show that accounting for variable dielectric field strength results in different values of optimal pre-stretch and thickness that maximize the DEA actuation.

  20. On the development of planar actuators for variable stiffness devices (United States)

    Henke, Markus; Gerlach, Gerald


    This contribution describes the development, the potential and the limitations of planar actuators for controlling bending devices with variable stiffness. Such structures are supposed to be components of new smart, self-sensing and -controlling composite materials for lightweight constructions. To realize a proper stiffness control, it is necessary to develop reliable actuators with high actuation capabilities based on smart materials. Several actuator designs driven by electroactive polymers (EAPs) are presented and discussed regarding to their applicability in such structures. To investigate the actuators, variable-flexural stiffness devices based on the control of its area moment of inertia were developed. The devices consist of a multi-layer stack of thin, individual plates. Stiffness variation is caused by planar actuators which control the sliding behavior between the layers by form closure structures. Previous investigations have shown that actuators with high actuation potential are needed to ensure reliable connections between the layers. For that reason, two kinds of EAPs Danfoss PolyPower and VHB 4905 by 3M, have been studied as driving unit. These EAP-driven actuators will be compared based on experimental measurements and finite element analyses.

  1. Two-stage actuation system using DC motors and piezoelectric actuators for controllable industrial and automotive brakes and clutches (United States)

    Neelakantan, Vijay A.; Washington, Gregory N.; Bucknor, Norman K.


    High bandwidth actuation systems that are capable of simultaneously producing relatively large forces and displacements are required for use in automobiles and other industrial applications. Conventional hydraulic actuation mechanisms used in automotive brakes and clutches are complex, inefficient and have poor control robustness. These lead to reduced fuel economy, controllability issues and other disadvantages. This paper involves the design, development, testing and control of a two-stage hybrid actuation mechanism by combining classical actuators like DC motors and advanced smart material actuators like piezoelectric actuators. The paper also discusses the development of a robust control methodology using the Internal Model Control (IMC) principle and emphasizes the robustness property of this control methodology by comparing and studying simulation and experimental results.

  2. A jellyfish-like swimming mini-robot actuated by an electromagnetic actuation system (United States)

    Ko, Youngho; Na, Sungyoung; Lee, Youngwoo; Cha, Kyoungrae; Ko, Seong Young; Park, Jongoh; Park, Sukho


    Among the various kinds of actuations for biomimetic robots, the electromagnetic actuation (EMA) method has been regarded as the one with the most potential. This paper proposes a jellyfish-like swimming mini-robot actuated by an EMA system in three-dimensional (3D) space. The jellyfish-like mini-robot has four flexible fins, each of which is equipped with a permanent magnet for electromagnetic actuation; the robot’s body is 17 mm long and 0.5 mm thick. Our EMA system was able to generate a uniform magnetic field in a desired direction in 3D space, which could bend the fins of the jellyfish-like mini-robot. Therefore, a cyclic change in the uniform magnetic field, in the EMA system, would synchronize the fluctuation of the fins and could generate a propulsion force for the robot, in the desired direction. In order to maximize the propulsion force of the jellyfish-like mini-robot, the waveform and frequency of the input current in the EMA system are optimized. Consequently, our jellyfish-like mini-robot was able to generate maximum propulsion force when a square waveform input current (13 A magnitude and 10 Hz frequency) was applied to the EMA system. Finally, the jellyfish-like mini-robot with the EMA system was able to perform various 3D swimming motions.

  3. Iridium oxide as actuator material for the ISFET-based sensor-actuator system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Olthuis, Wouter; Bomer, Johan G.; Bergveld, Piet; van der Linden, W.E.; Bos, M.; Bos, M.


    Acid or base concentrations can be determined by performing an acid-base titration with Coulometrically generated OH- or H+ ions at a noble-metal actuator electrode in close proximity to the pH-sensitive gate of an ISFET. The ISFET is used as the indicator electrode to detect the equivalence point

  4. Electrochemical actuator with a short response time: A new actuation regime

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Svetovoy, Vitaly; Uvarov, Ilia; Postnikov, Alexander V.; Sanders, Remco G.P.; Krijnen, Gijsbertus J.M.


    The lack of fast and strong microactuators is a well-recognized problem in the MEMS community. Electro- chemical actuators can develop high pressure but they are notoriously slow. Water electrolysis produced by short voltage pulses of alternating polarity can overcome the problem of slow gas

  5. Electrically Actuated Antiglare Rear-View Mirror Based on a Shape Memory Alloy Actuator (United States)

    Luchetti, T.; Zanella, A.; Biasiotto, M.; Saccagno, A.


    This article focuses on the experience of Centro Ricerche FIAT (CRF) regarding the development of shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators, and addressed some new design approaches which have been defined. Specific characteristics of shape memory materials, such as the efficiency of the transformation, have oriented the design of actuators toward occasionally used devices. The antiglare manual mechanism, incorporated in the internal rear-view mirror of a car, fits this new approach well. An antiglare rear-view mirror is a system capable of detecting a glare situation during night-time driving in order to automatically switch the mirror plane so as not to distract the driver. The low forces required, together with the silent, bi-stable movement are suitable for the use of a SMA actuator in this application. In the first part of the paper, the conceptual design is illustrated and a preliminary overview of the working principle is provided together with a series of considerations regarding the kinematics and the layout of electronic sensors in order to realize a fully controlled mechatronic prototype. Before concluding, the description of the realization of a working prototype is presented. The prototype of the EAGLE (Electrically Actuated antiGLare rEar-view mirror) system has provided experimental confirmation that such a device can satisfy fatigue and functional test requirements, thus offering the opportunity to spread the use of SMA devices in the automotive field.

  6. The Overtone Fiddle: an Actuated Acoustic Instrument

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Overholt, Daniel


    The Overtone Fiddle is a new violin-family instrument that incorporates electronic sensors, integrated DSP, and physical actuation of the acoustic body. An embedded tactile sound transducer creates extra vibrations in the body of the Overtone Fiddle, allowing performer control and sensation via...... both traditional violin techniques, as well as extended playing techniques that incorporate shared man/machine control of the resulting sound. A magnetic pickup system is mounted to the end of the fiddle’s fingerboard in order to detect the signals from the vibrating strings, deliberately not capturing...

  7. Pneumatic Artificial Muscle Actuation and Modeling (United States)

    Leephakpreeda, Thananchai; Wickramatunge, Kanchana C.


    A Pneumatic Artificial Muscle (PAM) yields a natural muscle-like actuator with a high force to weight ratio, a soft and flexible structure, and adaptable compliance for a humanoid robot, rehabilitation and prosthetic appliances to the disabled, etc. To obtain optimum design and usage, the mechanical behavior of the PAM need to be understood. In this study, observations of experimental results reveal an empirical model for relations of physical variables, contraction and air pressure within the PAM, as compared to mechanical characteristics, such as stiffness or/and pulling forces of the PAM available now in market.

  8. Considerations for Contractile Electroactive Materials and Actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lenore Rasmussen, David Schramm, Lewis D. Meixler, Charles A. Gentile, George Ascione, Carl Tilson, and Kelsey Pagdon


    Ras Labs produces electroactive polymer (EAP) based materials and actuators that bend, swell, ripple, and now contract (new development) with low electric input. In addition, Ras Labs produces EAP materials that quickly contract and expand, repeatedly, by reversing the polarity of the electric input. These recent developments are important attributes in the field of electroactivity because of the ability of contraction and contraction-expansion to produce biomimetric motion. The mechanism of contraction is not well understood. Radionuclide-labeled experiments were conducted to determine the mechanisms during contraction of these EAPs.


    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)


    A polymer-based flexible structure with integrated sensing/actuator means is presented. Conventionally, silicon has been used as a piezo-resistive material due to its high gauge factor and thereby high sensitivity to strain changes in a sensor. By using the fact that e.g. an SU-8 based polymer is...... is much softer than silicon and that e.g. a gold resistor is easily incorporated in SU-8 based polymer structure it has been demonstrated that a SU-8 based cantilever sensor is almost as sensitive to stress changes as the silicon piezo-resistive cantilever....

  10. Nanoporous Carbide-Derived Carbon Material-Based Linear Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janno Torop


    Full Text Available Devices using electroactive polymer-supported carbon material can be exploited as alternatives to conventional electromechanical actuators in applications where electromechanical actuators have some serious deficiencies. One of the numerous examples is precise microactuators. In this paper, we show for first time the dilatometric effect in nanocomposite material actuators containing carbide-derived carbon (CDC and polytetrafluoroetylene polymer (PTFE. Transducers based on high surface area carbide-derived carbon electrode materials are suitable for short range displacement applications, because of the proportional actuation response to the charge inserted, and high Coulombic efficiency due to the EDL capacitance. The material is capable of developing stresses in the range of tens of N cm-2. The area of an actuator can be dozens of cm2, which means that forces above 100 N are achievable. The actuation mechanism is based on the interactions between the high-surface carbon and the ions of the electrolyte. Electrochemical evaluations of the four different actuators with linear (longitudinal action response are described. The actuator electrodes were made from two types of nanoporous TiC-derived carbons with surface area (SA of 1150 m2 g-1 and 1470 m2 g-1, respectively. Two kinds of electrolytes were used in actuators: 1.0 M tetraethylammonium tetrafluoroborate (TEABF4 solution in propylene carbonate and pure ionic liquid 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium trifluoromethanesulfonate (EMITf. It was found that CDC based actuators exhibit a linear movement of about 1% in the voltage range of 0.8 V to 3.0 V at DC. The actuators with EMITf electrolyte had about 70% larger movement compared to the specimen with TEABF4 electrolyte.

  11. Electrostatic comb drive for vertical actuation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, A. P., LLNL


    The electrostatic comb finger drive has become an integral design for microsensor and microactuator applications. This paper reports on utilizing the levitation effect of comb fingers to design vertical-to-the-substrate actuation for interferometric applications. For typical polysilicon comb drives with 2 {micro}m gaps between the stationary and moving fingers, as well as between the microstructures and the substrate, the equilibrium position is nominally 1-2 {micro}m above the stationary comb fingers. This distance is ideal for many phase shifting interferometric applications. Theoretical calculations of the vertical actuation characteristics are compared with the experimental results, and a general design guideline is derived from these results. The suspension flexure stiffnesses, gravity forces, squeeze film damping, and comb finger thicknesses are parameters investigated which affect the displacement curve of the vertical microactuator. By designing a parallel plate capacitor between the suspended mass and the substrate, in situ position sensing can be used to control the vertical movement, providing a total feedback-controlled system. Fundamentals of various capacitive position sensing techniques are discussed. Experimental verification is carried out by a Zygo distance measurement interferometer.

  12. Numerical analysis of helical dielectric elastomer actuator (United States)

    Park, Jang Ho; Nair, Saurabh; Kim, Daewon


    Dielectric elastomer actuators (DEA) are known for its capability of experiencing extreme strains, as it can expand and contract based on specific actuation voltage applied. On contrary, helical DEA (HDEA) with its unique configuration does not only provide the contractile and extendable capabilities, but also can aid in attaining results for bending and torsion. The concept of HDEA embraces many new techniques and can be applied in multiple disciplines. Thus, this paper focuses on the simulation of HDEA with helical compliant electrodes that is a major factor prior to its application. The attributes of the material used to build the structure plays a vital role in the behavior of the system. For numerical analysis of HDEA, the material characteristics are input into a commercial grade software, and then the appropriate analysis is performed to retrieve its outcome. Applying the material characteristics into numerical analysis modeling, the functionality of HDEA for various activations can be achieved, which is used to test and comply with the fabricated final product.

  13. Manufacturable plastic microfluidic valves using thermal actuation. (United States)

    Pitchaimani, Karthik; Sapp, Brian C; Winter, Adam; Gispanski, Austin; Nishida, Toshikazu; Hugh Fan, Z


    A low-cost, manufacturable, thermally actuated, plastic microfluidic valve has been developed. The valve contains an encapsulated, temperature-sensitive fluid, which expands, deflecting a thin elastomeric film into a fluidic channel to control fluid flow. The power input for thermal expansion of each microfluidic valve can be controlled using a printed circuit board (PCB)-based controller, which is suitable for mass production and large-scale integration. A plastic microfluidic device with such valves was fabricated using compression molding and thermal lamination. The operation of the valves was investigated by measuring a change in the microchannel's ionic conduction current mediated by the resistance variation corresponding to the deflection of the microvalve. Valve closing was also confirmed by the disappearance of fluorescence when a fluorescent solution was displaced in the valve region. Valve operation was characterized for heater power ranging from 36 mW to 80 mW. When the valve was actuating, the local channel temperature was 10 to 19 degrees C above the ambient temperature depending on the heater power used. Repetitive valve operations (up to 50 times) have been demonstrated with a flow resulting from a hydrostatic head. Valve operation was tested for a flow rate of 0.33-4.7 microL/min.

  14. Experimental characterization of piezoelectric THUNDER actuator shape (United States)

    Harris, Paul


    A new type of piezoelectric composite actuator called THUNDER, which was originally developed by NASA, has potential applications in micro robotics, aeronautics, acoustics and hydraulics. The manufacturing process produces internal stresses with accompanying structural deformation. It is the aim of this research to characterize these deformations. Detailed measurements were taken by a motion control LabView data acquisition system and measured with a laser micrometer on several different types of actuators. Several functional forms were used in an attempt to fit the data. The data was best fit by a circular segment function. We also used a transcendental equation to be able to compare to other single point published values. We found the range of dome heights to be between 10.15 mm and 1.45 mm. For one particular model, the manufacturing difference was found to be 16% with an experimental error of 0.5%. The robust experimental data is vital to the development of our finite elements models. Preliminary experimental results of voltage induced deformations will be presented.

  15. Electric actuator for the sempell gate valve

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Herbstritt, E.C.


    The automation of valves has a primary importance in the scope of central control and regulation of power generation processes in power plants and especially in nuclear power plants. AUMA WERNER RIESTER GmbH & Co. KG is considered a leading manufacturer of electric actuators for the automation of valves. More than 30 years experience in designing, developing, and manufacturing provide a sound basis for offering reliable products, especially for nuclear applications. The quality assurance system of AUMA was developed according to 10 CFR 50, Appendix B and has been consistently accomplished. The program was certified by the TUV Germany (Technical Authorized Inspection Agency), according to ISO-9001, in 1994. AUMA offers two actuator type ranges for application in nuclear power plants. The range SAI is qualified according to IEEE 382-1978 and is designed for inside containment. The range SAN is qualified according to IEEE 382-1985 and KTA 3504-1988 for use in non-radioactive applications in the nuclear power plants.

  16. Stress measurements of planar dielectric elastomer actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Osmani, Bekim; Aeby, Elise A.; Müller, Bert [Biomaterials Science Center, University of Basel, Gewerbestrasse 14, 4123 Allschwil (Switzerland)


    Dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA) micro- and nano-structures are referred to artificial muscles because of their specific continuous power and adequate time response. The bending measurement of an asymmetric, planar DEA is described. The asymmetric cantilevers consist of 1 or 5 μm-thin DEAs deposited on polyethylene naphthalate (PEN) substrates 16, 25, 38, or 50 μm thick. The application of a voltage to the DEA electrodes generates an electrostatic pressure in the sandwiched silicone elastomer layer, which causes the underlying PEN substrate to bend. Optical beam deflection enables the detection of the bending angle vs. applied voltage. Bending radii as large as 850 m were reproducibly detected. DEA tests with electric fields of up to 80 V/μm showed limitations in electrode’s conductivity and structure failures. The actuation measurement is essential for the quantitative characterization of nanometer-thin, low-voltage, single- and multi-layer DEAs, as foreseen for artificial sphincters to efficiently treat severe urinary and fecal incontinence.

  17. Microfabricated therapeutic actuators and release mechanisms therefor (United States)

    Lee, Abraham P.; Fitch, Joseph P.; Schumann, Daniel L.; Da Silva, Luiz; Benett, William J.; Krulevitch, Peter A.


    Microfabricated therapeutic actuators are fabricated using a shape memory polymer (SMP), a polyurethane-based material that undergoes a phase transformation at a specified temperature (Tg). At a temperature above temperature Tg material is soft and can be easily reshaped into another configuration. As the temperature is lowered below temperature Tg the new shape is fixed and locked in as long as the material stays below temperature Tg. Upon reheating the material to a temperature above Tg, the material will return to its original shape. By the use of such SMP material, SMP microtubing can be used as a retaining/release actuator for the delivery of material, such as embolic coils, for example, through catheters into aneurysms, for example. The microtubing can be manufactured in various sizes and the phase change temperature Tg is determinate for an intended temperature target and intended use. The SMP microtubing can be positioned around or within an end of a deposit material. Various heating arrangements can be utilized with the SMP release mechanism, and the SMP microtubing can include a metallic coating for enhanced light absorption.

  18. Microelectromechanical systems integrating molecular spin crossover actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Manrique-Juarez, Maria D. [LCC, CNRS and Université de Toulouse, UPS, INP, F-31077 Toulouse (France); LAAS, CNRS and Université de Toulouse, INSA, UPS, F-31077 Toulouse (France); Rat, Sylvain; Salmon, Lionel; Molnár, Gábor; Bousseksou, Azzedine, E-mail:, E-mail: [LCC, CNRS and Université de Toulouse, UPS, INP, F-31077 Toulouse (France); Mathieu, Fabrice; Saya, Daisuke; Séguy, Isabelle; Leïchlé, Thierry; Nicu, Liviu, E-mail:, E-mail: [LAAS, CNRS and Université de Toulouse, INSA, UPS, F-31077 Toulouse (France)


    Silicon MEMS cantilevers coated with a 200 nm thin layer of the molecular spin crossover complex [Fe(H{sub 2}B(pz){sub 2}){sub 2}(phen)] (H{sub 2}B(pz){sub 2} = dihydrobis(pyrazolyl)borate and phen = 1,10-phenantroline) were actuated using an external magnetic field and their resonance frequency was tracked by means of integrated piezoresistive detection. The light-induced spin-state switching of the molecules from the ground low spin to the metastable high spin state at 10 K led to a well-reproducible shift of the cantilever's resonance frequency (Δf{sub r} = −0.52 Hz). Control experiments at different temperatures using coated as well as uncoated devices along with simple calculations support the assignment of this effect to the spin transition. This latter translates into changes in mechanical behavior of the cantilever due to the strong spin-state/lattice coupling. A guideline for the optimization of device parameters is proposed so as to efficiently harness molecular scale movements for large-scale mechanical work, thus paving the road for nanoelectromechanical systems (NEMS) actuators based on molecular materials.

  19. Electrostatically actuated resonant switches for earthquake detection

    KAUST Repository

    Ramini, Abdallah H.


    The modeling and design of electrostatically actuated resonant switches (EARS) for earthquake and seismic applications are presented. The basic concepts are based on operating an electrically actuated resonator close to instability bands of frequency, where it is forced to collapse (pull-in) if operated within these bands. By careful tuning, the resonator can be made to enter the instability zone upon the detection of the earthquake signal, thereby pulling-in as a switch. Such a switching action can be functionalized for useful functionalities, such as shutting off gas pipelines in the case of earthquakes, or can be used to activate a network of sensors for seismic activity recording in health monitoring applications. By placing a resonator on a printed circuit board (PCB) of a natural frequency close to that of the earthquake\\'s frequency, we show significant improvement on the detection limit of the EARS lowering it considerably to less than 60% of the EARS by itself without the PCB. © 2013 IEEE.

  20. Variable sweep geometry primary structure actuation (United States)

    Knowles, Gareth J.; Bird, Ross W.; White, Edward V.; Valentino, Michael


    Several corporations including QorTek and Boeing have both independently proposed variable sweep primary structures for future adaptive airframe structures as to enable miniaturized area dominance munitions and UAVs. Various new vehicle concepts must insert a high power actuator to overcome low speed aerodynamic forces within a limited packaging availability. In order to meet requirements for this and other UAV/UCAV/MMT missions, require a re-thinking on how to accomplish large motor torque/lb (rather than energy/lb) while integrating the speed and torque capability in a small package. The difficulty is highlighted by considering that piezo devices are nicely compact but can only deliver is typically 1-2ft-lb/lb; whereas SMA has potential of being lighter solution and can deliver 100-200 ft-lb/lb but has two problems: slow recovery and large weight penalty for thermal components. Fortunately, some munition applications have relatively modest control surface actuation bandwidth requirements. However, until now, the thermal aspect has been prohibitive. QorTek will present a new SMA-based motor that provides high torque/lb for UAV/UCAV/MMT systems. This unique motor design has eliminated the need for additional power components for thermal excitation (transient heating) of the SMA elements as to accomplish phase transition. The resulting package is the desirable lightweight and compact packaged solution to many air vehicle and munition needs. Moreover, the design eliminates the undesirable "snapping" action associated with SMA phase transition.

  1. Application of polyimide actuator rod seals (United States)

    Watermann, A. W.; Gay, B. F.; Robinson, E. D.; Srinath, S. K.; Nelson, W. G.


    Development of polyimide two-stage hydraulic actuator rod seals for application in high-performance aircraft was accomplished. The significant portion of the effort was concentrated on optimization of the chevron and K-section second-stage seal geometries to satisfy the requirements for operation at 450 K (350 F) with dynamic pressure loads varying between 200 psig steady-state and 1500 psig impulse cycling. Particular significance was placed on reducing seal gland dimension by efficiently utilizing the fatigue allowables of polyimide materials. Other objectives included investigation of pressure balancing techniques for first-stage polyimide rod seals for 4000 psig 450 K(350 F) environment and fabrication of a modular retainer for the two-stage combination. Seals were fabricated in 0.0254 m (1.0in.) and 0.0635 m (2.5in.) sizes and tested for structural integrity, frictional resistance, and endurance life. Test results showed that carefully designed second stages using polyimides could be made to satisfy the dynamic return pressure requirements of applications in high-performance aircraft. High wear under full system pressure indicated that further research is necessary to obtain an acceptable first-stage design. The modular retainer was successfully tested and showed potential for new actuator applications.

  2. Size dependent droplet actuation in digital microfluidic systems (United States)

    Bhattacharjee, Biddut; Najjaran, Homayoun


    Digital microfluidic systems (DMFS) manipulate liquid droplets with volumes in submicroliter range in two dimensional arrays of cells. Among possible droplet actuation mechanisms, Electrowetting-on-dielectric (EWOD) actuation has been found to be most feasible and advantageous because of low power consumption, ease of signal generation and basic device fabrication. In EWOD based DMFS, droplets are actuated by applying an electric field and thus increasing the wettability on one side of the droplet. In this paper, we show that the EWOD actuation of a droplet can be modeled as a closed loop system having unity feedback of position. Electrode, dielectric and droplet are modeled as a capacitor with variable area as the droplet, considered as a conductor, moves over the dielectric layer. The EWOD force depends on the rate of change of droplet area over the actuated electrode, which in turn depends on the direction of motion and the position of the droplet between the actuated and previous electrode. Thus, EWOD actuation intrinsically utilizes the droplet position to generate sufficient force to accelerate the droplet. When the droplet approaches the final position, the magnitude of force reduces automatically so the droplet decelerates. In case the droplet has sufficient momentum to exceed the final position, the EWOD force, according to the model, will act on the opposite side of the droplet in order to bring it back to the desired position. The dynamic response has been characterized using the proposed model for different droplet sizes, actuation voltages, dielectric thicknesses and electrode sizes.

  3. Actuator and electronics packaging for extrinsic humanoid hand (United States)

    Ihrke, Chris A. (Inventor); Bridgwater, Lyndon (Inventor); Diftler, Myron A. (Inventor); Reich, David M. (Inventor); Askew, Scott R. (Inventor)


    The lower arm assembly for a humanoid robot includes an arm support having a first side and a second side, a plurality of wrist actuators mounted to the first side of the arm support, a plurality of finger actuators mounted to the second side of the arm support and a plurality of electronics also located on the first side of the arm support.

  4. Tip loss correction for actuator / Navier Stokes computations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shen, Wen Zhong; Sørensen, Jens Nørkær; Mikkelsen, Robert Flemming


    The new tip loss correction, initially developed for ID BEM computations [1], is now extended to 2D Actuator Disc / Navier-Stokes (AD/NS) computations and 3D Actuator Line / Navier-Stokes (AL/NS) computations. As shown in the paper, the tip loss correction is an important and necessary step...

  5. Limit cycles and stiffness control with variable stiffness actuators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Carloni, Raffaella; Marconi, Lorenzo


    Variable stiffness actuators realize highly dynamic systems, whose inherent mechanical compliance can be properly exploited to obtain a robust and energy-efficient behavior. The paper presents a control strategy for variable stiffness actuators with the primarily goal of tracking a limit cycle

  6. Nonlinear Tracking Control of a Conductive Supercoiled Polymer Actuator. (United States)

    Luong, Tuan Anh; Cho, Kyeong Ho; Song, Min Geun; Koo, Ja Choon; Choi, Hyouk Ryeol; Moon, Hyungpil


    Artificial muscle actuators made from commercial nylon fishing lines have been recently introduced and shown as a new type of actuator with high performance. However, the actuators also exhibit significant nonlinearities, which make them difficult to control, especially in precise trajectory-tracking applications. In this article, we present a nonlinear mathematical model of a conductive supercoiled polymer (SCP) actuator driven by Joule heating for model-based feedback controls. Our efforts include modeling of the hysteresis behavior of the actuator. Based on nonlinear modeling, we design a sliding mode controller for SCP actuator-driven manipulators. The system with proposed control law is proven to be asymptotically stable using the Lyapunov theory. The control performance of the proposed method is evaluated experimentally and compared with that of a proportional-integral-derivative (PID) controller through one-degree-of-freedom SCP actuator-driven manipulators. Experimental results show that the proposed controller's performance is superior to that of a PID controller, such as the tracking errors are nearly 10 times smaller compared with those of a PID controller, and it is more robust to external disturbances such as sensor noise and actuator modeling error.

  7. Environmentally responsive optical microstructured hybrid actuator assemblies and applications thereof (United States)

    Aizenberg, Joanna; Aizenberg, Michael; Kim, Philseok


    Microstructured hybrid actuator assemblies in which microactuators carrying designed surface properties to be revealed upon actuation are embedded in a layer of responsive materials. The microactuators in a microactuator array reversibly change their configuration in response to a change in the environment without requiring an external power source to switch their optical properties.

  8. Leaf spring, and electromagnetic actuator provided with a leaf spring

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berkhoff, Arthur P.; Lemmen, Remco Louis Christiaan


    The invention relates to a leaf spring for an electromagnetic actuator and to such an electromagnetic actuator. The leaf spring is formed as a whole from a disc of plate-shaped, resilient material. The leaf spring comprises a central fastening part, an outer fastening part extending therearound and

  9. Modelling the nonlinearity of piezoelectric actuators in active ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Piezoelectric actuators have great capabilities as elements of intelligent structures for active vibration cancellation. One problem with this type of actuator is its nonlinear behaviour. In active vibration control systems, it is important to have an accurate model of the control branch. This paper demonstrates the ability of neural ...

  10. modelling the nonlinearity of piezoelectric actuators in active ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)


    Piezoelectric actuators have great capabilities as elements of intelligent structures for active vibration cancellation. One problem with this type of actuator is its nonlinear behaviour. In active vibration control systems, it is important to have an accurate model of the control branch. This paper demonstrates the ability of neural ...

  11. Design of a smart bidirectional actuator for space operation (United States)

    Saggin, Bortolino; Scaccabarozzi, Diego; Tarbini, Marco; Magni, Marianna; Biffi, Carlo Alberto; Tuissi, Ausonio


    A common need for space borne instruments, satellites and planetary exploration payloads is the usage of compact, light and low power actuators. In the recent years, this need has been partially solved by the development of customized solutions with an increasing usage of smart materials. A linear bidirectional actuator based on shape memory alloy technology is presented in this work. The device has been conceived to lock the double-pendulum scanning mechanism of a miniaturized Fourier transform spectrometer for planetary observation. The mechanism class is that of pin pullers, with the pin locking the movable components of the spectrometer during launch and landing phases. The proposed mechanism, differently from available off-the-shelf devices, allows multiple actuations without the need of manual resetting. Moreover, the device requires to be powered only to change its status. An appealing feature of the adopted concept is that the actuation is intrinsically shock-less, a key requirement for deployment of devices sensitive to mechanical vibration and shocks. All these characteristics, in addition to the design flexibility of the proposed concept in terms of achievable forces and strokes, make the designed actuator promising for many different applications, from space to ground. The designed bidirectional actuator provides 0.6 mm stroke and a 50 N preload but it represents just an example of implementation for the proposed concept. Structural design of the functional elastic components and SMA alloy characterization have guided the actuator development. A mockup of the actuator has been manufactured and the predicted performances preliminary validated.

  12. Hydraulically-actuated operating system for an electric circuit breaker (United States)

    Barkan, Philip; Imam, Imdad


    This hydraulically-actuated operating system comprises a cylinder, a piston movable therein in an opening direction to open a circuit breaker, and an accumulator for supplying pressurized liquid to a piston-actuating space within the cylinder. A normally-closed valve between the accumulator and the actuating space is openable to allow pressurized liquid from the accumulator to flow through the valve into the actuating space to drive the piston in an opening direction. A vent is located hydraulically between the actuating space and the valve for affording communication between said actuating space and a low pressure region. Flow control means is provided for restricting leakage through said vent to a rate that prevents said leakage from substantially detracting from the development of pressure within said actuatng space during the period from initial opening of the valve to the time when said piston has moved through most of its opening stroke. Following such period and while the valve is still open, said flow control means allows effective leakage through said vent. The accumulator has a limited capacity that results in the pressure within said actuating space decaying promptly to a low value as a result of effective leakage through said vent after the piston has moved through a circuit-breaker opening stroke and while the valve is in its open state. Means is provided for resetting the valve to its closed state in response to said pressure decay in the actuating space.

  13. A system look at electromechanical actuation for primary flight control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lomonova, E.A.


    An overview is presented of the emergence of the ALL Electric flight control system (FCS) or power-by-wire (PBW) concept. The concept of fly-by-power refers to the actuator using electrical rather than hydraulic power. The development of the primary flight control Electromechanical Actuators (EMAs)

  14. Stability and stabilization of linear systems with saturating actuators

    CERN Document Server

    Tarbouriech, Sophie; Gomes da Silva Jr, João Manoel; Queinnec, Isabelle


    Gives the reader an in-depth understanding of the phenomena caused by the more-or-less ubiquitous problem of actuator saturation. Proposes methods and algorithms designed to avoid, manage or overcome the effects of actuator saturation. Uses a state-space approach to ensure local and global stability of the systems considered. Compilation of fifteen years' worth of research results.

  15. Natural fibres actuators for smart bio-inspired hygromorph biocomposites (United States)

    Le Duigou, Antoine; Requile, Samuel; Beaugrand, Johnny; Scarpa, Fabrizio; Castro, Mickael


    Hygromorph biocomposite (HBC) actuators make use of the transport properties of plant fibres to generate an out-of-plane displacement when a moisture gradient is present. HBC actuators possess a design based on the bilayer configuration of natural hygromorph actuators (like pine cone, wheat awn, Selaginella lepidophyll). In this work we present a series of design guidelines for HBCs with improved performance, low environmental footprints and high durability in severe environments. We develop a theoretical actuating response (curvature) formulation of maleic anhydride polypropylene (MAPP)/plant fibres based on bimetallic actuators theory. The actuation response is evaluated as a function of the fibre type (flax, jute, kenaf and coir). We demonstrate that the actuation is directly related to the fibre microstructure and its biochemical composition. The jute and flax fibres appear to be the best candidates for use in HBCs. Flax/MAPP and jute/MAPP HBCs exhibit similar actuating behaviours during the sorption phase (amplitude and speed), but different desorption characteristics due to the combined effect of the lumen size, fibre division and biochemical composition on the desorption mechanism. During hygromechanical fatigue tests the jute/MAPP HBCs exhibit a drastic improvement in durability compared to their flax counterparts. We also provide a demonstration on how HBCs can be used to trigger deployment of more complex structures based on Origami and Kirigami designs.

  16. Electrothermal Actuators for SiO2 Photonic MEMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tjitte-Jelte Peters


    Full Text Available This paper describes the design, fabrication and characterization of electrothermal bimorph actuators consisting of polysilicon on top of thick (>10 μ m silicon dioxide beams. This material platform enables the integration of actuators with photonic waveguides, producing mechanically-flexible photonic waveguide structures that are positionable. These structures are explored as part of a novel concept for highly automated, sub-micrometer precision chip-to-chip alignment. In order to prevent residual stress-induced fracturing that is associated with the release of thick oxide structures from a silicon substrate, a special reinforcement method is applied to create suspended silicon dioxide beam structures. The characterization includes measurements of the post-release deformation (i.e., without actuation, as well as the deflection resulting from quasi-static and dynamic actuation. The post-release deformation reveals a curvature, resulting in the free ends of 800 μ m long silicon dioxide beams with 5 μ m-thick polysilicon to be situated approximately 80 μ m above the chip surface. Bimorph actuators that are 800 μ m in length produce an out-of-plane deflection of approximately 11 μ m at 60 mW dissipated power, corresponding to an estimated 240 ∘ C actuator temperature. The delivered actuation force of the 800 μ m-long bimorph actuators having 5 μ m-thick polysilicon is calculated to be approximately 750 μN at 120 mW .

  17. Creep effect modeling for a core free tubular actuator (United States)

    Sarban, Rahimullah; Oubaek, Jakob; Jones, Richard W.


    Of the range of dielectric EAP-based actuators that currently exist those having a cylindrical configuration are perhaps the most important. Up until now the most popular tubular actuator designs have exploited the exceptional pre-strain performance of the acrylics VHB 2910 and VHB 2905. Unfortunately pre-stained acrylic film rolled tubular actuators with a spring core experience problems concerning reliability and life expectancy. Partly because of these problems research is beginning to be directed towards the design, fabrication and characterisation of core free tubular actuators. This work reviews the Voltage-Strain modeling of core free rolled actuators that are constructed using a dielectric electro active polymer film that employs smart electrode technology. Position response tests, whereby a step input of 1500 V was applied to each actuator, confirmed that time dependent strain influences the Voltage-Strain behaviour of the actuators. To represent the time dependent strain behaviour a creep effect model was combined with Pelrine's electromechanical model to provide a more accurate representation of the Voltage-Strain characteristics of the actuators.

  18. Development of a soft untethered robot using artificial muscle actuators (United States)

    Cao, Jiawei; Qin, Lei; Lee, Heow Pueh; Zhu, Jian


    Soft robots have attracted much interest recently, due to their potential capability to work effectively in unstructured environment. Soft actuators are key components in soft robots. Dielectric elastomer actuators are one class of soft actuators, which can deform in response to voltage. Dielectric elastomer actuators exhibit interesting attributes including large voltage-induced deformation and high energy density. These attributes make dielectric elastomer actuators capable of functioning as artificial muscles for soft robots. It is significant to develop untethered robots, since connecting the cables to external power sources greatly limits the robots' functionalities, especially autonomous movements. In this paper we develop a soft untethered robot based on dielectric elastomer actuators. This robot mainly consists of a deformable robotic body and two paper-based feet. The robotic body is essentially a dielectric elastomer actuator, which can expand or shrink at voltage on or off. In addition, the two feet can achieve adhesion or detachment based on the mechanism of electroadhesion. In general, the entire robotic system can be controlled by electricity or voltage. By optimizing the mechanical design of the robot (the size and weight of electric circuits), we put all these components (such as batteries, voltage amplifiers, control circuits, etc.) onto the robotic feet, and the robot is capable of realizing autonomous movements. Experiments are conducted to study the robot's locomotion. Finite element method is employed to interpret the deformation of dielectric elastomer actuators, and the simulations are qualitatively consistent with the experimental observations.

  19. Numerical Simulation of Fluidic Actuators for Flow Control Applications (United States)

    Vasta, Veer N.; Koklu, Mehti; Wygnanski, Israel L.; Fares, Ehab


    Active flow control technology is finding increasing use in aerospace applications to control flow separation and improve aerodynamic performance. In this paper we examine the characteristics of a class of fluidic actuators that are being considered for active flow control applications for a variety of practical problems. Based on recent experimental work, such actuators have been found to be more efficient for controlling flow separation in terms of mass flow requirements compared to constant blowing and suction or even synthetic jet actuators. The fluidic actuators produce spanwise oscillating jets, and therefore are also known as sweeping jets. The frequency and spanwise sweeping extent depend on the geometric parameters and mass flow rate entering the actuators through the inlet section. The flow physics associated with these actuators is quite complex and not fully understood at this time. The unsteady flow generated by such actuators is simulated using the lattice Boltzmann based solver PowerFLOW R . Computed mean and standard deviation of velocity profiles generated by a family of fluidic actuators in quiescent air are compared with experimental data. Simulated results replicate the experimentally observed trends with parametric variation of geometry and inflow conditions.

  20. Stretchable Materials for Robust Soft Actuators towards Assistive Wearable Devices (United States)

    Agarwal, Gunjan; Besuchet, Nicolas; Audergon, Basile; Paik, Jamie


    Soft actuators made from elastomeric active materials can find widespread potential implementation in a variety of applications ranging from assistive wearable technologies targeted at biomedical rehabilitation or assistance with activities of daily living, bioinspired and biomimetic systems, to gripping and manipulating fragile objects, and adaptable locomotion. In this manuscript, we propose a novel two-component soft actuator design and design tool that produces actuators targeted towards these applications with enhanced mechanical performance and manufacturability. Our numerical models developed using the finite element method can predict the actuator behavior at large mechanical strains to allow efficient design iterations for system optimization. Based on two distinctive actuator prototypes’ (linear and bending actuators) experimental results that include free displacement and blocked-forces, we have validated the efficacy of the numerical models. The presented extensive investigation of mechanical performance for soft actuators with varying geometric parameters demonstrates the practical application of the design tool, and the robustness of the actuator hardware design, towards diverse soft robotic systems for a wide set of assistive wearable technologies, including replicating the motion of several parts of the human body.

  1. Advanced Electroactive Single Crystal and Polymer Actuator Concepts for Passive Optics Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — TRS Technologies proposes large stroke and high precision piezoelectric single crystal and electroactive polymer actuator concepts?HYBrid Actuation System (HYBAS)...

  2. Numerical modeling of shape memory alloy linear actuator (United States)

    Jani, Jaronie Mohd; Huang, Sunan; Leary, Martin; Subic, Aleksandar


    The demand for shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators in high-technology applications is increasing; however, there exist technical challenges to the commercial application of SMA actuator technologies, especially associated with actuation duration. Excessive activation duration results in actuator damage due to overheating while excessive deactivation duration is not practical for high-frequency applications. Analytical and finite difference equation models were developed in this work to predict the activation and deactivation durations and associated SMA thermomechanical behavior under variable environmental and design conditions. Relevant factors, including latent heat effect, induced stress and material property variability are accommodated. An existing constitutive model was integrated into the proposed models to generate custom SMA stress-strain curves. Strong agreement was achieved between the proposed numerical models and experimental results; confirming their applicability for predicting the behavior of SMA actuators with variable thermomechanical conditions.

  3. Analysis of Reconfigured Control Loop with a Virtual Actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Filasova


    Full Text Available Control reconfiguration changes the control structure in response to a fault detected in the plant. This becomes necessary, because a major fault like loss of an actuator breaks the corresponding control loop and therefore renders the whole system inoperable.  An important aim of control reconfiguration is to change the control structure as little as possible, since every change bears the potential of practical problems. The proposed solution is to keep the original controller in the loop and to add an extension called virtual actuator that implements the necessary changes of the control structure. The virtual actuator translates between the signals of the nominal controller and the signal of the faulty plants. This paper is concerned with the analysis of reconfigured loop with a virtual actuator for the system with the faulty actuator. The proposed analysis is illustrated on numerical example.

  4. Exploring dielectric elastomers as actuators for hand tremor suppression (United States)

    Kelley, Christopher R.; Kauffman, Jeffrey L.


    Pathological tremor results in undesired motion of body parts, with the greatest effect typically occurring in the hands. Since common treatment methods are ineffective in some patients or have risks associated with surgery or side effects, researchers are investigating mechanical means of tremor suppression. This work explores the viability of dielectric elastomers as the actuators in a tremor suppression control system. Dielectric elastomers have many properties similar to human muscle, making them a natural fit for integration into the human biomechanical system. This investigation develops a model of the integrated wrist-actuator system to determine actuator parameters that produce the necessary control authority without significantly affecting voluntary motion. Furthermore, this paper develops a control law for the actuator voltage to increase the effective viscous damping of the system. Simulations show excellent theoretical tremor suppression, demonstrating the potential for dielectric elastomers to suppress tremor while maximizing compatibility between the actuator and the human body.

  5. Advanced high performance horizontal piezoelectric hybrid synthetic jet actuator (United States)

    Xu, Tian-Bing (Inventor); Jiang, Xiaoning (Inventor); Su, Ji (Inventor)


    The present invention comprises a high performance, horizontal, zero-net mass-flux, synthetic jet actuator for active control of viscous, separated flow on subsonic and supersonic vehicles. The present invention is a horizontal piezoelectric hybrid zero-net mass-flux actuator, in which all the walls of the chamber are electrically controlled synergistically to reduce or enlarge the volume of the synthetic jet actuator chamber in three dimensions simultaneously and to reduce or enlarge the diameter of orifice of the synthetic jet actuator simultaneously with the reduction or enlargement of the volume of the chamber. The present invention is capable of installation in the wing surface as well as embedding in the wetted surfaces of a supersonic inlet. The jet velocity and mass flow rate for the SJA-H will be several times higher than conventional piezoelectric actuators.

  6. Advanced high performance vertical hybrid synthetic jet actuator (United States)

    Xu, Tian-Bing (Inventor); Jiang, Xiaoning (Inventor); Su, Ji (Inventor)


    The present invention comprises a high performance, vertical, zero-net mass-flux, synthetic jet actuator for active control of viscous, separated flow on subsonic and supersonic vehicles. The present invention is a vertical piezoelectric hybrid zero-net mass-flux actuator, in which all the walls of the chamber are electrically controlled synergistically to reduce or enlarge the volume of the synthetic jet actuator chamber in three dimensions simultaneously and to reduce or enlarge the diameter of orifice of the synthetic jet actuator simultaneously with the reduction or enlargement of the volume of the chamber. The jet velocity and mass flow rate for the present invention will be several times higher than conventional piezoelectric synthetic jet actuators.

  7. Overview of Actuated Arm Support Systems and Their Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E.A. Lomonova


    Full Text Available Arm support systems provide support throughout daily tasks, training or in an industrial environment. During the last decades a large diversity of actuated arm support systems have been developed. To analyze the actuation principles in these systems, an overview of actuated arm support systems is provided. This overview visualizes the current trends on research and development of these support systems and distinguishes three categories. These categories depend mainly on the functional status of the user environment, which defines the specifications. Therefore, the actuated arm support systems are classified according to their user environment, namely: ambulatory, rehabilitation and industrial. Furthermore, three main actuation principles and three mechanical construction principles have been identified.

  8. Magnetically actuated microstructured surfaces can actively modify cell migration behaviour. (United States)

    Khademolhosseini, F; Liu, C-C; Lim, C J; Chiao, M


    We present a study on the application of magnetically actuated polymer micropillar surfaces in modifying the migration behaviour of cells. We show that micropillar surfaces actuated at a frequency of 1 Hz can cause more than a 5-fold decrease in cell migration rates compared to controls, whereas non-actuated micropillar surfaces cause no statistically significant alterations in cell migration rates. The effectiveness of the micropillar arrays in impeding cell migration depends on micropillar density and placement patterns, as well as the direction of micropillar actuation with respect to the direction of cell migration. Since the magnetic micropillar surfaces presented can be actuated remotely with small external magnetic fields, their integration with implants could provide new possibilities for in-vivo tissue engineering applications.

  9. A Bimorph Moment/Force Actuator for Dynamic Testing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hou Xiaoyan


    Full Text Available This paper focuses on a novel bimorph actuator which can produce pure moment or pure force to structures under testing. Due to its unique construction, this actuator is only sensitive to one translational and one rotational degree of freedom (DOF, which can be further decoupled from each other through controlling the phase of the excitation voltage supplied to the actuator. To correlate the input electrical voltage with the output moment (or force, angular velocity, linear velocity, rotational (or translational conversion functions are defined and then numerically determined. Compared with conventional twin-shaker setup to generate moment, the bimorph actuator is simple, compact, light-weight, effective and cheap. When generating moment, the usually-existing unwanted force excitation is avoided. The working frequency range of the actuator is much wider and the loading effect is greatly reduced.

  10. Composite thermal micro-actuator array for tactile displays (United States)

    Enikov, Eniko T.; Lazarov, Kalin V.


    Tactile perception of complex symbols through tactile stimulation is an exciting application of a phenomenon known as tactile illusion (TI). Sensation of motion on the skin can be produced by a limited number of discrete mechanical actuators applying light pressure over the skin. This phenomenon can thus be used as a neurophysiological testing tool to determine central and peripheral nervous system injury as well as providing an additional human-machine communication channel. This paper describes the development of a 4 x 5 actuator array of individual vibrating pixels for fingertip tactile communication. The array is approximately one square centimeter and utilizes novel micro-clutch MEMS technology. The individual pixels are turned ON and OFF by pairs of microscopic composite thermal actuators, while the main vibration is generated by a vibrating piezo-electric plate. The physiological parameters required for inducing tactile illusion are described. The fabrication sequence for the thermal micro-actuators along with actuation results are also presented.

  11. System and Method for Tensioning a Robotically Actuated Tendon (United States)

    Reiland, Matthew J. (Inventor); Diftler, Myron A. (Inventor)


    A tendon tensioning system includes a tendon having a proximal end and a distal end, an actuator, and a motor controller. The actuator may include a drive screw and a motor, and may be coupled with the proximal end of the tendon and configured to apply a tension through the tendon in response to an electrical current. The motor controller may be electrically coupled with the actuator, and configured to provide an electrical current having a first amplitude to the actuator until a stall tension is achieved through the tendon; provide a pulse current to the actuator following the achievement of the stall tension, where the amplitude of the pulse current is greater than the first amplitude, and return the motor to a steady state holding current following the conclusion of the pulse current.

  12. Piezoelectric dispenser based on a piezoelectric-metal-cavity actuator. (United States)

    Lam, K H; Sun, C L; Kwok, K W; Chan, H L W


    A piezoelectric dispenser has been fabricated based on the idea of a piezoelectric-metal-cavity (PMC) actuator. The PMC actuator consists of a metal ring sandwiched between two identical piezoelectric unimorphs. The radial contraction of the piezoelectric ceramic is converted into a flextensional motion of the unimorph, causing a large flexural displacement in the center part of the actuator. With the PMC actuator as a fluid chamber, the large flexural actuation can be used to produce the displacement needed to eject fluid. By applying an appropriate voltage to the piezoelectric unimorphs, a drop-on-demand ejection of ink or water can be achieved. The efficiency of fluid ejection can be enhanced after installing a valve in the fluid chamber. With the simple PMC structure, the dispenser can be operated with a low driving voltage of 12-15 V.

  13. Piezoelectric Actuator Modeling Using MSC/NASTRAN and MATLAB (United States)

    Reaves, Mercedes C.; Horta, Lucas G.


    This paper presents a procedure for modeling structures containing piezoelectric actuators using MSCMASTRAN and MATLAB. The paper describes the utility and functionality of one set of validated modeling tools. The tools described herein use MSCMASTRAN to model the structure with piezoelectric actuators and a thermally induced strain to model straining of the actuators due to an applied voltage field. MATLAB scripts are used to assemble the dynamic equations and to generate frequency response functions. The application of these tools is discussed using a cantilever aluminum beam with a surface mounted piezoelectric actuator as a sample problem. Software in the form of MSCINASTRAN DMAP input commands, MATLAB scripts, and a step-by-step procedure to solve the example problem are provided. Analysis results are generated in terms of frequency response functions from deflection and strain data as a function of input voltage to the actuator.

  14. Shape memory system with integrated actuation using embedded particles (United States)

    Buckley, Patrick R [New York, NY; Maitland, Duncan J [Pleasant Hill, CA


    A shape memory material with integrated actuation using embedded particles. One embodiment provides a shape memory material apparatus comprising a shape memory material body and magnetic pieces in the shape memory material body. Another embodiment provides a method of actuating a device to perform an activity on a subject comprising the steps of positioning a shape memory material body in a desired position with regard to the subject, the shape memory material body capable of being formed in a specific primary shape, reformed into a secondary stable shape, and controllably actuated to recover the specific primary shape; including pieces in the shape memory material body; and actuating the shape memory material body using the pieces causing the shape memory material body to be controllably actuated to recover the specific primary shape and perform the activity on the subject.

  15. Asymmetric Bellow Flexible Pneumatic Actuator for Miniature Robotic Soft Gripper

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ganesha Udupa


    Full Text Available The necessity of the soft gripping devices is increasing day-by-day in medical robotics especially when safe, gentle motions and soft touch are necessary. In this paper, a novel asymmetric bellow flexible pneumatic actuator (AFPA has been designed and fabricated to construct a miniaturised soft gripper that could be used to grip small objects. The model of AFPA is designed using solid works and its bending motion is simulated in Abaqus software for optimisation and compared with experimental results. The actuator is fabricated using compression molding process that includes micromachining of the molds. Experiments conducted show the bending characteristics of the actuator at different pressures. The actuator shows excellent bending performance and the eccentricity in its design supports increased bending or curling motion up to a certain extent compared to normal bellows without eccentricity. The effects of profile shape and eccentricity on the actuator performance are analysed and the results are presented.

  16. Tungsten trioxide (WO3) as an actuator electrode material for ISFET-based coulometric sensor-actuator systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Kerkhof, J.C.; van Kerkhof, J.C.; Olthuis, Wouter; Bergveld, Piet; Bos, M.


    Acid or base concentrations can be determined by performing an acid-base titration with OH− or H+ ions, coulometrically generated by the electrolysis of water at a noble metal actuator electrode. This can be done very rapidly if the actuator electrode is in close proximity to an ISFET which is used

  17. Contractive tension force stack actuator based on soft dielectric EAP (United States)

    Kovacs, Gabor; Düring, Lukas


    Among the electronic polymers EAPs especially the dielectric elastomers are functional materials that have promising potential as muscle-like actuators due to their inherent compliancy and good overall performance. The combination of huge active deformations, high energy densities, good efficiencies and fast response is unique to dielectric elastomers. Furthermore, they are lightweight, have a simple structure and can be easily tailored to various applications. Up to now most scientific research work has been focused on the planar expanding actuation mode due to the fact that the commercially available acrylic material VHB 4910 (3M) can easily be processed to planar actuators and has demonstrated very high actuation performance when pre-strained. Many different actuator designs have been developed and tested which expands in plane when voltage is applied and shrinks back as soon as the applied charges are removed from the electrodes. Obviously the contractive operation mode at activation is required for a wide range of application. Due to the principle of operation of soft DE EAP, mainly two directions to performed work against external loads are possible. Beside of the commonly used expanding actuation in planar direction the contractile actuation in thickness direction of the DE film represents a very promising option in the multilayer configuration. First approaches have been presented by the folded actuator design and by the multilayer tactile display device. In this study a novel approach for active structures driven by soft dielectric EAP is presented, which can perform contractive displacements at external tensile load. The device is composed of an array of equal segments, where the dielectric films are arranged in a pile-up configuration. In order to maintain satisfying structural integrity when external tension load is applied special attention was paid to the compliant electrode design which takes a central importance concerning the force transmission

  18. Design of shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators

    CERN Document Server

    Rao, Ashwin; Reddy, J N


    This short monograph presents an analysis and design methodology for shape memory alloy (SMA) components such as wires, beams, and springs for different applications. The solid-solid, diffusionless phase transformations in thermally responsive SMA allows them to demonstrate unique characteristics like superelasticity and shape memory effects. The combined sensing and actuating capabilities of such materials allows them to provide a system level response by combining multiple functions in a single material system. In SMA, the combined mechanical and thermal loading effects influence the functionality of such materials. The aim of this book is to make the analysis of these materials accessible to designers by developing a "strength of materials" approach to the analysis and design of such SMA components inspired from their various applications with a review of various factors influencing the design process for such materials.

  19. Tip vortices in the actuator line model (United States)

    Martinez, Luis; Meneveau, Charles


    The actuator line model (ALM) is a widely used tool to represent the wind turbine blades in computational fluid dynamics without the need to resolve the full geometry of the blades. The ALM can be optimized to represent the `correct' aerodynamics of the blades by choosing an appropriate smearing length scale ɛ. This appropriate length scale creates a tip vortex which induces a downwash near the tip of the blade. A theoretical frame-work is used to establish a solution to the induced velocity created by a tip vortex as a function of the smearing length scale ɛ. A correction is presented which allows the use of a non-optimal smearing length scale but still provides the downwash which would be induced using the optimal length scale. Thanks to the National Science Foundation (NSF) who provided financial support for this research via Grants IGERT 0801471, IIA-1243482 (the WINDINSPIRE project) and ECCS-1230788.

  20. Highly efficient electrocaloric cooling with electrostatic actuation (United States)

    Ma, Rujun; Zhang, Ziyang; Tong, Kwing; Huber, David; Kornbluh, Roy; Ju, Yongho Sungtaek; Pei, Qibing


    Solid-state refrigeration offers potential advantages over traditional cooling systems, but few devices offer high specific cooling power with a high coefficient of performance (COP) and the ability to be applied directly to surfaces. We developed a cooling device with a high intrinsic thermodynamic efficiency using a flexible electrocaloric (EC) polymer film and an electrostatic actuation mechanism. Reversible electrostatic forces reduce parasitic power consumption and allow efficient heat transfer through good thermal contacts with the heat source or heat sink. The EC device produced a specific cooling power of 2.8 watts per gram and a COP of 13. The new cooling device is more efficient and compact than existing surface-conformable solid-state cooling technologies, opening a path to using the technology for a variety of practical applications.

  1. Electric motors and actuators at cryogenic tempertures (United States)

    Bugeat, J. P.; Macaigne, J.; Valentian, D.

    A small electric motor and an actuating mechanism for use at temperatures around 4.2 K under ultra high vacuum was tested in order to assess the feasibility of such a driving mechanism working in the coldest part of a spacecraft cryostat. A variable reluctance stepping motor driving a simple screw nut mechanism was used. Dry lubrication was provided by polyimide slide bearings and nut and by composite retainer roller bearings. Motor and mechanism sustained extended tests at liquid helium temperature with continuous operation for 8 hr periods and faultless restart after 16 hr rest periods. Power consumption was reduced to 15 mV leading to low liquid helium comsumption. Post test analysis indicates no change in motor characteristics and no damage to bearings, screw and nut.

  2. Actuator Line Modeling of Wind Turbine Wakes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Troldborg, Niels


    This thesis contains a comprehensive 3D Navier-Stokes computational study of the characteristics of wakes of wind turbines operating in various flow conditions including interacting wakes between a row of turbines. The computations were carried out using the actuator line technique combined...... and it is shown that the turbines are subject to rather severe yaw moments, even in situations where the mean wind is oriented along the row. This observation is indicative of large scale dynamics of the wakes....... with the 3D Navier Stokes solver EllipSys3D and a LES turbulence model. Simple models, based on applying body forces in the computational domain, are developed for imposing sheared and turbulent infow and their validity is discussed. A few computations on stand alone turbines are compared to measurements...

  3. Math Machines: Using Actuators in Physics Classes (United States)

    Thomas, Frederick J.; Chaney, Robert A.; Gruesbeck, Marta


    Probeware (sensors combined with data-analysis software) is a well-established part of physics education. In engineering and technology, sensors are frequently paired with actuators—motors, heaters, buzzers, valves, color displays, medical dosing systems, and other devices that are activated by electrical signals to produce intentional physical change. This article describes how a 20-year project aimed at better integration of the STEM disciplines (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) uses brief actuator activities in physics instruction. Math Machines "actionware" includes software and hardware that convert virtually any free-form, time-dependent algebraic function into the dynamic actions of a stepper motor, servo motor, or RGB (red, green, blue) color mixer. With wheels and a platform, the stepper motor becomes LACI, a programmable vehicle. Adding a low-power laser module turns the servo motor into a programmable Pointer. Adding a gear and platform can transform the Pointer into an earthquake simulator.

  4. A novel microgripper hybrid driven by a piezoelectric stack actuator and piezoelectric cantilever actuators. (United States)

    Chen, Weilin; Zhang, Xianmin; Fatikow, Sergej


    For the piezo-driven microgripper, one issue is to enlarge the grasping stroke and realize parallel grasping movement in the compact design. Piezoelectric stack actuator (PSA) and piezoelectric cantilever actuator (PCA) are two kinds of typical piezoelectric actuators. In this study, a novel microgripper hybrid driven by a PSA and two PCAs is proposed, which can be a better solution for the issue, compared with the previous microgripper using PSA-driven multi-stages displacement amplification mechanism (DAM) or using longer and narrower PCAs. A compact one-stage orthogonal DAM is proposed for the PSA in the microgripper, which can enlarge the grasping stroke and realize parallel grasping movement. The proposed orthogonal DAM is a triangulation amplification-based mechanism with undetermined structural parameters. Bidirectional symmetric input forces/displacements are not required in the proposed design. The number of the undetermined parameters and the solution principle are analyzed. Finite element analysis is used to verify the proposed DAM. The gripper arms are designed as two PCAs, for which the grasping and parasitic movements of the free end are modeled. Piezoelectric-static coupling finite element analysis is used to verify the models. The PCAs-driven grasping with considerable parasitic movement can be used in the coarse positioning. The integration of the hybrid-driven microgripper is presented, and its performances are presented and verified by experiments.

  5. Design and Evaluation of a Direct Drive Valve Actuated by Piezostack Actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juncheol Jeon


    Full Text Available This paper presents performance characteristics of a new type of direct drive valve (DDV system driven by a piezostack actuator. The flexible beam mechanism is employed to amplify the output displacement from the piezostack actuator. After describing the operational principle of the proposed piezo DDV system, the governing equation of the whole piezo DDV system is then obtained by integrating the equations of the valve components. Based on the proposed model, significant structural components of the piezo DDV system are designed in order to achieve operational requirements (operating frequency: over 100 Hz; flow rate: 20 liter/Min.. An optimal design method is proposed for obtaining the geometry of the flexible beam mechanism by considering spool displacement, required operating frequency, and available space of the valve. After deciding the specific geometric dimensions of the piezo DDV system, a PID control algorithm is designed to enforce the spool position to the desired position trajectories by activating the piezostack actuator. Characteristics and control performances of the proposed piezo DDV system are evaluated using the MATLAB Simulink.

  6. A biomimetic robotic jellyfish (Robojelly) actuated by shape memory alloy composite actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Villanueva, Alex; Smith, Colin; Priya, Shashank, E-mail: [Center for Intelligent Material Systems and Structures (CIMSS), Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061 (United States)


    An analysis is conducted on the design, fabrication and performance of an underwater vehicle mimicking the propulsion mechanism and physical appearance of a medusa (jellyfish). The robotic jellyfish called Robojelly mimics the morphology and kinematics of the Aurelia aurita species. Robojelly actuates using bio-inspired shape memory alloy composite actuators. A systematic fabrication technique was developed to replicate the essential structural features of A. aurita. Robojelly's body was fabricated from RTV silicone having a total mass of 242 g and bell diameter of 164 mm. Robojelly was able to generate enough thrust in static water conditions to propel itself and achieve a proficiency of 0.19 s{sup -1} while the A. aurita achieves a proficiency of around 0.25 s{sup -1}. A thrust analysis based on empirical measurements for a natural jellyfish was used to compare the performance of the different robotic configurations. The configuration with best performance was a Robojelly with segmented bell and a passive flap structure. Robojelly was found to consume an average power on the order of 17 W with the actuators not having fully reached a thermal steady state.

  7. A novel microgripper hybrid driven by a piezoelectric stack actuator and piezoelectric cantilever actuators (United States)

    Chen, Weilin; Zhang, Xianmin; Fatikow, Sergej


    For the piezo-driven microgripper, one issue is to enlarge the grasping stroke and realize parallel grasping movement in the compact design. Piezoelectric stack actuator (PSA) and piezoelectric cantilever actuator (PCA) are two kinds of typical piezoelectric actuators. In this study, a novel microgripper hybrid driven by a PSA and two PCAs is proposed, which can be a better solution for the issue, compared with the previous microgripper using PSA-driven multi-stages displacement amplification mechanism (DAM) or using longer and narrower PCAs. A compact one-stage orthogonal DAM is proposed for the PSA in the microgripper, which can enlarge the grasping stroke and realize parallel grasping movement. The proposed orthogonal DAM is a triangulation amplification-based mechanism with undetermined structural parameters. Bidirectional symmetric input forces/displacements are not required in the proposed design. The number of the undetermined parameters and the solution principle are analyzed. Finite element analysis is used to verify the proposed DAM. The gripper arms are designed as two PCAs, for which the grasping and parasitic movements of the free end are modeled. Piezoelectric-static coupling finite element analysis is used to verify the models. The PCAs-driven grasping with considerable parasitic movement can be used in the coarse positioning. The integration of the hybrid-driven microgripper is presented, and its performances are presented and verified by experiments.

  8. Dielectric elastomer actuators for octopus inspired suction cups. (United States)

    Follador, M; Tramacere, F; Mazzolai, B


    Suction cups are often found in nature as attachment strategy in water. Nevertheless, the application of the artificial counterpart is limited by the dimension of the actuators and their usability in wet conditions. A novel design for the development of a suction cup inspired by octopus suckers is presented. The main focus of this research was on the modelling and characterization of the actuation unit, and a first prototype of the suction cup was realized as a proof of concept. The actuation of the suction cup is based on dielectric elastomer actuators. The presented device works in a wet environment, has an integrated actuation system, and is soft. The dimensions of the artificial suction cups are comparable to proximal octopus suckers, and the attachment mechanism is similar to the biological counterpart. The design approach proposed for the actuator allows the definition of the parameters for its development and for obtaining a desired pressure in water. The fabricated actuator is able to produce up to 6 kPa of pressure in water, reaching the maximum pressure in less than 300 ms.

  9. Recent Advances in the Control of Piezoelectric Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ziqiang Chi


    Full Text Available The micro/nano positioning field has made great progress towards enabling the advance of micro/nano technology. Micro/nano positioning stages actuated by piezoelectric actuators are the key devices in micro/nano manipulation. The control of piezoelectric actuators has emerged as a hot topic in recent years. Piezoelectric materials have inherent hysteresis and creep nonlinearity, which can reduce the accuracy of the manipulation, even causing the instability of the whole system. Remarkable efforts have been made to compensate for the nonlinearity of piezoelectric actuation through the mathematical modelling and control approaches. This paper provides a review of recent advances on the control of piezoelectric actuators. After a brief introduction of basic components of typical piezoelectric micro/nano positioning platforms, the working principle and modelling of piezoelectric actuators are outlined in this paper. This is followed with the major control method and recent progress is presented in detail. Finally, some open issues and future work on the control of piezoelectric actuators are extensively discussed.

  10. Design and investigation of a linear smart actuator (United States)

    Krishna Chaitanya, S.; Dhanalakshmi, K.


    Motors are nearly the sole constituents for actuation and driving applications, but there exist cases where their use proves to be impractical. Shape memory alloy (SMA), then revolutionized the actuator technology, thereby opening the door for new ideas and designs and with it what seemed unfeasible in the past have now become challenging. Many conventional actuators and sensors could be substituted with SMA, obtaining advantages in terms of reduction of weight, dimensions and its cost. SMAs are a group of metallic materials that revert to a predefined shape via phase transformation induced by a thermal procedure. Unlike metals that exhibit thermal expansion, SMA exhibits contraction when heated, which is larger by a hundredfold and exerts tremendous force for its small size. The focus of this work is to realize SMA wire as actuator which finds suitable applications (space, aerospace, biomechanics, etc.) where minimizing space, weight and cost are prime objectives. The accomplishments reported in this paper represent a significant development in the design of SMA actuator configurations for linear actuation. Report on design, fabrication and characterisation of the proposed system is presented. The design took advantage of converting the small linear displacement of the SMA wire into a large linear elastic motion under the influence of biasing element. From the results with control it is aspired that with further improvements on the design, the actuator can be utilized in enabling practical SMA technologies for potential robotic and commercial applications.

  11. Miniature osmotic actuators for controlled maxillofacial distraction osteogenesis (United States)

    Li, Yu-Hsien; Su, Yu-Chuan


    We have successfully demonstrated miniature actuators that are capable of converting chemical potential directly into steady mechanical movements for maxillofacial distraction osteogenesis. Pistons and diaphragms powered by osmosis are employed to provide the desired linear and volumetric displacements for bone distraction and potentially the release of bone morphogenetic proteins, respectively. The cylindrical-shaped miniature actuators are composed of polymeric materials and fabricated by molding and assembly processes. In the prototype demonstration, vapor-permeable thermoplastic polyurethane was employed as the semi-permeable material. 3 cm long actuators with piston and diaphragm radii of 1 mm and 500 µm, respectively, were fabricated and characterized. The maximum distraction force from the piston-type actuator is found to be 6 N while the piston travels at a constant velocity of 32 µm h-1 (or 0.77 mm/day) for about 1 week. Meanwhile, the release rate from the diaphragm-type actuator is measured to be constant, 0.15 µl h-1 (or 3.6 µl/day), throughout the experiment. Moreover, the sizes and output characteristics of the self-regulating actuators could readily be tailored to realize optimal distraction rate, rhythm and osteogenic activity. As such, the demonstrated miniature osmotic actuators could potentially serve as versatile apparatuses for maxillofacial distraction osteogenesis and fulfill the needs of a variety of implantable and biomedical applications.

  12. Elastic Cube Actuator with Six Degrees of Freedom Output

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pengchuan Wang


    Full Text Available Unlike conventional rigid actuators, soft robotic technologies possess inherent compliance, so they can stretch and twist along every axis without the need for articulated joints. This compliance is exploited here using dielectric elastomer membranes to develop a novel six degrees of freedom (6-DOF polymer actuator that unifies ordinarily separate components into a simple cubic structure. This cube actuator design incorporates elastic dielectric elastomer membranes on four faces which are coupled by a cross-shaped end effector. The inherent elasticity of each membrane greatly reduces kinematic constraint and enables a 6-DOF actuation output to be produced via the end effector. An electro-mechanical model of the cube actuator is presented that captures the non-linear hyperelastic behaviour of the active membranes. It is demonstrated that the model accurately predicts actuator displacement and blocking moment for a range of input voltages. Experimental testing of a prototype 60 mm device demonstrates 6-DOF operation. The prototype produces maximum linear and rotational displacements of ±2.6 mm (±4.3% and ±4.8° respectively and a maximum blocking moment of ±76 mNm. The capacity for full 6-DOF actuation from a compact, readily scalable and easily fabricated polymeric package enables implementation in a range of mechatronics and robotics applications.

  13. Molecular forces in electromechanical integrated electrostatic harmonic actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lizhong Xu


    Full Text Available Authors invent an electromechanical integrated electrostatic harmonic actuator. It is more favorable for miniaturization of the electromechanical devices. As the dimensions of the actuator decreases, the effects of the Casimir and van der Waals forces become obvious. Here, effects of the molecular forces on the operating behavior of the actuator are investigated theoretically investigated by a parametric study. The equations of the radial displacements of the flexible ring and the output torque for the actuator are deduced for three different situations: only considering electrostatic force, considering electrostatic and van der Waals forces, and considering electrostatic and the Casimir forces. The effects of van der Waals or the Casimir force on the radial displacements of the flexible ring and the output torque for the actuator are analyzed. Results show that van der Waals or the Casimir forces has obvious effects on the output torque of the actuator for small structure dimension. The results are useful in theory and technique studies on further miniaturization of the actuator.

  14. Molecular forces in electromechanical integrated electrostatic harmonic actuator (United States)

    Xu, Lizhong; Shi, Xufei


    Authors invent an electromechanical integrated electrostatic harmonic actuator. It is more favorable for miniaturization of the electromechanical devices. As the dimensions of the actuator decreases, the effects of the Casimir and van der Waals forces become obvious. Here, effects of the molecular forces on the operating behavior of the actuator are investigated theoretically investigated by a parametric study. The equations of the radial displacements of the flexible ring and the output torque for the actuator are deduced for three different situations: only considering electrostatic force, considering electrostatic and van der Waals forces, and considering electrostatic and the Casimir forces. The effects of van der Waals or the Casimir force on the radial displacements of the flexible ring and the output torque for the actuator are analyzed. Results show that van der Waals or the Casimir forces has obvious effects on the output torque of the actuator for small structure dimension. The results are useful in theory and technique studies on further miniaturization of the actuator.

  15. A Study on a Microwave-Driven Smart Material Actuator (United States)

    Choi, Sang H.; Chu, Sang-Hyon; Kwak, M.; Cutler, A. D.


    NASA s Next Generation Space Telescope (NGST) has a large deployable, fragmented optical surface (greater than or = 2 8 m in diameter) that requires autonomous correction of deployment misalignments and thermal effects. Its high and stringent resolution requirement imposes a great deal of challenge for optical correction. The threshold value for optical correction is dictated by lambda/20 (30 nm for NGST optics). Control of an adaptive optics array consisting of a large number of optical elements and smart material actuators is so complex that power distribution for activation and control of actuators must be done by other than hard-wired circuitry. The concept of microwave-driven smart actuators is envisioned as the best option to alleviate the complexity associated with hard-wiring. A microwave-driven actuator was studied to realize such a concept for future applications. Piezoelectric material was used as an actuator that shows dimensional change with high electric field. The actuators were coupled with microwave rectenna and tested to correlate the coupling effect of electromagnetic wave. In experiments, a 3x3 rectenna patch array generated more than 50 volts which is a threshold voltage for 30-nm displacement of a single piezoelectric material. Overall, the test results indicate that the microwave-driven actuator concept can be adopted for NGST applications.

  16. Distributed microscopic actuation analysis of deformable plate membrane mirrors (United States)

    Lu, Yifan; Yue, Honghao; Deng, Zongquan; Tzou, Hornsen


    To further reduce the areal density of optical mirrors used in space telescopes and other space-borne optical structures, the concept of flexible membrane deformable mirror has been proposed. Because of their high flexibility, poor stiffness and low damping properties, environmental excitations such as orbital maneuver, path changing, and non-uniform heating may induce unexpected vibrations and thus reduce working performance. Therefore, active vibration control is essential for these membrane mirrors. In this paper, two different mirror models, i.e., the plate membrane model and pure membrane model, are studied respectively. In order to investigate the modal vibration characteristics of the mirror, a piezoelectric layer is fully laminated on its non-reflective side to serve as actuators. Dynamic equations of the mirror laminated with piezoelectric actuators are presented first. Then, the actuator induced modal control force is defined. When the actuator area shrinks to infinitesimal, the expressions of microscopic local modal control force and its two components are obtained to predict the spatial microscopic actuation behavior of the mirror. Different membrane pretension forces are also applied to reveal the tension effects on the actuation of the mirror. Analyses indicate that the spatial distribution of modal micro-control forces is exactly the same with the sensing signals distribution of the mirror, which provides crucial guidelines for optimal actuator placement of membrane deformable mirrors.

  17. SMA actuators: a viable practical technology (Presentation Video) (United States)

    Browne, Alan L.; Brown, Jeffrey; Hodgson, Darel E.


    Diverse products either based solely on or incorporating Shape Memory Alloys (SMA) have and are being made in a wide range of industries, and IP is being captured. Why then compared to SE (superelastic) Nitinol, and especially conventional technology, do so few ideas reach production? This presentation delves deeply into this topic in reaching the final assessment that SMA actuators are indeed now a viable practical technology. The presentation begins with an introduction to and description of the fundamental basis of SMA actuator technology. Examples of multiple commercially available geometric forms of SMA actuators are given and the functionalities that they provide are described. This is followed by examples of multiple commercial products incorporating such SMA actuators. Given that there are literally millions of commercial products incorporating conventional actuator technologies, indications are given as to why there are their less than 1000 that utilize SMA. Experience based challenges to the commercial use of SMA actuators are described. Besides having to compete with existing non-SMA technology which is quite mature additional challenges that are unique to SM actuators are indicated these including a wider than expected set of technical engineering problems and challenges and that a broader scope of dynamics is required.

  18. Optimum responses of droplets under electro-wetting actuation (United States)

    Tran, Tuan; Vo, Quoc


    The electro-wetting phenomenon has been used extensively to manipulate shape and position of liquid droplets in various applications such as microfluidics, microswitches, liquid lenses, light valves, and fast response displays. One of the quantities critically affecting the performance of such applications is the actuation time, defined as the duration for a droplet to reach a new equilibrium state after an electrical field is applied. We experimentally study the dynamical response of electro-actuated droplets for a wide range of control parameters including viscosity, drop size, and electric field. We show that there exists a relation between such parameters to achieve optimum actuation time, which can be validated by experimental data.

  19. Design of a prosthetic hand with remote actuation. (United States)

    Scott, Kurt; Perez-Gracia, Alba


    One of the main issues of prosthetic hands is to be able to fulfill all the specifications about speed, torque, weight and inertia while placing all the components within the prosthetic hand. This is especially true when full dexterity is required in the prosthesis. In this paper, a new design for a prosthetic hand is presented, which uses remote actuation in order to satisfy most of those requirements. The actuators are to be located in the back of the subject and the transmission is implemented via cables. Other characteristics of this new prosthetic hand include torque limitation and the possibility of switching between underactuated and fully actuated functions.

  20. Nonlinear Parameter Identification of a Resonant Electrostatic MEMS Actuator (United States)

    Al-Ghamdi, Majed S.; Alneamy, Ayman M.; Park, Sangtak; Li, Beichen; Khater, Mahmoud E.; Abdel-Rahman, Eihab M.; Heppler, Glenn R.; Yavuz, Mustafa


    We experimentally investigate the primary superharmonic of order two and subharmonic of order one-half resonances of an electrostatic MEMS actuator under direct excitation. We identify the parameters of a one degree of freedom (1-DOF) generalized Duffing oscillator model representing it. The experiments were conducted in soft vacuum to reduce squeeze-film damping, and the actuator response was measured optically using a laser vibrometer. The predictions of the identified model were found to be in close agreement with the experimental results. We also identified the noise spectral density of process (actuation voltage) and measurement noise. PMID:28505097

  1. Nonlinear Parameter Identification of a Resonant Electrostatic MEMS Actuator. (United States)

    Al-Ghamdi, Majed S; Alneamy, Ayman M; Park, Sangtak; Li, Beichen; Khater, Mahmoud E; Abdel-Rahman, Eihab M; Heppler, Glenn R; Yavuz, Mustafa


    We experimentally investigate the primary superharmonic of order two and subharmonic of order one-half resonances of an electrostatic MEMS actuator under direct excitation. We identify the parameters of a one degree of freedom (1-DOF) generalized Duffing oscillator model representing it. The experiments were conducted in soft vacuum to reduce squeeze-film damping, and the actuator response was measured optically using a laser vibrometer. The predictions of the identified model were found to be in close agreement with the experimental results. We also identified the noise spectral density of process (actuation voltage) and measurement noise.

  2. Fast-Response Electrostatic Actuator Based on Nano-Gap

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edward Kostsov


    Full Text Available The possibility of constructing new high-performance electrostatic fast actuators based on energy transformation in nanometer gaps is considered. The construction and the properties of the operation of such devices as well as their typical parameters are described. The drives are based on ferroelectrics with high values of dielectric permittivity (above 1000. They can be constructed using microelectronic technology. It is demonstrated that the actuators are capable of maintaining forces with a specific density up to 106 N/m2 and up to 100–1000 N in real devices for 10–100 µs. Experimental research results of such actuators are presented.

  3. Controlling flexible structures with second order actuator dynamics (United States)

    Inman, Daniel J.; Umland, Jeffrey W.; Bellos, John


    The control of flexible structures for those systems with actuators that are modeled by second order dynamics is examined. Two modeling approaches are investigated. First a stability and performance analysis is performed using a low order finite dimensional model of the structure. Secondly, a continuum model of the flexible structure to be controlled, coupled with lumped parameter second order dynamic models of the actuators performing the control is used. This model is appropriate in the modeling of the control of a flexible panel by proof-mass actuators as well as other beam, plate and shell like structural numbers. The model is verified with experimental measurements.

  4. Optimal Sensor and Actuator Location for Unstable Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shaker, Hamid Reza; Tahavori, Maryamsadat


    on the processes. Dually the problem of placing actuators on the processes is equally important. In this paper, the problem of determining optimal sensor and actuator locations for the linear systems is addressed. The problem of the sensor locations is viewed as the problem of maximizing the output energy...... generated by a given state and for the actuator locations is viewed as the problem of minimizing the input energy required to reach a given state. Such design problems occur in many applications, and therefore have been studied extensively. Unfortunately, the results in this context, which have been...

  5. Development of multilayer conducting polymer actuator for power application (United States)

    Ikushima, Kimiya; Kudoh, Yuji; Hiraoka, Maki; Yokoyama, Kazuo; Nagamitsu, Sachio


    In late years many kinds of home-use robot have been developed to assist elderly care and housework. Most of these robots are designed with conventional electromagnetic motors. For safety it is desirable to replace these electromagnetic motors with artificial muscle. However, an actuator for such a robot is required to have simple structure, low driving voltage, high stress generation, high durability, and operability in the air. No polymer actuator satisfying all these requirements has been realized yet. To meet these we took following two approaches focusing on conducting polymer actuators which can output high power in the air. (Approach 1) We have newly developed an actuator by multiply laminating ionic liquid infiltrated separators and polypyrrole films. Compared with conventional actuator that is driven in a bath of ionic liquid, the new actuator can greatly increase generated stress since the total sectional area is tremendously small. In our experiment, the new actuator consists of minimum unit with thickness of 128um and has work/weight ratio of 0.92J/kg by laminating 9 units in 0.5Hz driving condition. In addition, the driving experiment has shown a stable driving characteristic even for 10,000 cycles durability test. Furthermore, from our design consideration, it has been found that the work/weight ratio can be improved up to 8J/kg (1/8 of mammalian muscle of 64J/kg) in 0.1Hz by reducing the thickness of each unit to 30um. (Approach 2) In order to realize a simplified actuator structure in the air without sealing, we propose the use of ionic liquid gel. The actuation characteristic of suggested multilayered actuator using ionic liquid gel is simulated by computer. The result shows that performance degradation due to the use of ionic liquid gel is negligible small when ionic liquid gel with the elasticity of 3kPa or less is used. From above two results it is concluded that the proposed multilayerd actuator is promising for the future robotic applications

  6. Efficient active actuation to imitate locomotion of gecko's toes using an ionic polymer-metal composite actuator enhanced by carbon nanotubes (United States)

    Yu, Min; He, Qingsong; Yu, Dingshan; Zhang, Xiaoqing; Ji, Aihong; Zhang, Hao; Guo, Ce; Dai, Zhendong


    Active actuation of the adhesive pads is important for a gecko-robot climbing on walls. We demonstrate the fabrication of an ionic polymer-metal composite (IPMC) actuator enhanced with carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and its use for actively actuating an adhesive array to imitate the locomotion of gecko's toes. The as-fabricated IPMC actuator doped with CNTs exhibits a maximum blocking force of 3.59 gf driven at a low voltage of 3 V. It can be easily controlled by voltage signals to actuate an artificial gecko's toe to attach and detach from a surface. This will allow active, distributed actuation in a gecko robot.

  7. Compact, Low-Force, Low-Noise Linear Actuator (United States)

    Badescu, Mircea; Sherrit, Stewart; Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Actuators are critical to all the robotic and manipulation mechanisms that are used in current and future NASA missions, and are also needed for many other industrial, aeronautical, and space activities. There are many types of actuators that were designed to operate as linear or rotary motors, but there is still a need for low-force, low-noise linear actuators for specialized applications, and the disclosed mechanism addresses this need. A simpler implementation of a rotary actuator was developed where the end effector controls the motion of a brush for cleaning a thermal sensor. The mechanism uses a SMA (shape-memory alloy) wire for low force, and low noise. The linear implementation of the actuator incorporates a set of springs and mechanical hard-stops for resetting and fault tolerance to mechanical resistance. The actuator can be designed to work in a pull or push mode, or both. Depending on the volume envelope criteria, the actuator can be configured for scaling its volume down to 4x2x1 cu cm. The actuator design has an inherent fault tolerance to mechanical resistance. The actuator has the flexibility of being designed for both linear and rotary motion. A specific configuration was designed and analyzed where fault-tolerant features have been implemented. In this configuration, an externally applied force larger than the design force does not damage the active components of the actuator. The actuator housing can be configured and produced using cost-effective methods such as injection molding, or alternatively, its components can be mounted directly on a small circuit board. The actuator is driven by a SMA -NiTi as a primary active element, and it requires energy on the order of 20 Ws(J) per cycle. Electrical connections to points A and B are used to apply electrical power in the resistive NiTi wire, causing a phase change that contracts the wire on the order of 5%. The actuation period is of the order of a second for generating the stroke, and 4 to 10

  8. Theoretical and experimental study on active sound transmission control based on single structural mode actuation using point force actuators. (United States)

    Sanada, Akira; Tanaka, Nobuo


    This study deals with the feedforward active control of sound transmission through a simply supported rectangular panel using vibration actuators. The control effect largely depends on the excitation method, including the number and locations of actuators. In order to obtain a large control effect at low frequencies over a wide frequency, an active transmission control method based on single structural mode actuation is proposed. Then, with the goal of examining the feasibility of the proposed method, the (1, 3) mode is selected as the target mode and a modal actuation method in combination with six point force actuators is considered. Assuming that a single input single output feedforward control is used, sound transmission in the case minimizing the transmitted sound power is calculated for some actuation methods. Simulation results showed that the (1, 3) modal actuation is globally effective at reducing the sound transmission by more than 10 dB in the low-frequency range for both normal and oblique incidences. Finally, experimental results also showed that a large reduction could be achieved in the low-frequency range, which proves the validity and feasibility of the proposed method.

  9. 78 FR 25488 - Qualification Tests for Safety-Related Actuators in Nuclear Power Plants (United States)


    ... COMMISSION Qualification Tests for Safety-Related Actuators in Nuclear Power Plants AGENCY: Nuclear..., ``Qualification Tests for Safety-Related Actuators in Nuclear Power Plants.'' DG-1235 is proposed Revision 1 of RG... practices for qualifying safety-related actuators, and actuator components, in Nuclear Power Generating...

  10. High-performance electromechanical transduction using laterally-constrained dielectric elastomers part I: Actuation processes (United States)

    Koh, Soo Jin Adrian; Keplinger, Christoph; Kaltseis, Rainer; Foo, Choon-Chiang; Baumgartner, Richard; Bauer, Siegfried; Suo, Zhigang


    A dielectric elastomer transducer is a deformable capacitor, and is under development as a sensor, actuator, or generator. Among various geometric configurations, laterally-constrained transducer, also known as pure-shear transducer, is easy to implement and effective to couple mechanical force and electrical voltage. This analytical study reveals that lateral pre-stretch enhances actuation, far exceeding previously reported actuation strokes. Laterally-constrained transducers exhibit complex electromechanical behavior. As voltage increases, an actuator may undergo electromechanical instability, or form wrinkles, or suffer electrical breakdown. We survey the behavior of actuators under all possible states of pre-stretches, and identify five modes of actuation. Our analysis predicts that laterally-constrained actuators can achieve actuation stroke of 1000% for an acrylic elastomer, and 230% for natural rubber. This analysis opens the door to design actuators of simple geometry capable of a very large range of electromechanical actuation.

  11. Smart Actuators and Adhesives for Reconfigurable Matter. (United States)

    Ko, Hyunhyub; Javey, Ali


    Biological systems found in nature provide excellent stimuli-responsive functions. The camouflage adaptation of cephalopods (octopus, cuttlefish), rapid stiffness change of sea cucumbers, opening of pine cones in response to humidity, and rapid closure of Venus flytraps upon insect touch are some examples of nature's smart systems. Although current technologies are still premature to mimic these sophisticated structures and functions in smart biological systems, recent work on stimuli-responsive programmable matter has shown great progress. Stimuli-responsive materials based on hydrogels, responsive nanocomposites, hybrid structures, shape memory polymers, and liquid crystal elastomers have demonstrated excellent responsivities to various stimuli such as temperature, light, pH, and electric field. However, the technologies in these stimuli-responsive materials are still not sophisticated enough to demonstrate the ultimate attributes of an ideal programmable matter: fast and reversible reconfiguration of programmable matter into complex and robust shapes. Recently, reconfigurable (or programmable) matter that reversibly changes its structure/shape or physical/chemical properties in response to external stimuli has attracted great interest for applications in sensors, actuators, robotics, and smart systems. In particular, key attributes of programmable matter including fast and reversible reconfiguration into complex and robust 2D and 3D shapes have been demonstrated by various approaches. In this Account, we review focused areas of smart materials with special emphasis on the material and device structure designs to enhance the response time, reversibility, multistimuli responsiveness, and smart adhesion for efficient shape transformation and functional actuations. First, the capability of fast reconfiguration of 2D and 3D structures in a reversible way is a critical requirement for programmable matter. For the fast and reversible reconfiguration, various approaches


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    .'s (ARM) modular robotic manipulator technology developed for DOE EM operations, which addresses many of the issues discussed in the previous section. This manipulator system has the capability of custom configurations, which accommodate common glovebox tasks such as materials repackaging. The modular nature and quick connects of this system simplify installations into ''hot'' boxes and any potential modifications or repair therein. In the field of automation and robotics, a very common element is one used to generate motion for precise positioning of loads. One example of such an automation component would be an individual joint within an industrial robotic manipulator. This component consists of a tightly integrated package containing an electric motor, gear train, output support bearings, position sensors, brake, servo-amplifier and communications controller. Within the context of this paper, this key building block is referred to as an actuator module. With regard to the needs of the EM, [8] and [9] have shown that while each focus area has unique requirements for robotic automation at a system or manipulator level, their requirements at the actuator level are very similar. Thereby, a modular approach to automation which utilizes a small set of versatile actuator modules can be used to construct a broad range of robotic systems and automation cells suited to EM applications. By providing a pre-engineered, pre-integrated motion system to different robotics users within the DOE, new automation systems can be more quickly created without extensive expertise in motion control or the expense of building custom equipment.

  13. NanoDrill: 1 Actuator Core Acquisition System Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to design, build and test a 1 kg, single actuator, sample acquisition drill. The drill uses a novel method of core or powder acquisition. The core...

  14. Modeling framework for piezoelectrically actuated MEMS tunable lenses. (United States)

    Farghaly, Mahmoud A; Akram, Muhammad Nadeem; Halvorsen, Einar


    WWe report a modeling framework for evaluating the performance of piezoelectrically actuated MEMS tunable lenses. It models the static opto-electromechanical coupling for symmetric configurations of piezoelectric actuators based on the laminated-plate theory, linear piezoelectricity, and ray tracing. With these assumptions, it helps to find geometrical parameters for actuators on clamped square or circular diaphragms that give a diffraction-limited tunable lens with minimum F-number. The tunable lens' optical performance and its focusing capability, alone and in combination with a paraxial fixed lens, were calculated in terms of object distance and actuation voltage. Using the modeling framework, we confirmed that the modulation transfer function for objects located at different distances remains the same after voltage adjustment.

  15. Impact-Actuated Digging Tool for Lunar Excavation Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Honeybee Robotics proposes to develop a vacuum compatible, impact-actuated digging tool for the excavation of frozen and compacted regolith on the lunar surface and...

  16. Magnetic actuation of thick film multi-material compliant mechanisms (United States)

    Vogtmann, Dana; St. Pierre, Ryan; Bergbreiter, Sarah


    This work presents models and experimental validation of magnetically actuated silicon mechanisms with elastomer hinges. Combining both highly compliant hinges and magnetic actuation results in mechanisms that can be actuated with large torques, large displacements, and high power. A single link mechanism is modeled, fabricated, and tested as a proof-of-concept device for this approach. The fabricated elastomer used in this work is characterized for its static and dynamic properties, and the dipoles of the magnetic materials used are also characterized. Using these measured material properties, the modeled behavior of the single link mechanism is then compared to experimental results in both static and dynamic tests. The resulting link can be statically actuated over 150° (75.1° in both directions) with a maximum applied power from the magnetic field of 0.70 mW at resonance.

  17. Reliable Actuator for Cryo Propellant Fluid Control Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Cryogenic fluid handling applications require a reliable actuation technology that can handle very low temperatures. A novel EM hammer drive technology is proposed...

  18. Development of an Actuator for Ambient to Cryo Application (United States)

    Menzel, Karen; Jung, Hans Jurgen; Schmidt, Joerg


    During the qualification campaign of the NIRSpec Instrument Mechanism, the actuator could not achieve the expected life time which was extended during the development phase. The initial design could not be adapted to the requested number of revolutions during that phase. Consequently the actuator needed to be modified such that the function of the mechanism would not be endangered and thus the overall function of the NIRSpec instrument. The modification included the change of the overall actuator design - internal dimensions, tolerances, materials, lubrication and assembly process - while keeping the interface to the mechanism, mass, and function. The lessons learned from the inspection of the failed actuator have been implemented in order to ensure the development and qualification success. The initially available time for this activity was in the range of 6 months to meet the overall program schedule.

  19. Alleviation of Buffet-Induced Vibration Using Piezoelectric Actuators

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Morgenstern, Shawn D


    .... The objective of this research was to determine the most critical natural modes of vibration for the F-16 ventral fin and design piezoelectric actuators capable of reducing buffet-induced ventral fin vibration...

  20. Design Support and Analysis Tool for Pyrotechnically Actuated Valves Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Pyrotechnically actuated valves are triggered on or off by firing an explosive charge that rapidly releases large amounts of high-pressure, gas. Pyrovalves are...

  1. System Compliant Actuation for Structural Engine Noise Remission Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The purpose of the research into ?Compliant Actuator? design will be to demonstrate to prototype level a low profile fully integrated control mechanism. This...

  2. Characteristics Analysis and Testing of SMA Spring Actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianzuo Ma


    Full Text Available The biasing form two-way shape memory alloy (SMA actuator composed of SMA spring and steel spring is analyzed. Based on the force equilibrium equation, the relationship between load capacity of SMA spring and geometric parameters is established. In order to obtain the characteristics of SMA spring actuator, the output force and output displacement of SMA spring under different temperatures are analyzed by the theoretical model and the experimental method. Based on the shape memory effect of SMA, the relationship of the SMA spring actuator's output displacement with the temperature, the stress and strain, the material parameters, and the size parameters is established. The results indicate that the trend of theoretical results is basically consistent with the experimental data. The output displacement of SMA spring actuator is increased with the increasing temperature.

  3. Compact Fluidic Actuator Arrays For Flow Control Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The overall objective of the proposed research is to design, develop and demonstrate fluidic actuator arrays for aerodynamic separation control and drag reduction....

  4. Differential-damper topologies for actuators in rehabilitation robotics. (United States)

    Tucker, Michael R; Gassert, Roger


    Differential-damper (DD) elements can provide a high bandwidth means for decoupling a high inertia, high friction, non-backdrivable actuator from its output and can enable high fidelity force control. In this paper, a port-based decomposition is used to analyze the energetic behavior of such actuators in various physical domains. The general concepts are then applied to a prototype DD actuator for illustration and discussion. It is shown that, within physical bounds, the output torque from a DD actuator can be controlled independently from the input speed. This concept holds the potential to be scaled up and integrated in a compact and lightweight package powerful enough for incorporation with a portable lower limb orthotic or prosthetic device.

  5. Micro-actuators for Turbulent Boundary Layer Control (United States)

    Lee, Conrad; Colmenero, Gerardo; Goldstein, David; Wu, Kevin; Breuer, Kenneth


    We present direct numerical simulations and experiments on micro-jet control of a turbulent channel flow. The simulation code is pseudo-spectral and uses a virtual surface approach (immersed boundaries created with body forces) to model arrays of individually controlled rectangular slots in a doubly-periodic domain. Flush-mounted sensors are positioned either upstream (to detect gradients of streamwise vorticity) or directly over the actuators (to detect wall-normal velocity). The results emphasize the differences between earlier simulations using continuously variable blowing and suction and what is physically attainable using discrete actuators and sensors. Results show small drag reductions occur with the discrete actuators. Comparisons are made with physical experiments designed to closely match the simulations. Here, arrays of flush-mounted actuators force a low-Reynolds number turbulent channel flow in response to upstream-mounted shear sensors. The response of the flow is measured using PIV.

  6. Simulation Tool for Dielectric Barrier Discharge Plasma Actuators (United States)

    Likhanskii, Alexander


    Traditional approaches for active flow separation control using dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) plasma actuators are limited to relatively low speed flows and atmospheric conditions. This results in low feasibility of the DBDs for aerospace applications. For active flow control at turbine blades, fixed wings, and rotary wings and on hypersonic vehicles, DBD plasma actuators must perform at a wide range of conditions, including rarified flows and combustion mixtures. An efficient, comprehensive, physically based DBD simulation tool can optimize DBD plasma actuators for different operation conditions. Researchers are developing a DBD plasma actuator simulation tool for a wide range of ambient gas pressures. The tool will treat DBD using either kinetic, fluid, or hybrid models, depending on the DBD operational condition.

  7. High Speed Magnetostrictive MEMS Actuated Mirror Deflectors Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The main goal of this proposal is to develop high speed magnetostrictive and MEMS actuators for rapidly deflecting or deforming mirrors. High speed, light-weight,...

  8. Vibration analysis of composite laminate plate excited by piezoelectric actuators. (United States)

    Her, Shiuh-Chuan; Lin, Chi-Sheng


    Piezoelectric materials can be used as actuators for the active vibration control of smart structural systems. In this work, piezoelectric patches are surface bonded to a composite laminate plate and used as vibration actuators. A static analysis based on the piezoelectricity and elasticity is conducted to evaluate the loads induced by the piezoelectric actuators to the host structure. The loads are then employed to develop the vibration response of a simply supported laminate rectangular plate excited by piezoelectric patches subjected to time harmonic voltages. An analytical solution of the vibration response of a simply supported laminate rectangular plate under time harmonic electrical loading is obtained and compared with finite element results to validate the present approach. The effects of location and exciting frequency of piezoelectric actuators on the vibration response of the laminate plate are investigated through a parametric study. Numerical results show that modes can be selectively excited, leading to structural vibration control.

  9. Benefits and Challenges of Over-Actuated Excitation Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norman Fitz-Coy


    Full Text Available This paper provides a comprehensive discussion on the benefits and technical challenges of controlling over-determined and over-actuated excitation systems ranging from 1-DOF to 6-DOF. The primary challenges of over-actuated systems result from the physical constraints imposed when the number of exciters exceeds the number of mechanical degree-of-freedom. This issue is less critical for electro-dynamic exciters which tend to be more compliant than servo-hydraulic exciters. To facilitate the technical challenges discussion, generalized methods for determining the drive output commands and the actuator input transform is presented. To further provide insights into the problem, over-actuated 1-DOF and 6-DOF examples are provided. Results are presented to support the discussions.

  10. Thermal phase change actuator for self-tracking solar concentration

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Tremblay, E J; Loterie, D; Moser, C


    We present a proof of principle demonstration of a reversible in-plane actuator activated by focused sunlight, and describe a concept for its use as a self-tracking mechanism in a planar solar concentrator...

  11. Aerodynamic Optimization for Distributed Electro Mechanical Actuators Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Traditional hydraulic actuation and control surface layout both limit span wise control of lift distribution, and require large volume within wing cross-section,...

  12. Robotic Arm and Rover Actuator Systems for Mars Exploration (United States)

    Reid, L.; Brawn, D.; Noon, D.


    Missions such as the Sojourner Rover, the Robotic Arm for Mars Polar Lander, and the 2003 Mars Rover, Athena, use numerous actuators that must operate reliably in extreme environments for long periods of time.

  13. High Speed Magnetostrictive MEMS Actuated Mirror Deflectors Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to develop high speed magnetostrictive and MEMS actuators for rapidly deflecting or deforming mirrors. High speed, light-weight, low voltage beam...

  14. Compact Fluidic Actuator Arrays for Flow Control Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The overall objective of the proposed research is to design, develop and demonstrate fluidic actuator arrays for aerodynamic separation control and drag reduction....

  15. Mathematical analysis of actuator forces in a scissor lift (United States)

    Spackman, H.


    In 1985, NCCOSC began development of a tele-operated vehicle as part of the U.S. Marine Corps' Ground-Air Tele-Robotics Systems Program. One of the required vehicle components was a rigid, light-weight, and compact lift mechanism capable of deploying a surveillance package 10 feet above the vehicle bed. The lift mechanism that was eventually built and implemented was a 3-level scissor lift. In order to analyze the forces throughout the lift structure, a set of mathematical equations was derived. From these equations it was discovered that prudent placement of a lift's actuator can significantly reduce the forces required of the actuator and the stress levels in the adjacent scissor members. The purpose of this paper is to present the equations that were derived for analyzing the actuator forces. Using these equations, a designer can quickly determine the optimal locations for mounting an actuator and the resulting forces.

  16. On reliable control system designs. Ph.D. Thesis; [actuators (United States)

    Birdwell, J. D.


    A mathematical model for use in the design of reliable multivariable control systems is discussed with special emphasis on actuator failures and necessary actuator redundancy levels. The model consists of a linear time invariant discrete time dynamical system. Configuration changes in the system dynamics are governed by a Markov chain that includes transition probabilities from one configuration state to another. The performance index is a standard quadratic cost functional, over an infinite time interval. The actual system configuration can be deduced with a one step delay. The calculation of the optimal control law requires the solution of a set of highly coupled Riccati-like matrix difference equations. Results can be used for off-line studies relating the open loop dynamics, required performance, actuator mean time to failure, and functional or identical actuator redundancy, with and without feedback gain reconfiguration strategies.

  17. Wax microfluidics light-addressable valve with multiple actuation (United States)

    Díaz-González, M.; Boix, G.; Fernández-Sánchez, C.; Baldi, A.


    This work reports on the design, fabrication and performance of a novel light-actuated wax microvalve. This valve is capable of multiple-actuation (30 and 15 open-close cycles in air and water, correspondingly), shows a fast response (<=500 ms) and has a low energy-consumption per actuation (<=1 J). The valve is inherently latched in both open and close states and is leak-proof to at least 80 kPa. It is actuated (both open and close) by light pulses from an external LED. Many valves (< 100 cm2) can be easily integrated in a single chip with a wax microfluidics technology. Fabrication is based on a low-cost and fast prototyping process compatible with the presence of temperature sensitive biocomponents.

  18. A low-power-consumption out-of-Plane electrothermal actuator


    Girbau Sala, David; Llamas Morote, Marco Antonio; Casals Terré, Jasmina; Simó Selvas, Francisco Javier; Pradell i Cara, Lluís; Lázaro Guillén, Antoni


    This paper proposes a new vertical electrothermal actuator. It can be considered as a hybrid between the traditional in-plane buckle-beam actuator and the vertical hot-cold actuator. It is here referred to as vertical buckle beam. At identical dimensional and bias conditions, it features a displacement larger than that of other vertical electrothermal actuators proposed so far in the literature. The actuator performance is demonstrated by means of an analytical model along with finite-element...

  19. Design of Linear Series Elastic Actuators for a Humanoid Robot


    Knabe, Coleman Scott


    Series elastic actuators (SEAs) have numerous benefits for force controlled robotic applications. This thesis presents the design and assembly of a set of compact, lightweight, low-friction linear SEAs for the legs of the Tactical Hazardous Operations Robot (THOR). The THOR SEA pairs a ball screw driven linear actuator with a configurable titanium leaf spring. A removable pivot changes the effective cantilever length, setting the compliance to either 372 or 655 kN/m. Unlike typical SEAs which...

  20. EWOD (electrowetting on dielectric) digital microfluidics powered by finger actuation. (United States)

    Peng, Cheng; Zhang, Zhongning; Kim, Chang-Jin C J; Ju, Y Sungtaek


    We report finger-actuated digital microfluidics (F-DMF) based on the manipulation of discrete droplets via the electrowetting on dielectric (EWOD) phenomenon. Instead of requiring an external power supply, our F-DMF uses piezoelectric elements to convert mechanical energy produced by human fingers to electric voltage pulses for droplet actuation. Voltage outputs of over 40 V are provided by single piezoelectric elements, which is necessary for oil-free EWOD devices with thin (typically microfluidic applications.

  1. Contributions to Design of Actuators functioning with Nitinol Active Springs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Amariei


    Full Text Available The paper presents the research results achieved in order to perform a comparison regarding the influence of natural and forced cooling process applied to the Nitinol active springs inside a linear motion actuator. SMAs offer attractive potentials such as reversible strains of several percent, generation of high recovery stresses and high power / weight ratios. The actuator behavior was simulated first with SolidWorks and experimentally tested for results validation.

  2. Design of Piezoelectric PZT Cantilever for Actuator Application


    Abhay B. JOSHI; Dhananjay BODAS; S.A.GANGAL


    Piezoelectric MEMS cantilever is used as a basic element in sensing and actuation. This paper proposes a structural design of MEMS cantilever for actuator application based on bulk MEMS micromachining technique. The structure consists of a silicon dioxide cantilever with an attached piezoelectric layer. The cantilever is designed using analytical modeling and simulation tool: CoventorWare2009. Analytical and simulation results demonstrate deflection of 5.9 µm/V and 2.9 µm/V respectively with ...

  3. Dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuator for flow control (United States)

    Opaits, Dmitry Florievich

    Electrohydrodynamic (EHD) and magnetohydrodynamic phenomena are being widely studied for aerodynamic applications. The major effects of these phenomena are heating of the gas, body force generation, and enthalpy addition or extraction, [1, 2, 3]. In particular, asymmetric dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) plasma actuators are known to be effective EHD device in aerodynamic control, [4, 5]. Experiments have demonstrated their effectiveness in separation control, acoustic noise reduction, and other aeronautic applications. In contrast to conventional DBD actuators driven by sinusoidal voltages, we proposed and used a voltage profile consisting of nanosecond pulses superimposed on dc bias voltage. This produces what is essentially a non-self-sustained discharge: the plasma is generated by repetitive short pulses, and the pushing of the gas occurs primarily due to the bias voltage. The advantage of this non-self-sustained discharge is that the parameters of ionizing pulses and the driving bias voltage can be varied independently, which adds flexibility to control and optimization of the actuators performance. Experimental studies were conducted of a flow induced in a quiescent room air by a single DBD actuator. A new approach for non-intrusive diagnostics of plasma actuator induced flows in quiescent gas was proposed, consisting of three elements coupled together: the Schlieren technique, burst mode of plasma actuator operation, and 2-D numerical fluid modeling. During the experiments, it was found that DBD performance is severely limited by surface charge accumulation on the dielectric. Several ways to mitigate the surface charge were found: using a reversing DC bias potential, three-electrode configuration, slightly conductive dielectrics, and semi conductive coatings. Force balance measurements proved the effectiveness of the suggested configurations and advantages of the new voltage profile (pulses+bias) over the traditional sinusoidal one at relatively low

  4. Study of a Mini-Actuator with Permanent Magnets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available The paper presents an analytical method for the determination of the magnetic force produced by a mini - actuator with permanent magnets. The results are compared with those obtained by performing a numerical field analysis with COMSOL Multiphysics, showing a very good agreement. The study reveals that the actuator has two equilibrium points, one of which is stable and the other one unstable.

  5. Shape Control of Solar Collectors Using Shape Memory Alloy Actuators (United States)

    Lobitz, D. W.; Grossman, J. W.; Allen, J. J.; Rice, T. M.; Liang, C.; Davidson, F. M.


    Solar collectors that are focused on a central receiver are designed with a mechanism for defocusing the collector or disabling it by turning it out of the path of the sun's rays. This is required to avoid damaging the receiver during periods of inoperability. In either of these two cases a fail-safe operation is very desirable where during power outages the collector passively goes to its defocused or deactivated state. This paper is principally concerned with focusing and defocusing the collector in a fail-safe manner using shape memory alloy actuators. Shape memory alloys are well suited to this application in that once calibrated the actuators can be operated in an on/off mode using a minimal amount of electric power. Also, in contrast to other smart materials that were investigated for this application, shape memory alloys are capable of providing enough stroke at the appropriate force levels to focus the collector. Design and analysis details presented, along with comparisons to test data taken from an actual prototype, demonstrate that the collector can be repeatedly focused and defocused within accuracies required by typical solar energy systems. In this paper the design, analysis and testing of a solar collector which is deformed into its desired shape by shape memory alloy actuators is presented. Computations indicate collector shapes much closer to spherical and with smaller focal lengths can be achieved by moving the actuators inward to a radius of approximately 6 inches. This would require actuators with considerably more stroke and some alternate SMA actuators are currently under consideration. Whatever SMA actuator is finally chosen for this application, repeatability and fatigue tests will be required to investigate the long term performance of the actuator.

  6. Disposable Fluidic Actuators for Miniature In-Vivo Surgical Robotics. (United States)

    Pourghodrat, Abolfazl; Nelson, Carl A


    Fusion of robotics and minimally invasive surgery (MIS) has created new opportunities to develop diagnostic and therapeutic tools. Surgical robotics is advancing from externally actuated systems to miniature in-vivo robotics. However, with miniaturization of electric-motor-driven surgical robots, there comes a trade-off between the size of the robot and its capability. Slow actuation, low load capacity, sterilization difficulties, leaking electricity and transferring produced heat to tissues, and high cost are among the key limitations of the use of electric motors in in-vivo applications. Fluid power in the form of hydraulics or pneumatics has a long history in driving many industrial devices and could be exploited to circumvent these limitations. High power density and good compatibility with the in-vivo environment are the key advantages of fluid power over electric motors when it comes to in-vivo applications. However, fabrication of hydraulic/pneumatic actuators within the desired size and pressure range required for in-vivo surgical robotic applications poses new challenges. Sealing these types of miniature actuators at operating pressures requires obtaining very fine surface finishes which is difficult and costly. The research described here presents design, fabrication, and testing of a hydraulic/pneumatic double-acting cylinder, a limited-motion vane motor, and a balloon-actuated laparoscopic grasper. These actuators are small, seal-less, easy to fabricate, disposable, and inexpensive, thus ideal for single-use in-vivo applications. To demonstrate the ability of these actuators to drive robotic joints, they were modified and integrated in a robotic arm. The design and testing of this surgical robotic arm are presented to validate the concept of fluid-power actuators for in-vivo applications.

  7. Adaptive Non-linear Control of Hydraulic Actuator Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Poul Erik; Conrad, Finn


    Presentation of two new developed adaptive non-liner controllers for hydraulic actuator systems to give stable operation and improved performance.Results from the IMCIA project supported by the Danish Technical Research Council (STVF).......Presentation of two new developed adaptive non-liner controllers for hydraulic actuator systems to give stable operation and improved performance.Results from the IMCIA project supported by the Danish Technical Research Council (STVF)....

  8. Steering Micro-Robotic Swarm by Dynamic Actuating Fields


    Chao, Q.; Yu, J.; Dai, C; Xu, T.; Zhang, L.; Wang, C. C.; Jin, X.


    We present a general solution for steering microroboticswarm by dynamic actuating fields. In our approach, themotion of micro-robots is controlled by changing the actuatingdirection of a field applied to them. The time-series sequenceof actuating field’s directions can be computed automatically.Given a target position in the domain of swarm, a governingfield is first constructed to provide optimal moving directions atevery points. Following these directions, a robot can be drivento the target...

  9. Soft mobile robots driven by foldable dielectric elastomer actuators (United States)

    Sun, Wenjie; Liu, Fan; Ma, Ziqi; Li, Chenghai; Zhou, Jinxiong


    A cantilever beam with elastic hinge pulled antagonistically by two dielectric elastomer (DE) membranes in tension forms a foldable actuator if one DE membrane is subject to a voltage and releases part of tension. Simply placing parallel rigid bars on the prestressed DE membranes results in enhanced actuators working in a pure shear state. We report design, analysis, fabrication, and experiment of soft mobile robots that are moved by such foldable DE actuators. We describe systematic measurement of the foldable actuators and perform theoretical analysis of such actuators based on minimization of total energy, and a good agreement is achieved between model prediction and measurement. We develop two versions of prototypes of soft mobile robots driven either by two sets of DE membranes or one DE membrane and elastic springs. We demonstrate locomotion of these soft mobile robots and highlight several key design parameters that influence locomotion of the robots. A 45 g soft robot driven by a cyclic triangle voltage with amplitude 7.4 kV demonstrates maximal stroke 160 mm or maximal rolling velocity 42 mm/s. The underlying mechanics and physics of foldable DE actuators can be leveraged to develop other soft machines for various applications.

  10. Magnetic actuation and transition shapes of a bistable spherical cap

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E.G. Loukaides


    Full Text Available Multistable shells have been proposed for a variety of applications; however, their actuation is almost exclusively addressed through embedded piezoelectric patches. Additional actuation techniques are needed for applications requiring high strains or where remote actuation is desirable. Part of the reason for the lack of research in this area is the absence of appropriate models describing the detailed deformation and energetics of such shells. This work presents a bistable spherical cap made of iron carbonyl-infused polydimethylsiloxane. The magnetizable structure can be actuated remotely through permanent magnets while the transition is recorded with a high-speed camera. Moreover, the experiment is reproduced in a finite element (FE dynamic model for comparison with the physical observations. High-speed footage of the physical cap inversion together with the FE modeling gives valuable insight on preferable intermediate geometries. Both methods return similar values for the magnetic field strength required for the snap-through. High-strain multistable spherical cap transformation is demonstrated, based on informed material selection. We discover that non-axisymmetric transition shapes are preferred in intermediate geometries by bistable spherical caps. We develop the methods for design and analysis of such actuators, including the feasibility of remote actuation methods for multistable shells.

  11. Investigations on Actuator Dynamics through Theoretical and Finite Element Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Somashekhar S. Hiremath


    Full Text Available This paper gives a new approach for modeling the fluid-structure interaction of servovalve component-actuator. The analyzed valve is a precision flow control valve-jet pipe electrohydraulic servovalve. The positioning of an actuator depends upon the flow rate from control ports, in turn depends on the spool position. Theoretical investigation is made for No-load condition and Load condition for an actuator. These are used in finite element modeling of an actuator. The fluid-structure-interaction (FSI is established between the piston and the fluid cavities at the piston end. The fluid cavities were modeled with special purpose hydrostatic fluid elements while the piston is modeled with brick elements. The finite element method is used to simulate the variation of cavity pressure, cavity volume, mass flow rate, and the actuator velocity. The finite element analysis is extended to study the system's linearized response to harmonic excitation using direct solution steady-state dynamics. It was observed from the analysis that the natural frequency of the actuator depends upon the position of the piston in the cylinder. This is a close match with theoretical and simulation results. The effect of bulk modulus is also presented in the paper.

  12. Development of pneumatic actuator with low-wave reflection characteristics (United States)

    Chang, H.; Tsung, T. T.; Jwo, C. S.; Chiang, J. C.


    This study aims at the development of a less reflective electromagnetic pneumatic actuator often used in the anechoic chamber. Because a pneumatic actuator on the market is not appropriate for use in such a chamber and a metallic one has high dielectric constant which generates reflective electromagnetic waves to influence test parameters in the chamber. The newly developed pneumatic actuator is made from low dielectric constant plastics with less reflective of electromagnetic. A turbine-type air motor is used to develop the pneumatic actuator and a employ Prony tester is used to run the brake horsepower test for the performance test of pneumatic actuator. Test results indicate that the pneumatic actuator in the minimal starting flow is 17 l/min, and it generates a brake horsepower of 48 mW; in the maximum flow is 26 l/min, it generates a brake horsepower of 108 mW. Therefore, it works with a torque between 0.24 N-m and 0.55 N-m, and such a torque will be sufficient to drive the target button.

  13. Climbing robot actuated by meso-hydraulic artificial muscles (United States)

    Bryant, Matthew; Fitzgerald, Jason; Miller, Samuel; Saltzman, Jonah; Kim, Sangkyu; Lin, Yong; Garcia, Ephrahim


    This paper presents the design, construction, experimental characterization, and system testing of a legged, wall-climbing robot actuated by meso-scale hydraulic artificial muscles. While small wall-climbing robots have seen increased research attention in recent years, most authors have primarily focused on designs for the gripping and adhesion of the robot to the wall, while using only standard DC servo-motors for actuation. This project seeks to explore and demonstrate a different actuation mechanism that utilizes hydraulic artificial muscles. A four-limb climbing robot platform that includes a full closed-loop hydraulic power and control system, custom hydraulic artificial muscles for actuation, an on-board microcontroller and RF receiver for control, and compliant claws with integrated sensing for gripping a variety of wall surfaces has been constructed and is currently being tested to investigate this actuation method. On-board power consumption data-logging during climbing operation, analysis of the robot kinematics and climbing behavior, and artificial muscle force-displacement characterization are presented to investigate and this actuation method.

  14. Soft mobile robots driven by foldable dielectric elastomer actuators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sun, Wenjie; Liu, Fan; Ma, Ziqi; Li, Chenghai; Zhou, Jinxiong, E-mail: [State Key Laboratory for Strength and Vibration of Mechanical Structures and School of Aerospace, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an 710049 (China)


    A cantilever beam with elastic hinge pulled antagonistically by two dielectric elastomer (DE) membranes in tension forms a foldable actuator if one DE membrane is subject to a voltage and releases part of tension. Simply placing parallel rigid bars on the prestressed DE membranes results in enhanced actuators working in a pure shear state. We report design, analysis, fabrication, and experiment of soft mobile robots that are moved by such foldable DE actuators. We describe systematic measurement of the foldable actuators and perform theoretical analysis of such actuators based on minimization of total energy, and a good agreement is achieved between model prediction and measurement. We develop two versions of prototypes of soft mobile robots driven either by two sets of DE membranes or one DE membrane and elastic springs. We demonstrate locomotion of these soft mobile robots and highlight several key design parameters that influence locomotion of the robots. A 45 g soft robot driven by a cyclic triangle voltage with amplitude 7.4 kV demonstrates maximal stroke 160 mm or maximal rolling velocity 42 mm/s. The underlying mechanics and physics of foldable DE actuators can be leveraged to develop other soft machines for various applications.

  15. A survey on dielectric elastomer actuators for soft robots. (United States)

    Gu, Guo-Ying; Zhu, Jian; Zhu, Li-Min; Zhu, Xiangyang


    Conventional industrial robots with the rigid actuation technology have made great progress for humans in the fields of automation assembly and manufacturing. With an increasing number of robots needing to interact with humans and unstructured environments, there is a need for soft robots capable of sustaining large deformation while inducing little pressure or damage when maneuvering through confined spaces. The emergence of soft robotics offers the prospect of applying soft actuators as artificial muscles in robots, replacing traditional rigid actuators. Dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) are recognized as one of the most promising soft actuation technologies due to the facts that: i) dielectric elastomers are kind of soft, motion-generating materials that resemble natural muscle of humans in terms of force, strain (displacement per unit length or area) and actuation pressure/density; ii) dielectric elastomers can produce large voltage-induced deformation. In this survey, we first introduce the so-called DEAs emphasizing the key points of working principle, key components and electromechanical modeling approaches. Then, different DEA-driven soft robots, including wearable/humanoid robots, walking/serpentine robots, flying robots and swimming robots, are reviewed. Lastly, we summarize the challenges and opportunities for the further studies in terms of mechanism design, dynamics modeling and autonomous control.

  16. Implementation of a piezoelectrically actuated self-contained quadruped robot (United States)

    Ho, Thanhtam; Lee, Sangyoon


    In this paper we present the development of a mesoscale self-contained quadruped mobile robot that employs two pieces of piezoelectric actuators for the bounding gait locomotion, i.e., two rear legs have the same movement and two front legs do too. The actuator named LIPCA (LIghtweight Piezoceramic Composite curved Actuator) is a piezocomposite actuator that uses a PZT layer that is sandwiched between composite materials of carbon/epoxy and glass/epoxy layers to amplify the displacement. A biomimetic concept is applied to the design of the robot in a simplified way, such that each leg of the robot has only one degree of freedom. Considering that LIPCA requires a high input voltage and possesses capacitive characteristics, a small power supply circuit using PICO chips is designed for the implementation of selfcontained mobile robot. The prototype with the weight of 125 gram and the length of 120 mm can locomote with the bounding gait. Experiments showed that the robot can locomote at about 50 mm/sec with the circuit on board and the operation time is about 5 minutes, which can be considered as a meaningful progress toward the goal of building an autonomous legged robot actuated by piezoelectric actuators.

  17. Tunable actuation of dielectric elastomer by electromechanical loading rates (United States)

    Li, Guorui; Zhang, Mingqi; Chen, Xiangping; Yang, Xuxu; Wong, Tuck-Whye; Li, Tiefeng; Huang, Zhilong


    Dielectric elastomer (DE) membranes are able to self-deform with the application of an electric field through the thickness direction. In comparison to conventional rigid counterparts, soft actuators using DE provide a variety of advantages such as high compliance, low noise, and light weight. As one of the challenges in the development of DE actuating devices, tuning the electromechanical actuating behavior is crucial in order to achieve demanded loading paths and to avoid electromechanical failures. In this paper, our experimental results show that the electromechanical loading conditions affect the actuating behaviors of the DE. The electrical actuating force can be tuned by 29.4% with the control of the electrical charging rate. In addition, controllable actuations have been investigated by the mechanical model in manipulating the electromechanical loading rate. The calculated results agree well with the experimental data. Lastly, it is believed that the mechanisms of controlling the electromechanical loading rate may serve as a guide for the design of DE devices and high performance soft robots in the near future.

  18. Environmental Effects on the Polypyrrole Tri-layer Actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nirul Masurkar


    Full Text Available Electroactive polymer actuators such as polypyrrole (PPy are exciting candidates to drive autonomous devices that require low weight and low power. A simple PPy tri-layer bending type cantilever which operates in the air has been demonstrated previously, but the environmental effect on this actuator is still unknown. The major obstacle in the development of the PPy tri-layer actuator is to create proper packaging that reduces oxidation of the electrolyte and maintains constant displacement. Here, we report the variation in the displacement as well as the charge transfer at the different environmental condition. PPy trilayer actuators were fabricated by depositing polypyrrole on gold-coated porous poly(vinylidene fluoride (PVDF using the electro-synthesis method. It has been demonstrated that the charge transfer of tri-layer actuators is more in an inert environment than in open air. In addition, tri-layer actuators show constant deflection and enhancement of life due to the negligible oxidation rate of the electrolyte in an inert environment.

  19. MOSFET Switching Circuit Protects Shape Memory Alloy Actuators (United States)

    Gummin, Mark A.


    A small-footprint, full surface-mount-component printed circuit board employs MOSFET (metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor) power switches to switch high currents from any input power supply from 3 to 30 V. High-force shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators generally require high current (up to 9 A at 28 V) to actuate. SMA wires (the driving element of the actuators) can be quickly overheated if power is not removed at the end of stroke, which can damage the wires. The new analog driver prevents overheating of the SMA wires in an actuator by momentarily removing power when the end limit switch is closed, thereby allowing complex control schemes to be adopted without concern for overheating. Either an integral pushbutton or microprocessor-controlled gate or control line inputs switch current to the actuator until the end switch line goes from logic high to logic low state. Power is then momentarily removed (switched off by the MOSFET). The analog driver is suited to use with nearly any SMA actuator.

  20. Modeling and Synthesis Methods for Retrofit Design of Submarine Actuation Systems. Energy Storage for Electric Actuators (United States)


    sternplane v - sway w - heave u - surge X Y Z y z x Figure 2: Coordinate frame definitions of submarine vehicular dynamics. 2.1 Six Degree of Freedom...where Mν̇ is the total inertial matrix, C(ν) is the Coriolis/centripetal matrix, D(ν) is the total damping matrix, g(η) are the buoyancy and weight...Natick, MA. Retrofit Design of Submarine Actuation Systems Page 7 q - pitch w - heave u - surge δs Msp Figure 3: Hydrodynamic moment unit definition

  1. Effect of platelet-shaped graphene additives on actuating response of carbon nanotube/ionic liquid/polymer composite actuators (United States)

    Monobe, Hirosato; Tsuchiya, Nobuyuki; Yamamura, Masahiro; Mukai, Ken; Sugino, Takushi; Asaka, Kinji


    In this study, the platelet-shaped graphene was used as a conductive additive in porous electrodes of a dry-type polymer actuator consisting of carbon nanotube (CNT), ionic liquid, and a base polymer to improve actuation properties. The generated strain was estimated from the bending motion of the actuator in the frequency range from 0.005 to 10 Hz. Ten different types of electrode film were prepared by changing the mixing amounts and surface areas of the platelet-shaped graphene. When a small amount of graphene (30 mg) relative to CNT (50 mg) was added to the CNT electrode, the strain was increased to be almost twice larger than that of CNT (50 mg) without any additives. The strain coefficient of the three-layered actuator with CNT electrodes with graphene additives is positively correlated with the capacitance per volume of such electrodes.

  2. Bionic robot arm with compliant actuators (United States)

    Moehl, Bernhard


    Traditional robotics uses non-compliant materials for all components involved in the production of movement. Elasticity is avoided as far as possible, because it leads to hazardous oscillations and makes control of precise movements very difficult. Due to this deliberate stiffness, robots are typically heavy and clumsy structures in comparison to their living counterparts (i.e. man and animals). Yet, moving systems in nature cope not only with the difficulties introduced by compliant materials, they also take advantage of the elasticity in muscles and tendons to produce smooth and even rapid movements. It is understood, that elasticity in a multi-jointed moving system requires sophisticated control mechanisms- as provided by a nervous system or a suitably programmed computer. In this contribution I shall describe a two-jointed robot with purpose-built elasticity in its actuators. This is accomplished by spiral springs places in series with a conventional electric motor and a tendon to the arm. It is shown that, with sufficiently soft elasticity, oscillations can be avoided by active oscillation damping. (Such active oscillation damping presumably also governs movement control in man and animals.) Furthermore, once the major problem has been overcome, elasticity is found to offer a wide spectrum of valuable advantages, as far as the most serious problems in traditional robotics are concerned. They are summarized by terms such as less dangerous, position tolerant, lightweight construction, controlled forces, and ballistic movements. These will be explained in detail and presented for discussion.

  3. Actuators of 3-element unimorph deformable mirror (United States)

    Fu, Tianyang; Ning, Yu; Du, Shaojun


    Kinds of wavefront aberrations exist among optical systems because of atmosphere disturbance, device displacement and a variety of thermal effects, which disturb the information of transmitting beam and restrain its energy. Deformable mirror(DM) is designed to adjust these wavefront aberrations. Bimorph DM becomes more popular and more applicable among adaptive optical(AO) systems with advantages in simple structure, low cost and flexible design compared to traditional discrete driving DM. The defocus aberration accounted for a large proportion of all wavefront aberrations, with a simpler surface and larger amplitude than others, so it is very useful to correct the defocus aberration effectively for beam controlling and aberration adjusting of AO system. In this study, we desired on correcting the 3rd and 10th Zernike modes, analyze the characteristic of the 3rd and 10th defocus aberration surface distribution, design 3-element actuators unimorph DM model study on its structure and deformation principle theoretically, design finite element models of different electrode configuration with different ring diameters, analyze and compare effects of different electrode configuration and different fixing mode to DM deformation capacity through COMSOL finite element software, compare fitting efficiency of DM models to the 3rd and 10th Zernike modes. We choose the inhomogeneous electrode distribution model with better result, get the influence function of every electrode and the voltage-PV relationship of the model. This unimorph DM is suitable for the AO system with a mainly defocus aberration.

  4. RF-interrogatable hydrogel-actuated biosensor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hoel, Z; Wang, A W; Darrow, C B; Lee, A P; McConaghy, C F; Krulevitch, P; Gilman, A; Satcher, J H; Lane, S M


    The authors present a novel micromachined sensor that couples a swellable hydrogel with capacitive detection. The hydrogel swells in response to analyte concentration, exerting contact pressure on a deformable conducting membrane. Results are presented for characterization of a PHEMA hydrogel swelling in response to a calcium nitrate solution. Pressure-deflection measurements are performed on NiTi-based membranes. Hydrogel-actuated deflections of the membranes are measured. These measurements are correlated to determine the pressure generating characteristics of the hydrogel. Membrane deflection techniques have not previously been employed for hydrogel characterization. The PHEMA sample exhibited greatest sensitivity in the pH range of 6.0--6.5 and performed an average of 2.8 Joules of work per m{sup 3} per pH unit in response to ambient conditions over the pH range 3.5--6.5. The membrane deflections correspond to capacitive shifts of about 4 pF per pH unit for a capacitive transducer with initial gap of 100 {micro}m, capacitor plate area of 18.5 mm{sup 2} , and initial hydrogel volume of 11 {micro}L.

  5. Missile flight control using active flexspar actuators (United States)

    Barrett, Ronald M.; Gross, R. Steven; Brozoski, Fred


    A new type of subsonic missile flight control surface using piezoelectric flexspar actuators is presented. The flexspar design uses an aerodynamic shell which is pivoted at the quarter-chord about a graphite main spar. The shell is pitched up and down by a piezoelectric bender element which is rigidly attached to a base mount and allowed to rotate freely at the tip. The element curvature, shell pitch deflection and torsional stiffness are modeled using laminated plate theory. A one-third scale TOW 2B missile model was used as a demonstration platform. A static wing of the missile was replaced with an active flexspar wing. The 1' X 2.7' active flight control surface was powered by a bi-morph bender with 5-mil PZT-5H sheets. Bench and wind tunnel testing showed good correlation between theory and experiment and static pitch deflections in excess of +/- 14 degree(s). A natural frequency of 78.5 rad/s with a break frequency of 157 rad/s was measured. Wind tunnel tests revealed no flutter or divergence tendencies. Maximum changes in lift coefficient were measured at (Delta) CL equals +/- .73 which indicates that terminal and initial missile load factors may be increased by approximately 3.1 and 12.6 g's respectively, leading to a greatly reduced turn radius of only 2,400 ft.

  6. Water hydraulic actuators for ITER maintenance devices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Siuko, Mikko E-mail:; Pitkaeaho, M.; Raneda, A.; Poutanen, J.; Tammisto, J.; Palmer, J.; Vilenius, M


    The characteristic advantages of hydraulics (high power density, simple construction and reliability) together with the characteristics of water as the pressure medium (fire and environmentally safe, chemically neutral, not activated nor affected by radiation) are highlighted in critical applications such as remote handling operations in international thermonuclear experimental reactor (ITER). However, lack of commercial selection of water hydraulic components, common design expertise and known application experiences prevents wide use of water hydraulics. Since 1994, IHA has designed and manufactured water hydraulic tools for ITER divertor maintenance and experiences have been good. Therefore, IHA is developing water hydraulic component selection to be applied in coming systems where water hydraulics is foreseen to provide an advantage. Aim of the still on going project is to develop a set of components like power units, control components and actuators. By that way designers are able to apply water hydraulics where advantageous. In the paper the component types, their design and characteristics and results obtained so far are presented.

  7. Robust Force Control of Series Elastic Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Calanca


    Full Text Available Force-controlled series elastic actuators (SEA are widely used in novel human-robot interaction (HRI applications, such as assistive and rehabilitation robotics. These systems are characterized by the presence of the “human in the loop”, so that control response and stability depend on uncertain human dynamics, including reflexes and voluntary forces. This paper proposes a force control approach that guarantees the stability and robustness of the coupled human-robot system, based on sliding-mode control (SMC, considering the human dynamics as a disturbance to reject. We propose a chattering free solution that employs simple task models to obtain high performance, comparable with second order solutions. Theoretical stability is proven within the sliding mode framework, and predictability is reached by avoiding the reaching phase by design. Furthermore, safety is introduced by a proper design of the sliding surface. The practical feasibility of the approach is shown using an SEA prototype coupled with a human impedance in severe stress tests. To show the quality of the approach, we report a comparison with state-of-the-art second order SMC, passivity-based control and adaptive control solutions.

  8. Highly Tunable Electrothermally Actuated Arch Resonator

    KAUST Repository

    Hajjaj, Amal Z.


    This paper demonstrates experimentally, theoretically, and numerically a wide-range tunability of electrothermally actuated MEMS arch beams. The beams are made of silicon and are intentionally fabricated with some curvature as in-plane shallow arches. Analytical results based on the Galerkin discretization of the Euler Bernoulli beam theory are generated and compared to the experimental data and results of a multi-physics finite-element model. A good agreement is found among all the results. The electrothermal voltage is applied between the anchors of the clamped-clamped MEMS arch beam, generating a current that passes through the MEMS arch beam and controls its axial stress caused by thermal expansion. When the electrothermal voltage increases, the compressive stress increases inside the arch beam. This leads to increase in its curvature, thereby increases the resonance frequencies of the structure. We show here that the first resonance frequency can increase up to twice its initial value. We show also that after some electro-thermal voltage load, the third resonance frequency starts to become more sensitive to the axial thermal stress, while the first resonance frequency becomes less sensitive. These results can be used as guidelines to utilize arches as wide-range tunable resonators.

  9. Adaptive Liquid Lens Actuated by Droplet Movement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chao Liu


    Full Text Available In this paper we report an adaptive liquid lens actuated by droplet movement. Four rectangular PMMA (Polymethyl Methacrylate substrates are stacked to form the device structure. Two ITO (Indium Tin Oxide sheets stick on the bottom substrate. One PMMA sheet with a light hole is inserted in the middle of the device. A conductive droplet is placed on the substrate and touches the PMMA sheet to form a small closed reservoir. The reservoir is filled with another immiscible non-conductive liquid. The non-conductive liquid can form a smooth concave interface with the light hole. When the device is applied with voltage, the droplet stretches towards the reservoir. The volume of the reservoir reduces, changing the curvature of the interface. The device can thus achieve the function of an adaptive lens. Our experiments show that the focal length can be varied from −10 to −159 mm as the applied voltage changes from 0 to 65 V. The response time of the liquid lens is ~75 ms. The proposed device has potential applications in many fields such as information displays, imaging systems, and laser scanning systems.

  10. A cyclically actuated electrolytic drug delivery device

    KAUST Repository

    Yi, Ying


    This work, focusing on an implantable drug delivery system, presents the first prototype electrolytic pump that combines a catalytic reformer and a cyclically actuated mode. These features improve the release performance and extend the lifetime of the device. Using our platinum (Pt)-coated carbon fiber mesh that acts as a catalytic reforming element, the cyclical mode is improved because the faster recombination rate allows for a shorter cycling time for drug delivery. Another feature of our device is that it uses a solid-drug-in-reservoir (SDR) approach, which allows small amounts of a solid drug to be dissolved in human fluid, forming a reproducible drug solution for long-term therapies. We have conducted proof-of-principle drug delivery studies using such an electrolytic pump and solvent blue 38 as the drug substitute. These tests demonstrate power-controlled and pulsatile release profiles of the chemical substance, as well as the feasibility of this device. A drug delivery rate of 11.44 ± 0.56 μg min-1 was achieved by using an input power of 4 mW for multiple pulses, which indicates the stability of our system. © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2015.

  11. Validation of the actuator disc and actuator line techniques for yawed rotor flows using the New Mexico experimental data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Breton, S. P.; Shen, Wen Zhong; Ivanell, S.


    Experimental data acquired in the New Mexico experiment on a yawed 4.5m diameter rotor model turbine are used here to validate the actuator line (AL) and actuator disc (AD) models implemented in the Large Eddy Simulation code EllipSys3D in terms of loading and velocity field. Even without modelling...... and blade loading of the New Mexico rotor under yawed inflow....

  12. Coordination Protocols for a Reliable Sensor, Actuator, and Device Network (SADN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keiji Ozaki


    Full Text Available A sensor, actuator, and device network (SADN is composed of three types of nodes, which are sensor, actuator, and actuation device nodes. Sensor nodes and actuator nodes are interconnected in wireless networks as discussed in wireless sensor and actuator networks (WSANs. Actuator nodes and device nodes are interconnected in types of networks, i.e. wireless and wired network. Sensor nodes sense an physical event and send sensed values of the event to actuator nodes. An actuator node makes a decision on proper actions on receipt of sensed values and then issue the action requests to the device nodes. A device node really acts to the physical world. For example, moves a robot arms by performing the action on receipt of the action request. Messages may be lost and nodes may be faulty. Especially, messages are lost due to noise and collision in a wireless network. We propose a fully redundant model for an SADN where each of sensor, actuator, and device functions is replicated in multiple nodes and each of sensor-actuator and actuator-device communication is realized in many-to-many type of communication protocols. Even if some number of nodes are faulty, the other nodes can perform requested tasks. Here, each sensor node sends sensed values to multiple actuator nodes and each actuator node receives sensed values from multiple sensor nodes. While multiple actuator nodes communicate with multiple replica nodes of a device. Even if messages are lost and some number of nodes are faulty, device nodes can surely receive action requests required for sensed values and the actions are performed. In this paper, we discuss a type of semi-passive coordination (SPC protocol of multiple actuator nodes for multiple sensor nodes. We discuss a type of active coordination protocol for multiple actuator nodes and multiple actuation device nodes. We evaluate the SPC protocol for the sensor-actuator coordination in terms of the number of messages exchanged among

  13. Design of a Series Elastic- and Bowdencable-based actuation system for use as torque-=actuator in exoskeleton-type training

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veneman, J.F.; Ekkelenkamp, R.; Kruidhof, R.; van der Helm, F.C.T.; van der Kooij, Herman


    Common actuators have important drawbacks for use in an exoskeleton type of rehabilitation (training) robot. Either the actuators are heavy, complex or poor torque sources. A new actuation system is proposed and tested that combines a lightweight joint and a simple structure with adequate torque

  14. Surface texture change on-demand and microfluidic devices based on thickness mode actuation of dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) (United States)

    Ankit, Ankit; Nguyen, Anh Chien; Mathews, Nripan


    Tactile feedback devices and microfluidic devices have huge significance in strengthening the area of robotics, human machine interaction and low cost healthcare. Dielectric Elastomer Actuators (DEAs) are an attractive alternative for both the areas; offering the advantage of low cost and simplistic fabrication in addition to the high actuation strains. The inplane deformations produced by the DEAs can be used to produce out-of-plane deformations by what is known as the thickness mode actuation of DEAs. The thickness mode actuation is achieved by adhering a soft passive layer to the DEA. This enables a wide area of applications in tactile applications without the need of complex systems and multiple actuators. But the thickness mode actuation has not been explored enough to understand how the deformations can be improved without altering the material properties; which is often accompanied with increased cost and a trade off with other closely associated material properties. We have shown the effect of dimensions of active region and non-active region in manipulating the out-of-plane deformation. Making use of this, we have been able to demonstrate large area devices and complex patterns on the passive top layer for the surface texture change on-demand applications. We have also been able to demonstrate on-demand microfluidic channels and micro-chambers without the need of actually fabricating the channels; which is a cost incurring and cumbersome process.

  15. Investigation of Equivalent Unsprung Mass and Nonlinear Features of Electromagnetic Actuated Active Suspension

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Yin


    Full Text Available Electromagnetic actuated active suspension benefits active control and energy harvesting from vibration at the same time. However, the rotary type electromagnetic actuated active suspension introduces a significant extra mass on the unsprung mass due to the inertia of the rotating components of the actuator. The magnitude of the introduced unsprung mass is studied based on a gearbox type actuator and a ball screw type actuator. The geometry of the suspension and the actuator also influence the equivalent unsprung mass significantly. The suspension performance simulation or control logic derived should take this equivalent unsprung mass into account. Besides, an extra force should be compensated due to the nonlinear features of the suspension structure and it is studied. The active force of the actuator should compensate this extra force. The discovery of this paper provides a fundamental for evaluating the rotary type electromagnetic actuated active suspension performance and control strategy derived as well as controlling the electromagnetic actuated active suspension more precisely.

  16. Analysis of helicopter flight dynamics through modeling and simulation of primary flight control actuation system (United States)

    Nelson, Hunter Barton

    A simplified second-order transfer function actuator model used in most flight dynamics applications cannot easily capture the effects of different actuator parameters. The present work integrates a nonlinear actuator model into a nonlinear state space rotorcraft model to determine the effect of actuator parameters on key flight dynamics. The completed actuator model was integrated with a swashplate kinematics where step responses were generated over a range of key hydraulic parameters. The actuator-swashplate system was then introduced into a nonlinear state space rotorcraft simulation where flight dynamics quantities such as bandwidth and phase delay analyzed. Frequency sweeps were simulated for unique actuator configurations using the coupled nonlinear actuator-rotorcraft system. The software package CIFER was used for system identification and compared directly to the linearized models. As the actuator became rate saturated, the effects on bandwidth and phase delay were apparent on the predicted handling qualities specifications.

  17. Development of novel textile and yarn actuators using plasticized PVC gel (United States)

    Furuse, A.; Hashimoto, M.


    Soft actuators based on polymers are expected to be used for power sources to drive wearable robots which required in a wide range of fields such as medical, care and welfare, because they are light weight, flexible and quiet. Plasticized PVC gel which has a large deformation by applying a voltage and high driving stability in the atmosphere is considered as a suitable candidate material for development of soft actuator. Then, we proposed two kinds of novel flexible actuators constructed like yarn and textile by using plasticized PVC gel to develop soft actuator to realize a higher flexibility and low-voltage driving. In this study, we prepared prototypes of these actuators and clarify their characteristic. In addition, we considered the deformation model from its characteristics and geometric calculation. When a voltage was applied to their actuators, textile type actuator was contracted, while the twisted yarn type actuator was expanded. The deformation behavior of the proposed actuators could be found at a low voltage of 200V, the contraction strain of the textile actuator was about 27 %, and the expanding ratio of the yarn actuator was 0.4 %. Maximum contraction strain of textile actuator and expansion ratio of yarn actuator was 53% and 1.4% at 600 V, respectively. The calculation results from the proposed model were in roughly agreement with the experimental values. It indicated that deformation behavior of these actuators could estimate from models.

  18. Prediction of dry ice mass for firefighting robot actuation (United States)

    Ajala, M. T.; Khan, Md R.; Shafie, A. A.; Salami, MJE; Mohamad Nor, M. I.


    The limitation in the performance of electric actuated firefighting robots in high-temperature fire environment has led to research on the alternative propulsion system for the mobility of firefighting robots in such environment. Capitalizing on the limitations of these electric actuators we suggested a gas-actuated propulsion system in our earlier study. The propulsion system is made up of a pneumatic motor as the actuator (for the robot) and carbon dioxide gas (self-generated from dry ice) as the power source. To satisfy the consumption requirement (9cfm) of the motor for efficient actuation of the robot in the fire environment, the volume of carbon dioxide gas, as well as the corresponding mass of the dry ice that will produce the required volume for powering and actuation of the robot, must be determined. This article, therefore, presents the computational analysis to predict the volumetric requirement and the dry ice mass sufficient to power a carbon dioxide gas propelled autonomous firefighting robot in a high-temperature environment. The governing equation of the sublimation of dry ice to carbon dioxide is established. An operating time of 2105.53s and operating pressure ranges from 137.9kPa to 482.65kPa were achieved following the consumption rate of the motor. Thus, 8.85m3 is computed as the volume requirement of the CAFFR while the corresponding dry ice mass for the CAFFR actuation ranges from 21.67kg to 75.83kg depending on the operating pressure.

  19. Bio-inspired aquatic robotics by untethered piezohydroelastic actuation. (United States)

    Cen, L; Erturk, A


    This paper investigates fish-like aquatic robotics using flexible bimorphs made of macro-fiber composite (MFC) piezoelectric laminates for carangiform locomotion. In addition to noiseless and efficient actuation over a range of frequencies, geometric scalability, and simple design, bimorph propulsors made of MFCs offer a balance between the actuation force and velocity response for performance enhancement in bio-inspired swimming. The experimental component of the presented work focuses on the characterization of an elastically constrained MFC bimorph propulsor for thrust generation in quiescent water as well as the development of a robotic fish prototype combining a microcontroller and a printed-circuit-board amplifier to generate high actuation voltage for untethered locomotion. From the theoretical standpoint, a distributed-parameter electroelastic model including the hydrodynamic effects and actuator dynamics is coupled with the elongated-body theory for predicting the mean thrust in quiescent water. In-air and underwater experiments are performed to verify the incorporation of hydrodynamic effects in the linear actuation regime. For electroelastically nonlinear actuation levels, experimentally obtained underwater vibration response is coupled with the elongated-body theory to predict the thrust output. The measured mean thrust levels in quiescent water (on the order of ∼10 mN) compare favorably with thrust levels of biological fish. An untethered robotic fish prototype that employs a single bimorph fin (caudal fin) for straight swimming and turning motions is developed and tested in free locomotion. A swimming speed of 0.3 body-length/second (7.5 cm s⁻¹ swimming speed for 24.3 cm body length) is achieved at 5 Hz for a non-optimized main body-propulsor bimorph combination under a moderate actuation voltage level.

  20. Passive stability and actuation of micro aerial vehicles (United States)

    Piccoli, Matthew

    Micro Aerial Vehicles (MAVs) have increased in popularity in recent years. The most common platform, the quadrotor, has surpassed other MAVs like traditional helicopters and ornithopters in popularity mainly due to their simplicity. Yet the quadrotor design is a century old and was intended to carry people. We set out to design a MAV that is designed specifically to be a MAV, i.e. a vehicle not intended to carry humans as a payload. With this constraint lifted the vehicle can continuously rotate, which would dizzy a human, can sustain larger forces, which would damage a human, or can take advantage of scaling properties, where it may not work at human scale. Furthermore, we aim for simplicity by removing vehicle controllers and reducing the number of actuators, such that the vehicle can be made cost effective, if not disposable. We begin by studying general equations of motion for hovering MAVs. We search for vehicle configurations that exhibit passive stability, allowing the MAV to operate without a controller or actuators to apply control, ideally a single actuator. The analysis suggests two distinct types of passively stabilized MAVs and we create test vehicles for both. With simple hovering achieved, we concentrate on controlled motion with an emphasis on doing so without adding actuators. We find we can attain three degree of freedom control using separation of time scales with our actuator via low frequency for control in the vertical direction and high frequency for control in the horizontal plane. We explore techniques for achieving high frequency actuator control, which also allow the compensation of motor defects, specifically cogging torque. We combine passive stability with the motion control into two vehicles, UNO and Piccolissimo. UNO, the Underactuated-propeller Naturally-stabilized One-motor vehicle, demonstrates the capabilities of simple vehicles by performing maneuvers like conventional quadrotors. Piccolissimo, Italian for very little

  1. Evaluation of Effective Diaphragm Area for Pneumatic Actuator

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ryu, Hogeun; Han, Bongsub; Seon, Juhyoung [SOOSAN INDUSTRIES, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)


    The purpose of this study is to develop a methodology to calculate the exact effective diaphragm area using the results of diagnostic test to be performed in the evaluation of air operated valve performance. By using this developed methodology in pneumatic actuator performance evaluation, it can be reduce the possible errors arising from effective diaphragm area in the evaluation of performance of air operated valves. The performance assessment for the operability and structural integrity of air operated valves for the domestic nuclear power plant is in progress. One of the important parameters that determine the performance of the air operated valves is the effective diaphragm area of diaphragm type actuator. The effective diaphragm area is the actual area which the air pressure acting on the diaphragm. In general, the effective diaphragm area used for the performance evaluation of pneumatic actuator is provided by the manufacture or the actuator drawing. Flat type diaphragm was showed the difference between the measured value of EDA and the manufacture’s value, in the case of convoluted type diaphragm has showed that the measured value of EDA and manufacture’s value is almost the same. When evaluate a performance of a diaphragm actuator, accurate EDA is to be used because it is an important variable affecting the actuator performance. Particularly in the case of flat type diaphragm which EDA is changed in accordance with the stroke position, by using the EDA evaluation methodology developed in this study to minimize a possible error due to EDA when evaluating the performance of the air actuator.

  2. Tailoring the actuation of ionic polymer metal composites (United States)

    Nemat-Nasser, Sia; Wu, Yongxian


    Ionic polymer-metal composites (IPMCs) are biomimetic actuators and sensors. A typical IPMC consists of a thin perfluorinated ionomer membrane, with noble metal electrodes plated on both faces, and neutralized with the necessary amount of cations. A cantilevered strip of IPMC responds to an electric stimulus by generating large bending motions and, conversely, produces an electric potential upon sudden bending deformations. IPMCs have been considered for potential applications in artificial muscles, robotic systems, and biomedical devices. By examining the underpinning mechanisms responsible for the actuation and the factors that affect IPMC's performance, novel methods to tailor its electro-mechanical response to obtain optimized actuation activities are developed and presented in this paper. By introducing various monovalent or multivalent single cations and cation combinations, diverse actuation behaviors can be obtained and optimal actuation activities can be identified. The experimental measurements show good agreement with the results obtained using the nano-scaled, physics-based model that was introduced by the first author to predict the actuation of IPMCs qualitatively and quantitatively. The bending motion of IPMCs can also be tailored by modifying the time variation of the applied direct or alternating current. We have discovered that the Nafion-based IPMC's initial motion towards the anode can be controlled and ultimately eliminated by applying a linearly increasing electric potential at a suitable rate. For Flemion-based IPMCs, the tip displacement towards the anode is always linearly related to the cation charge accumulation at the cathode. These results have significant bearing on verifying various IPMC actuation models.

  3. Soft Pneumatic Actuator Fascicles for High Force and Reliability. (United States)

    Robertson, Matthew A; Sadeghi, Hamed; Florez, Juan Manuel; Paik, Jamie


    Soft pneumatic actuators (SPAs) are found in mobile robots, assistive wearable devices, and rehabilitative technologies. While soft actuators have been one of the most crucial elements of technology leading the development of the soft robotics field, they fall short of force output and bandwidth requirements for many tasks. In addition, other general problems remain open, including robustness, controllability, and repeatability. The SPA-pack architecture presented here aims to satisfy these standards of reliability crucial to the field of soft robotics, while also improving the basic performance capabilities of SPAs by borrowing advantages leveraged ubiquitously in biology; namely, the structured parallel arrangement of lower power actuators to form the basis of a larger and more powerful actuator module. An SPA-pack module consisting of a number of smaller SPAs will be studied using an analytical model and physical prototype. Experimental measurements show an SPA pack to generate over 112 N linear force, while the model indicates the benefit of parallel actuator grouping over a geometrically equivalent single SPA scale as an increasing function of the number of individual actuators in the group. For a module of four actuators, a 23% increase in force production over a volumetrically equivalent single SPA is predicted and validated, while further gains appear possible up to 50%. These findings affirm the advantage of utilizing a fascicle structure for high-performance soft robotic applications over existing monolithic SPA designs. An example of high-performance soft robotic platform will be presented to demonstrate the capability of SPA-pack modules in a complete and functional system.

  4. Electromechanically Actuated Valve for Controlling Flow Rate (United States)

    Patterson, Paul


    A proposed valve for controlling the rate of flow of a fluid would include an electric-motor-driven ball-screw mechanism for adjusting the seating element of the valve to any position between fully closed and fully open. The motor would be of a type that can be electronically controlled to rotate to a specified angular position and to rotate at a specified rate, and the ball screw would enable accurate linear positioning of the seating element as a function of angular position of the motor. Hence, the proposed valve would enable fine electronic control of the rate of flow and the rate of change of flow. The uniqueness of this valve lies in a high degree of integration of the actuation mechanism with the flow-control components into a single, relatively compact unit. A notable feature of this integration is that in addition to being a major part of the actuation mechanism, the ball screw would also be a flow-control component: the ball screw would be hollow so as to contain part of the main flow passage, and one end of the ball screw would be the main seating valve element. The relationships among the components of the valve are best understood by reference to the figure, which presents meridional cross sections of the valve in the fully closed and fully open positions. The motor would be supported by a bracket bolted to the valve body. By means of gears or pulleys and a timing belt, motor drive would be transmitted to a sleeve that would rotate on bearings in the valve body. A ball nut inside the sleeve would be made to rotate with the sleeve by use of a key. The ball screw would pass through and engage the ball nut. A key would prevent rotation of the ball screw in the valve body while allowing the ball screw to translate axially when driven by the ball nut. The outer surface of the ball screw would be threaded only in a mid-length region: the end regions of the outer surface of the ball screw would be polished so that they could act as dynamic sealing surfaces

  5. Hydrogel Actuation by Electric Field Driven Effects (United States)

    Morales, Daniel Humphrey

    Hydrogels are networks of crosslinked, hydrophilic polymers capable of absorbing and releasing large amounts of water while maintaining their structural integrity. Polyelectrolyte hydrogels are a subset of hydrogels that contain ionizable moieties, which render the network sensitive to the pH and the ionic strength of the media and provide mobile counterions, which impart conductivity. These networks are part of a class of "smart" material systems that can sense and adjust their shape in response to the external environment. Hence, the ability to program and modulate hydrogel shape change has great potential for novel biomaterial and soft robotics applications. We utilized electric field driven effects to manipulate the interaction of ions within polyelectrolyte hydrogels in order to induce controlled deformation and patterning. Additionally, electric fields can be used to promote the interactions of separate gel networks, as modular components, and particle assemblies within gel networks to develop new types of soft composite systems. First, we present and analyze a walking gel actuator comprised of cationic and anionic gel legs attached by electric field-promoted polyion complexation. We characterize the electro-osmotic response of the hydrogels as a function of charge density and external salt concentration. The gel walkers achieve unidirectional motion on flat elastomer substrates and exemplify a simple way to move and manipulate soft matter devices in aqueous solutions. An 'ionoprinting' technique is presented with the capability to topographically structure and actuate hydrated gels in two and three dimensions by locally patterning ions induced by electric fields. The bound charges change the local mechanical properties of the gel to induce relief patterns and evoke localized stress, causing rapid folding in air. The ionically patterned hydrogels exhibit programmable temporal and spatial shape transitions which can be tuned by the duration and/or strength of

  6. Hydraulic Actuators with Autonomous Hydraulic Supply for the Mainline Aircrafts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. S. Shumilov


    Full Text Available Applied in the aircraft control systems, hydraulic servo actuators with autonomous hydraulic supply, so-called, hydraulic actuators of integrated configuration, i.e. combination of a source of hydraulic power and its load in the single unit, are aimed at increasing control system reliability both owing to elimination of the pipelines connecting the actuator to the hydraulic supply source, and owing to avoidance of influence of other loads failure on the actuator operability. Their purpose is also to raise control system survivability by eliminating the long pipeline communications and their replacing for the electro-conductive power supply system, thus reducing the vulnerability of systems. The main reason for a delayed application of the hydraulic actuators in the cutting-edge aircrafts was that such aircrafts require hydraulic actuators of considerably higher power with considerable heat releases, which caused an unacceptable overheat of the hydraulic actuators. Positive and negative sides of the hydraulic actuators, their alternative options of increased reliability and survivability, local hydraulic systems as an advanced alternative to independent hydraulic actuators are considered.Now to use hydraulic actuators in mainline aircrafts is inexpedient since there are the unfairly large number of the problems reducing, first and last, safety of flights, with no essential weight and operational advantages. Still works to create competitive hydraulic actuators ought to be continued.Application of local hydraulic systems (LHS will allow us to reduce length of pressure head and drain pipelines and mass of pipelines, as well as to raise their general fail-safety and survivability. Application of the LHS principle will allow us to use a majority of steering drive advantages. It is necessary to allocate especially the following:- ease of meeting requirements for the non-local spread of the engine weight;- essentially reducing length and weight of

  7. Soft Pneumatic Bending Actuator with Integrated Carbon Nanotube Displacement Sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim Giffney


    Full Text Available The excellent compliance and large range of motion of soft actuators controlled by fluid pressure has lead to strong interest in applying devices of this type for biomimetic and human-robot interaction applications. However, in contrast to soft actuators fabricated from stretchable silicone materials, conventional technologies for position sensing are typically rigid or bulky and are not ideal for integration into soft robotic devices. Therefore, in order to facilitate the use of soft pneumatic actuators in applications where position sensing or closed loop control is required, a soft pneumatic bending actuator with an integrated carbon nanotube position sensor has been developed. The integrated carbon nanotube position sensor presented in this work is flexible and well suited to measuring the large displacements frequently encountered in soft robotics. The sensor is produced by a simple soft lithography process during the fabrication of the soft pneumatic actuator, with a greater than 30% resistance change between the relaxed state and the maximum displacement position. It is anticipated that integrated resistive position sensors using a similar design will be useful in a wide range of soft robotic systems.

  8. Nonlinear feedback control of dual-stage actuator system (United States)

    Liu, Chuan; Liu, Yang; Li, Xing; Chen, Xing-lin


    The wafer stage of lithography is a dual-stage actuator (DSA) system. An nm-level positioning precision is required by using macro movement of long-stroke linear motor and high-precision micro movement of short-stroke voice coil motor, while the platform is moving in high-speed. This brief presents a nonlinear control method for dual-stage actuator systems to track a step command input fast and accurately. To further reduce the settling time, we design the long-stroke actuator controller with the control law of proximate time optimal control (PTOC) to yield a closed-loop system with a small damping ratio for a fast rise time and certain allowable overshoot. Moreover, for the purpose of reducing the overshoot caused by the long-stroke actuator as the system output approaches the target location, a composite nonlinear feedback (CNF) control law is designed for the short-stroke actuator to yield a closed-loop system with a large damping ratio. The linear extended state observer (LESO) was designed to estimate the unknown velocity and compensate the disturbance of servo systems, thus static error could be effectively decreased. We applied this proposed control method to an actual DSA positioning system, which consists of a linear motor and a voice coil motor. Experimental results show that our approach can improve the dynamic performance and the anti-jamming capability of the system, enhance the control precision.

  9. Cryogenic actuator testing for the SAFARI ground calibration setup (United States)

    de Jonge, C.; Eggens, M.; Nieuwenhuizen, A. C. T.; Detrain, A.; Smit, H.; Dieleman, P.


    For the on-ground calibration setup of the SAFARI instrument cryogenic mechanisms are being developed at SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research, including a filter wheel, XYZ-scanner and a flipmirror mechanism. Due to the extremely low background radiation requirement of the SAFARI instrument, all of these mechanisms will have to perform their work at 4.5 Kelvin and low-dissipative cryogenic actuators are required to drive these mechanisms. In this paper, the performance of stepper motors, piezoelectric actuators and brushless DC-motors as cryogenic actuators are compared. We tested stepper motor mechanical performance and electrical dissipation at 4K. The actuator requirements, test setup and test results are presented. Furthermore, design considerations and early performance tests of the flipmirror mechanism are discussed. This flipmirror features a 102 x 72 mm aluminum mirror that can be rotated 45°. A Phytron stepper motor with reduction gearbox has been chosen to drive the flipmirror. Testing showed that this motor has a dissipation of 49mW at 4K with a torque of 60Nmm at 100rpm. Thermal modeling of the flipmirror mechanism predicts that with proper thermal strapping the peak temperature of the flipmirror after a single action will be within the background level requirements of the SAFARI instrument. Early tests confirm this result. For low-duty cycle operations commercial stepper motors appear suitable as actuators for test equipment in the SAFARI on ground calibration setup.

  10. A novel stiffness control method for series elastic actuator (United States)

    Lin, Guangmo; Zhao, Xingang; Han, Jianda


    Compliance plays an important role in human-robot cooperation. However, fixed compliance, or fixed stiffness, is difficult to meet the growing needs of human machine collaboration. As a result, the robot actuator is demanded to be able to adjust its stiffness. This paper presents a stiffness control scheme for a single DOF series elastic actuator (SEA) with a linear spring mounted in series in the mechanism. In this proposed method, the output angle of the spring is measured and used to calculate the input angle of the spring, thus the equivalent stiffness of the robot actuator revealed to the human operator can be rendered in accordance to the desired stiffness. Since the techniques used in this method only involve the position information of the system, there is no need to install an expensive force/torque sensor on the actuator. Further, the force/torque produced by the actuator can be estimated by simply multiplying the deformation angle of the spring and its constant stiffness coefficient. The analysis of the stiffness controller is provided. Then a simulation that emulates a human operates the SEA while the stiffness controller is running is carried out and the results also validate the proposed method.

  11. Parylene coated carbon nanotube actuators for tactile stimulation (United States)

    Bubak, Grzegorz; Ansaldo, Alberto; Gendron, David; Brayda, Luca; Ceseracciu, Luca; Ricci, Davide


    Ionic liquid/carbon nanotube based actuators have been constantly improved in recent years owing to their suitability for applications related to human-machine interaction and robotics thanks to their light-weight and low voltage operation. However, while great attention has been paid to the development of better electrodes and electrolytes, no adequate efforts were made to develop actuators to be used in direct contact with the human skin. Herein, we present our approach, based on the use of parylene-C coating. Indeed, owning to its physicochemical properties such as high dielectric strength, resistance to solvents, biological and chemical inactivity/inertness, parylene fulfils the requirements for use in biocompatible actuator fabrication. In this paper, we study the influence of the parylene coating on the actuator performance. To do so, we analyzed its mechanical and electrochemical properties. We looked into the role of parylene as a protection layer that can prevent alteration of the actuator performance likely caused by external conditions. In order to complete our study, we designed a haptic device and investigated the generated force, displacement and energy usage.

  12. Characterization of 3D-printed IPMC actuators (United States)

    Carrico, James D.; Erickson, John M.; Leang, Kam K.


    A three-dimensional (3D) fused filament additive manufacturing (AM) technique (3D printing) is described for creating ionic polymer-metal composites (IPMC) actuators. The 3D printing technique addresses some of the limitations of existing manufacturing processes for creating IPMCs, which includes limited shapes and sizes and time-consuming steps. In this paper, the 3D printing process is described in detail, where first a precursor material (non-acid Nafion precursor resin) is extruded into a thermoplastic filament for 3D printing. A custom designed 3D printer is described which utilizes the filament to manufacture custom-shaped IPMC actuators. The 3D printed samples are hydrolyzed in an aqueous solution of potassium hydroxide and dimethyl sulfoxide, followed by application of platinum electrodes. The performance of 3D-printed IPMC actuators with different infill patterns are characterized. Specifically, experimental results are presented for electrode resistance, actuation performance, and overall effective actuator stiffness for samples with longitudinal (0 degrees) and transverse (90 degrees) infill pattern.

  13. Parallel kinematic mechanisms for distributed actuation of future structures (United States)

    Lai, G.; Plummer, A. R.; Cleaver, D. J.; Zhou, H.


    Future machines will require distributed actuation integrated with load-bearing structures, so that they are lighter, move faster, use less energy, and are more adaptable. Good examples are shape-changing aircraft wings which can adapt precisely to the ideal aerodynamic form for current flying conditions, and light but powerful robotic manipulators which can interact safely with human co-workers. A 'tensegrity structure' is a good candidate for this application due to its potentially excellent stiffness and strength-to-weight ratio and a multi-element structure into which actuators could be embedded. This paper presents results of an analysis of an example practical actuated tensegrity structure consisting of 3 ‘unit cells’. A numerical method is used to determine the stability of the structure with varying actuator length, showing how four actuators can be used to control movement in three degrees of freedom as well as simultaneously maintaining the structural pre-load. An experimental prototype has been built, in which 4 pneumatic artificial muscles (PAMs) are embedded in one unit cell. The PAMs are controlled antagonistically, by high speed switching of on-off valves, to achieve control of position and structure pre-load. Experimental and simulation results are presented, and future prospects for the approach are discussed.

  14. A novel compact compliant actuator design for rehabilitation robots. (United States)

    Yu, Haoyong; Huang, Sunan; Thakor, Nitish V; Chen, Gong; Toh, Siew-Lok; Sta Cruz, Manolo; Ghorbel, Yassine; Zhu, Chi


    Rehabilitation robots have direct physical interaction with human body. Ideally, actuators for rehabilitation robots should be compliant, force controllable, and back drivable due to safety and control considerations. Various designs of Series Elastic Actuators (SEA) have been developed for these applications. However, current SEA designs face a common performance limitation due to the compromise on the spring stiffness selection. This paper presents a novel compact compliant force control actuator design for portable rehabilitation robots to overcome the performance limitations in current SEAs. Our design consists of a servomotor, a ball screw, a torsional spring between the motor and the ball screw, and a set of translational springs between the ball screw nut and the external load. The soft translational springs are used to handle the low force operation and reduce output impedance, stiction, and external shock load. The torsional spring, being in the high speed range, has high effective stiffness and improves the system bandwidth in large force operation when the translational springs are fully compressed. This design is also more compact due to the smaller size of the springs. We explain the construction and the working principle of our new design, followed by the dynamic modeling and analysis of the actuator. We also show the preliminary testing results of a prototype actuator designed for a lower limb exoskeleton for gait rehabilitation.

  15. Coherent structures induced by dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuator (United States)

    Zhang, Xin; Li, Huaxing; Choi, Kwing So; Song, Longfei


    The structures of a flow field induced by a plasma actuator were investigated experimentally in quiescent air using high-speed Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) technology. The motivation behind was to figure out the flow control mechanism of the plasma technique. A symmetrical Dielectric Barrier Discharge (DBD) plasma actuator was mounted on the suction side of the SC (2)-0714 supercritical airfoil. The results demonstrated that the plasma jet had some coherent structures in the separated shear layer and these structures were linked to a dominant frequency of f0 = 39 Hz when the peak-to-peak voltage of plasma actuator was 9.8 kV. The high speed PIV measurement of the induced airflow suggested that the plasma actuator could excite the flow instabilities which lead to production of the roll-up vortex. Analysis of transient results indicated that the roll-up vortices had the process of formation, movement, merging and breakdown. This could promote the entrainment effect of plasma actuator between the outside airflow and boundary layer flow, which is very important for flow control applications.

  16. Properties of polypyrrole polyvinilsulfate films for dual actuator sensing systems (United States)

    Pascual, Victor H.; Otero, Toribio F.; Schumacher, Johanna


    One of the challenges of modern science is the development of actuators able to sense working conditions while actuation, mimicking the way in which biological organs work. Actuation of those organs includes nervous (electric) pulses dense reactive gels, chemical reactions exchange of ions and solvent. For that purpose, conducting polymers are being widely studied. In this work the properties of self-supported films of the polypyrrole:polyvinilsulfate (PPy/PVS) blend polymer were assessed. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) studies show how during reduction / oxidation the polymer exchanges cations when immersed in a NaClO4 aqueous solution, revealing free positive charges in the electrolytic solution as the driving agents leading to the swelling/shrinking of the polymer. Eventually it is the phenomenon responsible of the actuation of the polymeric motors. Submitting the system to consecutive potential sweeps shows the reaction is really sensing the scan rate used in each cycle revealing that while actuating the system is actually sensing the electrochemical working conditions.

  17. Characterization of conjugated polymer actuation under cerebral physiological conditions. (United States)

    Daneshvar, Eugene Dariush; Smela, Elisabeth


    Conjugated polymer actuators have potential use in implantable neural interface devices for modulating the position of electrode sites within brain tissue or guiding insertion of neural probes along curved trajectories. The actuation of polypyrrole (PPy) doped with dodecylbenzenesulfonate (DBS) is characterized to ascertain whether it can be employed in the cerebral environment. Microfabricated bilayer beams are electrochemically cycled at either 22 or 37 °C in aqueous NaDBS or in artificial cerebrospinal fluid (aCSF). Nearly all the ions in aCSF are exchanged into the PPy-the cations Na(+) , K(+) , Mg(2+) , Ca(2+) , as well as the anion PO4 (3-) ; Cl(-) is not present. Nevertheless, deflections in aCSF are comparable to those in NaDBS and they are monotonic with oxidation level: strain increases upon reduction, with no reversal of motion despite the mixture of ionic charges and valences being exchanged. Actuation depends on temperature. Upon warming, the cyclic voltammograms show additional peaks and an increase of 70% in the consumed charge. Bending is, however, much less affected: strain increases somewhat (6%-13%) but remains monotonic, and deflections shift (up to 20%). These results show how the actuation environment must be taken into account, and demonstrate proof of concept for actuated implantable neural interfaces. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. Placement optimization of actuators and sensors for gyroelastic body

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quan Hu


    Full Text Available Gyroelastic body refers to a flexible structure with a distribution of stored angular momentum provided by fly wheels or control moment gyroscopes. The angular momentum devices can exert active torques to the structure for vibration suppression or shape control. This article mainly focuses on the placement optimization issue of the actuators and sensors on the gyroelastic body. The control moment gyroscopes and angular rate sensors are adopted as actuators and sensors, respectively. The equations of motion of the gyroelastic body incorporating the detailed actuator dynamics are linearized to a loosely coupled state-space model. Two optimization approaches are developed for both constrained and unconstrained gyroelastic bodies. The first is based on the controllability and observability matrices of the system. It is only applicable to the collocated actuator and sensor pairs. The second criterion is formulated from the concept of controllable and observable subspaces. It is capable of handling the cases of both collocated and noncollocated actuator and sensor pairs. The illustrative examples of a cantilevered beam and an unconstrained plate demonstrate the clear physical meaning and rationality of the two proposed methods.

  19. A new EAP based on electroosmotic flow: nastic actuators (United States)

    Piyasena, Menake E.; Shapiro, Benjamin; Smela, Elisabeth


    A new type of polymeric actuator has been developed based on a micro-scale hydraulic mechanism, in which electroosmotic flow (EOF) is used to pump a fluid from one place to another in the device. This "nastic" actuator is in principle capable of producing both large displacements and high forces at reasonable speeds. Prototypes were fabricated from polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) by micro-molding a fluid supply chamber, an expansion chamber, and connecting channels, and then topping this layer with a thin PDMS membrane. Upon applying a voltage across the two chambers, fluid flowed into the expansion reservoir, deflecting the membrane upward by hundreds of μm within a few seconds. The performance of these prototypes have been characterized in terms of deflection under load at various applied voltages, deflection vs. time upon input of a step potential, and repeatability. The performance of the actuator has been modeled, and the experimental and theoretical results are in reasonable agreement. The modeling work predicts that as the channel size is scaled down, the actuation stress will increase substantially, up to GPa for nanochannels, rivaling piezoelectrics and shape memory alloys but with much higher strain. Future applications of these actuators may include valves, shape-changing materials, and soft robotics.

  20. Integrated high pressure microhydraulic actuation and control for surgical instruments. (United States)

    Moers, A J M; De Volder, M F L; Reynaerts, D


    To reduce the surgical trauma to the patient, minimally invasive surgery is gaining considerable importance since the eighties. More recently, robot assisted minimally invasive surgery was introduced to enhance the surgeon's performance in these procedures. This resulted in an intensive research on the design, fabrication and control of surgical robots over the last decades. A new development in the field of surgical tool manipulators is presented in this article: a flexible manipulator with distributed degrees of freedom powered by microhydraulic actuators. The tool consists of successive flexible segments, each with two bending degrees of freedom. To actuate these compliant segments, dedicated fluidic actuators are incorporated, together with compact hydraulic valves which control the actuator motion. Especially the development of microvalves for this application was challenging, and are the main focus of this paper. The valves distribute the hydraulic power from one common high pressure supply to a series of artificial muscle actuators. Tests show that the angular stroke of the each segment of this medical instrument is 90°.

  1. Bioengineered novel robotic actuators for utilization in neuromuscular control (United States)

    Paul, Eddie


    A linear motion-controlling or power-actuating cylinder can be found in virtually all types of machinery. In many applications, however, limitations in performance of longevity of operation exist due to a number of factors ranging from nature's environmental extremes to the demands of complex design and engineering requirements. Industry has come to accept the limited flexibility of current power- and motion-regulating mechanisms such as hydraulic valve-controlled actuators, and oftentimes chooses to design around the inherent flaws and drawbacks of these basic components. As a result, the level of maintenance and potential for mechanical failure are greater than necessary in many applications from routine road construction where hydraulic machinery is instrumental, to undersea operations where man relies heavily on hydraulic-cylinder devices during most scientific, geographic and biological research excursions. With ultimate flexibility and environmental adaptability providing the key motivation, E. P. Industries, Inc. has developed and prototyped a system of Novel Robotic Actuators to function where operational or environmental demands exceed the capabilities of conventional hydraulic-valve devices. The objective in developing the Robotic Muscle is to replace a typical hydraulic cylinder actuator with a relatively more compact `muscle-like' actuator exhibiting maximum flexibility and a superior strength-to-weight ratio while resisting the harsh temperatures and deterioration factors presented by unusual operating environments. Progressive development of the Robotic Muscle will be directed to use as an artificial biological replacement.

  2. Metallic molybdenum disulfide nanosheet-based electrochemical actuators (United States)

    Acerce, Muharrem; Akdoğan, E. Koray; Chhowalla, Manish


    Actuators that convert electrical energy to mechanical energy are useful in a wide variety of electromechanical systems and in robotics, with applications such as steerable catheters, adaptive wings for aircraft and drag-reducing wind turbines. Actuation systems can be based on various stimuli, such as heat, solvent adsorption/desorption, or electrochemical action (in systems such as carbon nanotube electrodes, graphite electrodes, polymer electrodes and metals). Here we demonstrate that the dynamic expansion and contraction of electrode films formed by restacking chemically exfoliated nanosheets of two-dimensional metallic molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) on thin plastic substrates can generate substantial mechanical forces. These films are capable of lifting masses that are more than 150 times that of the electrode over several millimetres and for hundreds of cycles. Specifically, the MoS2 films are able to generate mechanical stresses of about 17 megapascals—higher than mammalian muscle (about 0.3 megapascals) and comparable to ceramic piezoelectric actuators (about 40 megapascals)—and strains of about 0.6 per cent, operating at frequencies up to 1 hertz. The actuation performance is attributed to the high electrical conductivity of the metallic 1T phase of MoS2 nanosheets, the elastic modulus of restacked MoS2 layers (2 to 4 gigapascals) and fast proton diffusion between the nanosheets. These results could lead to new electrochemical actuators for high-strain and high-frequency applications.

  3. A quest for 2D lattice materials for actuation (United States)

    Pronk, T. N.; Ayas, C.; Tekõglu, C.


    In the last two decades, most of the studies in shape morphing technology have focused on the Kagome lattice materials, which have superior properties such as in-plane isotropy, high specific stiffness and strength, and low energy requirement for actuation of its members. The Kagome lattice is a member of the family of semi-regular tessellations of the plane. Two fundamental questions naturally arise: i-) What makes a lattice material suitable for actuation? ii-) Are there other tessellations more effective than the Kagome lattice for actuation? The present paper tackles both questions, and provides a clear answer to the first one by comparing an alternative lattice material, the hexagonal cupola, with the Kagome lattice in terms of mechanical/actuation properties. The second question remains open, but, hopefully easier to challenge owing to a newly-discovered criterion: for an n-dimensional (n = 2 , 3) in-plane isotropic lattice material to be suitable for actuation, its pin-jointed equivalent must obey the generalised Maxwell's rule, and must possess M = 3(n - 1) non strain-producing finite kinematic mechanisms.

  4. Design and Control of a Pneumatically Actuated Transtibial Prosthesis (United States)

    Zheng, Hao; Shen, Xiangrong


    This paper presents the design and control of a pneumatically actuated transtibial prosthesis, which utilizes a pneumatic cylinder-type actuator to power the prosthetic ankle joint to support the user's locomotion. The pneumatic actuator has multiple advantages over the traditional electric motor, such as light weight, low cost, and high power-to-weight ratio. The objective of this work is to develop a compact and lightweight transtibial prosthesis, leveraging the multiple advantages provided by this highly competitive actuator. In this paper, the design details of the prosthesis are described, including the determination of performance specifications, the layout of the actuation mechanism, and the calculation of the torque capacity. Through the authors’ design calculation, the prosthesis is able to provide sufficient range of motion and torque capacity to support the locomotion of a 75 kg individual. The controller design is also described, including the underlying biomechanical analysis and the formulation of the finite-state impedance controller. Finally, the human subject testing results are presented, with the data indicating that the prosthesis is able to generate a natural walking gait and sufficient power output for its amputee user. PMID:26146497

  5. Fluid electrodes for submersible robotics based on dielectric elastomer actuators (United States)

    Christianson, Caleb; Goldberg, Nathaniel; Cai, Shengqiang; Tolley, Michael T.


    Recently, dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) have gathered interest for soft robotics due to their low cost, light weight, large strain, low power consumption, and high energy density. However, developing reliable, compliant electrodes for DEAs remains an ongoing challenge due to issues with fabrication, uniformity of the conductive layer, and mechanical stiffening of the actuators caused by conductive materials with large Young's moduli. In this work, we present a method for preparing, patterning, and utilizing conductive fluid electrodes. Further, when we submerse the DEAs in a bath containing a conductive fluid connected to ground, the bath serves as a second electrode, obviating the need for depositing a conductive layer to serve as either of the electrodes required of most DEAs. When we apply a positive electrical potential to the conductive fluid in the actuator with respect to ground, the electric field across the dielectric membrane causes charge carriers in the solution to apply an electrostatic force on the membrane, which compresses the membrane and causes the actuator to deform. We have used this process to develop a tethered submersible robot that can swim in a tank of saltwater at a maximum measured speed of 9.2 mm/s. Since saltwater serves as the electrode, we overcome buoyancy issues that may be a challenge for pneumatically actuated soft robots and traditional, rigid robotics. This research opens the door to low-power underwater robots for search and rescue and environmental monitoring applications.

  6. Dynamic modeling of brushless dc motors for aerospace actuation (United States)

    Demerdash, N. A.; Nehl, T. W.


    A discrete time model for simulation of the dynamics of samarium cobalt-type permanent magnet brushless dc machines is presented. The simulation model includes modeling of the interaction between these machines and their attached power conditioners. These are transistorized conditioner units. This model is part of an overall discrete-time analysis of the dynamic performance of electromechanical actuators, which was conducted as part of prototype development of such actuators studied and built for NASA-Johnson Space Center as a prospective alternative to hydraulic actuators presently used in shuttle orbiter applications. The resulting numerical simulations of the various machine and power conditioner current and voltage waveforms gave excellent correlation to the actual waveforms collected from actual hardware experimental testing. These results, numerical and experimental, are presented here for machine motoring, regeneration and dynamic braking modes. Application of the resulting model to the determination of machine current and torque profiles during closed-loop actuator operation were also analyzed and the results are given here. These results are given in light of an overall view of the actuator system components. The applicability of this method of analysis to design optimization and trouble-shooting in such prototype development is also discussed in light of the results at hand.

  7. Magnetic Actuation of Self-Assembled DNA Hinges (United States)

    Lauback, S.; Mattioli, K.; Armstrong, M.; Miller, C.; Pease, C.; Castro, C.; Sooryakumar, R.

    DNA nanotechnology offers a broad range of applications spanning from the creation of nanoscale devices, motors and nanoparticle templates to the development of precise drug delivery systems. Central to advancing this technology is the ability to actuate or reconfigure structures in real time, which is currently achieved primarily by DNA strand displacement yielding slow actuation times (about 1-10min). Here we exploit superparamagnetic beads to magnetically actuate DNA structures which also provides a system to measure forces associated with molecular interactions. DNA nanodevices are folded using DNA origami, whereby a long single-stranded DNA is folded into a precise compact geometry using hundreds of short oligonucleotides. Our DNA nanodevice is a nanohinge from which rod shaped DNA nanostructures are polymerized into micron-scale filaments forming handles for actuation. By functionalizing one arm of the hinge and the filament ends, the hinge can be attached to a surface while still allowing an arm to rotate and the filaments can be labeled with magnetic beads enabling the hinge to be actuated almost instantaneously by external magnetic fields. These results lay the groundwork to establish real-time manipulation and direct force application of DNA constructs.

  8. Post-buckled precompressed (PBP) elements : A new class of flight control actuators enhancing high-speed autonomous VTOL MAVs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barrett, R.; McMurtry, R.; Vos, R.; Tiso, P.; De Breuker, R.


    This paper describes a new class of flight control actuators using Post-Buckled Precompressed (PBP) piezoelectric elements. These actuators are designed to produce significantly higher deflection and force levels than conventional piezoelectric actuator elements. Classical laminate plate theory

  9. A novel sheet actuator using plasticized PVC gel and flexible electrodes (United States)

    Li, Yi; Hashimoto, Minoru


    The plasticized polyvinyl chloride (PVC) gel-based soft actuator exhibits a fast response in air, large deformation, and low power consumption under an electrical field, so it shows great potential for use as a new type of soft actuator. In our previous study, we have developed a multilayered expansion and contraction-type actuator using PVC gel and stainless mesh electrodes. However, the actuator using rigid metal electrodes bring challenges of a notable weight and size, a limitation in flexibility and performance. In this study, to develop an actuator with higher performance and flexibility, we proposed a novel sheet actuator using PVC gel and flexible electrodes. We explain the driving mechanism of the proposed sheet actuator and investigate the basic characteristics of the actuators with different content of plasticizer and membrane thickness. Besides, we conducted a comparison experiment between the proposed PVC gel sheet actuator and the traditional dielectric elastomer actuator, founding that, the PVC gel sheet actuator had a positive potential to be driven at a lower DC field to get a bigger deformation and a faster response than those of the traditional dielectric elastomer actuator. And we discussed the difference between the two types of actuators with a theoretical model, finding a good agreement with the experimental results.

  10. Distributed shell control with a new multi-DOF photostrictive actuator design (United States)

    Yue, H. H.; Sun, G. L.; Deng, Z. Q.; Tzou, H. S.


    With the photovoltaic effect and the converse piezoelectric effect, the lanthanum-modified lead zirconate titanate (PLZT) actuator can transform the narrow-band photonic energy to mechanical strain/stress—the photodeformation effect. This photodeformation process can be further used for non-contact precision actuation and control in various structural, biomedical and electromechanical systems. Although there are a number of design configurations of distributed actuators, e.g., segmentation and shaping, been investigated over the years, this study is to explore a new actuator configuration spatially bonded on the surface of shell structures to enhance the spatial modal controllability. A mathematical model of a new multiple degree-of-freedom (multi-DOF) photostrictive actuator configuration is presented first, followed by the photostrictive/shell coupling equations of a cylindrical shell structure laminated with the newly proposed multi-DOF distributed actuator. Distributed microscopic photostrictive actuation and its contributing components of a one-piece actuator and the multi-DOF actuator are evaluated in the modal domain. Effects of shell's curvature and actuator's size are also evaluated. Parametric analyses suggest that the new multi-DOF distributed actuator, indeed, provides better performance and control effect to shell actuation and control. This multi-DOF configuration can be further applied to actuation and control of various shell and non-shell structures.

  11. Fabrication and reliable implementation of an ionic polymer-metal composite (IPMC) biaxial bending actuator (United States)

    Lee, Gil-Yong; Choi, Jung-Oh; Kim, Myeungseon; Ahn, Sung-Hoon


    Ionic polymer-metal composites (IPMCs) are one of the most popular types of electro-active polymer actuator, due to their low electric driving potential, large deformation range, and light weight. IPMCs have been used as actuators or sensors in many areas of biomedical and robotic engineering. In this research, IPMCs were studied as a biaxial bending actuator capable of smart and flexible motion. We designed and fabricated this bending actuator and implemented it to have a reliable actuating motion using a systematic approach. The resulting device was bar shaped with a square cross section and had four insulated electrodes on its surface. By applying different voltages to these four electrodes, a biaxial bending motion can be induced. To construct this actuator, several fabrication processes were considered. We modified the Nafion stacking method, and established a complete sequence of actuator fabrication processes. Using these processes, we were able to fabricate an IPMC biaxial bending actuator with both high actuating force and high flexibility. Several experiments were conducted to investigate and verify the performance of the actuator. The IPMC actuator system was modeled from experimentally measured data, and using this actuator model, a closed-loop proportional integral (PI) controller was designed. Reference position tracking performances of open-loop and closed-loop systems were compared. Finally, circular motion tracking performances of the actuator tip were tested under different rotation frequencies and radii of a reference trajectory circle.

  12. Fabrication of a Miniature Paper-Based Electroosmotic Actuator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deepa Sritharan


    Full Text Available A voltage-controlled hydraulic actuator is presented that employs electroosmotic fluid flow (EOF in paper microchannels within an elastomeric structure. The microfluidic device was fabricated using a new benchtop lamination process. Flexible embedded electrodes were formed from a conductive carbon-silicone composite. The pores in the layer of paper placed between the electrodes served as the microchannels for EOF, and the pumping fluid was propylene carbonate. A sealed fluid-filled chamber was formed by film-casting silicone to lay an actuating membrane over the pumping liquid. Hydraulic force generated by EOF caused the membrane to bulge by hundreds of micrometers within fractions of a second. Potential applications of these actuators include soft robots and biomedical devices.

  13. Robot Arm with Tendon Connector Plate and Linear Actuator (United States)

    Ihrke, Chris A. (Inventor); Diftler, Myron A. (Inventor); Bridgwater, Lyndon (Inventor); Nguyen, Vienny (Inventor); Millerman, Alexander (Inventor)


    A robotic system includes a tendon-driven end effector, a linear actuator, a flexible tendon, and a plate assembly. The linear actuator assembly has a servo motor and a drive mechanism, the latter of which translates linearly with respect to a drive axis of the servo motor in response to output torque from the servo motor. The tendon connects to the end effector and drive mechanism. The plate assembly is disposed between the linear actuator assembly and the tendon-driven end effector and includes first and second plates. The first plate has a first side that defines a boss with a center opening. The second plate defines an accurate through-slot having tendon guide channels. The first plate defines a through passage for the tendon between the center opening and a second side of the first plate. A looped end of the flexible tendon is received within the tendon guide channels.

  14. Enhanced actuation in functionalized carbon nanotube–Nafion composites

    KAUST Repository

    Lian, Huiqin


    The fabrication and electromechanical performance of functionalized carbon nanotube (FCNT)-Nafion composite actuators were studied. The CNTs were modified successfully with polyethylene glycol (PEG), as verified by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) images show that the FCNTs are homogeneously dispersed in the Nafion matrix. The properties of FCNT-Nafion composites in terms of water uptake, ion exchange capacity, proton conductivity, dynamic mechanical properties, and actuation behavior were evaluated. The results show that the sample with 0.5 wt% FCNT exhibits the best overall behavior. Its storage modulus is 2.4 times higher than that of Nafion. In addition, the maximum generated strain and the blocking force for the same sample are 2 and 2.4 times higher compared to the neat Nafion actuator, respectively. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

  15. Electroactive Polymer (EAP) Actuators for Future Humanlike Robots (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Human-like robots are increasingly becoming an engineering reality thanks to recent technology advances. These robots, which are inspired greatly by science fiction, were originated from the desire to reproduce the human appearance, functions and intelligence and they may become our household appliance or even companion. The development of such robots is greatly supported by emerging biologically inspired technologies. Potentially, electroactive polymer (EAP) materials are offering actuation capabilities that allow emulating the action of our natural muscles for making such machines perform lifelike. There are many technical issues related to making such robots including the need for EAP materials that can operate as effective actuators. Beside the technology challenges these robots also raise concerns that need to be addressed prior to forming super capable robots. These include the need to prevent accidents, deliberate harm, or their use in crimes. In this paper, the potential EAP actuators and the challenges that these robots may pose will be reviewed.

  16. Progress toward EAP actuators for biomimetic social robots (United States)

    Hanson, D.


    Social robotics and artificial intelligence have progressed steadily in recent years, appearing in a variety of useful applications and products as well as breakthrough research. However, limitations in conventional motors continue to limit the possibilities of bio-inspired robotics. Such motors are needed for locomotion, grasping and manipulation, and social expressions and gestures. EAP actuators, being more like biological muscle in key regards, could revolutionize the hardware for such robots, if made robust, powerful, and manufacturable at reasonable prices. The author presents a survey of the progress and opportunities for EAP actuators in these fields, and discusses the latest work of his team in developing and manufacturing social robots that could benefit from EAP actuators.

  17. Acoustic actuation of in situ fabricated artificial cilia (United States)

    Orbay, Sinem; Ozcelik, Adem; Bachman, Hunter; Huang, Tony Jun


    We present on-chip acoustic actuation of in situ fabricated artificial cilia. Arrays of cilia structures are UV polymerized inside a microfluidic channel using a photocurable polyethylene glycol (PEG) polymer solution and photomasks. During polymerization, cilia structures are attached to a silane treated glass surface inside the microchannel. Then, the cilia structures are actuated using acoustic vibrations at 4.6 kHz generated by piezo transducers. As a demonstration of a practical application, DI water and fluorescein dye solutions are mixed inside a microfluidic channel. Using pulses of acoustic excitations, and locally fabricated cilia structures within a certain region of the microchannel, a waveform of mixing behavior is obtained. This result illustrates one potential application wherein researchers can achieve spatiotemporal control of biological microenvironments in cell stimulation studies. These acoustically actuated, in situ fabricated, cilia structures can be used in many on-chip applications in biological, chemical and engineering studies.

  18. Roll Motion Control of a Delta Wing by LE Actuators (United States)

    Lee, Gwo-Bin; Ho, Chih-Ming; Tsao, Tom; Tai, Yu-Chong


    For a delta wing at high angle of attack, the two leading edge vortices contribute a significant portion of the total lift. If the symmetry of the two vortices is perturbed by miniature actuators, a large rolling moment can be generated. This experimentally obtained rolling moment, when normalized by the moment generated by a single leading edge vortex , can be as high as 50%. The size of the actuator is about equal to the thickness of the boundary layer at the leading edge of the wing. This length scale matching provides a coupling between the perturbations and the flow field. We also have tested the concept on a one seventh scale model of a Mirage aircraft. In the flight tests, the miniature leading edge actuators have been shown to be able to control the motion of the aircraft in several maneuvering modes. This work is supported by a DARPA grant managed by AFOSR.

  19. Electrothermally actuated tunable clamped-guided resonant microbeams

    KAUST Repository

    Alcheikh, Nouha


    We present simulation and experimental investigation demonstrating active alteration of the resonant and frequency response behavior of resonators by controlling the electrothermal actuation method on their anchors. In-plane clamped-guided arch and straight microbeams resonators are designed and fabricated with V-shaped electrothermal actuators on their anchors. These anchors not only offer various electrothermal actuation options, but also serve as various mechanical stiffness elements that affect the operating resonance frequency of the structures. We have shown that for an arch, the first mode resonance frequency can be increased up to 50% of its initial value. For a straight beam, we have shown that before buckling, the resonance frequency decreases to very low values and after buckling, it increases up to twice of its initial value. These results can be promising for the realization of different wide–range tunable microresonator. The experimental results have been compared to multi-physics finite-element simulations showing good agreement among them.

  20. Design and control of hybrid actuation lower limb exoskeleton

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hipolito Aguilar-Sierra


    Full Text Available In this article, two types of actuators are applied for a lower limb exoskeleton. They are DC motors with the harmonic drive and the pneumatic artificial muscles. This combination takes advantages of both the harmonic drive and the pneumatic artificial muscle. It provides both high accuracy position control and high ratio of strength and weight. The shortcomings of the two actuators are overcome by the hybrid actuation, for example, low control accuracy and modeling difficult of pneumatic artificial muscle, compactness, and structural flexibility of DC motors. The design and modeling processes are discussed to show the proposed exoskeleton can increase the strength of human lower limbs. Experiments and analysis of the exoskeleton are given to evaluate the effectiveness of the design and modeling.

  1. Magnetically Assisted Bilayer Composites for Soft Bending Actuators (United States)

    Jang, Sung-Hwan; Na, Seon-Hong; Park, Yong-Lae


    This article presents a soft pneumatic bending actuator using a magnetically assisted bilayer composite composed of silicone polymer and ferromagnetic particles. Bilayer composites were fabricated by mixing ferromagnetic particles to a prepolymer state of silicone in a mold and asymmetrically distributed them by applying a strong non-uniform magnetic field to one side of the mold during the curing process. The biased magnetic field induces sedimentation of the ferromagnetic particles toward one side of the structure. The nonhomogeneous distribution of the particles induces bending of the structure when inflated, as a result of asymmetric stiffness of the composite. The bilayer composites were then characterized with a scanning electron microscopy and thermogravimetric analysis. The bending performance and the axial expansion of the actuator were discussed for manipulation applications in soft robotics and bioengineering. The magnetically assisted manufacturing process for the soft bending actuator is a promising technique for various applications in soft robotics. PMID:28773007

  2. Magnetically Assisted Bilayer Composites for Soft Bending Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sung-Hwan Jang


    Full Text Available This article presents a soft pneumatic bending actuator using a magnetically assisted bilayer composite composed of silicone polymer and ferromagnetic particles. Bilayer composites were fabricated by mixing ferromagnetic particles to a prepolymer state of silicone in a mold and asymmetrically distributed them by applying a strong non-uniform magnetic field to one side of the mold during the curing process. The biased magnetic field induces sedimentation of the ferromagnetic particles toward one side of the structure. The nonhomogeneous distribution of the particles induces bending of the structure when inflated, as a result of asymmetric stiffness of the composite. The bilayer composites were then characterized with a scanning electron microscopy and thermogravimetric analysis. The bending performance and the axial expansion of the actuator were discussed for manipulation applications in soft robotics and bioengineering. The magnetically assisted manufacturing process for the soft bending actuator is a promising technique for various applications in soft robotics.

  3. Artificial heart for humanoid robot using coiled SMA actuators (United States)

    Potnuru, Akshay; Tadesse, Yonas


    Previously, we have presented the design and characterization of artificial heart using cylindrical shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators for humanoids [1]. The robotic heart was primarily designed to pump a blood-like fluid to parts of the robot such as the face to simulate blushing or anger by the use of elastomeric substrates for the transport of fluids. It can also be used for other applications. In this paper, we present an improved design by using high strain coiled SMAs and a novel pumping mechanism that uses sequential actuation to create peristalsis-like motions, and hence pump the fluid. Various placements of actuators will be investigated with respect to the silicone elastomeric body. This new approach provides a better performance in terms of the fluid volume pumped.

  4. Electrothermally actuated tunable clamped-guided resonant microbeams (United States)

    Alcheikh, N.; Hajjaj, A. Z.; Jaber, N.; Younis, M. I.


    We present simulation and experimental investigation demonstrating active alteration of the resonant and frequency response behavior of resonators by controlling the electrothermal actuation method on their anchors. In-plane clamped-guided arch and straight microbeams resonators are designed and fabricated with V-shaped electrothermal actuators on their anchors. These anchors not only offer various electrothermal actuation options, but also serve as various mechanical stiffness elements that affect the operating resonance frequency of the structures. We have shown that for an arch, the first mode resonance frequency can be increased up to 50% of its initial value. For a straight beam, we have shown that before buckling, the resonance frequency decreases to very low values and after buckling, it increases up to twice of its initial value. These results can be promising for the realization of different wide-range tunable microresonator. The experimental results have been compared to multi-physics finite-element simulations showing good agreement among them.

  5. A biomorphic origami actuator fabricated by folding a conducting paper

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Okuzaki, H; Saido, T; Suzuki, H; Hara, Y; Yan, H [Laboratory of Organic Robotics, Interdisciplinary Graduate School of Medicine and Engineering, University of Yamanashi, 4-4-37 Takeda, 400-8511 (Japan)], E-mail:


    Cooperation between the electrical conductivity and hygroscopic nature of conducting polymers can provide an insight into the development of a new class of electro-active polymer (EAP) actuators or soft robots working in ambient air. In this paper, we describe an 'origami' actuator fabricated by folding a sheet of conducting 'paper'. The principle lies in the electrically induced changes in the elastic modulus of a humidosensitive conducting polymer film through reversible sorption and desorption of water vapor molecules, which is responsible for amplifying a contraction of the film ({approx} 1%) to more than a 100-fold expansion (> 100%) of the origami actuator. Utilizing the origami technique, we have fabricated a biomorphic origami robot by folding an electrochemically synthesized polypyrrole film into the figure of an accordion shape, which can move with a caterpillar-like motion by repeated expansion and contraction at a velocity of 2 cm min{sup -1}.

  6. Magnetostrictively actuated control flaps for vibration reduction in helicopter rotors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Millott, T.; Friedmann, P.P. [Univ. of California, Los Angeles, CA (United States). Mechanical, Aerospace and Nuclear Engineering Dept.


    High vibration levels can impose constraints on helicopter operations and hinder passenger acceptance. Vibration reduction using blade root pitch control introduces a significant power penalty and may adversely affect the airworthiness of the flight control system. Comparable levels of vibration reduction can be achieved using considerably less power through an actively controlled trailing edge flap mounted on the blade. Such a device would have no effect on helicopter airworthiness since it is controlled by a loop separate from the primary flight control system which utilizes the swashplate. Control flap actuation using the magnetostrictive material Terfenol-D is studied in this paper by designing a minimum weight actuator, subject to a set of actuation and stress constraints. The resulting device is capable of producing vibration reduction in excess of 90% at cruise conditions.

  7. Design control system of telescope force actuators based on WLAN (United States)

    Shuai, Xiaoying; Zhang, Zhenchao


    With the development of the technology of autocontrol, telescope, computer, network and communication, the control system of the modern large and extra lager telescope become more and more complicated, especially application of active optics. Large telescope based on active optics maybe contain enormous force actuators. This is a challenge to traditional control system based on wired networks, which result in difficult-to-manage, occupy signification space and lack of system flexibility. Wireless network can resolve these disadvantages of wired network. Presented control system of telescope force actuators based on WLAN (WFCS), designed the control system framework of WFCS. To improve the performance of real-time, we developed software of force actuators control system in Linux. Finally, this paper discussed improvement of WFCS real-time, conceived maybe improvement in the future.

  8. Focus tunable device actuator based on ionic polymer metal composite (United States)

    Zhang, Yi-Wei; Su, Guo-Dung J.


    IPMC (Ionic Polymer Metallic Composite) is a kind of electroactive polymer (EAP) which is used as an actuator because of its low driving voltage and small size. The mechanism of IPMC actuator is due to the ionic diffusion when the voltage gradient is applied. In this paper, the complex IPMC fabrication such as Ag-IPMC be further developed in this paper. The comparison of response time and tip bending displacement of Pt-IPMC and Ag-IPMC will also be presented. We also use the optimized IPMC as the lens actuator integrated with curvilinear microlens array, and use the 3D printer to make a simple module and spring stable system. We also used modeling software, ANSYS Workbench, to confirm the effect of spring system. Finally, we successfully drive the lens system in 200μm stroke under 2.5V driving voltage within 1 seconds, and the resonant frequency is approximately 500 Hz.

  9. Liquid Crystal Elastomer Actuators from Anisotropic Porous Polymer Template. (United States)

    Wang, Qian; Yu, Li; Yu, Meina; Zhao, Dongyu; Song, Ping; Chi, Hun; Guo, Lin; Yang, Huai


    Controlling self-assembly behaviors of liquid crystals is a fundamental issue for designing them as intelligent actuators. Here, anisotropic porous polyvinylidene fluoride film is utilized as a template to induce homogeneous alignment of liquid crystals. The mechanism of liquid crystal alignment induced by anisotropic porous polyvinylidene fluoride film is illustrated based on the relationship between the alignment behavior of liquid crystals and surface microstructure of anisotropic polyvinylidene fluoride film. Liquid crystal elastomer actuators with fast responsiveness, large strain change, and reversible actuation behaviors are achieved by the photopolymerization of liquid crystal monomer in liquid crystal cells coated with anisotropic porous films. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  10. Dynamic performance of dielectric elastomers utilized as acoustic actuators (United States)

    Hochradel, K.; Rupitsch, S. J.; Sutor, A.; Lerch, R.; Vu, D. K.; Steinmann, P.


    We report on the frequency dependent behavior of dielectric elastomer actuators (DEA). The introduced smart material actuators consist of 3M™'s elastomer VHB™4905 (9469) and a compliant, sputtered copper electrode on each side. The presented experiments on these compounds contain the active tuning of their resonance frequency and their application as acoustic actuators. We are able to decrease the membranes' eigenfrequency by 30% with an electrical offset potential. Alternatively, if an alternating signal is applied, sound pressure levels up to 130 dB in an enclosed volume of 28 ccm are achieved. In order to verify the results, a numerical simulation is introduced incorporating the two physical fields involved: electrical and mechanical.

  11. Vibration control of a flexible structure with electromagnetic actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gruzman, Maurício; Santos, Ilmar


    This work presents the model of a shear-frame-type structure composed of six flexible beams and three rigid masses. Fixed on the ground, outside the structure, two voltage-controlled electromagnetic actuators are used for vibration control. To model the flexible beams, unidimensional finite...... elements were used. Nonlinear equations for the actuator electromagnetic force, noise in the position sensor, time delays for the control signal update and voltage saturation were also considered in the model. For controlling purposes, a discrete linear quadratic regulator combined with a predictive full......-order discrete linear observer was employed. Results of numerical simulations, where the structure is submitted to an impulsive disturbance force and to a harmonic force, show that the oscillations can be significantly reduced with the use of the electromagnetic actuators....

  12. Rigid-flexible coupling dynamic modeling and investigation of a redundantly actuated parallel manipulator with multiple actuation modes (United States)

    Liang, Dong; Song, Yimin; Sun, Tao; Jin, Xueying


    A systematic dynamic modeling methodology is presented to develop the rigid-flexible coupling dynamic model (RFDM) of an emerging flexible parallel manipulator with multiple actuation modes. By virtue of assumed mode method, the general dynamic model of an arbitrary flexible body with any number of lumped parameters is derived in an explicit closed form, which possesses the modular characteristic. Then the completely dynamic model of system is formulated based on the flexible multi-body dynamics (FMD) theory and the augmented Lagrangian multipliers method. An approach of combining the Udwadia-Kalaba formulation with the hybrid TR-BDF2 numerical algorithm is proposed to address the nonlinear RFDM. Two simulation cases are performed to investigate the dynamic performance of the manipulator with different actuation modes. The results indicate that the redundant actuation modes can effectively attenuate vibration and guarantee higher dynamic performance compared to the traditional non-redundant actuation modes. Finally, a virtual prototype model is developed to demonstrate the validity of the presented RFDM. The systematic methodology proposed in this study can be conveniently extended for the dynamic modeling and controller design of other planar flexible parallel manipulators, especially the emerging ones with multiple actuation modes.

  13. Electro-Active Polymer (EAP) Actuators for Planetary Applications (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Y.; Leary, S.; Shahinpoor, M.; Harrison, J. O.; Smith, J.


    NASA is seeking to reduce the mass, size, consumed power, and cost of the instrumentation used in its future missions. An important element of many instruments and devices is the actuation mechanism and electroactive polymers (EAP) are offering an effective alternative to current actuators. In this study, two families of EAP materials were investigated, including bending ionomers and longitudinal electrostatically driven elastomers. These materials were demonstrated to effectively actuate manipulation devices and their performance is being enhanced in this on-going study. The recent observations are reported in this paper, include the operation of the bending-EAP at conditions that exceed the harsh environment on Mars, and identify the obstacles that its properties and characteristics are posing to using them as actuators. Analysis of the electrical characteristics of the ionomer EAP showed that it is a current driven material rather than voltage driven and the conductivity distribution on the surface of the material greatly influences the bending performance. An accurate equivalent circuit modeling of the ionomer EAP performance is essential for the design of effective drive electronics. The ionomer main limitations are the fact that it needs to be moist continuously and the process of electrolysis that takes place during activation. An effective coating technique using a sprayed polymer was developed extending its operation in air from a few minutes to about four months. The coating technique effectively forms the equivalent of a skin to protect the moisture content of the ionomer. In parallel to the development of the bending EAP, the development of computer control of actuated longitudinal EAP has been pursued. An EAP driven miniature robotic arm was constructed and it is controlled by a MATLAB code to drop and lift the arm and close and open EAP fingers of a 4-finger gripper. Keywords: Miniature Robotics, Electroactive Polymers, Electroactive Actuators, EAP

  14. Electrical breakdown detection system for dielectric elastomer actuators (United States)

    Ghilardi, Michele; Busfield, James J. C.; Carpi, Federico


    Electrical breakdown of dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) is an issue that has to be carefully addressed when designing systems based on this novel technology. Indeed, in some systems electrical breakdown might have serious consequences, not only in terms of interruption of the desired function but also in terms of safety of the overall system (e.g. overheating and even burning). The risk for electrical breakdown often cannot be completely avoided by simply reducing the driving voltages, either because completely safe voltages might not generate sufficient actuation or because internal or external factors might change some properties of the actuator whilst in operation (for example the aging or fatigue of the material, or an externally imposed deformation decreasing the distance between the compliant electrodes). So, there is the clear need for reliable, simple and cost-effective detection systems that are able to acknowledge the occurrence of a breakdown event, making DEA-based devices able to monitor their status and become safer and "selfaware". Here a simple solution for a portable detection system is reported that is based on a voltage-divider configuration that detects the voltage drop at the DEA terminals and assesses the occurrence of breakdown via a microcontroller (Beaglebone Black single-board computer) combined with a real-time, ultra-low-latency processing unit (Bela cape an open-source embedded platform developed at Queen Mary University of London). The system was used to both generate the control signal that drives the actuator and constantly monitor the functionality of the actuator, detecting any breakdown event and discontinuing the supplied voltage accordingly, so as to obtain a safer controlled actuation. This paper presents preliminary tests of the detection system in different scenarios in order to assess its reliability.

  15. Pneumatic artificial muscle actuators for compliant robotic manipulators (United States)

    Robinson, Ryan Michael

    Robotic systems are increasingly being utilized in applications that require interaction with humans. In order to enable safe physical human-robot interaction, light weight and compliant manipulation are desirable. These requirements are problematic for many conventional actuation systems, which are often heavy, and typically use high stiffness to achieve high performance, leading to large impact forces upon collision. However, pneumatic artificial muscles (PAMs) are actuators that can satisfy these safety requirements while offering power-to-weight ratios comparable to those of conventional actuators. PAMs are extremely lightweight actuators that produce force in response to pressurization. These muscles demonstrate natural compliance, but have a nonlinear force-contraction profile that complicates modeling and control. This body of research presents solutions to the challenges associated with the implementation of PAMs as actuators in robotic manipulators, particularly with regard to modeling, design, and control. An existing PAM force balance model was modified to incorporate elliptic end geometry and a hyper-elastic constitutive relationship, dramatically improving predictions of PAM behavior at high contraction. Utilizing this improved model, two proof-of-concept PAM-driven manipulators were designed and constructed; design features included parallel placement of actuators and a tendon-link joint design. Genetic algorithm search heuristics were employed to determine an optimal joint geometry; allowing a manipulator to achieve a desired torque profile while minimizing the required PAM pressure. Performance of the manipulators was evaluated in both simulation and experiment employing various linear and nonlinear control strategies. These included output feedback techniques, such as proportional-integral-derivative (PID) and fuzzy logic, a model-based control for computed torque, and more advanced controllers, such as sliding mode, adaptive sliding mode, and

  16. Self-organizing sensing and actuation for automatic control (United States)

    Cheng, George Shu-Xing


    A Self-Organizing Process Control Architecture is introduced with a Sensing Layer, Control Layer, Actuation Layer, Process Layer, as well as Self-Organizing Sensors (SOS) and Self-Organizing Actuators (SOA). A Self-Organizing Sensor for a process variable with one or multiple input variables is disclosed. An artificial neural network (ANN) based dynamic modeling mechanism as part of the Self-Organizing Sensor is described. As a case example, a Self-Organizing Soft-Sensor for CFB Boiler Bed Height is presented. Also provided is a method to develop a Self-Organizing Sensor.

  17. Active Vibration Control of a Flexible Structure Using Piezoceramic Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Fei


    Full Text Available Considerable attention has been devoted recently to active vibration control using intelligent materials as actuators. This paper presents results on active control schemes for vibration suppression of flexible steel cantilever beam with bonded piezoelectric actuators. The PZT patches are surface bonded near the fixed end of flexible steel cantilever beam. The dynamic model of the flexible steel cantilever beam is derived. Active vibration control methods, strain rate feedback control (SRF, positive position feedback control (PPF are investigated and implemented using xPC Target real-time system. Experimental results demonstrate that the SRF control and PPF control achieve effective vibration suppression results of steel cantilever beam.

  18. Design of Piezoelectric PZT Cantilever for Actuator Application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abhay B. JOSHI


    Full Text Available Piezoelectric MEMS cantilever is used as a basic element in sensing and actuation. This paper proposes a structural design of MEMS cantilever for actuator application based on bulk MEMS micromachining technique. The structure consists of a silicon dioxide cantilever with an attached piezoelectric layer. The cantilever is designed using analytical modeling and simulation tool: CoventorWare2009. Analytical and simulation results demonstrate deflection of 5.9 µm/V and 2.9 µm/V respectively with a resonant frequency of 23 kHz. Obtained results are discussed and compared with the reported data.

  19. Nuclear Storage Overpack Door Actuator and Alignment Apparatus (United States)

    Andreyko, Gregory M.


    The invention is a door actuator and alignment apparatus for opening and closing the 15,000-pound horizontally sliding door of a storage overpack. The door actuator includes a ball screw mounted horizontally on a rigid frame including a pair of door panel support rails. An electrically powered ball nut moves along the ball screw. The ball nut rotating device is attached to a carriage. The carriage attachment to the sliding door is horizontally pivoting. Additional alignment features include precision cam followers attached to the rails and rail guides attached to the carriage.

  20. Design and development of multi-lane smart electromechanical actuators

    CERN Document Server

    Annaz, Fawaz Yahya


    Design and Development of Multi-Lane Smart Electromechanical Actuators presents the design of electromechanical actuators in two types of architectures, namely, Torque Summed Architecture (TSA) and Velocity Summed Architecture, (VSA). It examines them in: * Hardware redundancy, where the architecture is made up of 3 or 4 lanes. * Digital Math Model redundancy, where a more compact two lanes architectures will be presented. The book starts with the very basic concepts and introduces the design process logically so that an understanding of the smart multi-lane systems that drive an aileron

  1. Actuator prototype system by voice commands using free software

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaime Andrango


    Full Text Available This prototype system is a software application that through the use of techniques of digital signal processing, extracts information from the user's speech, which is then used to manage the on/off actuator on a peripheral computer when vowels are pronounced. The method applies spectral differences. The application uses the parallel port as actuator, with the information recorded in the memory address 378H. This prototype was developed using free software tools for its versatility and dynamism, and to allow other researchers to base on it for further studies.

  2. High-strain actuator materials based on dielectric elastomers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pelrine, R.; Kornbluh, R.; Kofod, G.


    Dielectric elastomers are a new class of actuator materials that exhibit excellent performance. The principle of operation, as well as methods to fabricate and test these elastomers, is summarized here. The Figure is a sketch of an elastomer film (light gray) stretched on a frame (black) and patt......Dielectric elastomers are a new class of actuator materials that exhibit excellent performance. The principle of operation, as well as methods to fabricate and test these elastomers, is summarized here. The Figure is a sketch of an elastomer film (light gray) stretched on a frame (black...

  3. An artificial flexible robot arm based on pneumatic muscle actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renn Jyh-Chyang


    Full Text Available The purpose of this paper is to develop a novel human-friendly artificial flexible robot arm using four parallel-connected pneumatic muscle actuators (PMAs. The PMA is a flexible silicone rubber actuator which has some behaviors nearest to the real biological muscle including translational and rotational motions. An inverse kinematic model for the motion control is also developed. Finally, from experiment results, it is proved that not only the axial contraction control of a single PMA but also the attitude control of the whole pneumatic flexible robot arm using PID controller are satisfactory.

  4. Bouncing mode electrostatically actuated scanning micromirror for video applications (United States)

    Krylov, Slava; Barnea, Daniel I.


    We present a design and operation concept of a scanning device based on an electrostatic torsional micromirror that is aimed to fulfil the requirements of motion linearity, high operational frequency and low actuation voltages imposed by laser display applications. The operational mode incorporates a contact event between the mirror and an elastic constraint followed by a bouncing and an inversion of motion. A triangular response signal is obtained by the application of an actuation voltage which is piecewise constant in time. The tuning of the resonant frequency through the control of the applied voltage permits the synchronization of the response of the microfabricated device with a video signal.

  5. Viscoelastic creep elimination in dielectric elastomer actuation by preprogrammed voltage (United States)

    Zhang, Junshi; Wang, Yanjie; McCoul, David; Pei, Qibing; Chen, Hualing


    Viscoelasticity causes a time-dependent deformation and lowers the response speed and energy conversion efficiency of VHB-based dielectric elastomers (DEs), thus seriously restricting a wide range of applications of this otherwise versatile soft smart material. The viscoelastic deformation of a prestretched VHB film in a circular actuator configuration is studied both theoretically and experimentally. By adjusting the applied voltage, viscoelastic creep can be dispelled and an invariable strain is obtained by simulation. Subsequently, an experiment was designed to validate the simulation and the results indicate that a constant strain can be achieved by preprogramming the applied actuation voltage.

  6. Optical pendulum generator based on photomechanical liquid-crystalline actuators. (United States)

    Tang, Rong; Liu, Ziyi; Xu, Dandan; Liu, Jian; Yu, Li; Yu, Haifeng


    For converting light energy into electricity, an optical pendulum generator was designed by combining photomechanical movement of liquid-crystalline actuator (LCA) with Faraday's law of electromagnetic induction. Bilayer cantilever actuators were first fabricated with LDPE and LCA. Their photomechanical movement drove the attached copper coils to cut magnetic line of force generating electricity. The output electricity was proportional to the changing rate of the magnetic flux, which was greatly influenced by light intensity, film thickness, and sample size. Continuous electrical output was also achieved. This simple strategy may expand applications of photoactive materials in the capture and storage of light energy.

  7. Investigating the Electromechanical Coupling in Piezoelectric Actuator Drive Motor Under Heavy Load

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zsurzsan, Tiberiu-Gabriel; Andersen, Michael A. E.; Zhang, Zhe


    The Piezoelectric Actuator Drive (PAD) is an accurate, high-torque rotary piezoelectric motor that employs piezoelectric stack actuators and inverse hypocycloidal motion to generate rotation. Important factors that determine motor performance are the proper concentric alignment between the motor...

  8. Integrated design and analysis of smart actuators for hybrid assistive knee bracese-fla (United States)

    Guo, H. T.; Liao, W. H.


    The objective of this paper is to develop smart actuators for knee braces as assistive devices for helping disabled people to recover their mobility. The actuator functions as motor, clutch, and brake. In the design, magnetorheological (MR) fluids are utilized to generate controllable torque. To decrease the size of the actuator, motor and MR fluids are integrated. MR fluids are filled inside the DC motor based actuator. Additional design factors of smart actuators including influence of permanent magnet on MR fluids and dynamic sealing are also considered. Finite element model of the smart actuator is built and analyzed. A prototype of the smart actuator with two different inner armatures is fabricated and their characteristics are investigated. Torques are compared between simulation and experiments. The results show that the developed smart actuator with multiple functions is promising for assistive knee braces.

  9. Giant linear voltage-induced deformation of a dielectric elastomer actuator (United States)

    Zhu, Jian; Kollosche, Matthias; Kofod, Guggi; Suo, Zhigang


    For dielectric elastomers, one of the most conspicuous attributes is large deformation of actuation induced by voltage. However, electromechanical instability may limit their deformation. In this seminar, I will illustrate how dielectric elastomers survive or eliminate electromechanical instability, through mechanical designs. For example, I will analyze a dielectric elastomer with a ``pure shear'' boundary condition. The membrane is first prestretched along the transverse direction, and then fixed by a rigid bar. As a result, the stretch in transverse direction is fixed, and the membrane can only be actuated along the vertical direction. The theory shows that the actuator can avert electromechanical instability, and achieve a giant linear deformation of actuation. The experiments confirm the theoretical predictions. For SEBS material, the linear strain of actuation can be 80%. For VHB material, the linear strain of actuation can be 300%. The actuator shows advantages compared to the classic designs (say, tube and circular actuators), and can be used as artificial muscles in soft robots.

  10. Effect of 1partial thickness actuation on stress concentration reduction near a hole (United States)

    Sensharma, P. K.; Kadivar, M. H.; Haftka, R. T.


    Recently, there has been much interest in adaptive structures that can respond to a varying environment by changing their properties. Piezoelectric materials and shape memory alloys (SMA) are often used as partial thickness actuators to create such adaptivity by applied energy, usually electric curent. These actuators can be used to inducce strains in a structure and reduce stresses in regions of high stress concentration. Two of the present authors show that axisymmetric actuation strains applied troughout the thickness of a plate with a hole can reduce the stress concentration factor (SCF) in an isotropic plate from 3 to 2. However, in most cases actuators are expected to be bonded to or embedded in the plate, so that the actuation strains are applied in the actuators and not directly in the plate. The objective of this note is to show that such partial-thickness actuation cannot be used to reduce the stress concentration factor with axisymmetric actuations strain distribution.

  11. Experimental Data Collection and Modeling for Nominal and Fault Conditions on Electro-Mechanical Actuators (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Being relatively new to the field, electromechanical actuators in aerospace applications lack the knowledge base compared to ones accumulated for the other actuator...

  12. Electrical actuation of electrically conducting and insulating droplets using ac and dc voltages (United States)

    Kumari, N.; Bahadur, V.; Garimella, S. V.


    Electrical actuation of liquid droplets at the microscale offers promising applications in the fields of microfluidics and lab-on-chip devices. Much prior research has targeted the electrical actuation of electrically conducting liquid droplets using dc voltages (classical electrowetting). Electrical actuation of conducting droplets using ac voltages and the actuation of insulating droplets (using dc or ac voltages) has remained relatively unexplored. This paper utilizes an energy-minimization-based analytical framework to study the electrical actuation of a liquid droplet (electrically conducting or insulating) under ac actuation. It is shown that the electromechanical regimes of classical electrowetting, electrowetting under ac actuation and insulating droplet actuation can be extracted from the generic electromechanical actuation framework, depending on the electrical properties of the droplet, the underlying dielectric layer and the frequency of the actuation voltage. This paper also presents experiments which quantify the influence of the ac frequency and the electrical properties of the droplet on its velocity under electrical actuation. The velocities of droplets moving between two parallel plates under ac actuation are experimentally measured; these velocities are then related to the actuation force on the droplet which is predicted by the electromechanical model developed in this work. It is seen that the droplet velocities are strongly dependent on the frequency of the ac actuation voltage; the cut-off ac frequency, above which the droplet fails to actuate, is experimentally determined and related to the electrical conductivity of the liquid. This paper then analyzes and directly compares the various electromechanical regimes for the actuation of droplets in microfluidic applications.

  13. Analysis of Dielectric Electro Active Polymer Actuator and its High Voltage Driving Circuits

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thummala, Prasanth; Huang, Lina; Zhang, Zhe


    Actuators based on dielectric elastomers have promising applications in artificial muscles, space robotics, mechatronics, micro-air vehicles, pneumatic and electric automation technology, heating valves, loud speakers, tissue engineering, surgical tools, wind turbine flaps, toys, rotary motors...... actuator is analyzed in detail and the actuator structures, for the wind turbine flap and the heating valve applications are shown. Different high voltage switch mode power supply topologies for driving the DEAP actuator are discussed. The simulation and experimental results are discussed....

  14. A Two-Degree of Freedom Variable Stiffness Actuator Based on the MACCEPA Concept


    Maarten Weckx; Glenn Mathijssen; Idris Si Mhand Benali; Raphaël Furnemont; Ronald Van Ham; Dirk Lefeber; Bram Vanderborght


    The current state-of-the-art of variable stiffness actuators consists mostly of different concepts for single-degree of freedom joints. However, in bio-inspired robotic applications, multiple degrees of freedom variable stiffness actuators are often desired. Currently, this is usually achieved by cascading single-degree of freedom actuators. The innovation presented in this work is a two-degree of freedom variable stiffness actuator using the mechanically adjustable and controllable equilibri...

  15. Macro Fiber Composite Actuated Unmanned Air Vehicles: Design, Development, and Testing


    Bilgen, Onur


    The design and implementation of a morphing unmanned aircraft using smart materials is presented. Articulated lifting surfaces and articulated wing sections actuated by servos are difficult to instrument and fabricate in a repeatable fashion on thin, composite-wing micro-air-vehicles. Assembly is complex and time consuming. A type of piezoceramic composite actuator commonly known as Macro Fiber Composite (MFC) is used for wing morphing. The actuation capability of this actuator on fiberglas...

  16. Fast-Response-Time Shape-Memory-Effect Foam Actuators (United States)

    Jardine, Peter


    Bulk shape memory alloys, such as Nitinol or CuAlZn, display strong recovery forces undergoing a phase transformation after being strained in their martensitic state. These recovery forces are used for actuation. As the phase transformation is thermally driven, the response time of the actuation can be slow, as the heat must be passively inserted or removed from the alloy. Shape memory alloy TiNi torque tubes have been investigated for at least 20 years and have demonstrated high actuation forces [3,000 in.-lb (approximately equal to 340 N-m) torques] and are very lightweight. However, they are not easy to attach to existing structures. Adhesives will fail in shear at low-torque loads and the TiNi is not weldable, so that mechanical crimp fits have been generally used. These are not reliable, especially in vibratory environments. The TiNi is also slow to heat up, as it can only be heated indirectly using heater and cooling must be done passively. This has restricted their use to on-off actuators where cycle times of approximately one minute is acceptable. Self-propagating high-temperature synthesis (SHS) has been used in the past to make porous TiNi metal foams. Shape Change Technologies has been able to train SHS derived TiNi to exhibit the shape memory effect. As it is an open-celled material, fast response times were observed when the material was heated using hot and cold fluids. A methodology was developed to make the open-celled porous TiNi foams as a tube with integrated hexagonal ends, which then becomes a torsional actuator with fast response times. Under processing developed independently, researchers were able to verify torques of 84 in.-lb (approximately equal to 9.5 Nm) using an actuator weighing 1.3 oz (approximately equal to 37 g) with very fast (less than 1/16th of a second) initial response times when hot and cold fluids were used to facilitate heat transfer. Integrated structural connections were added as part of the net shape process, eliminating

  17. Finite-Element Modelling of Piezoelectric Actuators: Linear and Nonlinear Analyses (United States)

    Steinkopff, T.

    Because of their excellent properties, piezoelectric actuators have became manifest in different applications like diesel injection, textile machines, and for nano-positioning. They are used in different designs: by means of linear actuators and bending actuators, forces up to several kilo Newtons and displacements up to several millimeters can be realised, respectively.

  18. Battery powered high output voltage bidirectional flyback converter for cylindrical DEAP actuator

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Huang, Lina; Thummala, Prasanth; Zhang, Zhe


    DEAP (Dielectric Electro Active Polymer) actuator is essentially a capacitive load and can be applied in various actuation occasions. However, high voltage is needed to actuate it. In this paper, a high voltage bidirectional flyback converter with low input voltage is presented. The fundamental...

  19. Switch-mode High Voltage Drivers for Dielectric Electro Active Polymer (DEAP) Incremental Actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thummala, Prasanth

    voltage DC-DC converters for driving the DEAP based incremental actuators. The DEAP incremental actuator technology has the potential to be used in various industries, e.g., automotive, space and medicine. The DEAP incremental actuator consists of three electrically isolated and mechanically connected...

  20. Variable stiffness actuators: A port-based analysis and a comparison of energy efficiency

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, L.C.; Carloni, Raffaella; Stramigioli, Stefano

    In this paper, a metric for comparing different designs of variable stiffness actuators is introduced. For the formulation of this metric, we focus on the energy efficiency of the actuators. In particular, we propose a metric that is a measure of how much energy is used by the actuator for changing

  1. Variable stiffness actuators : A port-based analysis and a comparison of energy efficiency

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, L. C.; Carloni, R.; Stramigioli, S.


    In this paper, a metric for comparing different designs of variable stiffness actuators is introduced. For the formulation of this metric, we focus on the energy efficiency of the actuators. In particular, we propose a metric that is a measure of how much energy is used by the actuator for changing

  2. Model and Design of a Power Driver for Piezoelectric Stack Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chiaberge M


    Full Text Available A power driver has been developed to control piezoelectric stack actuators used in automotive application. An FEM model of the actuator has been implemented starting from experimental characterization of the stack and mechanical and piezoelectric parameters. Experimental results are reported to show a correct piezoelectric actuator driving method and the possibility to obtain a sensorless positioning control.

  3. Variable stiffness actuators : A port-based power-flow analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Carloni, Raffaella; Visser, Ludo C.; Stramigioli, Stefano

    Variable stiffness actuators realize a novel class of actuators, which are capable of changing the apparent output stiffness independently of the output position. This is mechanically achieved by the internal introduction of a number of elastic elements and a number of actuated degrees of freedom

  4. Variable Stiffness Actuators: A Port-Based Power-Flow Analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Carloni, Raffaella; Visser, L.C.; Stramigioli, Stefano


    Variable stiffness actuators realize a novel class of actuators, which are capable of changing the apparent output stiffness independently of the output position. This is mechanically achieved by the internal introduction of a number of elastic elements and a number of actuated degrees of freedom

  5. Large adaptive deformable membrane mirror with high actuator density: design and first prototypes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hamelinck, R.; Rosielle, N.; Steinbuch, M.; Doelman, N.J.


    A large adaptive deformable mirror with high actuator density is presented. The DM consists of a thin continuous membrane which acts as the correcting element. A grid of low voltage electro-magnetical push-pull actuators, - located in an actuator plate -, impose out-of-plane displacements in the

  6. A Two-Degree of Freedom Variable Stiffness Actuator Based on the MACCEPA Concept

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maarten Weckx


    Full Text Available The current state-of-the-art of variable stiffness actuators consists mostly of different concepts for single-degree of freedom joints. However, in bio-inspired robotic applications, multiple degrees of freedom variable stiffness actuators are often desired. Currently, this is usually achieved by cascading single-degree of freedom actuators. The innovation presented in this work is a two-degree of freedom variable stiffness actuator using the mechanically adjustable and controllable equilibrium position actuator (MACCEPA concept. The presented actuator is not a cascade of two single-degree of freedom actuators, but centralizes the two degrees of freedom in one single joint. Equilibrium position and stiffness of the actuator are, furthermore, independently controllable in both degrees of freedom. The design and experimental validation of the actuator are discussed in this work. The independence of adjusting the equilibrium position and stiffness of the actuator are experimentally validated. The results show that the measured characteristics of the actuator sufficiently match the theoretically calculated ones. Future work includes implementing the presented two-degree of freedom actuator in an application, like a bipedal robot or a robotic arm.

  7. 78 FR 67206 - Qualification Tests for Safety-Related Actuators in Nuclear Power Plants (United States)


    ... COMMISSION Qualification Tests for Safety-Related Actuators in Nuclear Power Plants AGENCY: Nuclear...-Related Actuators in Nuclear Power Plants.'' This RG is being revised to provide applicants and licensees with the most current information on testing safety-related actuators in nuclear power plants. This RG...

  8. Improvement of manufacture technology and research of actuators based on ionic polymer-metal composites (United States)

    Khmelnitskiy, I. K.; Vereshagina, L. O.; Kalyonov, V. E.; Broyko, A. P.; Lagosh, A. V.; Luchinin, V. V.; Testov, D. O.


    The purpose of this work is to improve the operational characteristics of actuators based on ionic polymer-metal composites (IPMC) by improving their manufacture technology. The optimal thickness of the ion-exchange membrane was determined. The technology of metal electrode deposition, the composition of actuator electrolyte solution and the storage method of actuators were optimized.

  9. 30 CFR 75.1103-6 - Automatic fire sensors; actuation of fire suppression systems. (United States)


    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Automatic fire sensors; actuation of fire... Protection § 75.1103-6 Automatic fire sensors; actuation of fire suppression systems. Point-type heat sensors or automatic fire sensor and warning device systems may be used to actuate deluge-type water systems...

  10. Micromixer based on dielectric stack actuators for medical applications (United States)

    Solano-Arana, Susana; Klug, Florian; Mößinger, Holger; Förster-Zügel, Florentine; Schlaak, Helmut F.


    Based on a previously developed microperistaltic pump, a micromixer made out of dielectric elastomer stack actuators (DESA) is proposed. The micromixer will be able to mix two fluids at the microscale, pumping both fluids in and out of the device. The device consists of three chambers. In the first and second chambers, fluids A and B are hosted, while in the third chamber, fluids A and B are mixed. The fluid flow regime is laminar. The application of voltage leads to an increase of the size of a gap in the z-axis direction, due to the actuators area expansion. This makes a channel open through which the fluid flows. The frequency of the actuation of the different actuators allows an increase of the flow rate. The micromixer can be used for applications such as drug delivery and synthesis of nucleic acids, the proposed device will be made of Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) as dielectric and graphite powder as electrode material. PDMS is a biocompatible material, widely used in the prosthesis field. Mixing fluids at a microscale is also in need in the lab-on-achip technology for complex chemical reactions.

  11. Magnetic actuation for MEMS scanners for retinal scanning displays (United States)

    Yan, Jun; Luanava, Selso; Casasanta, Vincenzo


    We discuss magnetic actuation for Microvision"s bi-axial scanners for retinal scanning displays. Compared to the common side-magnet and moving-coil approach, we have designed, assembled and tested a novel magnet configuration, with magnets above and below the moving coil. This design reduces the magnet sizes significantly without sacrificing performance, and opens further improvement paths as well.

  12. Variable stiffness actuators: the user’s point of view

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grioli, Giorgio; Wolf, Sebastian; Garabini, Manolo; Catalano, Manuel; Burdet, Etienne; Caldwell, Darwin; Carloni, Raffaella; Friedl, Werner; Grebenstein, Markus; Laffranchi, Matteo; Lefeber, Dirk; Stramigioli, Stefano; Tsagarakis, Nikos; van Damme, Michael; Vanderborght, Bram; Albu-Shaeffer, Alin; Bicchi, Antonio

    Since their introduction in the early years of this century, variable stiffness actuators (VSA) witnessed a sustained growth of interest in the research community, as shown by the growing number of publications. While many consider VSA very interesting for applications, one of the factors hindering

  13. Autonomous Vehicle Coordination with Wireless Sensor and Actuator Networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marin Perianu, Mihai; Bosch, S.; Marin Perianu, Raluca; Scholten, Johan; Havinga, Paul J.M.


    A coordinated team of mobile wireless sensor and actuator nodes can bring numerous benefits for various applications in the field of cooperative surveillance, mapping unknown areas, disaster management, automated highway and space exploration. This article explores the idea of mobile nodes using

  14. On actuator disc force fields generating wake vorticity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Kuik, G.A.M.; Van Zuijlen, A.H.


    Actuator disc calculations can be divided in two categories: force models where, for a prescribed force field, the flow is calculated using a CFD method, and kinematic models, where the wake is calculated based on wake boundary conditions and the force field is known when the velocities are known.

  15. Three-dimensional plasma actuation for faster transition to turbulence (United States)

    Das Gupta, Arnob; Roy, Subrata


    We demonstrate that a 3D non-linear plasma actuation method creates secondary instabilities by forming lambda vortices for a spatially developing turbulent boundary layer flow over a flat plate. Both bypass transition and controlled transition processes are numerically investigated using wall resolved modal discontinuous Galerkin based implicit large eddy simulation. The largest momentum thickness based Reynolds numbers ≤ft( R{{e}θ } \\right) tested are 1250 and 1100 for the bypass transition and the controlled transition, respectively. The 3D actuation method is based on a square serpentine plasma actuator (Durscher and Roy 2012 J. Phys. D: Appl. Phys. 45 035202). The transition is achieved via oblique wave transition by perturbing the flow at a frequency of 1 kHz with amplitude of 10% of the freestream velocity. Although the flow is perturbed at a single frequency, the instabilities arising due to the nonlinear interaction between the consecutive lambda vortices, creates subharmonic lambda vortices (half of the fundamental frequency), which finally break down into fully turbulent flow. These interactions have been thoroughly studied and discussed. Since the actuation creates oblique wave transition it will allow faster transition compared to the standard secondary instability mechanism with similar disturbance amplitude reducing the amount of energy input required for flow control.

  16. Modeling Populations of Thermostatic Loads with Switching Rate Actuation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Totu, Luminita Cristiana; Wisniewski, Rafal; Leth, John-Josef


    We model thermostatic devices using a stochastic hybrid description, and introduce an external actuation mechanism that creates random switch events in the discrete dynamics. We then conjecture the form of the Fokker-Planck equation and successfully verify it numerically using Monte Carlo...

  17. Compliance analysis of an under-actuated robotic finger

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wassink, Martin; Carloni, Raffaella; Stramigioli, Stefano


    Under-actuated robotic hands have multiple applications fields, like prosthetics and service robots. They are interesting for their versatility, simple control and minimal component usage. However, when external forces are applied on the finger-tip, the mechanical structure of the finger might not

  18. Compliance Analysis of an Under-Actuated Robotic Finger

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wassink, M.; Carloni, Raffaella; Stramigioli, Stefano

    Under-actuated robotic hands have multiple applications fields, like prosthetics and service robots. They are interesting for their versatility, simple control and minimal component usage. However, when external forces are applied on the finger-tip, the mechanical structure of the finger might not

  19. Sensing and control of flow separation using plasma actuators. (United States)

    Corke, Thomas C; Bowles, Patrick O; He, Chuan; Matlis, Eric H


    Single dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuators have been used to control flow separation in a large number of applications. An often used configuration involves spanwise-oriented asymmetric electrodes that are arranged to induce a tangential wall jet in the mean flow direction. For the best effect, the plasma actuator is placed just upstream of where the flow separation will occur. This approach is generally more effective when the plasma actuator is periodically pulsed at a frequency that scales with the streamwise length of the separation zone and the free-stream velocity. The optimum frequency produces two coherent spanwise vortices within the separation zone. It has been recently shown that this periodic pulsing of the plasma actuator could be sensed by a surface pressure sensor only when the boundary layer was about to separate, and therefore could provide a flow separation indicator that could be used for feedback control. The paper demonstrates this approach on an aerofoil that is slowly increasing its angle of attack, and on a sinusoidally pitching aerofoil undergoing dynamic stall. Short-time spectral analysis of time series from a static pressure sensor on the aerofoil is used to determine the separation state that ranges from attached, to imminent separation, to fully separated. A feedback control approach is then proposed, and demonstrated on the aerofoil with the slow angle of attack motion.

  20. Vibration control of a flexible structure with electromagnetic actuators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gruzman, Maurício; Santos, Ilmar


    elements were used. Nonlinear equations for the actuator electromagnetic force, noise in the position sensor, time delays for the control signal update and voltage saturation were also considered in the model. For controlling purposes, a discrete linear quadratic regulator combined with a predictive full...