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Sample records for actuator influence functions

  1. Flexible system model reduction and control system design based upon actuator and sensor influence functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yam, Yeung; Johnson, Timothy L.; Lang, Jeffrey H.

    1987-01-01

    A model reduction technique based on aggregation with respect to sensor and actuator influence functions rather than modes is presented for large systems of coupled second-order differential equations. Perturbation expressions which can predict the effects of spillover on both the reduced-order plant model and the neglected plant model are derived. For the special case of collocated actuators and sensors, these expressions lead to the derivation of constraints on the controller gains that are, given the validity of the perturbation technique, sufficient to guarantee the stability of the closed-loop system. A case study demonstrates the derivation of stabilizing controllers based on the present technique. The use of control and observation synthesis in modifying the dimension of the reduced-order plant model is also discussed. A numerical example is provided for illustration.

  2. Large space structure model reduction and control system design based upon actuator and sensor influence functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yam, Y.; Lang, J. H.; Johnson, T. L.; Shih, S.; Staelin, D. H.

    1983-01-01

    A model reduction procedure based on aggregation with respect to sensor and actuator influences rather than modes is presented for large systems of coupled second-order differential equations. Perturbation expressions which can predict the effects of spillover on both the aggregated and residual states are derived. These expressions lead to the development of control system design constraints which are sufficient to guarantee, to within the validity of the perturbations, that the residual states are not destabilized by control systems designed from the reduced model. A numerical example is provided to illustrate the application of the aggregation and control system design method.

  3. The influence of eddy currents on magnetic actuator performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zmood, R. B.; Anand, D. K.; Kirk, J. A.

    1987-01-01

    The present investigation of the effects of eddy currents on EM actuators' transient performance notes that a transfer function representation encompassing a first-order model of the eddy current influence can be useful in control system analysis. The method can be extended to represent the higher-order effects of eddy currents for actuators that cannot be represented by semiinfinite planes.

  4. Polymeric blends for sensor and actuation dual functionality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    St. Clair, Terry L. (Inventor); Harrison, Joycelyn S. (Inventor); Su, Ji (Inventor); Ounaies, Zoubeida (Inventor)

    2004-01-01

    The invention described herein supplies a new class of electroactive polymeric blend materials which offer both sensing and actuation dual functionality. The blend comprises two components, one component having a sensing capability and the other component having an actuating capability. These components should be co-processable and coexisting in a phase separated blend system. Specifically, the materials are blends of a sensing component selected from the group consisting of ferroelectric, piezoelectric, pyroelectric and photoelectric polymers and an actuating component that responds to an electric field in terms of dimensional change. Said actuating component includes, but is not limited to, electrostrictive graft elastomers, dielectric electroactive elastomers, liquid crystal electroactive elastomers and field responsive polymeric gels. The sensor functionality and actuation functionality are designed by tailoring the relative fraction of the two components. The temperature dependence of the piezoelectric response and the mechanical toughness of the dual functional blends are also tailored by the composition adjustment.

  5. The Influence of Relative Humidity on Dielectric Barrier Discharge Plasma Flow Control Actuator Performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wicks, M.; Thomas, F. O.; Corke, T. C.; Patel, M.

    2012-11-01

    Dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) plasma actuators possess numerous advantages for flow control applications and have been the focus of several previous studies. Most work has been performed in relatively pristine laboratory settings. In actual flow control applications, however, it is essential to assess the impact of various environmental influences on actuator performance. As a first effort toward assessing a broad range of environmental effects on DBD actuator performance, the influence of relative humidity (RH) is considered. Actuator performance is quantified by force balance measurements of reactive thrust while RH is systematically varied via an ultrasonic humidifier. The DBD plasma actuator assembly, force balance, and ultrasonic humidifier are all contained inside a large, closed test chamber instrumented with RH and temperature sensors in order to accurately estimate the average RH at the actuator. Measurements of DBD actuator thrust as a function of RH for several different applied voltage regimes and dielectric materials and thicknesses are presented. Based on these results, several important design recommendations are made. This work was supported by Innovative Technology Applications Company (ITAC), LLC under a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II Contract No. N00014-11-C-0267 issued by the U.S. Department of the Navy.

  6. Competition between pressure effects and airflow influence for the performance of plasma actuators

    SciTech Connect

    Kriegseis, J.; Barckmann, K.; Grundmann, S.; Frey, J.; Tropea, C.

    2014-05-15

    The present work addresses the combined influence of pressure variations and different airflow velocities on the discharge intensity of plasma actuators. Power consumption, plasma length, and discharge capacitance were investigated systematically for varying pressure levels (p = 0.1–1 bar) and airflow velocities (U{sub ∞}=0−100 m/s) to characterize and quantify the favorable and adverse effects on the discharge intensity. In accordance with previous reports, an increasing plasma actuator discharge intensity is observed for decreasing pressure levels. At constant pressure levels, an adverse airflow influence on the electric actuator performance is demonstrated. Despite the improved discharge intensity at lower pressure levels, the seemingly improved performance of the plasma actuators is accompanied with a more pronounced drop of the relative performance. These findings demonstrate the dependency of the (kinematic and thermodynamic) environmental conditions on the electric performance of plasma actuators, which in turn affects the control authority of plasma actuators for flow control applications.

  7. Casimir and hydrodynamic force influence on microelectromechanical system actuation in ambient conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sedighi, Mehdi; Palasantzas, George

    2014-02-01

    Casimir and hydrodynamic dissipation forces can strongly influence the actuation of microelectromechanical systems in ambient conditions. The dissipative and stiction dynamics of an actuating system is shown to depend on surface physical processes related to fluid slip and the size of the actuating components. Using phase change materials the Casimir force magnitude can be modulated via amorphous-crystalline phase transitions. The dissipative motion between amorphous coated phase change material components can be changed towards stiction upon crystallization and suitable choice of restoring spring constants. By contrast, amorphization can augment switching from stiction to dissipative dynamics.

  8. High Response Twin-Objective Actuator with Radial Tilt Function for Blu-ray Disc Recorder

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Seok Jung; Heor, Tae Youn; Kim, Tae Kyung; Ahn, Young Man; Chung, Chong Sam; Park, Soo Han

    2005-05-01

    We have developed Blu-ray Disc (BD) optical pick-up with a twin-objective lens actuator which is compatible with compact disc (CD) and digital versatile disc (DVD) in the high-speed BD-read only memory (ROM) and BD Recorder. In order to readout CD and DVD in BD Recorder, we adopted twin-objective lens actuator in consideration of optical utilization efficiency, optical performance and insurance of sufficient working distance (WD). This twin-objective lens actuator has two objectives in radial direction, one is for CD/DVD and the other is for BD. Through our careful investigation in design process, this actuator has extremely high AC sensitivities and good 2nd resonance characteristics in consideration of twin-objective actuator. Also, this actuator has linearity in wide focus range, that is to say, more than ± 1.0 mm and has radial tilt function which is tilt range more than 7 deg.

  9. Sensitivity of micromechanical actuation on amorphous to crystalline phase transformations under the influence of Casimir forces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sedighi, M.; Broer, W. H.; Palasantzas, G.; Kooi, B. J.

    2013-10-01

    Amorphous to crystalline phase transitions in phase change materials (PCM) can have strong influence on the actuation of microelectromechanical systems under the influence of Casimir forces. Indeed, the bifurcation curves of the stationary equilibrium points and the corresponding phase portraits of the actuation dynamics between gold and AIST (Ag5In5Sb60Te30) PCM, where an increase of the Casimir force of up ˜25% has been measured upon crystallization, show strong sensitivity to changes of the Casimir force as the stiffness of the actuating component decreases and/or the effective interaction area of the Casimir force increases, which can also lead to stiction. However, introduction of intrinsic energy dissipation (associated with a finite quality factor of the actuating system) can prevent stiction by driving the system to attenuated motion towards stable equilibrium depending on the PCM state and the system quality factor.

  10. Influence of low optical frequencies on actuation dynamics of microelectromechanical systems via Casimir forces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sedighi, Mehdi; Palasantzas, George

    2015-04-01

    The role of the Casimir force on the analysis of microactuators is strongly influenced by the optical properties of interacting materials. Bifurcation and phase portrait analysis were used to compare the sensitivity of actuators when the optical properties at low optical frequencies were modeled using the Drude and Plasma models. Indeed, for metallic systems, which have strong Casimir attraction, the details of the modeling of the low optical frequency regime can be dramatic, leading to predictions of either stable motion or stiction instability. However, this difference is strongly minimized for weakly conductive systems as are the doped insulators making actuation modeling more certain to predict.

  11. How the type of input function affects the dynamic response of conducting polymer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiang, Xingcan; Alici, Gursel; Mutlu, Rahim; Li, Weihua

    2014-10-01

    There has been a growing interest in smart actuators typified by conducting polymer actuators, especially in their (i) fabrication, modeling and control with minimum external data and (ii) applications in bio-inspired devices, robotics and mechatronics. Their control is a challenging research problem due to the complex and nonlinear properties of these actuators, which cannot be predicted accurately. Based on an input-shaping technique, we propose a new method to improve the conducting polymer actuators’ command-following ability, while minimizing their electric power consumption. We applied four input functions with smooth characteristics to a trilayer conducting polymer actuator to experimentally evaluate its command-following ability under an open-loop control strategy and a simulated feedback control strategy, and, more importantly, to quantify how the type of input function affects the dynamic response of this class of actuators. We have found that the four smooth inputs consume less electrical power than sharp inputs such as a step input with discontinuous higher-order derivatives. We also obtained an improved transient response performance from the smooth inputs, especially under the simulated feedback control strategy, which we have proposed previously [X Xiang, R Mutlu, G Alici, and W Li, 2014 “Control of conducting polymer actuators without physical feedback: simulated feedback control approach with particle swarm optimization’, Journal of Smart Materials and Structure, 23]. The idea of using a smooth input command, which results in lower power consumption and better control performance, can be extended to other smart actuators. Consuming less electrical energy or power will have a direct effect on enhancing the operational life of these actuators.

  12. Influence of materials' optical response on actuation dynamics by Casimir forces.

    PubMed

    Sedighi, M; Broer, W H; Van der Veeke, S; Svetovoy, V B; Palasantzas, G

    2015-06-01

    The dependence of the Casimir force on the frequency-dependent dielectric functions of interacting materials makes it possible to tailor the actuation dynamics of microactuators. The Casimir force is largest for metallic interacting systems due to the high absorption of conduction electrons in the far-infrared range. For less conductive systems, such as phase change materials or conductive silicon carbide, the reduced force offers the advantage of increased stable operation of MEMS devices against pull-in instabilities that lead to unwanted stiction. Bifurcation analysis with phase portraits has been used to compare the sensitivity of a model actuator when the optical properties are altered.

  13. Influence of materials' optical response on actuation dynamics by Casimir forces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sedighi, M.; Broer, W. H.; Van der Veeke, S.; Svetovoy, V. B.; Palasantzas, G.

    2015-06-01

    The dependence of the Casimir force on the frequency-dependent dielectric functions of interacting materials makes it possible to tailor the actuation dynamics of microactuators. The Casimir force is largest for metallic interacting systems due to the high absorption of conduction electrons in the far-infrared range. For less conductive systems, such as phase change materials or conductive silicon carbide, the reduced force offers the advantage of increased stable operation of MEMS devices against pull-in instabilities that lead to unwanted stiction. Bifurcation analysis with phase portraits has been used to compare the sensitivity of a model actuator when the optical properties are altered.

  14. Influence of plasticizer content on the transition of electromechanical behavior of PVC gel actuator.

    PubMed

    Ali, Mohammad; Ueki, Takamitsu; Tsurumi, Daijiro; Hirai, Toshihiro

    2011-06-21

    The actuation performance of plasticized poly(vinyl chloride) (PVC) gel actuators in an electric field depends on their chemical composition and electrical and mechanical properties. The influence of plasticizer (dibutyl adipate) content on electromechanical behavior of PVC gels was investigated by impedance spectroscopy and space charge measurement. By plasticizing the PVC, the dielectric constant and space charge density of PVC gel were drastically increased at 1:2 w/w ratio of PVC to plasticizer. To apply the results obtained from the impedance spectroscopy and space charge measurement, electrostatic adhesive forces generated between the PVC gel and the anode were measured. The electrostatic adhesive force at the anode was also dramatically increased at the same plasticizer content. All of the results indicated a transition of electromechanical behavior of PVC gel in the electric field, which was considered to originate from the orientation of polarized plasticizer molecules and dipole rotation of PVC chains. By using the electrostatic adhesive force of PVC gel derived from the electromechanical transition, a new electroactive actuator can be developed for novel applications.

  15. Airflow influence on the discharge performance of dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuators

    SciTech Connect

    Kriegseis, J.; Tropea, C.; Grundmann, S.

    2012-07-15

    In the present work, the effect of the airflow on the performance of dielectric barrier discharge plasma-actuators is investigated experimentally. In order to analyze the actuator's performance, luminosity measurements have been carried out simultaneously with the recording of the relevant electrical parameters. A performance drop of about 10% is observed for the entire measured parameter range at a flow speed of M = 0.145 (U{sub {infinity}}=50 m/s). This insight is of particular importance, since the plasma-actuator control authority is already significantly reduced at this modest speed level. The results at higher Mach numbers (0.4influence. It is demonstrated that these numbers span a universal performance drop diagram for the entire range of investigated operating parameters.

  16. A new biarticular actuator design facilitates control of leg function in BioBiped3.

    PubMed

    Sharbafi, Maziar Ahmad; Rode, Christian; Kurowski, Stefan; Scholz, Dorian; Möckel, Rico; Radkhah, Katayon; Zhao, Guoping; Rashty, Aida Mohammadinejad; Stryk, Oskar von; Seyfarth, Andre

    2016-01-01

    Bioinspired legged locomotion comprises different aspects, such as (i) benefiting from reduced complexity control approaches as observed in humans/animals, (ii) combining embodiment with the controllers and (iii) reflecting neural control mechanisms. One of the most important lessons learned from nature is the significant role of compliance in simplifying control, enhancing energy efficiency and robustness against perturbations for legged locomotion. In this research, we investigate how body morphology in combination with actuator design may facilitate motor control of leg function. Inspired by the human leg muscular system, we show that biarticular muscles have a key role in balancing the upper body, joint coordination and swing leg control. Appropriate adjustment of biarticular spring rest length and stiffness can simplify the control and also reduce energy consumption. In order to test these findings, the BioBiped3 robot was developed as a new version of BioBiped series of biologically inspired, compliant musculoskeletal robots. In this robot, three-segmented legs actuated by mono- and biarticular series elastic actuators mimic the nine major human leg muscle groups. With the new biarticular actuators in BioBiped3, novel simplified control concepts for postural balance and for joint coordination in rebounding movements (drop jumps) were demonstrated and approved. PMID:27367459

  17. Influence functions of a thin shallow meniscus-shaped mirror.

    PubMed

    Arnold, L

    1997-04-01

    Thin shallow spherical shell theory is used to derive the general influence function, owing to uniform and/or discrete (actuators) loads, for a thin shallow meniscus-shaped mirror of uniform thickness with a central hole and supported at discrete points. Small elastic deformations are considered. No symmetry on the load distribution constrains the model. Explicit analytical expressions of the set of equations are given for calculating the influence functions. Results agree with the finite element analysis (FEA) to within 1%. When the FEA requires megabytes of RAM memory, the analytical method needs only kilobytes and typically runs 30 times faster. This is a crucial advantage for the iterative optimization of mirror supports such as large passive or active meniscus-shaped primary mirror supports or Cassegrain/Gregorian adaptive secondary actuator configurations. References are given on estimating the shear effects (thick mirror), the thickness variation effect, and the influence of the size of the support pads. PMID:18253168

  18. Influence functions of a thin shallow meniscus-shaped mirror.

    PubMed

    Arnold, L

    1997-04-01

    Thin shallow spherical shell theory is used to derive the general influence function, owing to uniform and/or discrete (actuators) loads, for a thin shallow meniscus-shaped mirror of uniform thickness with a central hole and supported at discrete points. Small elastic deformations are considered. No symmetry on the load distribution constrains the model. Explicit analytical expressions of the set of equations are given for calculating the influence functions. Results agree with the finite element analysis (FEA) to within 1%. When the FEA requires megabytes of RAM memory, the analytical method needs only kilobytes and typically runs 30 times faster. This is a crucial advantage for the iterative optimization of mirror supports such as large passive or active meniscus-shaped primary mirror supports or Cassegrain/Gregorian adaptive secondary actuator configurations. References are given on estimating the shear effects (thick mirror), the thickness variation effect, and the influence of the size of the support pads.

  19. Mechanically robust, rapidly actuating, and biologically functionalized macroporous poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)/silk hybrid hydrogels.

    PubMed

    Gil, Eun Seok; Park, Sang-Hyug; Tien, Lee W; Trimmer, Barry; Hudson, Samuel M; Kaplan, David L

    2010-10-01

    A route toward mechanically robust, rapidly actuating, and biologically functionalized polymeric actuators using macroporous soft materials is described. The materials were prepared by combining silk protein and a synthetic polymer (poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIAPPm)) to form interpenetrating network materials and macroporous structures by freeze-drying, with hundreds of micrometer diameter pores and exploiting the features of both polymers related to dynamic materials and structures. The chemically cross-linked PNIPAAm networks provided stimuli-responsive features, while the silk interpenetrating network formed by inducing protein β-sheet crystallinity in situ for physical cross-links provided material robustness, improved expansion force, and enzymatic degradability. The macroporous hybrid hydrogels showed enhanced thermal-responsive properties in comparison to pure PNIPAAm hydrogels, nonporous silk/PNIPAAm hybrid hydrogels, and previously reported macroporous PNIPAAm hydrogels. These new systems reach near equilibrium sizes in shrunken/swollen states in less than 1 min, with the structural features providing improved actuation rates and stable oscillatory properties due to the macroporous transport and the mechanically robust silk network. Confocal images of the hydrated hydrogels around the lower critical solution temperature (LCST) revealed macropores that could be used to track changes in the real time morphology upon thermal stimulus. The material system transformed from a macroporous to a nonporous structure upon enzymatic degradation. To extend the utility of the system, an affinity platform for a switchable or tunable system was developed by immobilizing biotin and avidin on the macropore surfaces.

  20. On the shear stress distribution between a functionally graded piezoelectric actuator and an elastic substrate and the reduction of its concentration.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jiashi; Jin, Zhihe; Li, Jiangyu

    2008-11-01

    Recent advances in material processing technologies allow the production of piezoelectric materials with functionally graded material properties. We investigate the implications of functionally graded piezoelectric materials when used as actuators for structural control by examining the distribution of the actuating shear stress under a piezoelectric actuator of a functionally graded material (FGM) on an isotropic elastic half-space. It is shown that FGM materials can be used to adjust the shear stress distribution. In particular, the concentration near the edges of a conventional homogeneous piezoelectric actuator can be significantly reduced in an FGM actuator.

  1. Influence of air pressure on the performance of plasma synthetic jet actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yang; Jia, Min; Wu, Yun; Li, Ying-hong; Zong, Hao-hua; Song, Hui-min; Liang, Hua

    2016-09-01

    Plasma synthetic jet actuator (PSJA) has a wide application prospect in the high-speed flow control field for its high jet velocity. In this paper, the influence of the air pressure on the performance of a two-electrode PSJA is investigated by the schlieren method in a large range from 7 kPa to 100 kPa. The energy consumed by the PSJA is roughly the same for all the pressure levels. Traces of the precursor shock wave velocity and the jet front velocity vary a lot for different pressures. The precursor shock wave velocity first decreases gradually and then remains at 345 m/s as the air pressure increases. The peak jet front velocity always appears at the first appearance of a jet, and it decreases gradually with the increase of the air pressure. A maximum precursor shock wave velocity of 520 m/s and a maximum jet front velocity of 440 m/s are observed at the pressure of 7 kPa. The averaged jet velocity in one period ranges from 44 m/s to 54 m/s for all air pressures, and it drops with the rising of the air pressure. High velocities of the precursor shock wave and the jet front indicate that this type of PSJA can still be used to influence the high-speed flow field at 7 kPa. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 51407197, 51522606, 51336011, 91541120, and 11472306).

  2. Influence of geometrical parameters on performance of plasma synthetic jet actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zong, Hao-hua; Wu, Yun; Jia, Min; Song, Hui-min; Liang, Hua; Li, Ying-hong; Zhang, Zhi-bo

    2016-01-01

    Plasma synthetic jet actuator (PSJA) has shown wide and promising application prospects in a high speed flow control field, due to its rapid response, high exhaust velocity, and non-moving components. In this paper, the total pressure profile of a plasma synthetic jet (PSJ) is measured and a new method is developed to evaluate the pulsed thrust of the PSJA. The influence of geometrical parameters including the electrode distance, the orifice diameter, and the throat length on PSJA performance is analyzed based on the pulsed thrust, the discharge characteristics, and the schlieren images. When varying the electrode distance, the dominant factor determining the jet intensity is the heating volume instead of the discharge energy. For the arc discharge, the electrode distance should be extended to increase both the jet velocity and the jet duration time. The design of the orifice diameter should be based on the controlled flow field. A large orifice diameter produces a strong perturbation with short time duration, while a small orifice diameter induces a lasting jet with low mass flux. In order to obtain better high frequency performance, the throat length should be shortened on the condition that the structural strength of the PSJA is maintained, while there is almost no influence of the throat length on the single cycle performance of the PSJA. Once the discharge energy is fixed, the pulsed thrust remains almost unchanged with different orifice diameters and throat lengths. These three geometrical parameters are independent to some extent and can be optimized separately.

  3. Influence of flow rate on aerosol particle size distributions from pressurized and breath-actuated inhalers.

    PubMed

    Smith, K J; Chan, H K; Brown, K F

    1998-01-01

    Particle size distribution of delivered aerosols and the total mass of drug delivered from the inhaler are important determinants of pulmonary deposition and response to inhalation therapy. Inhalation flow rate may vary between patients and from dose to dose. The Andersen Sampler (AS) cascade impactor operated at flow rates of 30 and 55 L/min and the Marple-Miller Impactor (MMI) operated at flow rates of 30, 55, and 80 L/min were used in this study to investigate the influence of airflow rate on the particle size distributions of inhalation products. Total mass of drug delivered from the inhaler, fine particle mass, fine particle fraction, percentage of nonrespirable particles, and amount of formulation retained within the inhaler were determined by ultraviolet spectrophotometry for several commercial bronchodilator products purchased in the marketplace, including a pressurized metered-dose inhaler (pMDI), breath-actuated pressurized inhaler (BAMDI), and three dry powder inhalers (DPIs), two containing salbutamol sulphate and the other containing terbutaline sulphate. Varying the flow rate through the cascade impactor produced no significant change in performance of the pressurized inhalers. Increasing the flow rate produced a greater mass of drug delivered and an increase in respirable particle mass and fraction from all DPIs tested. PMID:10346666

  4. Influence of Segmentation of Ring-Shaped NdFeB Magnets with Parallel Magnetization on Cylindrical Actuators

    PubMed Central

    Eckert, Paulo Roberto; Goltz, Evandro Claiton; Filho, Aly Ferreira Flores

    2014-01-01

    This work analyses the effects of segmentation followed by parallel magnetization of ring-shaped NdFeB permanent magnets used in slotless cylindrical linear actuators. The main purpose of the work is to evaluate the effects of that segmentation on the performance of the actuator and to present a general overview of the influence of parallel magnetization by varying the number of segments and comparing the results with ideal radially magnetized rings. The analysis is first performed by modelling mathematically the radial and circumferential components of magnetization for both radial and parallel magnetizations, followed by an analysis carried out by means of the 3D finite element method. Results obtained from the models are validated by measuring radial and tangential components of magnetic flux distribution in the air gap on a prototype which employs magnet rings with eight segments each with parallel magnetization. The axial force produced by the actuator was also measured and compared with the results obtained from numerical models. Although this analysis focused on a specific topology of cylindrical actuator, the observed effects on the topology could be extended to others in which surface-mounted permanent magnets are employed, including rotating electrical machines. PMID:25051032

  5. Influence of segmentation of ring-shaped NdFeB magnets with parallel magnetization on cylindrical actuators.

    PubMed

    Eckert, Paulo Roberto; Goltz, Evandro Claiton; Flores Filho, Aly Ferreira

    2014-07-21

    This work analyses the effects of segmentation followed by parallel magnetization of ring-shaped NdFeB permanent magnets used in slotless cylindrical linear actuators. The main purpose of the work is to evaluate the effects of that segmentation on the performance of the actuator and to present a general overview of the influence of parallel magnetization by varying the number of segments and comparing the results with ideal radially magnetized rings. The analysis is first performed by modelling mathematically the radial and circumferential components of magnetization for both radial and parallel magnetizations, followed by an analysis carried out by means of the 3D finite element method. Results obtained from the models are validated by measuring radial and tangential components of magnetic flux distribution in the air gap on a prototype which employs magnet rings with eight segments each with parallel magnetization. The axial force produced by the actuator was also measured and compared with the results obtained from numerical models. Although this analysis focused on a specific topology of cylindrical actuator, the observed effects on the topology could be extended to others in which surface-mounted permanent magnets are employed, including rotating electrical machines.

  6. Development of Cell Culture Microdevice Integrated with Piezoelectric Thin Film Actuator for On-Chip Regulation of Cell Functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawashima, Takahiro; Yamada, Yuhei; Matsuzawa, Yuuta; Nagai, Moeto; Shibata, Takayuki; Masuzawa, Toru; Kimura, Tsuyoshi; Kishida, Akio

    2012-10-01

    To develop a cell culture microdevice integrated with piezoelectric thin film actuators for on-chip cell function regulation, we investigated various fabrication processes including the formation of a lead zirconate titanate (PZT) thin film using a sol-gel method as a piezoelectric thin film actuator and PZT thin film patterning. According to our proposed batch fabrication process, a prototype cell culture microdevice with 16 microchambers and PZT actuators was successfully fabricated on a 20 ×20 mm2 Si substrate. Moreover, we used the fabricated prototype device to investigate the effects of applied voltage and frequency on diaphragm displacement. The device sufficiently delivered mechanical vibratory stimuli to cells in culture solution. Moreover, in a feasibility study using living cells, we observed that mechanical vibratory stimulation affected cell adhesion.

  7. Investigation of static and dynamic behavior of functionally graded piezoelectric actuated Poly-Si micro cantilever probe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pandey, Vibhuti Bhushan; Parashar, Sandeep Kumar

    2016-04-01

    In the present paper a novel functionally graded piezoelectric (FGP) actuated Poly-Si micro cantilever probe is proposed for atomic force microscope. The shear piezoelectric coefficient d15 has much higher value than coupling coefficients d31 and d33, hence in the present work the micro cantilever beam actuated by d15 effect is utilized. The material properties are graded in the thickness direction of actuator by a simple power law. A three dimensional finite element analysis has been performed using COMSOL Multiphysics® (version 4.2) software. Tip deflection and free vibration analysis for the micro cantilever probe has been done. The results presented in the paper shall be useful in the design of micro cantilever probe and their subsequent utilization in atomic force microscopes.

  8. An Electroactive, Tunable, and Frequency Selective Surface Utilizing Highly Stretchable Dielectric Elastomer Actuators Based on Functionally Antagonistic Aperture Control.

    PubMed

    Choi, Jun-Ho; Ahn, Jaeho; Kim, Jin-Bong; Kim, Young-Cheol; Lee, Jung-Yong; Oh, Il-Kwon

    2016-04-13

    An active, frequency selective surface utilizing a silver-nanowire-coated dielectric elastomer with a butterfly-shaped aperture pattern is realized by properly exploiting the electroactive control of two antagonistic functions (stretching vs compression) on a patterned dielectric elastomer actuator. PMID:26864249

  9. Integrated design and analysis of smart actuators for hybrid assistive knee bracese-fla

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, H. T.; Liao, W. H.

    2009-03-01

    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.

  10. Nonlinear analysis of thermally and electrically actuated functionally graded material microbeam.

    PubMed

    Li, Yingli; Meguid, S A; Fu, Yiming; Xu, Daolin

    2014-02-01

    In this paper, we provide a unified and self-consistent treatment of a functionally graded material (FGM) microbeam with varying thermal conductivity subjected to non-uniform or uniform temperature field. Specifically, it is our objective to determine the effect of the microscopic size of the beam, the electrostatic gap, the temperature field and material property on the pull-in voltage of the microbeam under different boundary conditions. The non-uniform temperature field is obtained by integrating the steady-state heat conduction equation. The governing equations account for the microbeam size by introducing an internal material length-scale parameter that is based on the modified couple stress theory. Furthermore, it takes into account Casimir and van der Waals forces, and the associated electrostatic force with the first-order fringing field effects. The resulting nonlinear differential equations were converted to a coupled system of algebraic equations using the differential quadrature method. The outcome of our work shows the dramatic effect and dependence of the pull-in voltage of the FGM microbeam upon the temperature field, its gradient for a given boundary condition. Specifically, both uniform and non-uniform thermal loading can actuate the FGM microbeam even without an applied voltage. Our work also reveals that the non-uniform temperature field is more effective than the uniform temperature field in actuating a FGM cantilever-type microbeam. For the clamped-clamped case, care must be taken to account for the effective use of thermal loading in the design of microbeams. It is also observed that uniform thermal loading will lead to a reduction in the pull-in voltage of a FGM microbeam for all the three boundary conditions considered.

  11. Energy deposition characteristics of nanosecond dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuators: Influence of dielectric material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Correale, G.; Winkel, R.; Kotsonis, M.

    2015-08-01

    An experimental study aimed at the characterization of energy deposition of nanosecond Dielectric Barrier Discharge (ns-DBD) plasma actuators was carried out. Special attention was given on the effect of the thickness and material used for dielectric barrier. The selected materials for this study were polyimide film (Kapton), polyamide based nylon (PA2200), and silicone rubber. Schlieren measurements were carried out in quiescent air conditions in order to observe density gradients induced by energy deposited. Size of heated area was used to qualify the energy deposition coupled with electrical power measurements performed using the back-current shunt technique. Additionally, light intensity measurements showed a different nature of discharge based upon the material used for barrier, for a fixed thickness and frequency of discharge. Finally, a characterisation study was performed for the three tested materials. Dielectric constant, volume resistivity, and thermal conductivity were measured. Strong trends between the control parameters and the energy deposited into the fluid during the discharge were observed. Results indicate that efficiency of energy deposition mechanism relative to the thickness of the barrier strongly depends upon the material used for the dielectric barrier itself. In general, a high dielectric strength and a low volumetric resistivity are preferred for a barrier, together with a high heat capacitance and a low thermal conductivity coefficient in order to maximize the efficiency of the thermal energy deposition induced by an ns-DBD plasma actuator.

  12. Biomimetic actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouda, Vaclav; Boudova, Lea; Haluzikova, Denisa

    2005-05-01

    The aim of the presentation is to propose an alternative model of mammalian skeletal muscle function, which reflects the simplicity of nature and can be applied in engineering. Van der Waals attractive and repulsive electrostatic forces are assumed to control the design of internal structures and functions of contractile units of the muscles - sarcomere. The role of myosin heads is crucial for the higher order formation. The model of the myosin head lattice is the working model for the sarcomere contraction interpretation. The contraction is interpreted as a calcium induced phase transition of the lattice, which results in relative actin-myosin sliding and/or force generation. The model should provide the engineering science with a simple analogy to technical actuators of high performance.

  13. Large aperture deformable mirror with a transferred single-crystal silicon membrane actuated using large-stroke PZT Unimorph Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hishinumat, Yoshikazu; Yang, Eui - Hyeok (EH)

    2005-01-01

    We have demonstrated a large aperture (50 mm x 50 mm) continuous membrane deformable mirror (DM) with a large-stroke piezoelectric unimorph actuator array. The DM consists of a continuous, large aperture, silicon membrane 'transferred' in its entirety onto a 20 x 20 piezoelectric unimorph actuator array. A PZT unimorph actuator, 2.5 mm in diameter with optimized PZT/Si thickness and design showed a deflection of 5.7 [m at 20V. An assembled DM showed an operating frequency bandwidth of 30 kHz and influence function of approximately 30%.

  14. Inertial Linear Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Laughlin, Darren

    1995-01-01

    Inertial linear actuators developed to suppress residual accelerations of nominally stationary or steadily moving platforms. Function like long-stroke version of voice coil in conventional loudspeaker, with superimposed linear variable-differential transformer. Basic concept also applicable to suppression of vibrations of terrestrial platforms. For example, laboratory table equipped with such actuators plus suitable vibration sensors and control circuits made to vibrate much less in presence of seismic, vehicular, and other environmental vibrational disturbances.

  15. Linear Proof Mass Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holloway, Sidney E., III

    1994-01-01

    This paper describes the mechanical design, analysis, fabrication, testing, and lessons learned by developing a uniquely designed spaceflight-like actuator. The linear proof mass actuator (LPMA) was designed to attach to both a large space structure and a ground test model without modification. Previous designs lacked the power to perform in a terrestrial environment while other designs failed to produce the desired accelerations or frequency range for spaceflight applications. Thus, the design for a unique actuator was conceived and developed at NASA Langley Research Center. The basic design consists of four large mechanical parts (mass, upper housing, lower housing, and center support) and numerous smaller supporting components including an accelerometer, encoder, and four drive motors. Fabrication personnel were included early in the design phase of the LPMA as part of an integrated manufacturing process to alleviate potential difficulties in machining an already challenging design. Operating testing of the LPMA demonstrated that the actuator is capable of various types of load functions.

  16. Linear Proof Mass Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holloway, S. E., III

    1995-01-01

    This paper describes the mechanical design, analysis, fabrication, testing, and lessons learned by developing a uniquely designed spaceflight-like actuator. The Linear Proof Mass Actuator (LPMA) was designed to attach to both a large space structure and a ground test model without modification. Previous designs lacked the power to perform in a terrestrial environment while other designs failed to produce the desired accelerations or frequency range for spaceflight applications. Thus, the design for a unique actuator was conceived and developed at NASA Langley Research Center. The basic design consists of four large mechanical parts (Mass, Upper Housing, Lower Housing, and Center Support) and numerous smaller supporting components including an accelerometer, encoder, and four drive motors. Fabrication personnel were included early in the design phase of the LPMA as part of an integrated manufacturing process to alleviate potential difficulties in machining an already challenging design. Operational testing of the LPMA demonstrated that the actuator is capable of various types of load functions.

  17. Fault-tolerant rotary actuator

    DOEpatents

    Tesar, Delbert

    2006-10-17

    A fault-tolerant actuator module, in a single containment shell, containing two actuator subsystems that are either asymmetrically or symmetrically laid out is provided. Fault tolerance in the actuators of the present invention is achieved by the employment of dual sets of equal resources. Dual resources are integrated into single modules, with each having the external appearance and functionality of a single set of resources.

  18. Actuation of polypyrrole nanowires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Alexander S.; Peteu, Serban F.; Ly, James V.; Requicha, Aristides A. G.; Thompson, Mark E.; Zhou, Chongwu

    2008-04-01

    Nanoscale actuators are essential components of the NEMS (nanoelectromechanical systems) and nanorobots of the future, and are expected to become a major area of development within nanotechnology. This paper demonstrates for the first time that individual polypyrrole (PPy) nanowires with diameters under 100 nm exhibit actuation behavior, and therefore can potentially be used for constructing nanoscale actuators. PPy is an electroactive polymer which can change volume on the basis of its oxidation state. PPy-based macroscale and microscale actuators have been demonstrated, but their nanoscale counterparts have not been realized until now. The research reported here answers positively the fundamental question of whether PPy wires still exhibit useful volume changes at the nanoscale. Nanowires with a 50 nm diameter and a length of approximately 6 µm, are fabricated by chemical polymerization using track-etched polycarbonate membranes as templates. Their actuation response as a function of oxidation state is investigated by electrochemical AFM (atomic force microscopy). An estimate of the minimum actuation force is made, based on the displacement of the AFM cantilever.

  19. Actuation of polypyrrole nanowires.

    PubMed

    Lee, Alexander S; Peteu, Serban F; Ly, James V; Requicha, Aristides A G; Thompson, Mark E; Zhou, Chongwu

    2008-04-23

    Nanoscale actuators are essential components of the NEMS (nanoelectromechanical systems) and nanorobots of the future, and are expected to become a major area of development within nanotechnology. This paper demonstrates for the first time that individual polypyrrole (PPy) nanowires with diameters under 100 nm exhibit actuation behavior, and therefore can potentially be used for constructing nanoscale actuators. PPy is an electroactive polymer which can change volume on the basis of its oxidation state. PPy-based macroscale and microscale actuators have been demonstrated, but their nanoscale counterparts have not been realized until now. The research reported here answers positively the fundamental question of whether PPy wires still exhibit useful volume changes at the nanoscale. Nanowires with a 50 nm diameter and a length of approximately 6 µm, are fabricated by chemical polymerization using track-etched polycarbonate membranes as templates. Their actuation response as a function of oxidation state is investigated by electrochemical AFM (atomic force microscopy). An estimate of the minimum actuation force is made, based on the displacement of the AFM cantilever.

  20. Smart composite material system with sensor, actuator, and processor functions: a model of holding and releasing a ball

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oishi, Ryutaro; Yoshida, Hitoshi; Nagai, Hideki; Xu, Ya; Jang, Byung-Koog

    2002-07-01

    A smart composite material system which has three smart functions of sensor, actuator and processor has been developed intend to apply to structure of house for controlling ambient temperature and humidity, hands of robot for holding and feeling an object, and so on. A carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP) is used as matrix in the smart composite. The size of the matrix is 120mm x 24mm x 0.45mm. The CFRP plate is combined two Ni-Ti shape memory alloy (SMA) wires with an elastic rubber to construct a composite material. The composite material has a characteristic of reversible response with respect to temperature. A photo-sensor and temperature sensor are embedded in the composite material. The composite material has a processor function to combine with a simple CPU (processor) unit. For demonstrating the capability of the composite material system, a model is built up for controlling certain behaviors such as gripping and releasing a spherical object. The amplitude of gripping force is (3.0 plus/minus 0.3) N in the measurement, which is consistent with our calculation of 2.7 N. Out of a variety of functions to be executed by the CPU, it is shown to exert calculation and decision making in regard to object selection, object holding, and ON-OFF control of action by external commands.

  1. Enhancing the force capability of permanent magnet latching actuators for electromechanical valve actuation systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rens, J.; Clark, R. E.; Jewell, G. W.; Howe, D.

    2005-05-01

    This article introduces a topology of parallel-polarized permanent magnet latching actuator for use in electromagnetic valve actuation systems for internal combustion engines. The actuator has a number of advantages over reluctance actuators, commonly employed in such systems, in terms of reduced starting currents and fail-safe capability. The influence of a number of design features on actuator performance, such as tooth tapering, additional magnets to improve the main magnet flux path and prevent the onset of saturation, and mechanical clearances required to protect the permanent magnet from shock loads are investigated. The design study findings are verified by measurements on a prototype actuator.

  2. Torsional Ratcheting Actuating System

    SciTech Connect

    BARNES,STEPHEN MATTHEW; MILLER,SAMUEL L.; RODGERS,M. STEVEN; BITSIE,FERNANDO

    2000-01-24

    A new type of surface micromachined ratcheting actuation system has been developed at the Microelectronics Development Laboratory at Sandia National Laboratories. The actuator uses a torsional electrostatic comb drive that is coupled to an external ring gear through a ratcheting scheme. The actuator can be operated with a single square wave, has minimal rubbing surfaces, maximizes comb finger density, and can be used for open-loop position control. The prototypes function as intended with a minimum demonstrated operating voltage of 18V. The equations of motion are developed for the torsional electrostatic comb drive. The resonant frequency, voltage vs. displacement and force delivery characteristics are predicted and compared with the fabricated device's performance.

  3. Actuated atomizer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tilton, Charles (Inventor); Weiler, Jeff (Inventor); Palmer, Randall (Inventor); Appel, Philip (Inventor)

    2008-01-01

    An actuated atomizer is adapted for spray cooling or other applications wherein a well-developed, homogeneous and generally conical spray mist is required. The actuated atomizer includes an outer shell formed by an inner ring; an outer ring; an actuator insert and a cap. A nozzle framework is positioned within the actuator insert. A base of the nozzle framework defines swirl inlets, a swirl chamber and a swirl chamber. A nozzle insert defines a center inlet and feed ports. A spool is positioned within the coil housing, and carries the coil windings having a number of turns calculated to result in a magnetic field of sufficient strength to overcome the bias of the spring. A plunger moves in response to the magnetic field of the windings. A stop prevents the pintle from being withdrawn excessively. A pintle, positioned by the plunger, moves between first and second positions. In the first position, the head of the pintle blocks the discharge passage of the nozzle framework, thereby preventing the atomizer from discharging fluid. In the second position, the pintle is withdrawn from the swirl chamber, allowing the atomizer to release atomized fluid. A spring biases the pintle to block the discharge passage. The strength of the spring is overcome, however, by the magnetic field created by the windings positioned on the spool, which withdraws the plunger into the spool and further compresses the spring.

  4. Actuator mechanism

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stange, W. C. (Inventor)

    1978-01-01

    An actuator mechanism is described, having a frame with a rotatable shaft supported in the frame, a positioning mechanism coupled to the shaft for rotating the shaft in two rotary positions, disposed approximately 180 degrees apart, and a pair of plungers coupled to the shaft. Each plunger is responsive to a control signal for applying bi-directional rotation to the shaft.

  5. Sensors, actuators, and smart materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Troiler-McKinstry, S.; Newnham, R. E.

    1993-04-01

    Electroceramic materials are presently noted to have a wide array of sensing and actuating functions which can be incorporated into smart-material designs. The sensor types extend to temperature, piezoelectricity and piezoresistivity, and the presence of oxygen. Attention is given to the prospects for developing composite smart materials that encompass various sensing and actuating functions; these may ultimately reach a level of complexity and sophistication that may be termed 'biomimetric' in its approximation to the functions of the living tissues of organisms.

  6. Reliability studies of electrostrictive actuators

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, U.; Randall, M.; Hock, J.; Ritter, A.

    1994-12-31

    Multilayer electrostrictive actuators have numerous applications. Frequently these applications involve harsh mechanical and electrical loads. Furthermore, it is typically expected that these loads be incurred for >10{sup 8} repetitions (ideally for an infinite number of cycles). This paper describes the electrical and electro-mechanical analyses used at AVX Corporation to assess the performance characteristics of multilayer ceramic actuators, and addresses the effects of electro-mechanical cycling on selected device properties. In this study, lead magnesium niobate based multilayer electrostrictive actuators were subjected to a.c. fields at rated device voltage. Capacitance, dissipation factor, displacement vs. voltage, displacement hysteresis, electro-mechanical quality factor, and resonant frequency were monitored as a function of electro-mechanical cycling. The actuators exhibited highly stable displacements throughout the investigation. Changes observed in other properties indicate a possibility of using them as NDE techniques to assess the actuator reliability.

  7. Actuator-valve interface optimization

    SciTech Connect

    Burchett, O.L.; Jones, R.L.

    1986-01-01

    A computer code, Actuator Valve Response (AVR), has been developed to optimize the explosive actuator-valve interface parameters so that the valve plunger velocity is at a maximum when the plunger reaches the valve tubes. The code considers three forces to act on the valve plunger before the plunger reaches the valve tubes. These are the pressure force produced by the actuator, the shear force necessary to shear the seal disks on the actuator and the valve plunger, and the friction force caused by friction between the plunger and the plunger bore. The three forces are modeled by expressions that are explicitly functions of the plunger displacement. A particular actuator-valve combination was analyzed with the computer code AVR with four different combinations of valve plunger seal disk shear strength and initial friction force. (LEW)

  8. Deconstructing and constructing innate immune functions using molecular sensors and actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coutinho, Kester; Inoue, Takanari

    2016-05-01

    White blood cells such as neutrophils and macrophages are made competent for chemotaxis and phagocytosis -- the dynamic cellular behaviors that are hallmarks of their innate immune functions -- by the reorganization of complex biological circuits during differentiation. Conventional loss-of-function approaches have revealed that more than 100 genes participate in these cellular functions, and we have begun to understand the intricate signaling circuits that are built up from these gene products. We now appreciate: (1) that these circuits come in a variety of flavors -- so that we can make a distinction between genetic circuits, metabolic circuits and signaling circuits; and (2) that they are usually so complex that the assumption of multiple feedback loops, as well as that of crosstalk between seemingly independent pathways, is now routine. It has not escaped our notice, however, that just as physicists and electrical engineers have long been able to disentangle complex electric circuits simply by repetitive cycles of probing and measuring electric currents using a voltmeter, we might similarly be able to dissect these intricate biological circuits by incorporating equivalent approaches in the fields of cell biology and bioengineering. Existing techniques in biology for probing individual circuit components are unfortunately lacking, so that the overarching goal of drawing an exact circuit diagram for the whole cell -- complete with kinetic parameters for connections between individual circuit components -- is not yet in near sight. My laboratory and others have thus begun the development of a new series of molecular tools that can measurably investigate the circuit connectivity inside living cells, as if we were doing so on a silicon board. In these proceedings, I will introduce some of these techniques, provide examples of their implementation, and offer a perspective on directions moving forward.

  9. A latchable thermally activated phase change actuator for microfluidic systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richter, Christiane; Sachsenheimer, Kai; Rapp, Bastian E.

    2016-03-01

    Complex microfluidic systems often require a high number of individually controllable active components like valves and pumps. In this paper we present the development and optimization of a latchable thermally controlled phase change actuator which uses a solid/liquid phase transition of a phase change medium and the displacement of the liquid phase change medium to change and stabilize the two states of the actuator. Because the phase change is triggered by heat produced with ohmic resistors the used control signal is an electrical signal. In contrast to pneumatically activated membrane valves this concept allows the individual control of several dozen actuators with only two external pressure lines. Within this paper we show the general working principle of the actuator and demonstrate its general function and the scalability of the concept at an example of four actuators. Additionally we present the complete results of our studies to optimize the response behavior of the actuator - the influence of the heating power as well as the used phase change medium on melting and solidifying times.

  10. Integrated sensing and actuation of muscle-like actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gisby, T. A.; Xie, S.; Calius, E. P.; Anderson, I. A.

    2009-03-01

    The excellent overall performance and compliant nature of Dielectric Elastomer Actuators (DEAs) make them ideal candidates for artificial muscles. Natural muscle however is much more than just an actuator, it provides position feedback to the brain that is essential for the body to maintain balance and correct posture. If DEAs are to truly earn the moniker of "artificial muscles" they need to be able to reproduce, if not improve on, this functionality. Self-sensing DEAs are the ideal solution to this problem. This paper presents a system by which the capacitance of a DEA can be sensed while it is being actuated and used for feedback control. This system has been strongly influenced by the desire for portability i.e. designed for use in a battery operated microcontroller based system. It is capable of controlling multiple independent DEAs using a single high voltage power supply. These features are important developments for artificial muscle devices where accuracy and low mass are important e.g. a prosthetic hand or force-feedback surgical tools. A numerical model of the electrical behaviour of the DEA that incorporates arbitrary leakage currents and the impact of arbitrary variable capacitance has been created to model a DEA system. A robust capacitive self-sensing method that uses a slew-rate controlled Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) signal and compensates for the effects of leakage current and variable capacitance is presented. The numerical model is then used to compare the performance of this new method with an earlier method previously published by the authors.

  11. Choosing Actuators for Automatic Control Systems of Thermal Power Plants

    SciTech Connect

    Gorbunov, A. I.; Serdyukov, O. V.

    2015-03-15

    Two types of actuators for automatic control systems of thermal power plants are analyzed: (i) pulse-controlled actuator and (ii) analog-controlled actuator with positioning function. The actuators are compared in terms of control circuit, control accuracy, reliability, and cost.

  12. Influence Function Learning in Information Diffusion Networks

    PubMed Central

    Du, Nan; Liang, Yingyu; Balcan, Maria-Florina; Song, Le

    2015-01-01

    Can we learn the influence of a set of people in a social network from cascades of information diffusion? This question is often addressed by a two-stage approach: first learn a diffusion model, and then calculate the influence based on the learned model. Thus, the success of this approach relies heavily on the correctness of the diffusion model which is hard to verify for real world data. In this paper, we exploit the insight that the influence functions in many diffusion models are coverage functions, and propose a novel parameterization of such functions using a convex combination of random basis functions. Moreover, we propose an efficient maximum likelihood based algorithm to learn such functions directly from cascade data, and hence bypass the need to specify a particular diffusion model in advance. We provide both theoretical and empirical analysis for our approach, showing that the proposed approach can provably learn the influence function with low sample complexity, be robust to the unknown diffusion models, and significantly outperform existing approaches in both synthetic and real world data. PMID:25973445

  13. Modular droplet actuator drive

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pollack, Michael G. (Inventor); Paik, Philip (Inventor)

    2011-01-01

    A droplet actuator drive including a detection apparatus for sensing a property of a droplet on a droplet actuator; circuitry for controlling the detection apparatus electronically coupled to the detection apparatus; a droplet actuator cartridge connector arranged so that when a droplet actuator cartridge electronically is coupled thereto: the droplet actuator cartridge is aligned with the detection apparatus; and the detection apparatus can sense the property of the droplet on a droplet actuator; circuitry for controlling a droplet actuator coupled to the droplet actuator connector; and the droplet actuator circuitry may be coupled to a processor.

  14. Memory metal actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ruoff, C. F. (Inventor)

    1985-01-01

    A mechanical actuator can be constructed by employing a plurality of memory metal actuator elements in parallel to control the amount of actuating force. In order to facilitate direct control by digital control signals provided by a computer or the like, the actuating elements may vary in stiffness according to a binary relationship. The cooling or reset time of the actuator elements can be reduced by employing Peltier junction cooling assemblies in the actuator.

  15. The Influence of Palatoplasty on Eating Function

    PubMed Central

    Wakami, Satoki; Motomura, Hisashi

    2016-01-01

    Summary: Postoperative dietary control and surgical procedures are important for minimizing complications after a palatoplasty because the palate is always exposed to stresses by various movements associated with eating. Currently, we provide fluid foods (food paste, liquid food, and soft food) to postpalatoplasty patients. However, nutritional inadequacies associated with fluid food necessitate the need to develop a new food specifically for postpalatoplasty patients. Although evaluating the influence of a palatoplasty on eating function is important for the development of a new diet, no data have been published on this topic. Thus, to evaluate the influence of a palatoplasty on eating function, we analyzed postoperative changes in the eating condition of cleft palate patients. We performed a retrospective study. All participants had undergone surgery for a cleft palate at our hospital. Nurses recorded the amount of food that patients consumed as a ratio of the whole meal, and we extracted data on the food type and the amount consumed at each meal from their medical records. After the ratio was expressed as a percentage of the whole meal (eating rate), we calculated the mean value of the percentage of the subject group and examined chronological changes. The eating rate was very low on postoperative day 1, it improved over time and was constant on postoperative day 7. From this result, we concluded that palatoplasty greatly influences the eating function of patients, and the influence lasts for at least a week after surgery. PMID:27622108

  16. The Influence of Palatoplasty on Eating Function.

    PubMed

    Fujikawa, Heishiro; Wakami, Satoki; Motomura, Hisashi

    2016-08-01

    Postoperative dietary control and surgical procedures are important for minimizing complications after a palatoplasty because the palate is always exposed to stresses by various movements associated with eating. Currently, we provide fluid foods (food paste, liquid food, and soft food) to postpalatoplasty patients. However, nutritional inadequacies associated with fluid food necessitate the need to develop a new food specifically for postpalatoplasty patients. Although evaluating the influence of a palatoplasty on eating function is important for the development of a new diet, no data have been published on this topic. Thus, to evaluate the influence of a palatoplasty on eating function, we analyzed postoperative changes in the eating condition of cleft palate patients. We performed a retrospective study. All participants had undergone surgery for a cleft palate at our hospital. Nurses recorded the amount of food that patients consumed as a ratio of the whole meal, and we extracted data on the food type and the amount consumed at each meal from their medical records. After the ratio was expressed as a percentage of the whole meal (eating rate), we calculated the mean value of the percentage of the subject group and examined chronological changes. The eating rate was very low on postoperative day 1, it improved over time and was constant on postoperative day 7. From this result, we concluded that palatoplasty greatly influences the eating function of patients, and the influence lasts for at least a week after surgery. PMID:27622108

  17. Carbon nanotube actuators

    PubMed

    Baughman; Cui; Zakhidov; Iqbal; Barisci; Spinks; Wallace; Mazzoldi; De Rossi D; Rinzler; Jaschinski; Roth; Kertesz

    1999-05-21

    Electromechanical actuators based on sheets of single-walled carbon nanotubes were shown to generate higher stresses than natural muscle and higher strains than high-modulus ferroelectrics. Like natural muscles, the macroscopic actuators are assemblies of billions of individual nanoscale actuators. The actuation mechanism (quantum chemical-based expansion due to electrochemical double-layer charging) does not require ion intercalation, which limits the life and rate of faradaic conducting polymer actuators. Unlike conventional ferroelectric actuators, low operating voltages of a few volts generate large actuator strains. Predictions based on measurements suggest that actuators using optimized nanotube sheets may eventually provide substantially higher work densities per cycle than any previously known technology.

  18. Bucky gel actuators optimization towards haptic applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bubak, Grzegorz; Ansaldo, Alberto; Ceseracciu, Luca; Hata, Kenji; Ricci, Davide

    2014-03-01

    An ideal plastic actuator for haptic applications should generate a relatively large displacement (minimum 0.2-0.6 mm, force (~50 mN/cm2) and a fast actuation response to the applied voltage. Although many different types of flexible, plastic actuators based on electroactive polymers (EAP) are currently under investigation, the ionic EAPs are the only ones that can be operated at low voltage. This property makes them suitable for applications that require inherently safe actuators. Among the ionic EAPs, bucky gel based actuators are very promising. Bucky gel is a physical gel made by grounding imidazolium ionic liquids with carbon nanotubes, which can then be incorporated in a polymeric composite matrix to prepare the active electrode layers of linear and bending actuators. Anyhow, many conflicting factors have to be balanced to obtain required performance. In order to produce high force a large stiffness is preferable but this limits the displacement. Moreover, the bigger the active electrode the larger the force. However the thicker an actuator is, the slower the charging process becomes (it is diffusion limited). In order to increase the charging speed a thin electrolyte would be desirable, but this increases the probability of pinholes and device failure. In this paper we will present how different approaches in electrolyte and electrode preparation influence actuator performance and properties taking particularly into account the device ionic conductivity (which influences the charging speed) and the electrode surface resistance (which influences both the recruitment of the whole actuator length and its speed).

  19. Perinatal choline influences brain structure and function.

    PubMed

    Zeisel, Steven H; Niculescu, Mihai D

    2006-04-01

    Choline is derived not only from the diet, but also from de novo synthesis. It is important for methyl-group metabolism, the formation of membranes, kidney function, and neurotransmission. When deprived of dietary choline, most adult men and postmenopausal women develop signs of organ dysfunction (fatty liver or muscle damage) and have a decreased capacity to convert homocysteine to methionine. Choline is critical during fetal development, when it influences stem cell proliferation and apoptosis, thereby altering brain structure and function (memory is permanently enhanced in rodents exposed to choline during the latter part of gestation). PMID:16673755

  20. Flight control actuation system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wingett, Paul T. (Inventor); Gaines, Louie T. (Inventor); Evans, Paul S. (Inventor); Kern, James I. (Inventor)

    2004-01-01

    A flight control actuation system comprises a controller, electromechanical actuator and a pneumatic actuator. During normal operation, only the electromechanical actuator is needed to operate a flight control surface. When the electromechanical actuator load level exceeds 40 amps positive, the controller activates the pneumatic actuator to offset electromechanical actuator loads to assist the manipulation of flight control surfaces. The assistance from the pneumatic load assist actuator enables the use of an electromechanical actuator that is smaller in size and mass, requires less power, needs less cooling processes, achieves high output forces and adapts to electrical current variations. The flight control actuation system is adapted for aircraft, spacecraft, missiles, and other flight vehicles, especially flight vehicles that are large in size and travel at high velocities.

  1. Flight control actuation system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wingett, Paul T. (Inventor); Gaines, Louie T. (Inventor); Evans, Paul S. (Inventor); Kern, James I. (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    A flight control actuation system comprises a controller, electromechanical actuator and a pneumatic actuator. During normal operation, only the electromechanical actuator is needed to operate a flight control surface. When the electromechanical actuator load level exceeds 40 amps positive, the controller activates the pneumatic actuator to offset electromechanical actuator loads to assist the manipulation of flight control surfaces. The assistance from the pneumatic load assist actuator enables the use of an electromechanical actuator that is smaller in size and mass, requires less power, needs less cooling processes, achieves high output forces and adapts to electrical current variations. The flight control actuation system is adapted for aircraft, spacecraft, missiles, and other flight vehicles, especially flight vehicles that are large in size and travel at high velocities.

  2. Microprocessor controlled force actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zimmerman, D. C.; Inman, D. J.; Horner, G. C.

    1986-01-01

    The mechanical and electrical design of a prototype force actuator for vibration control of large space structures (LSS) is described. The force actuator is an electromagnetic system that produces a force by reacting against a proof-mass. The actuator has two colocated sensors, a digital microcontroller, and a power amplifier. The total weight of actuator is .998 kg. The actuator has a steady state force output of approximately 2.75 N from approximately 2 Hz to well beyond 1000 Hz.

  3. Neonatal thyroid function: influence of perinatal factors.

    PubMed Central

    Franklin, R C; Carpenter, L M; O'Grady, C M

    1985-01-01

    Indices of thyroid function were measured in 229 healthy term neonates at birth and at 5, 10, and 15 days of age. Results were analysed to assess whether maternal diabetes mellitus, toxaemia of pregnancy, intrapartum fetal distress, duration of labour, method of delivery, asphyxia at birth, race, sex, birthweight, birth length, head circumference, or method of feeding influenced any index. Thyroxine, the free thyroxine index, and free thyroxine concentrations at birth correlated with birthweight. Method of delivery influenced mean thyroxine and free thyroxine index values at birth and at age 5 days. Mean values of triiodothyronine, reverse triiodothyronine, thyroxine binding globulin, and thyroid stimulating hormone were not affected by any of the perinatal factors studied. Birthweight and perhaps method of delivery should be taken into account when interpreting neonatal thyroxine parameters but determination of thyroid stimulating hormone as a screen for congenital hypothyroidism in healthy term neonates circumvents these considerations. PMID:3977386

  4. Design of high performance piezo composites actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Almajid, Abdulhakim A.

    Design of high performance piezo composites actuators are developed. Functionally Graded Microstructure (FGM) piezoelectric actuators are designed to reduce the stress concentration at the middle interface existed in the standard bimorph actuators while maintaining high actuation performance. The FGM piezoelectric laminates are composite materials with electroelastic properties varied through the laminate thickness. The elastic behavior of piezo-laminates actuators is developed using a 2D-elasticity model and a modified classical lamination theory (CLT). The stresses and out-of-plane displacements are obtained for standard and FGM piezoelectric bimorph plates under cylindrical bending generated by an electric field throughout the thickness of the laminate. The analytical model is developed for two different actuator geometries, a rectangular plate actuator and a disk shape actuator. The limitations of CLT are investigated against the 2D-elasticity model for the rectangular plate geometry. The analytical models based on CLT (rectangular and circular) and 2D-elasticity are compared with a model based on Finite Element Method (FEM). The experimental study consists of two FGM actuator systems, the PZT/PZT FGM system and the porous FGM system. The electroelastic properties of each layer in the FGM systems were measured and input in the analytical models to predict the FGM actuator performance. The performance of the FGM actuator is optimized by manipulating the thickness of each layer in the FGM system. The thickness of each layer in the FGM system is made to vary in a linear or non-linear manner to achieve the best performance of the FGM piezoelectric actuator. The analytical and FEM results are found to agree well with the experimental measurements for both rectangular and disk actuators. CLT solutions are found to coincide well with the elasticity solutions for high aspect ratios while the CLT solutions gave poor results compared to the 2D elasticity solutions for

  5. Superconducting linear actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Bruce; Hockney, Richard

    1993-01-01

    Special actuators are needed to control the orientation of large structures in space-based precision pointing systems. Electromagnetic actuators that presently exist are too large in size and their bandwidth is too low. Hydraulic fluid actuation also presents problems for many space-based applications. Hydraulic oil can escape in space and contaminate the environment around the spacecraft. A research study was performed that selected an electrically-powered linear actuator that can be used to control the orientation of a large pointed structure. This research surveyed available products, analyzed the capabilities of conventional linear actuators, and designed a first-cut candidate superconducting linear actuator. The study first examined theoretical capabilities of electrical actuators and determined their problems with respect to the application and then determined if any presently available actuators or any modifications to available actuator designs would meet the required performance. The best actuator was then selected based on available design, modified design, or new design for this application. The last task was to proceed with a conceptual design. No commercially-available linear actuator or modification capable of meeting the specifications was found. A conventional moving-coil dc linear actuator would meet the specification, but the back-iron for this actuator would weigh approximately 12,000 lbs. A superconducting field coil, however, eliminates the need for back iron, resulting in an actuator weight of approximately 1000 lbs.

  6. An investigation on actuation behavior of polyacrylonitrile gel fibers as a function of microstructure and stabilization temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mirbaha, Hamideh; Arbab, Shahram; Zeinolebadi, Ahmad; Nourpanah, Parviz

    2013-04-01

    Polyacrylonitrile (PAN) gel fibers show great potential to be used as actuators due to their mechanical response to chemical stimuli. In this work the response of PAN gel fibers to pH variation is studied. Three commercial grade PAN fibers with different chemical composition are investigated. Fibers are stabilized at temperatures varying from 100 to 275 °C. The stabilized fibers are hydrolyzed in an alkaline solution to obtain gel fibers. Gel fibers are stepwise immersed in solutions with pH varying between 0 and 14. Length/diameter variations are measured by optical microscopy. Results suggest that there is an optimum stabilization temperature at which a maximum response to pH change is obtained. This temperature corresponds to the onset of cyclization reactions, and is determined by the chemical composition of starting material. Thus at low stabilization temperatures (T ≤ 200 °C) only a gel-like shell is formed on the surface of fibers. Fibers stabilized above 200 °C show significant length/diameter variations (up to 325%). Increasing the stabilization temperature above the optimum temperature weakens the response of fibers to pH change. The results also show that the actuation behavior of PAN fibers containing itaconic acid starts at lower stabilization temperatures. This is attributed to the effect of acidic groups in lowering the onset of cyclization reactions.

  7. Micromachined electrostatic vertical actuator

    DOEpatents

    Lee, Abraham P.; Sommargren, Gary E.; McConaghy, Charles F.; Krulevitch, Peter A.

    1999-10-19

    A micromachined vertical actuator utilizing a levitational force, such as in electrostatic comb drives, provides vertical actuation that is relatively linear in actuation for control, and can be readily combined with parallel plate capacitive position sensing for position control. The micromachined electrostatic vertical actuator provides accurate movement in the sub-micron to micron ranges which is desirable in the phase modulation instrument, such as optical phase shifting. For example, compact, inexpensive, and position controllable micromirrors utilizing an electrostatic vertical actuator can replace the large, expensive, and difficult-to-maintain piezoelectric actuators. A thirty pound piezoelectric actuator with corner cube reflectors, as utilized in a phase shifting diffraction interferometer can be replaced with a micromirror and a lens. For any very precise and small amplitudes of motion` micromachined electrostatic actuation may be used because it is the most compact in size, with low power consumption and has more straightforward sensing and control options.

  8. Mixing Layer Excitation by Dielectric Barrier Discharge Plasma Actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ely, Richard; Little, Jesse

    2012-11-01

    The response of a mixing layer with velocity ratio 0.28 to perturbations near the high-speed side (U2=11 m/s, ReL = 0.26 × 106) of its origin from dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuators is studied experimentally. Both alternating current (ac) and nanosecond (ns) pulse driven plasma are investigated in an effort to clarify the mechanisms associated with each technique as well as the more general physics associated with flow control via momentum-based versus thermal actuation. Ac-DBD plasma actuators, which function through electrohydrodynamic effects, are found to generate an increase in mixing layer momentum thickness that is strongly dependent on forcing frequency. Results are qualitatively similar to previous archival literature on the topic employing oscillating flaps. Ns-DBD plasma, which is believed to function through thermal effects, has no measureable influence on the mixing layer profile at similar forcing conditions. In the context of previous archival literature, these results suggest different physical mechanisms govern active control via ac- and ns-DBD plasma actuation and more generally, momentum versus thermal perturbations. Further investigation of these phenomena will be provided through variation of the boundary/mixing layer properties and forcing parameters in the context of spatially and temporally resolved experimental data. Supported by: AFOSR and Raytheon Missile Systems.

  9. Influence of epoxyeicosatrienoic acids on uterine function.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, E; Jawerbaum, A; Novaro, V; Gimeno, M A

    1997-01-01

    In spite of the large quantities of epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EEts) released by reproductive tissues, their function has not yet been determined. In order to analyze the influence of epoxygenase products on isolated uterine function, Clotrimazole, a cytochrome P450 inhibitor was used. The drug decreased isolated rat uterine isometric developed tension (IDT) and frequency (FC). 14,15 EEt induced a contractile response when added at 10(11) M, 8,9 EEt and 11,12 EEt produced an increment of IDT when added to 10(-7) M and 5,6 EEt did not modify IDT values. A contractile stimulatory effect was observed when 14,15 EEt (10(-7) M) was added to a tissue bath preparation containing Clotrimazole (20 microM). On the other hand, uterine contractile response to 14,15 EEt addition was partially abolished by indomethacin (10(-6) M), a well known cyclooxygenase inhibitor. Uterine response to 5,6; 8,9 and 11,12 EEts was not modified by indomethacin. This is the first evidence of 14-15 EEt uterotonic properties, possibly exerted in part through the cyclooxygenase pathway.

  10. Design of an innovative dielectric elastomer actuator for space applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Branz, Francesco; Sansone, Francesco; Francesconi, Alessandro

    2014-03-01

    The capability of Dielectric Elastomers to show large deformations under high voltage loads has been deeply investigated to develop a number of actuators concepts. From a space systems point of view, the advantages introduced by this class of smart materials are considerable and include high conversion efficiency, distributed actuation, self-sensing capability, light weight and low cost. This paper focuses on the design of a solid-state actuator capable of high positioning resolution. The use of Electroactive Polymers makes this device interesting for space mechanisms applications, such as antenna and sensor pointing, solar array orientation, attitude control, adaptive structures and robotic manipulators. In particular, such actuation suffers neither wear, nor fatigue issues and shows highly damped vibrations, thus requiring no maintenance and transferring low disturbance to the surrounding structures. The main weakness of this actuator is the relatively low force/torque values available. The proposed geometry allows two rotational degrees of freedom, and simulations are performed to measure the expected instant angular deflection at zero load and the stall torque of the actuator under a given high voltage load. Several geometric parameters are varied and their influence on the device behaviour is studied. Simplified relations are extrapolated from the numerical results and represent useful predicting tools for design purposes. Beside the expected static performances, the dynamic behaviour of the device is also assessed and the input/output transfer function is estimated. Finally, a prototype design for laboratory tests is presented; the experimental activity aims to validate the preliminary results obtained by numerical analysis.

  11. Electromagnetic rotational actuation.

    SciTech Connect

    Hogan, Alexander Lee

    2010-08-01

    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.

  12. 14 CFR 33.72 - Hydraulic actuating systems.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Hydraulic actuating systems. 33.72 Section... AIRWORTHINESS STANDARDS: AIRCRAFT ENGINES Design and Construction; Turbine Aircraft Engines § 33.72 Hydraulic actuating systems. Each hydraulic actuating system must function properly under all conditions in which...

  13. Subminiature hydraulic actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sevart, F. D.

    1978-01-01

    Subminiature, single-vane rotary actuator for wind-tunnel test-model control-surface actuation systems presents severe torque and system band-pass requirements with stringent space and weight limitations. Actuator has very low leakage of fluid from one side to other, permitting use in precision position servo-systems.

  14. AMSD Cryo Actuator Testing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2002-01-01

    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.

  15. Omnidirectional Actuator Handle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moetteli, John B.

    1995-01-01

    Proposed actuator handle comprises two normally concentric rings, cables, and pulleys arranged such that relative displacement of rings from concentricity results in pulling of cable and consequent actuation of associated mechanism. Unlike conventional actuator handles like levers on farm implements, actuated from one or two directions only, proposed handle reached from almost any direction and actuated by pulling or pushing inner ring in any direction with respect to outer ring. Flanges installed on inner ring to cover gap between inner ring and housing to prevent clothing from being caught.

  16. Bimorphic polymeric photomechanical actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sarkisov, Sergey S. (Inventor); Curley, Michael J. (Inventor); Adamovsky, Grigory (Inventor); Sarkisov, Jr., Sergey S. (Inventor); Fields, Aisha B. (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    A bimorphic polymeric photomechanical actuator, in one embodiment using polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) as a photosensitive body, transmitting light over fiber optic cables, and controlling the shape and pulse duration of the light pulse to control movement of the actuator. Multiple light beams are utilized to generate different ranges of motion for the actuator from a single photomechanical body and alternative designs use multiple light beams and multiple photomechanical bodies to provide controlled movement. Actuator movement using one or more ranges of motion is utilized to control motion to position an actuating element in three dimensional space.

  17. Sequential growth and monitoring of a polypyrrole actuator system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sarrazin, J. C.; Mascaro, Stephen A.

    2014-03-01

    Electroactive polymers (EAPs) have emerged as viable materials in sensing and actuating applications, but the capability to mimic the structure and function of natural muscle is increased due to their ability to permit additional, sequential synthesis steps between stages of actuation. Current work is improving upon the mechanical performance in terms of achievable stresses, strains, and strain rates, but issues still remain with actuator lifetime and adaptability. This work seeks to create a bioinspired polymer actuation system that can be monitored using state estimation and adjusted in vivo during operation. The novel, time-saving process of sequential growth was applied to polymer actuator systems for the initial growth, as well as additional growth steps after actuation cycles. Synthesis of conducting polymers on a helical metal electrode directs polymer shape change during actuation, assists in charge distribution along the polymer for actuation, and as is described in this work, constructs a constant working electrode/polymer connection during operation which allows sequential polymer growth based on a performance need. The polymer system is monitored by means of a reduced-order, state estimation model that works between growth and actuation cycles. In this case, actuator stress is improved between growth cycles. The ability for additional synthesis of the polymer actuator not only creates an actuator system that can be optimized based on demand, but creates a dynamic actuator system that more closely mimics natural muscle capability.

  18. Dielectric elastomer actuators for adaptive photonic microsystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heimann, Marcus; Schröder, Henning; Marx, Sebastian; Lang, Klaus-Dieter

    2013-03-01

    Various applications in the field of photonic microsystems for Dielectric Elastomer Actuators (DEA) were shown with this research. DEA belong to the class of Electro Active Polymers (EAP) and have the potential to substitute common technologies like piezoelectric actuators. DEAs offers several advantages like compact and variable shapes, large actuation ranges and cost efficient production processes that have to be emphasized. For the market of adaptive photonic microsystems especially area actuators are very suitable. They can be used e.g. as tuneable lens, mirror or grating component and tool for optical fiber alignment. These area actuators have a similar structure like a capacitor. They consist of three layers, two electrode layers on top and bottom and one dielectric layer in the center. The dielectric layer is made of a deformable and prestretched elastomer film. When applying a voltage between both electrode layers the thickness of the dielectric film is compressed and the actuator is displaced in the plane. The use of material compositions like a polymer matrix with graphite, carbon nano particles or carbon nano tubes as well as thin metal films for the electrodes were studied. The paper presents results on suitable dielectric and electrode materials, actuator geometries and respective adaptive photonic components. The manufacturing process of area actuators is described in detail. As a basic size of the area actuators (20 × 20) mm2 were chosen. Onto the produced area actuators polymer lenses or mirrors were assembled. The deflection of the optical beam path is calculated with optical simulations and measured at the prepared adaptive optical components. Static actuations of about +/-15 μm are achieved when applying a voltage of 200 V. Also the function of a tuneable beam splitter is demonstrated to show further applications.

  19. Multilayer Piezoelectric Stack Actuator Characterization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2008-01-01

    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.

  20. Genetic Algorithm Approaches for Actuator Placement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crossley, William A.

    2000-01-01

    This research investigated genetic algorithm approaches for smart actuator placement to provide aircraft maneuverability without requiring hinged flaps or other control surfaces. The effort supported goals of the Multidisciplinary Design Optimization focus efforts in NASA's Aircraft au program. This work helped to properly identify various aspects of the genetic algorithm operators and parameters that allow for placement of discrete control actuators/effectors. An improved problem definition, including better definition of the objective function and constraints, resulted from this research effort. The work conducted for this research used a geometrically simple wing model; however, an increasing number of potential actuator placement locations were incorporated to illustrate the ability of the GA to determine promising actuator placement arrangements. This effort's major result is a useful genetic algorithm-based approach to assist in the discrete actuator/effector placement problem.

  1. Space shuttle rudder/speedbrake actuation subsystem

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Naber, R. A.

    1985-01-01

    The Rudder/Speedbrake (R/SB) Actuation Subsystem for use on the NASA Space Shuttle Orbiter is an electro-hydro-mechanical system which provides the control and positionary capability of the orbiter aero-dynamic primary flight control surface. The system is located in the vehicle's vertical stabilizer. The geared rotary actuators provide a power hinge feature of the split panel rudder. Actuation of both panels in the same direction provides conventional rudder control; actuating the panels differentially provides a speedbrake function intended to control both speed and pitch. The commands may be superimposed on one another. The system consists of one power drive unit which responds to quadredundant avionic signals to generate a rotary output, four geared rotary actuators, which develop rotary position and torque as outputs, and ten torque transmitting drive-shifts.

  2. Microfabrication of stacked dielectric elastomer actuator fibers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-04-01

    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.

  3. Hydraulic Actuator System for Rotor Control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ulbrich, Heinz; Althaus, Josef

    1991-01-01

    In the last ten years, several different types of actuators were developed and fabricated for active control of rotors. A special hydraulic actuator system capable of generating high forces to rotating shafts via conventional bearings is addressed. The actively controlled hydraulic force actuator features an electrohydraulic servo valve which can produce amplitudes and forces at high frequencies necessary for influencing rotor vibrations. The mathematical description will be given in detail. The experimental results verify the theoretical model. Simulations already indicate the usefulness of this compact device for application to a real rotor system.

  4. Electropneumatic actuator, phase 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bloomfield, D. P.

    1989-10-01

    The program demonstrated the feasibility of an electropneumatic actuator which can be used in manufacturing applications. The electropneumatic actuator, an alternative to the electric, hydraulic, and pneumatic actuators used in industry, consists of an electrochemical compressor, a power supply, and an actuator. The electrochemical compressor working fluid is hydrogen and a solvent such as water or ammonia. The compressor has no moving parts and runs on low voltage DC. The actuator is a conventional, commercially available unit. Researchers designed, constructed, and tested the electrochemical compressor in conjunction with the actuator, power supply, and computerized control. The one inch actuator can lift a fifty pound weight a distance of ten inches in about 1.5 minutes. The electrochemically powered system is capable of driving its loaded actuator to a prescribed location at a controlled rate. A defined set of design changes will combine the compressor and actuator in the same housing, and will develop two orders of magnitude increased actuator speed at the same or higher force levels.

  5. Considerations for contractile electroactive materials and actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasmussen, Lenore; Schramm, David; Rasmussen, Paul; Mullally, Kevin; Meixler, Lewis D.; Pearlman, Daniel; Kirk, Alice

    2011-04-01

    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.

  6. Considerations for Contractile Electroactive Materials and Actuators

    SciTech Connect

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

    2011-05-23

    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.

  7. MEMS fluidic actuator

    DOEpatents

    Kholwadwala, Deepesh K.; Johnston, Gabriel A.; Rohrer, Brandon R.; Galambos, Paul C.; Okandan, Murat

    2007-07-24

    The present invention comprises a novel, lightweight, massively parallel device comprising microelectromechanical (MEMS) fluidic actuators, to reconfigure the profile, of a surface. Each microfluidic actuator comprises an independent bladder that can act as both a sensor and an actuator. A MEMS sensor, and a MEMS valve within each microfluidic actuator, operate cooperatively to monitor the fluid within each bladder, and regulate the flow of the fluid entering and exiting each bladder. When adjacently spaced in a array, microfluidic actuators can create arbitrary surface profiles in response to a change in the operating environment of the surface. In an embodiment of the invention, the profile of an airfoil is controlled by independent extension and contraction of a plurality of actuators, that operate to displace a compliant cover.

  8. Improved Electrohydraulic Linear Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hamtil, James

    2004-01-01

    A product line of improved electrohydraulic linear actuators has been developed. These actuators are designed especially for use in actuating valves in rocket-engine test facilities. They are also adaptable to many industrial uses, such as steam turbines, process control valves, dampers, motion control, etc. The advantageous features of the improved electrohydraulic linear actuators are best described with respect to shortcomings of prior electrohydraulic linear actuators that the improved ones are intended to supplant. The flow of hydraulic fluid to the two ports of the actuator cylinder is controlled by a servo valve that is controlled by a signal from a servo amplifier that, in turn, receives an analog position-command signal (a current having a value between 4 and 20 mA) from a supervisory control system of the facility. As the position command changes, the servo valve shifts, causing a greater flow of hydraulic fluid to one side of the cylinder and thereby causing the actuator piston to move to extend or retract a piston rod from the actuator body. A linear variable differential transformer (LVDT) directly linked to the piston provides a position-feedback signal, which is compared with the position-command signal in the servo amplifier. When the position-feedback and position-command signals match, the servo valve moves to its null position, in which it holds the actuator piston at a steady position.

  9. Comprehensive piezoceramic actuator review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Chris J.; Washington, Gregory N.

    2002-07-01

    Piezoceramic actuation has become an area of increased interest in the past ten years. Having been used for many years as sensors in such applications as pressure transducers and smoke detectors, piezoceramics are now being used as prime movers in fuel injectors and valve lifters. In an effort to aid the engineering community, this paper will conduct a comprehensive review of several piezoceramic actuators. Classical design parameters will be derived for each actuator such as blocked force and free stroke. In addition, more esoteric entities such as mechanical efficiency and energy density will also be derived. The result will be design metrics of popular piezoceramic actuators containing vital design equations, validated with empirical data. Of the many different configurations of piezoceramic actuators, this paper will investigate the bimorph and unimorph bender. These actuator types are finding increased use in semi-active structural damping, energy harvesting and vibration control. The work in this paper will show experimental verification of various actuator types as well as theoretical derivations. In addition to unimorphs, bimorphs and stack actuators a novel type of unimorph bender, the THUNDER actuator (developed and licensed by NASA) will be included in the review.

  10. Status of Electrical Actuator Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roth, Mary Ellen; Taylor, Linda M.; Hansen, Irving G.

    1996-01-01

    An ever increasing number of actuation functions historically performed by hydraulics or pneumatics are being accomplished by electric actuation. If 'end to end' systems are considered, electric actuators (EA's) are potentially lighter and more efficient. In general, system redundancies may be more easily implemented and operationally monitored. Typically, electrical components exhibit longer mean times to failure and projected lifetime costs of EA's are potentially much lower than those of other options. EA's have certain characteristics which must be considered in their application. The actual mechanical loadings must be established, for the more easily controlled EA may be operated much closer to its full capabilities. At higher rates of motion, EA's are operating as constant power devices. Therefore, it may be possible to start a movement that can not be stopped. The incorporation of high power electronics into remote locations introduces new concerns of EMI and thermal control. It is the management of these and other characteristics that forms the engineering design challenges. Work is currently in progress on EA's for aircraft and expendable launch vehicles. These applications span from ten to 40+ horsepower. The systematics and status of these actuators will be reported along with current technical trends in this area.

  11. Peristaltic pump made of dielectric elastomer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2009-03-01

    The functional principle of peristaltic motion is inspired by the pattern in which hollow organs move. The technology of dielectric elastomer actuators provides the possibility to design a very compact peristaltic pump. The geometries of the whole pump and the actuator elements have been determined by numerical simulations of the mechanical behaviour and the fluid dynamics. With eight independent actuators the pumping channel is self-sealing and there is no need for any valves. The first generation of this pump is able to generate flow rates up to 0.36 μl/min.

  12. Biomimetic photo-actuation: progress and challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dicker, Michael P. M.; Weaver, Paul M.; Rossiter, Jonathan M.; Bond, Ian P.; Faul, Charl F. J.

    2016-04-01

    Photo-actuation, such as that observed in the reversible sun-tracking movements of heliotropic plants, is produced by a complex, yet elegant series of processes. In the heliotropic leaf movements of the Cornish Mallow, photo-actuation involves the generation, transport and manipulation of chemical signals from a distributed network of sensors in the leaf veins to a specialized osmosis driven actuation region in the leaf stem. It is theorized that such an arrangement is both efficient in terms of materials use and operational energy conversion, as well as being highly robust. We concern ourselves with understanding and mimicking these light driven, chemically controlled actuating systems with the aim of generating intelligent structures which share the properties of efficiency and robustness that are so important to survival in Nature. In this work we present recent progress in mimicking these photo-actuating systems through remote light exposure of a metastable state photoacid and the resulting signal and energy transfer through solution to a pH-responsive hydrogel actuator. Reversible actuation strains of 20% were achieved from this arrangement, with modelling then employed to reveal the critical influence hydrogel pKa has on this result. Although the strong actuation achieved highlights the progress that has been made in replicating the principles of biomimetic photo-actuation, challenges such as photoacid degradation were also revealed. It is anticipated that current work can directly lead to the development of high-performance and low-cost solartrackers for increased photovoltaic energy capture and to the creation of new types of intelligent structures employing chemical control systems.

  13. Dielectric elastomer actuators with hydrostatic coupling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpi, Federico; Frediani, Gabriele; De Rossi, Danilo

    2009-03-01

    The rapidly growing adoption of dielectric elastomer (DE) actuators as a high performance EAP technology for many kinds of new applications continuously opens new technical challenges, in order to take always the most from each adopted device and actuating configuration. This paper presents a new type of DE actuators, which show attractive potentialities for specific application needs. The concept here proposed adopts an incompressible fluid to mechanically couple active and passive parts. The active parts work according to the DE actuation principle, while the passive parts represent the end effector, in contact with the load. The fluid is used to transfer actuation hydrostatically from an active to a passive part and, then, to the load. This can provide specific advantages, including improved safety and less stringent design constraints for the architecture of the actuator, especially for soft end effectors. Such a simple concept can be readily implemented according to different shapes and intended functionalities of the resulting actuators. The paper describes the structure and the performance of the first prototype devices developed so far.

  14. Evaluation of piezoceramic actuators for control of aircraft interior noise

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Silcox, Richard J.; Lefebvre, Sylvie; Metcalf, Vern L.; Beyer, Todd B.; Fuller, Chris R.

    1992-01-01

    Results of an experiment to evaluate piezoceramic actuators as the control actuator for active control of interior noise in a large-scale fuselage model are presented. Control was demonstrated for tonal excitation using a time domain least mean squares algorithm. A maximum of four actuator channels and six error signals were used. The actuators were employed for control of noise at frequencies where interior cavity modes were the dominant response and for driven acoustic responses where a structure resonance was dominant. Global reductions of 9 to 12 dB were obtained for the cases examined. The most effective configuration of skin-mounted actuators was found to be a pure in-plane forcing function as opposed to a bending excitation. The frame-mounted actuators were found to be equally effective as the skin-mounted actuators. However, both configurations resulted in local regions of unacceptably high vibration response in the structure.

  15. Sleeve muscle actuator and its application in transtibial prostheses.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Hao; Shen, Xiangrong

    2013-06-01

    This paper describes the concept of a new sleeve muscle actuator, and a transtibial prosthesis design powered by this novel actuator. Inspired by the functioning mechanism of the traditional pneumatic muscle actuator, the sleeve muscle actuator incorporates a cylindrical insert to the center of the pneumatic muscle, which eliminates the central portion of the internal volume. As a result of this change, the sleeve muscle provides multiple advantages over the traditional pneumatic muscle, including the increased force capacity over the entire range of motion, reduced energy consumption, and faster dynamic response. Furthermore, utilizing the load-bearing tube as the insert, the sleeve muscle enables an innovative "actuation-load bearing" structure, which has a potential of generating a highly compact actuation system suitable for prosthetic use. Utilizing this new actuator, the preliminary design of a transtibial prosthesis is presented, which is able to provide sufficient torque output and range of motion for a 75 Kg amputee user in level walking. PMID:24187262

  16. Actuating Fibers: Design and Applications.

    PubMed

    Stoychev, Georgi V; Ionov, Leonid

    2016-09-21

    Actuators are devices capable of moving or controlling objects and systems by applying mechanical force on them. Among all kinds of actuators with different shapes, fibrous ones deserve particular attention. In spite of their apparent simplicity, actuating fibers allow for very complex actuation behavior. This review discusses different approaches for the design of actuating fibers, and their advantages and disadvantages. We also discuss the prospects for the design of fibers with advanced architectures and complex actuation behavior. PMID:27571481

  17. Conducting polymers are simultaneous sensing actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Córdova, Fransisco G.; Ismail, Yahya A.; Martinez, Jose G.; Al Harrasi, Ahmad S.; Otero, Toribio F.

    2013-04-01

    Conducting polymers are soft, wet and reactive gels capable of mimicking biological functions. They are the electrochemomechanical actuators having the ability to sense the surrounding variables simultaneously. The sensing and actuating signals are sent/received back through the same two connecting wires in these materials. The sensing ability is a general property of all conducting polymers arises from the unique electrochemical reaction taking place in them. This sensing ability is verified for two different conducting polymers here - for an electrochemically generated polypyrrole triple layer bending actuator exchanging cations and for a chemically generated polytoluidine linear actuator exchanging anions. The configuration of the polypyrrole actuator device corresponds to polypyrrole-dodecyl benzene sulfonate (pPy-DBS) film/tape/ pPy-DBS film in which the film on one side of the triple layer is acted as anode and the film on the other side acted as cathode simultaneously, and the films interchanged their role when move in the opposite direction. The polytoluidine linear actuator was fabricated using a hydrgel microfiber through in situ chemical polymerization. The sensing characteristics of these two actuators were studied as a function of their working conditions: applied current, electrolyte concentration and temperature in aqueous electrolytes. The chronopotentiometric responses were studied by applying square electrical currents for a specified time. For the pPy actuator it was set to produce angular movement of +/- 45° by the free end of the actuator, consuming constant charges of 60 mC. In both the actuators the evolution of the muscle potential along the electrical current cycle was found to be a function of chemical and physical variables acting on the polymer reaction rates: electrolyte concentration, temperature or driving electrical current. The muscle potential evolved decreases with increasing electrolyte concentrations, increasing temperatures or

  18. Thermo-magnetic materials for use in designing intelligent actuators

    SciTech Connect

    Ohtani, Yoshimutsu; Yoshimura, Fumikatsu; Hatakeyama, Iwao; Ishii, Yoshikazu

    1994-12-31

    The authors present the concept of an intelligent thermal actuator designed by using thermally sensitive magnetic materials. The use of the magnetic transition of FeRh alloy is very effective in increasing the actuator functions. These functions are freedom of direction, tuning temperature, and increasing both sensitivity and power. Two new types of actuator, a remote controlled optical driven thermo-magnetic motor and a temperature sensitive spring-less valve, are proposed and experimental results are shown.

  19. Lock for hydraulic actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, R. H.

    1981-01-01

    Two clamps hold rod in fixed extension from cylinder even when power is off, converting actuator into stiff structural member. Locked actuator is useful as mechanical support or linkage or as fail-safe device in case of loss of hydraulic pressure. Potential applications include manufacturing processes and specialized handling and holding devices.

  20. Do Geographically Isolated Wetlands Influence Landscape Functions?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Landscape functions such as flow generation, nutrient and sediment retention, and biodiversity support depend on the exchange of solutes, particles, energy, and organisms between elements in hydrological and habitat networks. Wetlands are important network elements, providing hyd...

  1. Do geographically isolated wetlands influence landscape functions?

    PubMed

    Cohen, Matthew J; Creed, Irena F; Alexander, Laurie; Basu, Nandita B; Calhoun, Aram J K; Craft, Christopher; D'Amico, Ellen; DeKeyser, Edward; Fowler, Laurie; Golden, Heather E; Jawitz, James W; Kalla, Peter; Kirkman, L Katherine; Lane, Charles R; Lang, Megan; Leibowitz, Scott G; Lewis, David Bruce; Marton, John; McLaughlin, Daniel L; Mushet, David M; Raanan-Kiperwas, Hadas; Rains, Mark C; Smith, Lora; Walls, Susan C

    2016-02-23

    Geographically isolated wetlands (GIWs), those surrounded by uplands, exchange materials, energy, and organisms with other elements in hydrological and habitat networks, contributing to landscape functions, such as flow generation, nutrient and sediment retention, and biodiversity support. GIWs constitute most of the wetlands in many North American landscapes, provide a disproportionately large fraction of wetland edges where many functions are enhanced, and form complexes with other water bodies to create spatial and temporal heterogeneity in the timing, flow paths, and magnitude of network connectivity. These attributes signal a critical role for GIWs in sustaining a portfolio of landscape functions, but legal protections remain weak despite preferential loss from many landscapes. GIWs lack persistent surface water connections, but this condition does not imply the absence of hydrological, biogeochemical, and biological exchanges with nearby and downstream waters. Although hydrological and biogeochemical connectivity is often episodic or slow (e.g., via groundwater), hydrologic continuity and limited evaporative solute enrichment suggest both flow generation and solute and sediment retention. Similarly, whereas biological connectivity usually requires overland dispersal, numerous organisms, including many rare or threatened species, use both GIWs and downstream waters at different times or life stages, suggesting that GIWs are critical elements of landscape habitat mosaics. Indeed, weaker hydrologic connectivity with downstream waters and constrained biological connectivity with other landscape elements are precisely what enhances some GIW functions and enables others. Based on analysis of wetland geography and synthesis of wetland functions, we argue that sustaining landscape functions requires conserving the entire continuum of wetland connectivity, including GIWs.

  2. Hereditary and environmental influences on arterial function.

    PubMed

    Hayward, C S; Benetos, A

    2007-07-01

    1. With the ageing population and increasing heart failure, arterial function has been shown to contribute to cardiovascular risk because of its adverse effects on ventriculovascular coupling. Population studies have confirmed independent prognostic information of arterial stiffening on cardiovascular survival. 2. The term 'arterial function' encompasses a range of phenotypes, including measures of arterial structure/remodelling, measures of arterial wall mechanics, surrogate measures of stiffness and of wave reflection. There exists significant interaction between these measures and none is truly independent of the others. Added to this complexity is the recognition that, although arterial function has a strong genetic component, quantification requires a range of techniques from twin to family and population studies. 3. The contribution of heritability is often derived from statistical models with input from genomic scanning and candidate gene studies. Studies to date confirm a significant heritable component for the majority of phenotypes examined. However, it has also been recognized that the factors involved in blood pressure maintenance are likely to be separate to those in arterial structural degeneration with ageing. Candidate genes for arterial function go beyond those of the sympathetic and renin-angiotensin systems and include genes involved in signalling pathways and extracellular matrix modulation. 4. The present review examines the evidence for heritability of the major arterial function phenotypes with environmental and ageing modulation. A brief overview of the impact of atherosclerotic risk factors on arterial function is included.

  3. Do geographically isolated wetlands influence landscape functions?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cohen, Matthew J.; Creed, Irena F.; Alexander, Laurie C.; Basu, Nandita; Calhoun, Aram J. K.; Craft, Christopher; D’Amico, Ellen; DeKeyser, Edward S.; Fowler, Laurie; Golden, Heather E.; Jawitz, James W.; Kalla, Peter; Kirkman, L. Katherine; Lane, Charles R.; Lang, Megan; Leibowitz, Scott G.; Lewis, David Bruce; Marton, John; McLaughlin, Daniel L.; Mushet, David M.; Raanan-Kiperwas, Hadas; Rains, Mark C.; Smith, Lora; Walls, Susan C.

    2015-01-01

    Geographically isolated wetlands (GIWs), those surrounded by uplands, exchange materials, energy, and organisms with other elements in hydrological and habitat networks, contributing to landscape functions, such as flow generation, nutrient and sediment retention, and biodiversity support. GIWs constitute most of the wetlands in many North American landscapes, provide a disproportionately large fraction of wetland edges where many functions are enhanced, and form complexes with other water bodies to create spatial and temporal heterogeneity in the timing, flow paths, and magnitude of network connectivity. These attributes signal a critical role for GIWs in sustaining a portfolio of landscape functions, but legal protections remain weak despite preferential loss from many landscapes. GIWs lack persistent surface water connections, but this condition does not imply the absence of hydrological, biogeochemical, and biological exchanges with nearby and downstream waters. Although hydrological and biogeochemical connectivity is often episodic or slow (e.g., via groundwater), hydrologic continuity and limited evaporative solute enrichment suggest both flow generation and solute and sediment retention. Similarly, whereas biological connectivity usually requires overland dispersal, numerous organisms, including many rare or threatened species, use both GIWs and downstream waters at different times or life stages, suggesting that GIWs are critical elements of landscape habitat mosaics. Indeed, weaker hydrologic connectivity with downstream waters and constrained biological connectivity with other landscape elements are precisely what enhances some GIW functions and enables others. Based on analysis of wetland geography and synthesis of wetland functions, we argue that sustaining landscape functions requires conserving the entire continuum of wetland connectivity, including GIWs.

  4. Fast electrochemical actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uvarov, I. V.; Postnikov, A. V.; Svetovoy, V. B.

    2016-03-01

    Lack of fast and strong microactuators is a well-recognized problem in MEMS community. Electrochemical 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 termination. Here we demonstrate an actuation regime, for which the gas pressure is relaxed just for 10 μs or so. The actuator consists of a microchamber filled with the electrolyte and covered with a flexible membrane. The membrane bends outward when the pressure in the chamber increases. Fast termination of gas and high pressure developed in the chamber are related to a high density of nanobubbles in the chamber. The physical processes happening in the chamber are discussed so as problems that have to be resolved for practical applications of this actuation regime. The actuator can be used as a driving engine for microfluidics.

  5. The Influence of Peer Tutors and Technology-Actuated Reading Instruction Process on Third-Grade Students' Self-Perceptions as Readers: A Multiple Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Daw, Brenda Shill

    2011-01-01

    Driven by Lev Vygotsky's Sociocultural Theory (1986), my study investigated the self-perceptions and interactions of seven underperforming, third-grade readers while using Technology-Actuated Reading Instruction (TARI). Partnered with same-age peer tutors, readers used digital tools to listen to, read/record, and playback oral reading…

  6. Dynamic Reconstruction and Multivariable Control for Force-Actuated, Thin Facesheet Adaptive Optics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grocott, Simon C. O.; Miller, David W.

    1997-01-01

    The Multiple Mirror Telescope (MMT) under development at the University of Arizona takes a new approach in adaptive optics placing a large (0.65 m) force-actuated, thin facesheet deformable mirror at the secondary of an astronomical telescope, thus reducing the effects of emissivity which are important in IR astronomy. However, The large size of the mirror and low stiffness actuators used drive the natural frequencies of the mirror down into the bandwidth of the atmospheric distortion. Conventional adaptive optics takes a quasi-static approach to controlling the, deformable mirror. However, flexibility within the control bandwidth calls for a new approach to adaptive optics. Dynamic influence functions are used to characterize the influence of each actuator on the surface of the deformable mirror. A linearized model of atmospheric distortion is combined with dynamic influence functions to produce a dynamic reconstructor. This dynamic reconstructor is recognized as an optimal control problem. Solving the optimal control problem for a system with hundreds of actuators and sensors is formidable. Exploiting the circularly symmetric geometry of the mirror, and a suitable model of atmospheric distortion, the control problem is divided into a number of smaller decoupled control problems using circulant matrix theory. A hierarchic control scheme which seeks to emulate the quasi-static control approach that is generally used in adaptive optics is compared to the proposed dynamic reconstruction technique. Although dynamic reconstruction requires somewhat more computational power to implement, it achieves better performance with less power usage, and is less sensitive than the hierarchic technique.

  7. Multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT) as compliant electrodes for dielectric elastomer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chua, Soo-Lim; Neo, Xin-Hui; Lau, Gih-Keong

    2011-04-01

    A stacked dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA) consists of multiple layers of elastomeric dielectrics interleaved with compliant electrodes. It is capable of taking a tensile load if only the interleaving compliant electrodes provide a good bonding and enough elasticity. However, the stacked configuration of DEA was found to produce less actuation strain as compared to a single-layer configuration of pre-stretched membrane. It is believed the binder for compliant electrodes has a significant influence on the actuation strain. Yet, there has yet systematic study on the effect of binder. In this paper, we will study the effects of binder, solvent, and surface fictionalization on the compliant electrodes using the conductive filler of Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotube (MWCNT). Two types of binders are used, namely a soft silicone rubber (Mold Max 10T) and a soft silicone gel (Sylgard 527 gel). The present experiments show that the actuators using binders in the compliant electrodes produce a much lower areal strain as compared to the ones without binders in them. It is found that introducing a binder in the electrodes decreases the conductivity. The MWCNT compliant electrode with binder remains conductive (<1TΩ) up to a strain of 300%, whereas the one without binder remains conductive up to a strain of 800%. Changing the type of binder to a softer and less-viscous one increases the percolation ratio for MWCNT-COOH filler from 5% to 15% but this does not significantly increase the actuation strain. In addition, this study investigates the effect of MWCNT functionalization on the dielectric elastomeric actuation. The compliant electrodes using the MWCNT functionalized with (-COOH) group was also found to have a lower electrical conductivity and areal actuation strain, in comparison to the ones using the pristine MWCNT filler. In addition to binder, solvent for dispersing MWCNT-COOH was found to affect the actuation strain even though the solvent is eventually removed by

  8. Do geographically isolated wetlands influence landscape functions?

    PubMed

    Cohen, Matthew J; Creed, Irena F; Alexander, Laurie; Basu, Nandita B; Calhoun, Aram J K; Craft, Christopher; D'Amico, Ellen; DeKeyser, Edward; Fowler, Laurie; Golden, Heather E; Jawitz, James W; Kalla, Peter; Kirkman, L Katherine; Lane, Charles R; Lang, Megan; Leibowitz, Scott G; Lewis, David Bruce; Marton, John; McLaughlin, Daniel L; Mushet, David M; Raanan-Kiperwas, Hadas; Rains, Mark C; Smith, Lora; Walls, Susan C

    2016-02-23

    Geographically isolated wetlands (GIWs), those surrounded by uplands, exchange materials, energy, and organisms with other elements in hydrological and habitat networks, contributing to landscape functions, such as flow generation, nutrient and sediment retention, and biodiversity support. GIWs constitute most of the wetlands in many North American landscapes, provide a disproportionately large fraction of wetland edges where many functions are enhanced, and form complexes with other water bodies to create spatial and temporal heterogeneity in the timing, flow paths, and magnitude of network connectivity. These attributes signal a critical role for GIWs in sustaining a portfolio of landscape functions, but legal protections remain weak despite preferential loss from many landscapes. GIWs lack persistent surface water connections, but this condition does not imply the absence of hydrological, biogeochemical, and biological exchanges with nearby and downstream waters. Although hydrological and biogeochemical connectivity is often episodic or slow (e.g., via groundwater), hydrologic continuity and limited evaporative solute enrichment suggest both flow generation and solute and sediment retention. Similarly, whereas biological connectivity usually requires overland dispersal, numerous organisms, including many rare or threatened species, use both GIWs and downstream waters at different times or life stages, suggesting that GIWs are critical elements of landscape habitat mosaics. Indeed, weaker hydrologic connectivity with downstream waters and constrained biological connectivity with other landscape elements are precisely what enhances some GIW functions and enables others. Based on analysis of wetland geography and synthesis of wetland functions, we argue that sustaining landscape functions requires conserving the entire continuum of wetland connectivity, including GIWs. PMID:26858425

  9. Do geographically isolated wetlands influence landscape functions?

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Matthew J.; Creed, Irena F.; Alexander, Laurie; Basu, Nandita B.; Calhoun, Aram J. K.; Craft, Christopher; D’Amico, Ellen; DeKeyser, Edward; Fowler, Laurie; Golden, Heather E.; Jawitz, James W.; Kalla, Peter; Kirkman, L. Katherine; Lane, Charles R.; Lang, Megan; Leibowitz, Scott G.; Lewis, David Bruce; Marton, John; McLaughlin, Daniel L.; Mushet, David M.; Raanan-Kiperwas, Hadas; Rains, Mark C.; Smith, Lora; Walls, Susan C.

    2016-01-01

    Geographically isolated wetlands (GIWs), those surrounded by uplands, exchange materials, energy, and organisms with other elements in hydrological and habitat networks, contributing to landscape functions, such as flow generation, nutrient and sediment retention, and biodiversity support. GIWs constitute most of the wetlands in many North American landscapes, provide a disproportionately large fraction of wetland edges where many functions are enhanced, and form complexes with other water bodies to create spatial and temporal heterogeneity in the timing, flow paths, and magnitude of network connectivity. These attributes signal a critical role for GIWs in sustaining a portfolio of landscape functions, but legal protections remain weak despite preferential loss from many landscapes. GIWs lack persistent surface water connections, but this condition does not imply the absence of hydrological, biogeochemical, and biological exchanges with nearby and downstream waters. Although hydrological and biogeochemical connectivity is often episodic or slow (e.g., via groundwater), hydrologic continuity and limited evaporative solute enrichment suggest both flow generation and solute and sediment retention. Similarly, whereas biological connectivity usually requires overland dispersal, numerous organisms, including many rare or threatened species, use both GIWs and downstream waters at different times or life stages, suggesting that GIWs are critical elements of landscape habitat mosaics. Indeed, weaker hydrologic connectivity with downstream waters and constrained biological connectivity with other landscape elements are precisely what enhances some GIW functions and enables others. Based on analysis of wetland geography and synthesis of wetland functions, we argue that sustaining landscape functions requires conserving the entire continuum of wetland connectivity, including GIWs. PMID:26858425

  10. Personality functioning: the influence of stature

    PubMed Central

    Ulph, F; Betts, P; Mulligan, J; Stratford, R

    2004-01-01

    Background: The Wessex Growth Study has monitored the psychological development of a large cohort of short normal and average height control participants since school entry. Aims: To examine the effect of stature on their personality functioning now that they are aged 18–20 years. Methods: This report contains data from 48 short normal and 66 control participants. Mean height SD score at recruitment was: short normals -2.62 SD, controls -0.22 SD. Final height SD score was: short normals -1.86, controls 0.07. The Adolescent to Adult Personality Functioning Assessment (ADAPFA) measures functioning in six domains: education and employment, love relationships, friendships, coping, social contacts, and negotiations. Results: No significant effect of recruitment height or final height was found on total ADAPFA score or on any of the domain scores. Socioeconomic status significantly affected total score, employment and education, and coping domain scores. Gender had a significant effect on total score, love relationships, coping, and social contacts domain scores. Salient aspects of daily living for this sample were identified from the interviews (prevalence%): consuming alcohol (94%), further education (63%), love relationships (55%), current drug use (29%), experience of violence (28%), parenthood (11%), and unemployment (9%). Stature was not significantly related to behaviour in any of these areas. Conclusions: Despite previously reported links between short stature and poorer psychosocial adaptation, no evidence was found that stature per se significantly affected the functioning of the participants in these areas as young adults. PMID:14709494

  11. Global network influences on local functional connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Snyder, Adam C.; Morais, Michael J.; Willis, Cory M.; Smith, Matthew A.

    2015-01-01

    A central neuroscientific pursuit is understanding neuronal interactions that support computations underlying cognition and behavior. Although neurons interact across disparate scales – from cortical columns to whole-brain networks – research has been restricted to one scale at a time. We measured local interactions through multi-neuronal recordings while accessing global networks using scalp EEG in rhesus macaques. We measured spike count correlation, an index of functional connectivity with computational relevance, and EEG oscillations, which have been linked to various cognitive functions. We found a surprising non-monotonic relationship between EEG oscillation amplitude and spike count correlation, contrary to the intuitive expectation of a direct relationship. With a widely-used network model we replicated these findings by incorporating a private signal targeting inhibitory neurons, a common mechanism proposed for gain modulation. Finally, we report that spike count correlation explains nonlinearities in the relationship between EEG oscillations and response time in a spatial selective attention task. PMID:25799040

  12. Influence of age on neurotransmitter function.

    PubMed

    Simpkins, J W; Millard, W J

    1987-12-01

    Regulation by neurotransmitters of anterior pituitary hormone secretion is complex and a thorough understanding of their normal role in hormone secretion is a prerequisite to understanding their involvement in age-related changes in endocrine function. To date, uncertainties far out-number demonstrated causative relationships between alterations in neurotransmitter release and resulting age-associated changes in hormone secretion. The best demonstrated relationships are the following. First, a decline in function of the TIDA system is responsible, in part, for the age-related elevation in prolactin secretion and may be involved in the decline in LH secretion. Second, the age-related decrease in hypothalamic norepinephrine turnover plays a role in the decline in LH and GH secretion and may be involved in alterations in TSH secretion during aging. Third, the decline in circadian activity of suprachiasmatic nucleus serotoninergic neurons may account for the blunting of circadian rhythms in the secretions of several anterior pituitary hormones in old animals. Fourth, evidence exists for an age-related decline in function of LHRH neurons, which may contribute to the observation of blunted LH secretion in old animals. Finally, somatostatin release may be increased in old animals, which likely contributes to the age-related decline in GH secretion. Other hypothalamic-releasing hormones have only recently been isolated and characterized; thus, little research on their age-related alterations has been done. Research on these neuropeptides will contribute further to our understanding of the role of neurotransmitters in age-related alterations in hormone secretion.

  13. MEMS Actuated Deformable Mirror

    SciTech Connect

    Papavasiliou, A; Olivier, S; Barbee, T; Walton, C; Cohn, M

    2005-11-10

    This ongoing work concerns the creation of a deformable mirror by the integration of MEMS actuators with Nanolaminate foils through metal compression boning. These mirrors will use the advantages of these disparate technologies to achieve dense actuation of a high-quality, continuous mirror surface. They will enable advanced adaptive optics systems in large terrestrial telescopes. While MEMS actuators provide very dense actuation with high precision they can not provide large forces typically necessary to deform conventional mirror surfaces. Nanolaminate foils can be fabricated with very high surface quality while their extraordinary mechanical properties enable very thin, flexible foils to survive the rigors of fabrication. Precise metal compression bonding allows the attachment of the fragile MEMS actuators to the thin nanolaminate foils without creating distortions at the bond sites. This paper will describe work in four major areas: (1) modeling and design, (2) bonding development, (3) nanolaminate foil development, (4) producing a prototype. A first-principles analytical model was created and used to determine the design parameters. A method of bonding was determined that is both strong, and minimizes the localized deformation or print through. Work has also been done to produce nanolaminate foils that are sufficiently thin, flexible and flat to be deformed by the MEMS actuators. Finally a prototype was produced by bonding thin, flexible nanolaminate foils to commercially available MEMS actuators.

  14. Cryogenic Piezoelectric Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2009-01-01

    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.

  15. Effect of mass loading on ionic polymer metal composite actuators and sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakthi Swarrup, J.; Ganguli, Ranjan

    2015-04-01

    Ionic polymer metal composites (IPMC) actuator for flapping insect scale wing is advantageous due to its low mass, high deflection and simple actuation mechanism. Some of the factors that affect the actuation of IPMC are the amount of hydration in the polymer membrane and the environmental conditions such as temperature, humidity etc. In structural design, the attachment of wing on the IPMC actuators is an important concern as the attached wing increases the mass of actuators thereby affecting the parameters like displacement, stiffness and resonant frequencies. Such IPMC actuators have to produce sufficient actuation force and frequency to lift and flap the attached wing. Therefore, it is relevant to study the influence of attachment of wing on the actuator parameters (displacement, resonant frequency, block force and stiffness) and performance of the actuators. This paper is divided into two parts; the first part deals with the modeling of the IPMC actuators for its effect on the level of water uptake and temperature using energy based method. The modeling method adapted is validated with the experimental procedure used to actuate the IPMC. The second part deals with the experimental analysis of IPMC actuation at dry, wet and in water conditions. The effect of end mass loading on the performance of 20 Hz, high frequency actuator (HFA) and 8.7 Hz, low frequency IPMC actuators (LFA) and sensors is studied. The IPMC actuators are attached with IPMC flapping wing at its free end and performance analysis on the attached wing is also carried out.

  16. Investigations of electronic amplifiers supplying a piezobimorph actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milecki, Andrzej; Regulski, Roman

    2016-10-01

    Piezoelectric bending actuators, also known as bimorphs, are characterized by very good dynamic properties and by displacements in a range of a few millimeters. Therefore these actuators are used in a wide range of applications. However their usage is limited because they require supplying amplifiers with output voltage of about 200 V, which are rather expensive. This paper presents investigation results of such amplifiers with high voltage output. The model of a piezobending actuator is proposed and implemented in Matlab-Simulink software in order to simulate the behavior of the actuator supplied by the amplifiers. The simulation results are presented and compared with investigation results of high voltage amplifier used for supplying a piezoactuator. The influence of current limitation of operational amplifier on the actuator current is tested. Finally, a low cost audio power amplifier is proposed to control the piezobender actuator (as a cheaper alternative to the high-voltage amplifier) and its investigations results are presented in the paper.

  17. [The influence of lead on testis function].

    PubMed

    Martynowicz, Helena; Andrzejak, Ryszard; Medraś, Marek

    2005-01-01

    The deterioration of male fertility, found in numerous epidemiological studies of past decades, can be connected to growing exposure to environmental toxins. Heavy metals, especially lead is widely spread and extremely toxic. The mechanism by which lead exerts toxic effects on testis is quite complex. It involves spermatogenesis, steroidogenesis, and red-ox system. The chronic lead exposure can induce functional disorder (decrease of testosterone synthesis) or morphological disorder (decrease of testicular weight and seminal vesicle, peritubular fibrosis, seminiferous tubular diameter decrease and decrease in germ cell population related to an apoptotic process). Currently existing environmental and occupational exposure to lead and increasing combined exposure to environmental toxins results in constantly increasing number of diagnosed fertility impairments.

  18. Design and characteristics of MRF-based actuators for torque transmission under influence of high shear rates up to 34,000s-1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Güth, Dirk; Erbis, Vadim; Schamoni, Markus; Maas, Jürgen

    2014-04-01

    High rotational speeds for brakes and clutches based on magnetorheological fluids represent a remaining challenge for the industrial or automotive application. Beside particle centrifugation effects and rotational speed-depending no-load losses, the torque characteristic is an important property that needs to considered in the design process of actuators. Due to missing experimental data for these operating conditions, in this paper the shear rate and flux depending yield stress behavior of magnetorheological uids is experimentally investigated for high rotational speeds or respectively high shear rates. Therefore a brake actuator with variable shear gap heights up to 4 mm is designed, realized and used for the experimental investigation, which are performed for a maximum shear rate of ƴ= 34; 000 s-1 under large magnetic elds. The measurement results point out a strong dependency between shear rate, magnetic ux density and resulting yield stress. For low shear gap heights, a significant reduction in the yield stress up to 10 % can be determined. Additionally the development of Taylor vortices is determined, which will not only occur in viscous case without an applied magnetic field. The measurement results are important for a reliable actuator design which should be used in application with high rotational speeds.

  19. Electrothermal linear actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Derr, L. J.; Tobias, R. A.

    1969-01-01

    Converting electric power into powerful linear thrust without generation of magnetic fields is accomplished with an electrothermal linear actuator. When treated by an energized filament, a stack of bimetallic washers expands and drives the end of the shaft upward.

  20. Rotary series elastic actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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)

    2012-01-01

    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.

  1. Rotary Series Elastic Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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)

    2013-01-01

    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.

  2. Magnetically Actuated Seal

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pinera, Alex

    2013-01-01

    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.

  3. Muscle Motion Solenoid Actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obata, Shuji

    It is one of our dreams to mechanically recover the lost body for damaged humans. Realistic humanoid robots composed of such machines require muscle motion actuators controlled by all pulling actions. Particularly, antagonistic pairs of bi-articular muscles are very important in animal's motions. A system of actuators is proposed using the electromagnetic force of the solenoids with the abilities of the stroke length over 10 cm and the strength about 20 N, which are needed to move the real human arm. The devised actuators are based on developments of recent modern electro-magnetic materials, where old time materials can not give such possibility. Composite actuators are controlled by a high ability computer and software making genuine motions.

  4. Tendon Driven Finger Actuation System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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); Permenter, Frank Noble (Inventor); Mehling, Joshua S. (Inventor)

    2013-01-01

    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.

  5. Electrostatic Linear Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Collins, Earl R., Jr.; Curry, Kenneth C.

    1990-01-01

    Electrically charged helices attract or repel each other. Proposed electrostatic linear actuator made with intertwined dual helices, which holds charge-bearing surfaces. Dual-helix configuration provides relatively large unbroken facing charged surfaces (relatively large electrostatic force) within small volume. Inner helix slides axially in outer helix in response to voltages applied to conductors. Spiral form also makes components more rigid. Actuator conceived to have few moving parts and to be operable after long intervals of inactivity.

  6. Combustion powered linear actuator

    DOEpatents

    Fischer, Gary J.

    2007-09-04

    The present invention provides robotic vehicles having wheeled and hopping mobilities that are capable of traversing (e.g. by hopping over) obstacles that are large in size relative to the robot and, are capable of operation in unpredictable terrain over long range. The present invention further provides combustion powered linear actuators, which can include latching mechanisms to facilitate pressurized fueling of the actuators, as can be used to provide wheeled vehicles with a hopping mobility.

  7. Simulation and control of an electro-hydraulic actuated clutch

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balau, Andreea-Elena; Caruntu, Constantin-Florin; Lazar, Corneliu

    2011-08-01

    The basic function of any type of automotive transmission is to transfer the engine torque to the vehicle with the desired ratio smoothly and efficiently and the most common control devices inside the transmission are clutches and hydraulic pistons. The automatic control of the clutch engagement plays a crucial role in Automatic Manual Transmission (AMT) vehicles, being seen as an increasingly important enabling technology for the automotive industry. It has a major role in automatic gear shifting and traction control for improved safety, drivability and comfort and, at the same time, for fuel economy. In this paper, a model for a wet clutch actuated by an electro-hydraulic valve used by Volkswagen for automatic transmissions is presented. Starting from the developed model, a simulator was implemented in Matlab/Simulink and the model was validated against data obtained from a test-bench provided by Continental Automotive Romania, which includes the Volkswagen wet clutch actuated by the electro-hydraulic valve. Then, a predictive control strategy is applied to the model of the electro-hydraulic actuated clutch with the aims of controlling the clutch piston displacement and decreasing the influence of the network-induced delays on the control performances. The simulation results obtained with the proposed method are compared with the ones obtained with different networked controllers and it is shown that the strategy proposed in this paper can indeed improve the performances of the control system.

  8. Species identity influences belowground arthropod assemblages via functional traits

    PubMed Central

    Gorman, Courtney E.; Read, Quentin D.; Van Nuland, Michael E.; Bryant, Jessica A. M.; Welch, Jessica N.; Altobelli, Joseph T.; Douglas, Morgan J.; Genung, Mark A.; Haag, Elliot N.; Jones, Devin N.; Long, Hannah E.; Wilburn, Adam D.; Schweitzer, Jennifer A.; Bailey, Joseph K.

    2013-01-01

    Plant species influence belowground communities in a variety of ways, ultimately impacting nutrient cycling. Functional plant traits provide a means whereby species identity can influence belowground community interactions, but little work has examined whether species identity influences belowground community processes when correcting for evolutionary history. Specifically, we hypothesized that closely related species would exhibit (i) more similar leaf and root functional traits than more distantly related species, and (ii) more similar associated soil arthropod communities. We found that after correcting for evolutionary history, tree species identity influenced belowground arthropod communities through plant functional traits. These data suggest that plant species structure may be an important predictor in shaping associated soil arthropod communities and further suggest the importance of better understanding the extended consequences of evolutionary history on ecological processes, as similarity in traits may not always reflect similar ecology.

  9. Hybrid electromechanical actuator and actuation system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2008-01-01

    A hybrid electromechanical actuator has two different types of electromechanical elements, one that expands in a transverse direction when electric power is applied thereto and one that contracts in a transverse direction when electric power is applied thereto. The two electromechanical elements are (i) disposed in relation to one another such that the transverse directions thereof are parallel to one another, and (ii) mechanically coupled to one another at least at two opposing edges thereof. Electric power is applied simultaneously to the elements.

  10. Variable Valve Actuation

    SciTech Connect

    Jeffrey Gutterman; A. J. Lasley

    2008-08-31

    mechanism it was determined that the single cam design did not have enough flexibility to satisfy three critical OEM requirements simultaneously, (maximum valve lift variation, intake valve opening timing and valve closing duration), and a new approach would be necessary. After numerous internal design reviews including several with the OEM a dual cam design was developed that had the flexibility to meet all motion requirements. The second cam added complexity to the mechanism however the cost was offset by the deletion of the electric motor required in the previous design. New patent applications including detailed drawings and potential valve motion profiles were generated and alternate two cam designs were proposed and evaluated for function, cost, reliability and durability. Hardware was designed and built and testing of sample hardware was successfully completed on an engine test stand. The mechanism developed during the course of this investigation can be applied by Original Equipment Manufacturers, (OEM), to their advanced diesel engines with the ultimate goal of reducing emissions and improving fuel economy. The objectives are: (1) Develop an optimal, cost effective, variable valve actuation (VVA) system for advanced low temperature diesel combustion processes. (2) Design and model alternative mechanical approaches and down-select for optimum design. (3) Build and demonstrate a mechanism capable of application on running engines.

  11. Lightweight in-plane actuated deformable mirrors for space telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shepherd, Michael J.

    This research focused on lightweight, in-plane actuated, deformable mirrors, with the ultimate goal of developing a 20-meter or larger diameter light gathering aperture for space telescopes. Membrane optics is the study of these structures which may be stowed compactly and unfurled in orbit. This effort comprised four research areas: modelling, analytical solutions, surface control strategy, and scaling. Initially, experimental results were compared to theory using a 0.127 meter diameter deformable mirror testbed. The mirror was modelled using finite elements with MSC.Nastran software, where a boundary tension field was determined using laser vibrometer data. A non-linear solution technique was used to incorporate the membrane stiffening from the applied tension. Statically obtained actuator influence functions were compared to experimentally achieved data, and then a least squares approach was used as the basis for creating a quasi-static control algorithm. Experimental simultaneous tracking of Zernike tip, tilt, and defocus modes was successfully demonstrated. The analytical solutions to plate-membrane and beam-string ordinary differential equation representing the deformable mirror equations were developed. A simplified approach to modelling the axisymmetric cases was also presented. Significantly, it was shown both analytically and through numerical analysis that static actuation for a mirror with a discrete electrode pattern and a high tension-to-stiffness ratio was simply a localized piston displacement in the region of the actuator. Next, a novel static control strategy, the Modal Transformation Method, was developed for membrane mirrors. The method was implemented in finite element simulation, and shows the capability of the in-plane actuated mirror to form Zernike surfaces within an interior, or clear aperture, region using a number of statically-actuated structural modes. Lastly, the scaling problem for membrane optics was addressed. Linear modelling was

  12. Piezoelectric Actuator Modeling Using MSC/NASTRAN and MATLAB

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reaves, Mercedes C.; Horta, Lucas G.

    2003-01-01

    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.

  13. Miniaturized auto-focusing VCM actuator with zero holding current.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chien-Sheng; Lin, Psang Dain

    2009-06-01

    In keeping with consumers' preferences for electronic products of ever smaller size and enhanced functionality, it is necessary to reduce the profile of the auto-focusing actuators used in camera phones without sacrificing their performance. Accordingly, this study modifies the Voice Coil Motor (VCM) actuator proposed by the current group in a previous study (C. S. Liu and P. D. Lin, Opt. Express, 16, 2533-2540, 2008) to accomplish a miniaturized auto-focusing actuator for cell phone camera modules with minimal power consumption. The proposed device comprises a VCM, a closed-loop position control system, a magnetoconductive plate, and a lens support structure to drive the lens to the optimal focusing position. The experimental results show that the actuator has a zero holding current when maintaining the lens in the specified focusing position. Overall, it is shown that compared to existing VCM actuators, the proposed actuator has bo a higher power efficiency and an improved positioning repeatability.

  14. Miniaturized auto-focusing VCM actuator with zero holding current.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chien-Sheng; Lin, Psang Dain

    2009-06-01

    In keeping with consumers' preferences for electronic products of ever smaller size and enhanced functionality, it is necessary to reduce the profile of the auto-focusing actuators used in camera phones without sacrificing their performance. Accordingly, this study modifies the Voice Coil Motor (VCM) actuator proposed by the current group in a previous study (C. S. Liu and P. D. Lin, Opt. Express, 16, 2533-2540, 2008) to accomplish a miniaturized auto-focusing actuator for cell phone camera modules with minimal power consumption. The proposed device comprises a VCM, a closed-loop position control system, a magnetoconductive plate, and a lens support structure to drive the lens to the optimal focusing position. The experimental results show that the actuator has a zero holding current when maintaining the lens in the specified focusing position. Overall, it is shown that compared to existing VCM actuators, the proposed actuator has bo a higher power efficiency and an improved positioning repeatability. PMID:19506625

  15. Shape memory alloy actuated adaptive exhaust nozzle for jet engine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Song, Gangbing (Inventor); Ma, Ning (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

    The proposed adaptive exhaust nozzle features an innovative use of the shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators for actively control of the opening area of the exhaust nozzle for jet engines. The SMA actuators remotely control the opening area of the exhaust nozzle through a set of mechanism. An important advantage of using SMA actuators is the reduction of weight of the actuator system for variable area exhaust nozzle. Another advantage is that the SMA actuator can be activated using the heat from the exhaust and eliminate the need of other energy source. A prototype has been designed and fabricated. The functionality of the proposed SMA actuated adaptive exhaust nozzle is verified in the open-loop tests.

  16. The Load Capability of Piezoelectric Single Crystal Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2006-01-01

    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.

  17. The Load Capability of Piezoelectric Single Crystal Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2007-01-01

    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.

  18. Turbocharger with dual function actuator

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, C.D.; Janik, M.; Tomoyasu, R.S.

    1990-01-16

    This patent describes an exhaust gas driven turbocharger. It comprises: a housing, a shaft rotatably mounted in the housing, a turbine wheel and a compressor wheel mounted in the housing on the shaft for rotation therewith. The housing defining a turbine inlet passage and a compressor inlet passage for communicating exhaust gas to the turbine wheel and ambient air to the compressor wheel respectively and further defining a turbine outlet passage and a compressor outlet passage for communicating exhaust gas and compressed air respectively from the housing a wastegate valve for venting the turbine inlet passage.

  19. Position Sensor Integral with a Linear Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howard, David E.; Alhorn, Dean C.

    2004-01-01

    A noncontact position sensor has been designed for use with a specific two-dimensional linear electromagnetic actuator. To minimize the bulk and weight added by the sensor, the sensor has been made an integral part of the actuator: that is to say, parts of the actuator structure and circuitry are used for sensing as well as for varying position. The actuator (see Figure 1) includes a C-shaped permanent magnet and an armature that is approximately centered in the magnet gap. The intended function of the actuator is to cause the permanent magnet to translate to, and/or remain at, commanded x and y coordinates, relative to the armature. In addition, some incidental relative motion along the z axis is tolerated but not controlled. The sensor is required to measure the x and y displacements from a nominal central position and to be relatively insensitive to z displacement. The armature contains two sets of electromagnet windings oriented perpendicularly to each other and electrically excited in such a manner as to generate forces in the x,y plane to produce the required motion. Small sensor excitation coils are mounted on the pole tips of the permanent magnet. These coils are excited with a sine wave at a frequency of 20 kHz. This excitation is transformer-coupled to the armature windings. The geometric arrangement of the excitation coils and armature windings is such that the amplitudes of the 20-kHz voltages induced in the armature windings vary nearly linearly with x and y displacements and do not vary significantly with small z displacements. Because the frequency of 20 kHz is much greater than the maximum frequency characteristic of the actuation signals applied to the armature windings, there is no appreciable interference between actuator and sensor functions of the armature windings.

  20. Altering prosthetic foot stiffness influences foot and muscle function during below-knee amputee walking: a modeling and simulation analysis.

    PubMed

    Fey, Nicholas P; Klute, Glenn K; Neptune, Richard R

    2013-02-22

    Most prosthetic feet are designed to improve amputee gait by storing and releasing elastic energy during stance. However, how prosthetic foot stiffness influences muscle and foot function is unclear. Identifying these relationships would provide quantitative rationale for prosthetic foot prescription that may lead to improved amputee gait. The purpose of this study was to identify the influence of altered prosthetic foot stiffness on muscle and foot function using forward dynamics simulations of amputee walking. Three 2D muscle-actuated forward dynamics simulations of unilateral below-knee amputee walking with a range of foot stiffness levels were generated, and muscle and prosthetic foot contributions to body support and propulsion and residual leg swing were quantified. As stiffness decreased, the prosthetic keel provided increased support and braking (negative propulsion) during the first half of stance while the heel contribution to support decreased. During the second half of stance, the keel provided decreased propulsion and increased support. In addition, the keel absorbed less power from the leg, contributing more to swing initiation. Thus, several muscle compensations were necessary. During the first half of stance, the residual leg hamstrings provided decreased support and increased propulsion. During the second half of stance, the intact leg vasti provided increased support and the residual leg rectus femoris transferred increased energy from the leg to the trunk for propulsion. These results highlight the influence prosthetic foot stiffness has on muscle and foot function throughout the gait cycle and may aid in prescribing feet of appropriate stiffness.

  1. Digital Actuator Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Ken Thomas; Ted Quinn; Jerry Mauck; Richard Bockhorst

    2014-09-01

    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

  2. Actuating critical care therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Stone, David J; Csete, Marie

    2016-10-01

    Viewing the intensive care unit (ICU) as a control system with inputs (patients) and outputs (outcomes), we focus on actuation (therapies) of the system and how to enhance our understanding of status of patients and their trajectory in the ICU. To incorporate the results of these analytics meaningfully, we feel that a reassessment of predictive scoring systems and of ways to optimally characterize and display the patient's "state space" to clinicians is important. Advances in sensing (diagnostics) and computation have not yet led to significantly better actuation, and so we focus on ways that data can be used to improve actuation in the ICU, in particular by following therapeutic burden along with disease severity. This article is meant to encourage discussion about how the critical care community can best deal with the data they see each day, and prepare for recommendations that will inevitably arise from application of major federal and state initiatives in big data analytics and precision medicine.

  3. Quantifying phase function influence in subdiffusively backscattered light.

    PubMed

    Bodenschatz, Nico; Krauter, Philipp; Liemert, André; Kienle, Alwin

    2016-03-01

    Light backscattering at short source-detector separations is considerably influenced by the scattering phase function of a turbid medium. We seek to more precisely relate a medium's subdiffusive backscattering to the angular scattering characteristics of its microstructure. First, we demonstrate the inability of the scattering asymmetry g1 = < cos θ > to predict phase function influence on backscattering and reveal ambiguities related to the established phase function parameter γ. Through the use of high-order similarity relations, we introduce a new parameter that more accurately relates a scattering phase function to its subdiffusive backscattering intensity. Using extensive analytical forward calculations based on solutions to the radiative transfer equation in the spatial domain and spatial frequency domain, we demonstrate the superiority of our empirically derived quantifier σ over the established parameter γ. PMID:26968384

  4. Evaluation of New Actuators in a Buffet Loads Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moses, Robert W.; Wieseman, Carol D.; Bent, Aaron A.; Pizzochero, Alessandro E.

    2001-01-01

    Ongoing research in buffet loads alleviation has provided an application for recently developed piezoelectric actuators capable of higher force output than previously existing actuators could provide and that can be embedded within the vehicle s structure. These new actuators, having interdigitated electrodes, promise increased performance over previous piezoelectric actuators that were tested on the fin of an F/A-18 aircraft. Two new actuators being considered by the United States Air Force to reduce buffet loads on high performance aircraft were embedded into the fins of an F/A-18 wind-tunnel model and tested in the Transonic Dynamics Tunnel at the NASA Langley Research Center. The purpose of this test program, called ENABLE (Evaluation of New Actuators in a Buffet Loads Environment), was to examine the performance of the new actuators in alleviating fin buffeting, leading to a systems -level study of a fin buffet loads alleviation system architecture being considered by the USAF, Boeing, and NASA for implementation on high performance aircraft. During this windtunnel test, the two actuators performed superbly in alleviating fin buffeting. Peak values of the power spectral density functions for tip acceleration were reduced by as much as 85%. RMS values of tip acceleration were reduced by as much as 40% while using less than 50% of the actuators capacity. Details of the wind-tunnel model and results of the wind-tunnel test are provided herein.

  5. Evaluation of new actuators in a buffet loads environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moses, Robert W.; Wieseman, Carol D.; Bent, Aaron A.; Pizzochero, Alessandro E.

    2001-06-01

    Ongoing research in buffet loads alleviation has provided an application for recently developed piezoelectric actuators capable of higher force output than previously existing actuators could provide and that can be embedded within the vehicle's structure. These new actuators, having interdigitated electrodes, promise increased performance over previous piezoelectric actuators that were tested on the fin of an F/A-18 aircraft. Two new actuators being considered by the United States Air Force to reduce buffet loads on high performance aircraft were embedded into the fins of an F/A-18 wind-tunnel model and tested in the transonic Dynamics Tunnel at the NASA Langley Research Center. The purpose of this test program, called ENABLE (Evaluation of New Actuators in a Buffet Loads Environment), was to examine the performance of the new actuators in alleviating fin buffeting, leading to a systems-level study of a fin buffet loads alleviation system architecture being considered by the USAF, Boeing, and NASA for implementation on high performance aircraft. During this wind-tunnel test, the two actuators performed superbly in alleviating fin buffeting. Peak values of the power spectral density functions for tip acceleration were reduced by as much as 85%. RMS values of tip acceleration were reduced by as much as 40% while using less than 50% of the actuator's capacity. Details of the wind-tunnel model and results of the wind- tunnel test are provided herein.

  6. Hydraulic involute cam actuator

    DOEpatents

    Love, Lonnie J.; Lind, Randall F.

    2011-11-01

    Mechanical joints are provided in which the angle between a first coupled member and a second coupled member may be varied by mechanical actuators. In some embodiments the angle may be varied around a pivot axis in one plane and in some embodiments the angle may be varied around two pivot axes in two orthogonal planes. The joints typically utilize a cam assembly having two lobes with an involute surface. Actuators are configured to push against the lobes to vary the rotation angle between the first and second coupled member.

  7. Fault tolerant linear actuator

    DOEpatents

    Tesar, Delbert

    2004-09-14

    In varying embodiments, the fault tolerant linear actuator of the present invention is a new and improved linear actuator with fault tolerance and positional control that may incorporate velocity summing, force summing, or a combination of the two. In one embodiment, the invention offers a velocity summing arrangement with a differential gear between two prime movers driving a cage, which then drives a linear spindle screw transmission. Other embodiments feature two prime movers driving separate linear spindle screw transmissions, one internal and one external, in a totally concentric and compact integrated module.

  8. Applications of dielectric elastomer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelrine, Ron; Sommer-Larsen, Peter; Kornbluh, Roy D.; Heydt, Richard; Kofod, Guggi; Pei, Qibing; Gravesen, Peter

    2001-07-01

    Dielectric elastomer actuators, based on the field-induced deformation of elastomeric polymers with compliant electrodes, can produce a large strain response, combined with a fast response time and high electromechanical efficiency. This unique performance, combined with other factors such as low cost, suggests many potential applications, a wide range of which are under investigation. Applications that effectively exploit the properties of dielectric elastomers include artificial muscle actuators for robots; low-cost, lightweight linear actuators; solid- state optical devices; diaphragm actuators for pumps and smart skins; acoustic actuators; and rotary motors. Issues that may ultimately determine the success or failure of the actuation technology for specific applications include the durability of the actuator, the performance of the actuator under load, operating voltage and power requirements, and electronic driving circuitry, to name a few.

  9. Evolutionary flight and enabling smart actuator devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manzo, Justin; Garcia, Ephrahim

    2007-04-01

    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.

  10. Active Flow Control Using Sweeping Jet Actuators on a Semi-Span Wing Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Melton, LaTunia Pack; Koklu, Mehti

    2016-01-01

    Wind tunnel experiments were performed using active flow control on an unswept semispan wing model with a 30% chord trailing edge flap to aid in the selection of actuators for a planned high Reynolds number experiment. Two sweeping jet actuator sizes were investigated to determine the influence of actuator size on the active flow control system efficiency. Sweeping jet actuators with orifice sizes of 1 mm x 2 mm and 2 mm x 4 mm were selected because of the differences in actuator jet sweep angle. The parameters that were varied include actuator momentum, freestream velocity, and trailing edge flap deflection angle. Steady and unsteady pressure data, Particle Image Velocimetry data, and force and moment data were acquired to assess the performance of the two actuators. In addition to the wind tunnel experiments, benchtop studies of the actuators were performed to characterize the jets produced by each actuator. Benchtop investigations of the smaller actuator reveal that the jet exiting the actuator has a reduced sweep angle compared to published data for larger versions of this type of actuator. The larger actuator produces an oscillating jet that attaches to the external di?user walls at low supply pressures and produces the expected sweep angles. The AFC results using the smaller actuators show that while the actuators can control flow separation, the selected spacing of 3.3 cm may be too large due to the reduced sweep angle. In comparison, the spacing for the larger actuators, 6.6 cm, appears to be optimal for the Mach numbers investigated. Particle Image Velocimetry results are presented and show how the wall jets produced by the actuators cause the flow to attach to the flap surface.

  11. Mycorrhizas influence functional traits of two tallgrass prairie species.

    PubMed

    Weremijewicz, Joanna; Seto, Kotaro

    2016-06-01

    Over the past decade, functional traits that influence plant performance and thus, population, community, and ecosystem biology have garnered increasing attention. Generally lacking, however, has been consideration of how ubiquitous arbuscular mycorrhizas influence plant allometric and stoichiometric functional traits. We assessed how plant dependence on and responsiveness to mycorrhizas influence plant functional traits of a warm-season, C4 grass, Andropogon gerardii Vitman, and the contrasting, cool-season, C3 grass, Elymus canadensis L. We grew both host species with and without inoculation with mycorrhizal fungi, across a broad gradient of soil phosphorus availabilities. Both host species were facultatively mycotrophic, able to grow without mycorrhizas at high soil phosphorus availability. A. gerardii was most dependent upon mycorrhizas and E. canadensis was weakly dependent, but highly responsive to mycorrhizas. The high dependence of A. gerardii on mycorrhizas resulted in higher tissue P and N concentrations of inoculated than noninoculated plants. When not inoculated, E. canadensis was able to take up both P and N in similar amounts to inoculated plants because of its weak dependence on mycorrhizas for nutrient uptake and its pronounced ability to change root-to-shoot ratios. Unlike other highly dependent species, A. gerardii had a high root-to-shoot ratio and was able to suppress colonization by mycorrhizal fungi at high soil fertilities. E. canadensis, however, was unable to suppress colonization and had a lower root-to shoot ratio than A. gerardii. The mycorrhiza-related functional traits of both host species likely influence their performance in nature: both species attained the maximum responsiveness from mycorrhizas at soil phosphorus availabilities similar to those of tallgrass prairies. Dependence upon mycorrhizas affects performance in the absence of mycorrhizas. Responsiveness to mycorrhizal fungi is also a function of the environment and

  12. Mycorrhizas influence functional traits of two tallgrass prairie species.

    PubMed

    Weremijewicz, Joanna; Seto, Kotaro

    2016-06-01

    Over the past decade, functional traits that influence plant performance and thus, population, community, and ecosystem biology have garnered increasing attention. Generally lacking, however, has been consideration of how ubiquitous arbuscular mycorrhizas influence plant allometric and stoichiometric functional traits. We assessed how plant dependence on and responsiveness to mycorrhizas influence plant functional traits of a warm-season, C4 grass, Andropogon gerardii Vitman, and the contrasting, cool-season, C3 grass, Elymus canadensis L. We grew both host species with and without inoculation with mycorrhizal fungi, across a broad gradient of soil phosphorus availabilities. Both host species were facultatively mycotrophic, able to grow without mycorrhizas at high soil phosphorus availability. A. gerardii was most dependent upon mycorrhizas and E. canadensis was weakly dependent, but highly responsive to mycorrhizas. The high dependence of A. gerardii on mycorrhizas resulted in higher tissue P and N concentrations of inoculated than noninoculated plants. When not inoculated, E. canadensis was able to take up both P and N in similar amounts to inoculated plants because of its weak dependence on mycorrhizas for nutrient uptake and its pronounced ability to change root-to-shoot ratios. Unlike other highly dependent species, A. gerardii had a high root-to-shoot ratio and was able to suppress colonization by mycorrhizal fungi at high soil fertilities. E. canadensis, however, was unable to suppress colonization and had a lower root-to shoot ratio than A. gerardii. The mycorrhiza-related functional traits of both host species likely influence their performance in nature: both species attained the maximum responsiveness from mycorrhizas at soil phosphorus availabilities similar to those of tallgrass prairies. Dependence upon mycorrhizas affects performance in the absence of mycorrhizas. Responsiveness to mycorrhizal fungi is also a function of the environment and

  13. "Mighty Worm" Piezoelectric Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bamford, Robert M.; Wada, Ben K.; Moore, Donald M.

    1994-01-01

    "Mighty Worm" piezoelectric actuator used as adjustable-length structural member, active vibrator or vibration suppressor, and acts as simple (fixed-length) structural member when inactive. Load force not applied to piezoelectric element in simple-structural-member mode. Piezoelectric element removed from load path when not in use.

  14. Shape Memory Alloy Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baumbick, Robert J. (Inventor)

    2000-01-01

    The present invention discloses and teaches a unique, remote optically controlled micro actuator particularly suitable for aerospace vehicle applications wherein hot gas, or in the alternative optical energy, is employed as the medium by which shape memory alloy elements are activated. In gas turbine powered aircraft the source of the hot gas may be the turbine engine compressor or turbine sections.

  15. Piezoelectric actuator renaissance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uchino, Kenji

    2015-03-01

    This paper resumes the content of the invited talk of the author, read at the occasion of the International Workshop on Relaxor Ferroelectrics, IWRF 14, held on October 12-16, 2014 in Stirin, Czech Republic. It reviews the recent advances in materials, designing concepts, and new applications of piezoelectric actuators, as well as the future perspectives of this area.

  16. Electromechanical flight control actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1979-01-01

    The feasibility of using an electromechanical actuator (EMA) as the primary flight control equipment in aerospace flight is examined. The EMA motor design is presented utilizing improved permanent magnet materials. The necessary equipment to complete a single channel EMA using the single channel power electronics breadboard is reported. The design and development of an improved rotor position sensor/tachometer is investigated.

  17. Bistable microelectromechanical actuator

    DOEpatents

    Fleming, James G.

    1999-01-01

    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.

  18. Bistable microelectromechanical actuator

    DOEpatents

    Fleming, J.G.

    1999-02-02

    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.

  19. Thermally Actuated Hydraulic Pumps

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, Jack; Ross, Ronald; Chao, Yi

    2008-01-01

    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

  20. Polypyrrole actuators: modeling and performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madden, John D.; Madden, Peter G.; Hunter, Ian W.

    2001-07-01

    Conducting polymer actuators generate forces that exceed those of mammalian skeletal muscle by up to two orders of magnitude for a given cross-sectional area, require only a few volts to operate, and are low in cost. However application of conducting polymer actuators is hampered by the lack of a full description of the relationship between load, displacement, voltage and current. In an effort to provide such a model, system identification techniques are employed. Stress-strain tests are performed at constant applied potential to determine polypyrrole stiffness. The admittance transfer function of polypyrrole and the associated electrolyte is measured over the potential range in which polypyrrole is highly conductive. The admittance is well described by treating the polymer as a volumetric capacitance of 8*107 F*m3 whose charging rate is limited by the electrolyte resistance and by diffusion within polypyrrole. The relationship between strain and charge is investigated, showing that strain is directly proportional to charge via the strain to charge density ratio, (alpha) = 1*10+-10 m3*C-1, at loads of up to 4 MPa. Beyond 4 MPa the strain to charge ratio is time dependent. The admittance models, stress/strain relation and strain to charge relationship are combined to form a full description of polypyrrole electromechanical response. This description predicts that large increases in strain rate and power are obtained through miniaturization, yielding bandwidths in excess of 10 kHz. The model also enables motor designers to optimize polypyrrole actuator geometries for their applications.

  1. A smart soft actuator using a single shape memory alloy for twisting actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shim, Jae-Eul; Quan, Ying-Jun; Wang, Wei; Rodrigue, Hugo; Song, Sung-Hyuk; Ahn, Sung-Hoon

    2015-12-01

    Recently, robots have become a topic of interest with regard to their functionality as they need to complete a large number of diverse tasks in a variety of environments. When using traditional mechanical components, many parts are needed to realize complex deformations, such as motors, hinges, and cranks. To produce complex deformations, this work introduces a smart soft composite torsional actuator using a single shape memory alloy (SMA) wire without any additional elements. The proposed twisting actuator is composed of a torsionally prestrained SMA wire embedded at the center of a polydimethylsiloxane matrix that twists by applying an electric current upon joule heating of the SMA wire. This report shows the actuator design, fabrication method, and results for the twisting angle and actuation moment. Results show that a higher electric current helps reach the maximum twisting angle faster, but that if the current is too low or too high, it will not be able to reach its maximum deformation. Also, both the twisting angle and the twisting moment increase with a large applied twisting prestrain, but this increase has an asymptotic behavior. However, results for both the width and the thickness of the actuator show that a larger width and thickness reduce the maximum actuation angle of the actuator. This paper also presents a new mechanism for an SMA-actuated active catheter using only two SMA wires with a total length of 170 mm to bend the tip of the catheter in multiple directions. The fabricated active catheter’s maximum twisting angle is 270°, and the maximum bending curvature is 0.02 mm-1.

  2. Electrostatic actuators for portable microfluidic systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tice, Joshua

    Both developed and developing nations have an urgent need to diagnose disease cheaply, reliably, and independently of centralized facilities. Microfulidic platforms are well-positioned to address the need for portable diagnostics, mainly due to their obvious advantage in size. However, most microfluidic methods rely on equipment outside of the chip either for driving fluid flow (e.g., syringe pumps) or for taking measurements (e.g., lasers or microscopes). The energy and space requirements of the whole system inhibit portability and contribute to costs. To capitalize on the strengths of microfluidic platforms and address the serious needs of society, system components need to be miniaturized. Also, miniaturization should be accomplished as simply as possible, considering that simplicity is usually requisite for achieving truly transformative technology. Herein, I attempt to address the issue of controlling fluid flow in portable microfluidic systems. I focus on systems that are driven by elastomer-based membrane valves, since these valves are inherently simple, yet they are capable of sophisticated fluid manipulation. Others have attempted to modify pneumatic microvalves for portable applications, e.g., by transitioning to electromagnetic, thermopneumatic, or piezoelectric actuation principles. However, none of these strategies maintain the proper balance of simplicity, functionality, and ease of integration. My research centers on electrostatic actuators, due to their conceptual simplicity and the efficacy of electrostatic forces on the microscale. To ensure easy integration with polymer-based systems, and to maintain simplicity in the fabrication procedure, the actuators were constructed solely from poly(dimethylsiloxane) and multi-walled carbon nanotubes. In addition, the actuators were fabricated exclusively with soft-lithographic techniques. A mathematical model was developed to identify actuator parameters compatible with soft-lithography, and also to

  3. Design and control of multifunctional magnetorheological actuators for assistive knee braces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, H. T.; Liao, W. H.

    2010-04-01

    This paper is aimed at developing a novel multifunctional actuator utilizing magnetorheological (MR) fluids. As a key component for assistive knee braces, the actuator can work with multiple functions as motor, clutch and brake in order to meet the requirement of normal human walking. In this paper, design considerations including configurations, materials selection, mechanical and electromagnetic designs are illustrated. Prototype of the multifunctional actuator is fabricated, and each of its functions is investigated. Control strategies for mimicking normal human walking using the multifunctional actuator are illustrated. Adaptive control algorithm is adopted. Experiments on torque and speed tracking are conducted. The results show that the developed multifunctional actuator is promising for assistive knee braces.

  4. Dielectric Actuation of Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niu, Xiaofan

    Dielectric polymers are widely used in a plurality of applications, such as electrical insulation, dielectric capacitors, and electromechanical actuators. Dielectric polymers with large strain deformations under an electric field are named dielectric elastomers (DE), because of their relative low modulus, high elongation at break, and outstanding resilience. Dielectric elastomer actuators (DEA) are superior to traditional transducers as a muscle-like technology: large strains, high energy densities, high coupling efficiency, quiet operation, and light weight. One focus of this dissertation is on the design of DE materials with high performance and easy processing. UV radiation curing of reactive species is studied as a generic synthesis methodology to provide a platform for material scientists to customize their own DE materials. Oligomers/monomers, crosslinkers, and other additives are mixed and cured at appropriate ratios to control the stress-strain response, suppress electromechanical instability of the resulting polymers, and provide stable actuation strains larger than 100% and energy densities higher than 1 J/g. The processing is largely simplified in the new material system by removal of the prestretching step. Multilayer stack actuators with 11% linear strain are demonstrated in a procedure fully compatible with industrial production. A multifunctional DE derivative material, bistable electroactive polymer (BSEP), is invented enabling repeatable rigid-to-rigid deformation without bulky external structures. Bistable actuation allows the polymer actuator to have two distinct states that can support external load without device failure. Plasticizers are used to lower the glass transition temperature to 45 °C. Interpenetrating polymer network structure is established inside the BSEP to suppress electromechanical instability, providing a breakdown field of 194 MV/m and a stable bistable strain as large as 228% with a 97% strain fixity. The application of BSEP

  5. Mechatronic track guidance on disturbed track: the trade-off between actuator performance and wheel wear

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurzeck, Bernhard; Heckmann, Andreas; Wesseler, Christoph; Rapp, Matthias

    2014-05-01

    Future high-speed trains are the main focus of the DLR research project Next Generation Train. One central point of the research activities is the development of mechatronic track guidance for the two-axle intermediate wagons with steerable, individually powered, independently rotating wheels. The traction motors hereby fulfil two functions; they concurrently are traction drives and steering actuators. In this paper, the influence of the track properties - line layout and track irregularities - on the performance requirements for the guidance actuator is investigated using multi-body models in SIMPACK®. In order to compromise on the design conflict between low wheel wear and low steering torque, the control parameters of the mechatronic track guidance are optimised using the DLR in-house software MOPS. Besides the track irregularities especially the increasing inclination at transition curves defines high actuator requirements due to gyroscopic effects at high speed. After introducing a limiter for the actuating variables into the control system, a good performance is achieved.

  6. Optimization of Actuating Origami Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buskohl, Philip; Fuchi, Kazuko; Bazzan, Giorgio; Joo, James; Gregory, Reich; Vaia, Richard

    2015-03-01

    Origami structures morph between 2D and 3D conformations along predetermined fold lines that efficiently program the form, function and mobility of the structure. By leveraging design concepts from action origami, a subset of origami art focused on kinematic mechanisms, reversible folding patterns for applications such as solar array packaging, tunable antennae, and deployable sensing platforms may be designed. However, the enormity of the design space and the need to identify the requisite actuation forces within the structure places a severe limitation on design strategies based on intuition and geometry alone. The present work proposes a topology optimization method, using truss and frame element analysis, to distribute foldline mechanical properties within a reference crease pattern. Known actuating patterns are placed within a reference grid and the optimizer adjusts the fold stiffness of the network to optimally connect them. Design objectives may include a target motion, stress level, or mechanical energy distribution. Results include the validation of known action origami structures and their optimal connectivity within a larger network. This design suite offers an important step toward systematic incorporation of origami design concepts into new, novel and reconfigurable engineering devices. This research is supported under the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) funding, LRIR 13RQ02COR.

  7. The LIM protein LIMD1 influences osteoblast differentiation and function

    SciTech Connect

    Luderer, Hilary F.; Bai Shuting; Longmore, Gregory D.

    2008-09-10

    The balance between bone resorption and bone formation involves the coordinated activities of osteoblasts and osteoclasts. Communication between these two cell types is essential for maintenance of normal bone homeostasis; however, the mechanisms regulating this cross talk are not completely understood. Many factors that mediate differentiation and function of both osteoblasts and osteoclasts have been identified. The LIM protein Limd1 has been implicated in the regulation of stress osteoclastogenesis through an interaction with the p62/sequestosome protein. Here we show that Limd1 also influences osteoblast progenitor numbers, differentiation, and function. Limd1{sup -/-} calvarial osteoblasts display increased mineralization and accelerated differentiation. While no significant differences in osteoblast number or function were detected in vivo, bone marrow stromal cells isolated from Limd1{sup -/-} mice contain significantly more osteoblast progenitors compared to wild type controls when cultured ex vivo. Furthermore, we observed a significant increase in nuclear {beta}-catenin staining in differentiating Limd1{sup -/-} calvarial osteoblasts suggesting that Limd1 is a negative regulator of canonical Wnt signaling in osteoblasts. These results demonstrate that Limd1 influences not only stress osteoclastogenesis but also osteoblast function and osteoblast progenitor commitment. Together, these data identify Limd1 as a novel regulator of both bone osetoclast and bone osteoblast development and function.

  8. Three-dimensional effects of curved plasma actuators in quiescent air

    SciTech Connect

    Wang Chincheng; Durscher, Ryan; Roy, Subrata

    2011-04-15

    This paper presents results on a new class of curved plasma actuators for the inducement of three-dimensional vortical structures. The nature of the fluid flow inducement on a flat plate, in quiescent conditions, due to four different shapes of dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) plasma actuators is numerically investigated. The three-dimensional plasma kinetic equations are solved using our in-house, finite element based, multiscale ionized gas (MIG) flow code. Numerical results show electron temperature and three dimensional plasma force vectors for four shapes, which include linear, triangular, serpentine, and square actuators. Three-dimensional effects such as pinching and spreading the neighboring fluid are observed for serpentine and square actuators. The mechanisms of vorticity generation for DBD actuators are discussed. Also the influence of geometric wavelength ({lambda}) and amplitude ({Lambda}) of the serpentine and square actuators on vectored thrust inducement is predicted. This results in these actuators producing significantly better flow mixing downstream as compared to the standard linear actuator. Increasing the wavelengths of serpentine and square actuators in the spanwise direction is shown to enhance the pinching effect giving a much higher vertical velocity. On the contrary, changing the amplitude of the curved actuator varies the streamwise velocity significantly influencing the near wall jet. Experimental data for a serpentine actuator are also reported for validation purpose.

  9. Electrical Actuation Technology Bridging

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hammond, Monica (Compiler); Sharkey, John (Compiler)

    1993-01-01

    This document contains the proceedings of the NASA Electrical Actuation Technology Bridging (ELA-TB) Workshop held in Huntsville, Alabama, September 29-October 1, 1992. The workshop was sponsored by the NASA Office of Space Systems Development and Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). The workshop addressed key technologies bridging the entire field of electrical actuation including systems methodology, control electronics, power source systems, reliability, maintainability, and vehicle health management with special emphasis on thrust vector control (TVC) applications on NASA launch vehicles. Speakers were drawn primarily from industry with participation from universities and government. In addition, prototype hardware demonstrations were held at the MSFC Propulsion Laboratory each afternoon. Splinter sessions held on the final day afforded the opportunity to discuss key issues and to provide overall recommendations. Presentations are included in this document.

  10. Solar actuated drain system

    SciTech Connect

    Sarver, G. E.; Worstell, B. W.

    1985-04-30

    A temperature actuated drain system is provided that comprises a siphon that has an inlet end for immersing in a pool of water to be drained from a roof surface and a discharge end communicating with a pressure-responsive one-way valve. A solar actuated enclosed chamber that contains a solar heat energy collector is located on the roof surface and is in open communication with the siphon by means of a tubular member that has its inlet end positioned closely adjacent the bottom of the interior of the chamber. The arrangement causes any appreciable amounts of water that accumulate within the chamber to be discharged from the chamber during the pumping action created by the heating and cooling of air within the chamber.

  11. Microfabricated therapeutic actuator mechanisms

    DOEpatents

    Northrup, M.A.; Ciarlo, D.R.; Lee, A.P.; Krulevitch, P.A.

    1997-07-08

    Electromechanical microstructures (microgrippers), either integrated circuit (IC) silicon-based or precision machined, to extend and improve the application of catheter-based interventional therapies for the repair of aneurysms in the brain or other interventional clinical therapies. These micromechanisms can be specifically applied to release platinum coils or other materials into bulging portions of the blood vessels also known as aneurysms. The ``micro`` size of the release mechanism is necessary since the brain vessels are the smallest in the body. Through a catheter more than one meter long, the micromechanism located at one end of the catheter can be manipulated from the other end thereof. The microgripper (micromechanism) of the invention will also find applications in non-medical areas where a remotely actuated microgripper or similar actuator would be useful or where micro-assembling is needed. 22 figs.

  12. Microfabricated therapeutic actuator mechanisms

    DOEpatents

    Northrup, Milton A.; Ciarlo, Dino R.; Lee, Abraham P.; Krulevitch, Peter A.

    1997-01-01

    Electromechanical microstructures (microgrippers), either integrated circuit (IC) silicon-based or precision machined, to extend and improve the application of catheter-based interventional therapies for the repair of aneurysms in the brain or other interventional clinical therapies. These micromechanisms can be specifically applied to release platinum coils or other materials into bulging portions of the blood vessels also known as aneurysms. The "micro" size of the release mechanism is necessary since the brain vessels are the smallest in the body. Through a catheter more than one meter long, the micromechanism located at one end of the catheter can be manipulated from the other end thereof. The microgripper (micromechanism) of the invention will also find applications in non-medical areas where a remotely actuated microgripper or similar actuator would be useful or where micro-assembling is needed.

  13. Microfabricated therapeutic actuators

    DOEpatents

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

    1999-01-01

    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.

  14. Microfabricated therapeutic actuators

    DOEpatents

    Lee, A.P.; Northrup, M.A.; Ciarlo, D.R.; Krulevitch, P.A.; Benett, W.J.

    1999-06-15

    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. 8 figs.

  15. Automatic rotary valve actuator

    SciTech Connect

    Cook, W.E.

    1985-03-28

    This report describes the design, construction, and operation of a microcomputer-controlled valve actuator for operating test valves requiring rotary motion of the valve stem. An AIM 65 microcomputer, using a FORTH language program, controls an air motor and air clutch mounted within an oven to accomplish testing at elevated temperatures. The valve actuator closes the test valve until a preset torque is reached and then opens the valve to its initial starting point. The number of cycles and extremes of rotation are tallied and printed as the test progresses. Provisions are made to accept remote signals to stop the test and to indicate to a remote device when the test has been stopped.

  16. Scissor thrust valve actuator

    DOEpatents

    DeWall, Kevin G.; Watkins, John C; Nitzel, Michael E.

    2006-08-29

    Apparatus for actuating a valve includes a support frame and at least one valve driving linkage arm, one end of which is rotatably connected to a valve stem of the valve and the other end of which is rotatably connected to a screw block. A motor connected to the frame is operatively connected to a motor driven shaft which is in threaded screw driving relationship with the screw block. The motor rotates the motor driven shaft which drives translational movement of the screw block which drives rotatable movement of the valve driving linkage arm which drives translational movement of the valve stem. The valve actuator may further include a sensory control element disposed in operative relationship with the valve stem, the sensory control element being adapted to provide control over the position of the valve stem by at least sensing the travel and/or position of the valve stem.

  17. Dissolution actuated sample container

    DOEpatents

    Nance, Thomas A.; McCoy, Frank T.

    2013-03-26

    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.

  18. Linear mass actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holloway, Sidney E., III (Inventor); Crossley, Edward A., Jr. (Inventor); Jones, Irby W. (Inventor); Miller, James B. (Inventor); Davis, C. Calvin (Inventor); Behun, Vaughn D. (Inventor); Goodrich, Lewis R., Sr. (Inventor)

    1992-01-01

    A linear mass actuator includes an upper housing and a lower housing connectable to each other and having a central passageway passing axially through a mass that is linearly movable in the central passageway. Rollers mounted in the upper and lower housings in frictional engagement with the mass translate the mass linearly in the central passageway and drive motors operatively coupled to the roller means, for rotating the rollers and driving the mass axially in the central passageway.

  19. Shape memory alloy actuator

    DOEpatents

    Varma, Venugopal K.

    2001-01-01

    An actuator for cycling between first and second positions includes a first shaped memory alloy (SMA) leg, a second SMA leg. At least one heating/cooling device is thermally connected to at least one of the legs, each heating/cooling device capable of simultaneously heating one leg while cooling the other leg. The heating/cooling devices can include thermoelectric and/or thermoionic elements.

  20. Thermally actuated thermionic switch

    DOEpatents

    Barrus, D.M.; Shires, C.D.

    1982-09-30

    A thermally actuated thermionic switch which responds to an increase of temperature by changing from a high impedance to a low impedance at a predictable temperature set point. The switch has a bistable operation mode switching only on temperature increases. The thermionic material may be a metal which is liquid at the desired operation temperature and held in matrix in a graphite block reservoir, and which changes state (ionizes, for example) so as to be electrically conductive at a desired temperature.

  1. Thermally actuated thermionic switch

    DOEpatents

    Barrus, Donald M.; Shires, Charles D.

    1988-01-01

    A thermally actuated thermionic switch which responds to an increase of temperature by changing from a high impedance to a low impedance at a predictable temperature set point. The switch has a bistable operation mode switching only on temperature increases. The thermionic material may be a metal which is liquid at the desired operation temperature and held in matrix in a graphite block reservoir, and which changes state (ionizes, for example) so as to be electrically conductive at a desired temperature.

  2. Passively actuated valve

    DOEpatents

    Modro, S. Michael; Ougouag, Abderrafi M.

    2005-09-20

    A passively actuated valve for isolating a high pressure zone from a low pressure zone and discontinuing the isolation when the pressure in the high pressure zone drops below a preset threshold. If the pressure in the high pressure zone drops below the preset threshold, the valve opens and allows flow from the high pressure zone to the low pressure zone. The valve remains open allowing pressure equalization and back-flow should a pressure inversion between the two pressure zone occur.

  3. Nonlinear identification of ionic polymer actuator systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kothera, Curt S.; Lacy, Seth L.; Erwin, R. Scott; Leo, Donald J.

    2004-07-01

    Ionic polymers are a class of electromechanically coupled materials that can be used as flexible transducers. When set up in the cantilever configuration, the actuators exhibit a large bending deflection when an electric field is applied across their thickness. Being a relatively new research topic, the governing physical and chemical mechanisms are not yet fully understood. Experimental results have demonstrated nonlinear dynamic behavior. The nonlinear dynamics can be seen in the response of current, displacement, and velocity of the actuator. This work presents results for the nonlinear identification of ionic polymer actuator systems driven at a specific frequency. Identification results using a 5th-degree Volterra expansion show that the nonlinear distortion can be accurately modeled. Using such a high power in the series expansion is necessary to capture the most dominant harmonics, as evidenced when examining the power spectral density of the response. An investigation of how nonlinearities enter into the response is also performed. By analyzing both the actuation current and tip velocity, results show that both the voltage to current and current to velocity stages influence the nonlinear response, but the voltage to current stage is more dominantly nonlinear.

  4. Cylindrical Piezoelectric Fiber Composite Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2008-01-01

    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.

  5. Microelectromechanical (MEM) thermal actuator

    DOEpatents

    Garcia, Ernest J.; Fulcher, Clay W. G.

    2012-07-31

    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.

  6. Influence of hypokinesis on physiological functions in fowl

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nvota, J.; Lamosova, D.; Tesarova, D.; Cierna, V.; Vyboh, P.

    1979-01-01

    The effects of hypokinesis and postincubation stress (which are characteristic for modern techniques of poultry cage keeping) on the endocrine functions, metabolic reactions, body weight growth and proteosynthesis in the muscle of cocks was investigated. The stress due to hypokinesis was observed in growing cocks housed in metallic cages in which they could hardly turn around. The findings obtained indicate that a 35-day hypokinesis did not exert any more significant influence both on physiological functions and body weight growth as well as on proteosynthesis in the muscle of cocks under study; however, it speeded up the protein metabolism in the muscle. The postincubation stress modified significantly the hypokinesis effect. Findings recorded in birds differed considerably from findings obtained in laboratory mammals, in which the hypokinesis induced significant changes in endocrine functions, body weight decrease and proteosynthesis disorders. A good tolerance of hypokinesis by fowl can be interpreted not only by the phylogenetic remoteness of the compared species but also by the domestication.

  7. Optimizing an Actuator Array for the Control of Multi-Frequency Noise in Aircraft Interiors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palumbo, D. L.; Padula, S. L.

    1997-01-01

    Techniques developed for selecting an optimized actuator array for interior noise reduction at a single frequency are extended to the multi-frequency case. Transfer functions for 64 actuators were obtained at 5 frequencies from ground testing the rear section of a fully trimmed DC-9 fuselage. A single loudspeaker facing the left side of the aircraft was the primary source. A combinatorial search procedure (tabu search) was employed to find optimum actuator subsets of from 2 to 16 actuators. Noise reduction predictions derived from the transfer functions were used as a basis for evaluating actuator subsets during optimization. Results indicate that it is necessary to constrain actuator forces during optimization. Unconstrained optimizations selected actuators which require unrealistically large forces. Two methods of constraint are evaluated. It is shown that a fast, but approximate, method yields results equivalent to an accurate, but computationally expensive, method.

  8. Influence of persistent monodominance on functional diversity and functional community assembly in African tropical forests.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kearsley, Elizabeth; Verbeeck, Hans; Hufkens, Koen; Beeckman, Hans; Steppe, Kathy; Boeckx, Pascal; Huygens, Dries

    2015-04-01

    Lowland tropical rainforest are taxonomically diverse and complex systems, although not all tropical communities are equally diverse. Naturally occuring monodominant patches of Gilbertiodendron dewevrei are commonly found across Central Africa alongside higher diversity forests. Nevertheless, a low taxonomical diversity does not necessarily indicate an equivalently low functional diverse system. We investigate the functional diversity and functional community assembly of mixed and monodominant tropical forests in a central region of the Congo Basin in D. R. Congo using 15 leaf and wood traits covering 95% of all species within each community. This unique dataset allows us to investigate differences in functional diversity and ecosystem functioning between mixed and monodominant forest types. Functional richness, functional divergence and functional evenness are three functional diversity measures providing different aspects of functional diversity. The largest difference between the two forest types was found for functional richness, with a lower functional richness in the monodominant forest indicating a higher amount of niche space filled in the mixed forest. The mixed forest also had a higher species richness and Simpson diversity index, indicating that the higher species richness increases the functional niche space. Subsequently, we identified whole community trait shifts within the monodominant forest compared to the mixed forest. The dominance of Gilbertiodendron dewevrei, for which a distinct niche is found for most traits, presented a significant influence on the entire (trait) community expressing fundamental differences in ecosystem functioning. More detailed investigation of species unique within the monodominant forest and species occurring in both forest types provide more insight into the influence of Gilbertiodendron dewevrei. Both the unique and the shared species showed significant shifts in leaf nutrients, specific leaf area and water use

  9. Telescoping cylindrical piezoelectric fiber composite actuator assemblies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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)

    2010-01-01

    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.

  10. Development of an Actuator for Ambient to Cryo Application

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2010-01-01

    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.

  11. High power thrust vector actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kittock, M. J.

    1993-06-01

    Modern missile programs are frequently favoring electro-mechanical (EM) thrust vector actuation (TVA) over hydraulic for a variety of reasons. However, actuation system performance requirements are not relaxed for EM systems. Thus the development of EM systems with greater power output is required. The configuration of EM actuator studied consists of a DC brushless motor driving a spur gear train, which drives a ballscrew that converts rotary motion to rectilinear motion. This design produces an actuator with high levels of performance in a compact mechanical package. Design for manufacturability and assembly (DFMA) was part of the design process, resulting in an actuator that can be assembled easily and will operate reliably. This paper will discuss the mechanical details of the resultant actuator and report test results on a prototype derivative.

  12. Topological design of compliant smart structures with embedded movable actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yiqiang; Luo, Zhen; Zhang, Xiaopeng; Kang, Zhan

    2014-04-01

    In the optimal configuration design of piezoelectric smart structures, it is favorable to use actuation elements with certain predefined geometries from the viewpoint of manufacturability of fragile piezoelectric ceramics in practical applications. However, preserving the exact shape of these embedded actuators and tracking their dynamic motions presents a more challenging research task than merely allowing them to take arbitrary shapes. This paper proposes an integrated topology optimization method for the systematic design of compliant smart structures with embedded movable PZT (lead zirconate titanate) actuators. Compared with most existing studies, which either optimize positions/sizes of the actuators in a given host structure or design the host structure with pre-determined actuator locations, the proposed method simultaneously optimizes the positions of the movable PZT actuators and the topology of the host structure, typically a compliant mechanism for amplifying the small strain stroke. A combined topological description model is employed in the optimization, where the level set model is used to track the movements of the PZT actuators and the independent point-wise density interpolation (iPDI) approach is utilized to search for the optimal topology of the host structure. Furthermore, we define an integral-type constraint function to prevent overlaps between the PZT actuators and between the actuators and the external boundaries of the design domain. Such a constraint provides a unified and explicit mathematical statement of the non-overlap condition for any number of arbitrarily shaped embedded actuators. Several numerical examples are used to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed optimization method.

  13. Design and investigation of a linear smart actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krishna Chaitanya, S.; Dhanalakshmi, K.

    2015-04-01

    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.

  14. Linear Proof-Mass Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holloway, Sidney E., III; Crossley, Edward A.; Miller, James B.; Jones, Irby W.; Davis, C. Calvin; Behun, Vaughn D.; Goodrich, Lewis R., Sr.

    1995-01-01

    Linear proof-mass actuator (LPMA) is friction-driven linear mass actuator capable of applying controlled force to structure in outer space to damp out oscillations. Capable of high accelerations and provides smooth, bidirectional travel of mass. Design eliminates gears and belts. LPMA strong enough to be used terrestrially where linear actuators needed to excite or damp out oscillations. High flexibility designed into LPMA by varying size of motors, mass, and length of stroke, and by modifying control software.

  15. Direct drive field actuator motors

    DOEpatents

    Grahn, A.R.

    1998-03-10

    A positive-drive field actuator motor is described which includes a stator carrying at least one field actuator which changes in dimension responsive to application of an energy field, and at least one drive shoe movable by the dimensional changes of the field actuator to contact and move a rotor element with respect to the stator. Various embodiments of the motor are disclosed, and the rotor element may be moved linearly or arcuately. 62 figs.

  16. Direct drive field actuator motors

    DOEpatents

    Grahn, Allen R.

    1998-01-01

    A positive-drive field actuator motor including a stator carrying at least one field actuator which changes in dimension responsive to application of an energy field, and at least one drive shoe movable by the dimensional changes of the field actuator to contact and move a rotor element with respect to the stator. Various embodiments of the motor are disclosed, and the rotor element may be moved linearly or arcuately.

  17. A DNA tweezer-actuated enzyme nanoreactor.

    PubMed

    Liu, Minghui; Fu, Jinglin; Hejesen, Christian; Yang, Yuhe; Woodbury, Neal W; Gothelf, Kurt; Liu, Yan; Yan, Hao

    2013-01-01

    The functions of regulatory enzymes are essential to modulating cellular pathways. Here we report a tweezer-like DNA nanodevice to actuate the activity of an enzyme/cofactor pair. A dehydrogenase and NAD(+) cofactor are attached to different arms of the DNA tweezer structure and actuation of enzymatic function is achieved by switching the tweezers between open and closed states. The enzyme/cofactor pair is spatially separated in the open state with inhibited enzyme function, whereas in the closed state, enzyme is activated by the close proximity of the two molecules. The conformational state of the DNA tweezer is controlled by the addition of specific oligonucleotides that serve as the thermodynamic driver (fuel) to trigger the change. Using this approach, several cycles of externally controlled enzyme inhibition and activation are successfully demonstrated. This principle of responsive enzyme nanodevices may be used to regulate other types of enzymes and to introduce feedback or feed-forward control loops.

  18. The influence of functional social support on executive functioning in middle-aged African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Sims, Regina C.; Levy, Shellie-Anne; Mwendwa, Denée T.; Callender, Clive O.; Campbell, Alfonso L.

    2012-01-01

    Social support has a positive influence on cognitive functioning and buffers cognitive decline in older adults. This study examined the relations between social support and executive functioning in middle-aged adults. A community-based sample of African Americans completed the Interpersonal Support Evaluation List, a measure of functions of social support, and two measures of executive functioning, the Stroop Color Word Test and the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST). Hierarchical regression analyses were used to explore the hypothesis that different facets of perceived social support influence performance on measures of executive functioning. After controlling for age, gender, and education, social support facets including belonging support, self-esteem support, appraisal support, and tangible support were significant predictors of Stroop performance. In addition, tangible support significantly predicted WCST performance. These findings add to previous literature on social support and cognition; however, findings for middle-aged adults are unique and suggest that social support has a positive influence on some executive functions in African Americans prior to old age. PMID:21614697

  19. Biomimetic photo-actuation: sensing, control and actuation in sun-tracking plants.

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-01

    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.

  20. Analysing the reliability of actuation elements in series and parallel configurations for high-redundancy actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steffen, Thomas; Schiller, Frank; Blum, Michael; Dixon, Roger

    2013-08-01

    A high-redundancy actuator (HRA) is an actuation system composed of a high number of actuation elements, increasing both travel and force above the capability of an individual element. This approach provides inherent fault tolerance: if one of the elements fails, the capabilities of the whole actuator may be reduced, but it retains core functionality. Many different configurations are possible, with different implications for the actuator capability and reliability. This article analyses the reliability of the HRA based on the likelihood of an unacceptable reduction in capability. The analysis of the HRA is a highly structured problem, but it does not fit into known reliability categories (such as the k-out-of-n system), and a fault-tree analysis becomes prohibitively large. Instead, a multi-state systems approach is pursued here, which provides an easy, concise and efficient reliability analysis of the HRA. The resulting probability distribution can be used to find the optimal configuration of an HRA for a given set of requirements.

  1. Biomimetic photo-actuation: sensing, control and actuation in sun-tracking plants.

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-01

    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. PMID:24959885

  2. Simulation and experimental investigation of active lightweight compliant mechanisms with integrated piezoceramic actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Modler, Niels; Winkler, Anja; Filippatos, Angelos; Lovasz, Erwin-Christian; Mărgineanu, Dan

    2016-08-01

    Compliant mechanisms with integrated actuators can enable new function-integrative structures through the elastic deformation of elements without the use of classical links and joints. For such designs, the mechanical behaviour of the mechanism has to be well known, because external loads, the utilised materials and the geometry of the structural parts influence the deformation performance significantly. In order to speed up the development process of such mechanisms, a tool for the dynamic analysis of compliant movements is necessary before any further FEM simulation and manufacturing. Therefore, the paper presents a simulating procedure for active compliant mechanisms obtained through the integration of piezoceramic actuators into fibre-reinforced composite structures using a double layer model. A new mechanism was designed, simulated, constructed and tested. The comparison between simulation and experimental results confirm the effectiveness of the presented procedure in regard to the design phase of new active compliant structures.

  3. The influence of gravity on structure and function of animals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ross, M. D.

    1984-01-01

    Gravity is the only environmental parameter that has remained constant during the period of evolution of living matter on earth. Thus, it must have been a major force in shaping living things. The influence of gravitational loading on evolution of the vertebrate skeleton is well recognized, and scale effects have been studied. This paper, however, considers in addition four pivotal events in early evolution that would seem to have been significant for the later success and diversifcation of animal life. These are evolution of the cytoskeleton, cell motility (flagellae and cilia), gravity detecting devices (accelerometers), and biomineralization. All are functionally calcium dependent in eukaryotes and all occurred or were foreshadowed in prokaryotes. A major question is why calcium was selected as an ion of great importance to the structure and function of living matter; another is whether gravity played a role in its selection.

  4. The influence of gravity on structure and function of animals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, M. D.

    Gravity is the only environmental parameter that has remained constant during the period of evolution of living matter on Earth. Thus, it must have been a major force in shaping livimg things. The influence of gravitational loading on evolution of the vertebrate skeleton is well recognized, and scale effects have been studied. This paper, however, considers in addition four pivotal events in early evolution that would seem to have been significant for the later success and diversification of animal life. These are evolution of the cytoskeleton, cell motility (flagellae and cilia), gravity detecting devices (accelerometers), and biomineralization. All are functionally calcium dependent in eukaryotes and all occurred or were foreshadowed in prokaryotes. A major question is why calcium was selected as an ion of great importance to the structure and function of living matter; another is whether gravity played a role in its selection.

  5. Influence of Radiofrequency Ablation of Lung Cancer on Pulmonary Function

    SciTech Connect

    Tada, Akihiro Hiraki, Takao; Iguchi, Toshihiro; Gobara, Hideo; Mimura, Hidefumi; Toyooka, Shinichi; Kiura, Katsuyuki; Tsuda, Toshihide; Mitsuhashi, Toshiharu; Kanazawa, Susumu

    2012-08-15

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate altered pulmonary function retrospectively after RFA. Methods: This retrospective study comprised 41 ablation sessions for 39 patients (22 men and 17 women; mean age, 64.8 years). Vital capacity (VC) and forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV{sub 1}) at 1 and 3 months after RFA were compared with the baseline (i.e., values before RFA). To evaluate the factors that influenced impaired pulmonary function, univariate analysis was performed by using multiple variables. If two or more variables were indicated as statistically significant by univariate analysis, these variables were subjected to multivariate analysis to identify independent factors. Results: The mean VC and FEV{sub 1} before RFA and 1 and 3 months after RFA were 3.04 and 2.24 l, 2.79 and 2.11 l, and 2.85 and 2.13 l, respectively. The values at 1 and 3 months were significantly lower than the baseline. Severe pleuritis after RFA was identified as the independent factor influencing impaired VC at 1 month (P = 0.003). For impaired FEV{sub 1} at 1 month, only severe pleuritis (P = 0.01) was statistically significant by univariate analysis. At 3 months, severe pleuritis (VC, P = 0.019; FEV{sub 1}, P = 0.003) and an ablated parenchymal volume {>=}20 cm{sup 3} (VC, P = 0.047; FEV{sub 1}, P = 0.038) were independent factors for impaired VC and FEV{sub 1}. Conclusions: Pulmonary function decreased after RFA. RFA-induced severe pleuritis and ablation of a large volume of marginal parenchyma were associated with impaired pulmonary function.

  6. Piezoelectric actuated gimbal

    DOEpatents

    Tschaggeny, Charles W.; Jones, Warren F.; Bamberg, Eberhard

    2011-09-13

    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.

  7. Pneumatically actuated micropipetting device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szita, Nicolas; Buser, Rudolf A.

    1998-03-01

    We have realized a valveless micropipetting device with an integrated sensor which can aspirate and dispense liquid volumes without any valves, hence without any reflow or dead volume. With an external pneumatic actuation, we have demonstrated aspirating and dispensing from 190nl of 6 (mu) l of water. Measurements showed a standard deviation of down to 1 percent. An integrated capacitive sensor will allow monitoring of the pressure throughout the pipetting process and detect malfunctions, e.g. clotting of the pipetting tip. It is our intention to use this demonstrated precise aspiration mechanism in combination with a micromachined reaction chamber and a miniaturized optical analysis system.

  8. Lead screw linear actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Perkins, Gerald S. (Inventor)

    1980-01-01

    A linear actuator which can apply high forces is described, which includes a reciprocating rod having a threaded portion engaged by a nut that is directly coupled to the rotor of an electric motor. The nut is connected to the rotor in a manner that minimizes loading on the rotor, by the use of a coupling that transmits torque to the nut but permits it to shift axially and radially with respect to the rotor. The nut has a threaded hydrostatic bearing for engaging the threaded rod portion, with an oilcarrying groove in the nut being interrupted.

  9. Automated manufacturing process for DEAP stack-actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tepel, Dominik; Hoffstadt, Thorben; Maas, Jürgen

    2014-03-01

    Dielectric elastomers (DE) are thin polymer films belonging to the class of electroactive polymers (EAP), which are coated with compliant and conductive electrodes on each side. Due to the influence of an electrical field, dielectric elastomers perform a large amount of deformation. In this contribution a manufacturing process of automated fabricated stack-actuators based on dielectric electroactive polymers (DEAP) are presented. First of all the specific design of the considered stack-actuator is explained and afterwards the development, construction and realization of an automated manufacturing process is presented in detail. By applying this automated process, stack-actuators with reproducible and homogeneous properties can be manufactured. Finally, first DEAP actuator modules fabricated by the mentioned process are validated experimentally.

  10. Basis Function Approximation of Transonic Aerodynamic Influence Coefficient Matrix

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Li, Wesley W.; Pak, Chan-gi

    2011-01-01

    A technique for approximating the modal aerodynamic influence coefficients matrices by using basis functions has been developed and validated. An application of the resulting approximated modal aerodynamic influence coefficients matrix for a flutter analysis in transonic speed regime has been demonstrated. This methodology can be applied to the unsteady subsonic, transonic, and supersonic aerodynamics. The method requires the unsteady aerodynamics in frequency-domain. The flutter solution can be found by the classic methods, such as rational function approximation, k, p-k, p, root-locus et cetera. The unsteady aeroelastic analysis for design optimization using unsteady transonic aerodynamic approximation is being demonstrated using the ZAERO flutter solver (ZONA Technology Incorporated, Scottsdale, Arizona). The technique presented has been shown to offer consistent flutter speed prediction on an aerostructures test wing 2 configuration with negligible loss in precision in transonic speed regime. These results may have practical significance in the analysis of aircraft aeroelastic calculation and could lead to a more efficient design optimization cycle.

  11. On reliable control system designs. Ph.D. Thesis; [actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Birdwell, J. D.

    1978-01-01

    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.

  12. The X-38 V-201 Flap Actuator Mechanism

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hagen, Jeff; Moore, Landon; Estes, Jay; Layer, Chris

    2004-01-01

    The X-38 Crew Rescue Vehicle V-201 space flight test article was designed to achieve an aerodynamically controlled re-entry from orbit in part through the use of two body mounted flaps on the lower rear side. These flaps are actuated by an electromechanical system that is partially exposed to the re-entry environment. These actuators are of a novel configuration and are unique in their requirement to function while exposed to re-entry conditions. The authors are not aware of any other vehicle in which a major actuator system was required to function throughout the complete re-entry profile while parts of the actuator were directly exposed to the ambient environment.

  13. Impairments that Influence Physical Function among Survivors of Childhood Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Carmen L.; Gawade, Prasad L.; Ness, Kirsten K.

    2015-01-01

    Children treated for cancer are at increased risk of developing chronic health conditions, some of which may manifest during or soon after treatment while others emerge many years after therapy. These health problems may limit physical performance and functional capacity, interfering with participation in work, social, and recreational activities. In this review, we discuss treatment-induced impairments in the endocrine, musculoskeletal, neurological, and cardiopulmonary systems and their influence on mobility and physical function. We found that cranial radiation at a young age was associated with a broad range of chronic conditions including obesity, short stature, low bone mineral density and neuromotor impairments. Anthracyclines and chest radiation are associated with both short and long-term cardiotoxicity. Although numerous chronic conditions are documented among individuals treated for childhood cancer, the impact of these conditions on mobility and function are not well characterized, with most studies limited to survivors of acute lymphoblastic leukemia and brain tumors. Moving forward, further research assessing the impact of chronic conditions on participation in work and social activities is required. Moreover, interventions to prevent or ameliorate the loss of physical function among children treated for cancer are likely to become an important area of survivorship research. PMID:25692094

  14. Contractive tension force stack actuator based on soft dielectric EAP

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kovacs, Gabor; Düring, Lukas

    2009-03-01

    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

  15. A comparison of hydraulic, pneumatic, and electro-mechanical actuators for general aviation flight controls

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roskam, J.; Rice, M.; Eysink, H.

    1979-01-01

    Mathematical models for electromechanical (EM), pneumatic and hydraulic actuations are discussed. It is shown that EM and hydraulic actuators provide better and faster time responses than pneumatic actuators but EM actuators utilizing the recently developed samarium-cobalt technology have significant advantages in terms of size, weight and power requirements. In terms of ease and flexibility of installation EM actuators apparently have several advantages over hydraulic actuators, and cost is a primary reason for the popularity of EM actuation for secondary control function since no additional systems need to be added to the aircraft. While new rare earth magnets are currently in developmental stage, costs are relatively high; but continued research should bring prices down.

  16. Actuator operated microvalves

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Okojie, Robert S. (Inventor)

    2008-01-01

    An actuator operated microvalve and the method of making same is disclosed and claimed. The microvalve comprises a SiC housing which includes a first lower portion and a second upper portion. The lower portion of the SiC housing includes a passageway therethrough, a microvalve seat, and a moveable SiC diaphragm. The SiC diaphragm includes a centrally located boss and radially extending corrugations which may be sinusoidally shaped. The boss of the SiC diaphragm moves and modulates in a range of positions between a closed position wherein the boss interengages said microvalve seat prohibiting communication of fluid through the passageway and a fully open position when the boss is spaced apart from the seat at its maximum permitting communication of fluid through said passageway. The actuator includes a SiC top plate affixed to the boss of the diaphragm and a first electrode and the second upper portion of the SiC housing further includes a second electrode.

  17. A bioinspired soft actuated material.

    PubMed

    Roche, Ellen T; Wohlfarth, Robert; Overvelde, Johannes T B; Vasilyev, Nikolay V; Pigula, Frank A; Mooney, David J; Bertoldi, Katia; Walsh, Conor J

    2014-02-26

    A class of soft actuated materials that can achieve lifelike motion is presented. By embedding pneumatic actuators in a soft material inspired by a biological muscle fibril architecture, and developing a simple finite element simulation of the same, tunable biomimetic motion can be achieved with fully soft structures, exemplified here by an active left ventricle simulator.

  18. Smart actuators with piezoelectric materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janocha, Hartmut; Jendritza, Daniel J.; Scheer, Peter

    1996-04-01

    Piezoelectric solid-state actuators continue to gain in technical and economic significance for a great variety of applications such as quick fine-positioning tasks, control of structural stability and active noise and vibration control due to the high driving forces, short reaction times and compact construction of these actuators. Microelectronics and signal processing must be combined intelligently to form `smart actuators' in order to do justice to the growing demand for precision, miniaturization, efficiency and cost. Energy transducers with piezoelectric PZT ceramics (PZT: lead-zirconate-titanate) simultaneously possess actuator and sensor capacities. An important requirement for the construction of smart actuators is fulfilled by separating the sensor information (charge approximately external force) from the actuator control quantities (elongation approximately electric field strength). A closed-loop control structure with digital signal processing and a voltage controlled power amplifier were developed to enable nearly load-independent linearization of the actuator's response characteristic (elongation-voltage curve) even under dynamic operating conditions by making use of the `self-sensing' effect and without using extra force or displacement sensors. The effectiveness of the developed approach for realizing smart actuators was verified and specified with the help of a computerized large-signal measurement set-up using a low-voltage piezoelectric ceramic stack as an example.

  19. Bi-stable optical actuator

    DOEpatents

    Holdener, Fred R.; Boyd, Robert D.

    2000-01-01

    The present invention is a bi-stable optical actuator device that is depowered in both stable positions. A bearing is used to transfer motion and smoothly transition from one state to another. The optical actuator device may be maintained in a stable position either by gravity or a restraining device.

  20. Rotary actuator for space applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andión, J. A.; Burgui, C.; Migliorero, G.

    2005-07-01

    SENER is developing a rotary actuator for space applications. The activity, partially funded under ESA GSTP contract, aims at the design, development and performance testing of an innovative rotary actuator concept for space applications. An engineering model has been manufactured and has been tested to demonstrate the compliance with the requirements specification.

  1. Actuated Hybrid Mirror Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hickey, Gregory; Redding, David; Lowman, Andrew; Cohen, David; Ohara, Catherine

    2005-01-01

    The figure depicts the planned Actuated Hybrid Mirror Telescope (AHMT), which is intended to demonstrate a new approach to the design and construction of wide-aperture spaceborne telescopes for astronomy and Earth science. This technology is also appropriate for Earth-based telescopes. The new approach can be broadly summarized as using advanced lightweight mirrors that can be manufactured rapidly at relatively low cost. More specifically, it is planned to use precise replicated metallic nanolaminate mirrors to obtain the required high-quality optical finishes. Lightweight, dimensionally stable silicon carbide (SiC) structures will support the nanolaminate mirrors in the required surface figures. To enable diffraction- limited telescope performance, errors in surface figures will be corrected by use of mirror-shape-control actuators that will be energized, as needed, by a wave-front-sensing and control system. The concepts of nanolaminate materials and mirrors made from nanolaminate materials were discussed in several previous NASA Tech Briefs articles. Nanolaminates constitute a relatively new class of materials that can approach theoretical limits of stiffness and strength. Nanolaminate mirrors are synthesized by magnetron sputter deposition of metallic alloys and/or compounds on optically precise master surfaces to obtain optical-quality reflector surfaces backed by thin shell structures. As an integral part of the deposition process, a layer of gold that will constitute the reflective surface layer is deposited first, eliminating the need for a subsequent and separate reflective-coating process. The crystallographic textures of the nanolaminate will be controlled to optimize the performance of the mirror. The entire deposition process for making a nanolaminate mirror takes less than 100 hours, regardless of the mirror diameter. Each nanolaminate mirror will be bonded to its lightweight SiC supporting structure. The lightweight nanolaminate mirrors and Si

  2. A Simple Sensor Model for THUNDER Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Campbell, Joel F.; Bryant, Robert G.

    2009-01-01

    A quasi-static (low frequency) model is developed for THUNDER actuators configured as displacement sensors based on a simple Raleigh-Ritz technique. This model is used to calculate charge as a function of displacement. Using this and the calculated capacitance, voltage vs. displacement and voltage vs. electrical load curves are generated and compared with measurements. It is shown this model gives acceptable results and is useful for determining rough estimates of sensor output for various loads, laminate configurations and thicknesses.

  3. Modeling and design of a normal stress electromagnetic actuator with linear characteristics for fast steering mirror

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Long, Yongjun; Wei, Xiaohui; Wang, Chunlei; Dai, Xin; Wang, Shigang

    2014-05-01

    A new rotary normal stress electromagnetic actuator for fast steering mirror (FSM) is presented. The study includes concept design, actuating torque modeling, actuator design, and validation with numerical simulation. To achieve an FSM with compact structure and high bandwidth, the actuator is designed with a cross armature magnetic topology. By introducing bias flux generated by four permanent magnets (PMs), the actuator has high-force density similar to a solenoid but also has essentially linear characteristics similar to a voice coil actuator, leading to a simply control algorithm. The actuating torque output is a linear function of both driving current and rotation angle and is formulated with equivalent magnetic circuit method. To improve modeling accuracy, both the PM flux and coil flux leakages are taken into consideration through finite element simulation. Based on the established actuator model, optimal design of the actuator is presented to meet the requirement of our FSM. Numerical simulation is then presented to validate the concept design, established actuator model, and designed actuator. It is shown that the calculated results are in a good agreement with the simulation results.

  4. Reconfigurable control of aircraft undergoing sensor and actuator failures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bajpai, Gaurav

    2001-07-01

    Significant number of fatal aircraft accidents in recent years have been linked to component failures. With the predicted increase in air traffic these numbers are likely to increase. With reduction of fatal accidents as motivation, this dissertation investigates design of fault tolerant control systems for aircrafts undergoing sensor and/or actuator failures. Given that the nominal controller may perform inadequately in the event of sensors and/or actuator failure, the feasible approach for such a control scheme is to predesign various controllers anticipating these failures and then switching to an appropriate controller when the failure occurs. This is enabled by the available redundancy in sensing and actuation and allows the system to perform adequately even when these failures occur. The predesign of controllers for sensor and actuator failures is considered. Sensor failures are easily accommodated if certain detectability conditions are met. However, the predesign for actuator failures is not trivial as the position at which the actuators fail is not known a priori. It is shown that this problem can be tackled by reducing it to the classical control problem of disturbance decoupling, in which, the functional control enables the steady state output of dynamical system to reject any disturbance due to the failed actuators. For linear systems, conditions for existence of a controller capable of accommodating these failures can be understood in geometric terms and calculations are linked to solvability of coupled matrix equations. Although control design for aircrafts is done using linear techniques, failures can cause excursions into nonlinear regimes due to ensuing changes in the flight conditions. This dissertation also uses the recent results in the nonlinear regulator theory to address actuator failures in nonlinear systems. The utility of design techniques is illustrated using flight control examples with failures. The symbolic computational tools are

  5. A reduced order model for dielectric elastomer actuators over a range of frequencies and prestrains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiser, Jillian; Manning, Michael; Adler, David; Breuer, Kenneth

    2016-09-01

    The actuation strain of an equibiaxially prestrained dielectric elastomer membrane is studied as a function of driving frequency and prestrain. Experimental data are gathered on the membrane's creep and recovery following DC actuation, as well as the steady state amplitude and phase for AC driving voltages ranging from 2 to 40 Hz. The effect of prestretch on steady state actuation was also investigated, using membranes of both 250% and 300% prestretch. A three-element generalized Kelvin-Voigt model is developed to capture the transient and steady-state actuation responses as a function of frequency and prestrain. We show that, despite its relative simplicity, this model captures the relevant timescales for the membrane behavior with good fidelity and can be used to accurately predict the actuation magnitude and phase as a function of time over a range of actuation configurations and driving conditions.

  6. [Correcting influence of music on the students' functional state].

    PubMed

    Gevorkian, É S; Minasian, S M; Abraamian, É T; Adamian, Ts I

    2013-01-01

    The influence of listening to classical music on integral indices of the activity of the regulatory mechanisms of the heart rhythm in students after teaching load was tested with the method of variational pulsometry accordingly to R.M Baevsky procedure. Registration and analysis of ECG was realized on Pentium 4 in three experimental situations: before the start of lessons (norm), after lessons, after listening to the music. Two types of response of students 'functional state to the teaching load: sympathetic and parasympathetic have been established. After teaching load music therapy session was found to led to the shift of levels of all examined indices of heart rhythm toward the original data (norm), most expressed in students with a sympathetic response type.

  7. T-Slide Linear Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vranish, John

    2009-01-01

    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

  8. Nuclear radiation actuated valve

    DOEpatents

    Christiansen, David W.; Schively, Dixon P.

    1985-01-01

    A nuclear radiation actuated valve for a nuclear reactor. The valve has a valve first part (such as a valve rod with piston) and a valve second part (such as a valve tube surrounding the valve rod, with the valve tube having side slots surrounding the piston). Both valve parts have known nuclear radiation swelling characteristics. The valve's first part is positioned to receive nuclear radiation from the nuclear reactor's fuel region. The valve's second part is positioned so that its nuclear radiation induced swelling is different from that of the valve's first part. The valve's second part also is positioned so that the valve's first and second parts create a valve orifice which changes in size due to the different nuclear radiation caused swelling of the valve's first part compared to the valve's second part. The valve may be used in a nuclear reactor's core coolant system.

  9. Biomaterial systems for mechanosensing and actuation.

    PubMed

    Fratzl, Peter; Barth, Friedrich G

    2009-11-26

    Living organisms use composite materials for various functions, such as mechanical support, protection, motility and the sensing of signals. Although the individual components of these materials may have poor mechanical qualities, they form composites of polymers and minerals with a remarkable variety of functional properties. Researchers are now using these natural systems as models for artificial mechanosensors and actuators, through studying both natural structures and their interactions with the environment. In addition to inspiring the design of new materials, analysis of natural structures on this basis can provide insight into evolutionary constraints on structure-function relationships in living organisms and the variety of structural solutions that emerged from these constraints. PMID:19940914

  10. Laser initiated piston actuator X51-8284-1

    SciTech Connect

    Spomer, E.

    1993-04-27

    This contract is a follow on effort in the development of a laser initiated piston actuator. During the previous contract a miniature piston actuator was developed which had two system related problems. First, during operation of the actuator, combustion gases would escape past the piston shank, overheating the surrounding materials. Secondly, the function of the device seemed to be overly brisant. The purpose of this contract was to improve the performance of the laser initiated piston actuator by developing a means of sealing the device, and to reduce the velocity of the piston. Three sealing concepts were tested; a silicone pad placed on the powder side of the piston, a stainless steel cup placed on the powder side of the piston, and copper plating on the shank of the piston. Piston velocity was to be reduced by changing the powder charge to BCTK or reducing the amount of Ti/KClO{sub 4}.

  11. Soft linear electroactive polymer actuators based on polypyrrole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maziz, Ali; Khaldi, Alexandre; Persson, Nils-Krister; Jager, Edwin W. H.

    2015-04-01

    There is a growing demand for human-friendly robots that can interact and work closely with humans. Such robots need to be compliant, lightweight and equipped with silent and soft actuators. Electroactive polymers such as conducting polymers (CPs) are "smart" materials that deform in response to electrical simulation and are often addressed as artificial muscles due to their functional similarity with natural muscles. They offer unique possibilities and are perfect candidates for such actuators since they are lightweight, silent, and driven at low voltages. Most CP actuators are fabricated using electrochemical oxidative synthesis. We have developed new CP based fibres employing both vapour phase and liquid phase electrochemical synthesis. We will present the fabrication and characterisation of these fibres as well as their performance as linear actuators.

  12. Soft mobile robots driven by foldable dielectric elastomer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-08-01

    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.

  13. Fluidic actuators for active flow control on airframe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schueller, M.; Weigel, P.; Lipowski, M.; Meyer, M.; Schlösser, P.; Bauer, M.

    2016-04-01

    One objective of the European Projects AFLoNext and Clean Sky 2 is to apply Active Flow Control (AFC) on the airframe in critical aerodynamic areas such as the engine/wing junction or the outer wing region for being able to locally improve the aerodynamics in certain flight conditions. At the engine/wing junction, AFC is applied to alleviate or even eliminate flow separation at low speeds and high angle of attacks likely to be associated with the integration of underwing- mounted Ultra High Bypass Ratio (UHBR) engines and the necessary slat-cut-outs. At the outer wing region, AFC can be used to allow more aggressive future wing designs with improved performance. A relevant part of the work on AFC concepts for airframe application is the development of suitable actuators. Fluidic Actuated Flow Control (FAFC) has been introduced as a Flow Control Technology that influences the boundary layer by actively blowing air through slots or holes out of the aircraft skin. FAFC actuators can be classified by their Net Mass Flux and accordingly divided into ZNMF (Zero Net Mass Flux) and NZNMF (Non Zero Net-Mass-Flux) actuators. In the frame of both projects, both types of the FAFC actuator concepts are addressed. In this paper, the objectives of AFC on the airframe is presented and the actuators that are used within the project are discussed.

  14. Basis Function Approximation of Transonic Aerodynamic Influence Coefficient Matrix

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Li, Wesley Waisang; Pak, Chan-Gi

    2010-01-01

    A technique for approximating the modal aerodynamic influence coefficients [AIC] matrices by using basis functions has been developed and validated. An application of the resulting approximated modal AIC matrix for a flutter analysis in transonic speed regime has been demonstrated. This methodology can be applied to the unsteady subsonic, transonic and supersonic aerodynamics. The method requires the unsteady aerodynamics in frequency-domain. The flutter solution can be found by the classic methods, such as rational function approximation, k, p-k, p, root-locus et cetera. The unsteady aeroelastic analysis for design optimization using unsteady transonic aerodynamic approximation is being demonstrated using the ZAERO(TradeMark) flutter solver (ZONA Technology Incorporated, Scottsdale, Arizona). The technique presented has been shown to offer consistent flutter speed prediction on an aerostructures test wing [ATW] 2 configuration with negligible loss in precision in transonic speed regime. These results may have practical significance in the analysis of aircraft aeroelastic calculation and could lead to a more efficient design optimization cycle

  15. Photomechanical actuation in polymer-nanotube composites.

    PubMed

    Ahir, Samit V; Terentjev, Eugene M

    2005-06-01

    For some systems, energy from an external source can trigger changes in the internal state of the structure, leading to a mechanical response much larger than the initial input. The ability to unlock this internal work in a solid-state structure is of key importance for many potential applications. We report a novel phenomenon of photo-induced mechanical actuation observed in a polymer-nanotube composite when exposed to infrared radiation. At small strains the sample tends to expand, when stimulated by photons, by an amount that is orders of magnitude greater than the pristine polymer. Conversely, at larger applied pre-strain, it will contract under identical infrared excitation. The behaviour is modelled as a function of orientational ordering of nanotubes induced by the uniaxial extension. It is thought that no other materials can display this continuously reversible response of so large a magnitude, making rubber nanocomposites important for actuator applications. PMID:15880115

  16. Deicing of helicopter blades using piezoelectric actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramanathan, Srinivasa; Varadan, Vasundara V.; Varadan, Vijay K.

    2000-06-01

    Deicing of fixed wing aircraft and rotor craft that fly; at lower altitudes has been an area of research interest for many decades. The currently available solutions, though functional, are economically or environmentally inefficient. Some military helicopters have electrical deicing system for rotor blades that use up to 12 kW of power to achieve all weather shear horizontal waves at the ice-substrate interface is proposed. Experiments were carried out using PZT-5A and PZT-8 shear plate actuators bonded to an aluminum plate. A low-temperature chamber was constructed for this purpose. The results indicate that the PZT-8 actuators were able to deice the aluminum plate melting the ice at the interface. Results are presented in the form of tabular data and digital photographs taken of the melting process. The deicing mechanism is discussed.

  17. Soft Robots: Manipulation, Mobility, and Fast Actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shepherd, Robert; Ilievski, Filip; Choi, Wonjae; Stokes, Adam; Morin, Stephen; Mazzeo, Aaron; Kramer, Rebecca; Majidi, Carmel; Wood, Rob; Whitesides, George

    2012-02-01

    Material innovation will be a key feature in the next generation of robots. A simple, pneumatically powered actuator composed of only soft-elastomers can perform the function of a complex arrangement of mechanical components and electric motors. This talk will focus on soft-lithography as a simple method to fabricate robots--composed of exclusively soft materials (elastomeric polymers). These robots have sophisticated capabilities: a gripper (with no electrical sensors) can manipulate delicate and irregularly shaped objects and a quadrupedal robot can walk to an obstacle (a gap smaller than its walking height) then shrink its body and squeeze through the gap using an undulatory gait. This talk will also introduce a new method of rapidly actuating soft robots. Using this new method, a robot can be caused to jump more than 30 times its height in under 200 milliseconds.

  18. Design, testing and control of a magnetorheological actuator for assistive knee braces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, J. Z.; Liao, W. H.

    2010-03-01

    This paper is aimed at developing a smart actuator for assistive knee braces to provide assistance to disabled or elderly people with mobility problems. A magnetorheological (MR) actuator is developed to be used in assistive knee braces to provide controllable torque. The MR actuator can work as a brake or a clutch. When active torque is needed, the DC motor works and the MR actuator functions as a clutch to transfer the torque generated by the motor to the leg; when passive torque is desired, the DC motor is turned off and the MR actuator functions as a brake to provide controllable passive torque. The prototype of the developed MR actuator is fabricated and experiments are carried out to investigate the characteristics of the MR actuator. The results show that the MR actuator is able to provide sufficient torque needed for normal human activities. Adaptive control is proposed for controlling the MR actuator. Anti-windup strategy is used to achieve better control performance. Experiments on the MR actuator under control are also performed to study the torque tracking ability of the system.

  19. Gear-Driven Turnbuckle Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rivera, Ricky N.

    2010-01-01

    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.

  20. Electrically controlled polymeric gel actuators

    DOEpatents

    Adolf, D.B.; Shahinpoor, M.; Segalman, D.J.; Witkowski, W.R.

    1993-10-05

    Electrically controlled polymeric gel actuators or synthetic muscles are described capable of undergoing substantial expansion and contraction when subjected to changing pH environments, temperature, or solvent. The actuators employ compliant containers for the gels and their solvents. The gels employed may be cylindrical electromechanical gel fibers such as polyacrylamide fibers or a mixture of poly vinyl alcohol-polyacrylic acid arranged in a parallel aggregate and contained in an electrolytic solvent bath such as salt water. The invention includes smart, electrically activated devices exploiting this phenomenon. These devices are capable of being manipulated via active computer control as large displacement actuators for use in adaptive structure such as robots. 11 figures.

  1. Electrically controlled polymeric gel actuators

    DOEpatents

    Adolf, Douglas B.; Shahinpoor, Mohsen; Segalman, Daniel J.; Witkowski, Walter R.

    1993-01-01

    Electrically controlled polymeric gel actuators or synthetic muscles capable of undergoing substantial expansion and contraction when subjected to changing pH environments, temperature, or solvent. The actuators employ compliant containers for the gels and their solvents. The gels employed may be cylindrical electromechanical gel fibers such as polyacrylamide fibers or a mixture of poly vinyl alcohol-polyacrylic acid arranged in a parallel aggregate and contained in an electrolytic solvent bath such as salt water. The invention includes smart, electrically activated devices exploiting this phenomenon. These devices are capable of being manipulated via active computer control as large displacement actuators for use in adaptive structure such as robots.

  2. Ultrasonically Actuated Tools for Abrading Rock Surfaces

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dolgin, Benjamin; Sherrit, Stewart; Bar-Cohen, Yoseph; Rainen, Richard; Askin, Steve; Bickler, Donald; Lewis, Donald; Carson, John; Dawson, Stephen; Bao, Xiaoqi; Chang, Zensheu; Peterson, Thomas

    2006-01-01

    An ultrasonic rock-abrasion tool (URAT) was developed using the same principle of ultrasonic/sonic actuation as that of the tools described in two prior NASA Tech Briefs articles: Ultrasonic/ Sonic Drill/Corers With Integrated Sensors (NPO-20856), Vol. 25, No. 1 (January 2001), page 38 and Ultrasonic/ Sonic Mechanisms for Drilling and Coring (NPO-30291), Vol. 27, No. 9 (September 2003), page 65. Hence, like those tools, the URAT offers the same advantages of low power demand, mechanical simplicity, compactness, and ability to function with very small axial loading (very small contact force between tool and rock). Like a tool described in the second of the cited previous articles, a URAT includes (1) a drive mechanism that comprises a piezoelectric ultrasonic actuator, an amplification horn, and a mass that is free to move axially over a limited range and (2) an abrasion tool bit. A URAT tool bit is a disk that has been machined or otherwise formed to have a large number of teeth and an overall shape chosen to impart the desired shape (which could be flat or curved) to the rock surface to be abraded. In operation, the disk and thus the teeth are vibrated in contact with the rock surface. The concentrated stresses at the tips of the impinging teeth repeatedly induce microfractures and thereby abrade the rock. The motion of the tool induces an ultrasonic transport effect that displaces the cuttings from the abraded area. The figure shows a prototype URAT. A piezoelectric-stack/horn actuator is housed in a cylindrical container. The movement of the actuator and bit with respect to the housing is aided by use of mechanical sliders. A set of springs accommodates the motion of the actuator and bit into or out of the housing through an axial range between 5 and 7 mm. The springs impose an approximately constant force of contact between the tool bit and the rock to be abraded. A dust shield surrounds the bit, serving as a barrier to reduce the migration of rock debris to

  3. Enzyme actuated bioresponsive hydrogels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

  4. Firewater system inadvertent actuation frequencies

    SciTech Connect

    Schroeder, J.A.; Eide, S.A.

    1993-04-01

    This paper presents some recommended generic values for fire protection system inadvertent actuation frequencies. The frequencies are based on actual data from Department of Energy and commercial reactor plant facilities.

  5. Firewater system inadvertent actuation frequencies

    SciTech Connect

    Schroeder, J.A. ); Eide, S.A. )

    1993-01-01

    This paper presents some recommended generic values for fire protection system inadvertent actuation frequencies. The frequencies are based on actual data from Department of Energy and commercial reactor plant facilities.

  6. Hydraulically actuated well shifting tool

    SciTech Connect

    Roth, B.A.

    1992-10-20

    This patent describes a hydraulically actuated shifting tool for actuating a sliding member in a well tool. It comprises: a housing having a hydraulic fluid bore therein; shifting dog means positioned on the housing for movement away and toward the housing; locking dog means positioned on the housing for movement away and toward the body; shifting dog hydraulic actuating means in fluid communication with the bore for causing engagement of the shifting dogs with the sliding member; locking dog hydraulic actuating means in communication with the bore for causing engagement of the locking dogs with the locking means; and hydraulic shifting means in communication with the bore for causing relative movement between the shifting dog means and the locking dog means for shifting the sliding sleeve.

  7. Redox state influence on human galectin-1 function.

    PubMed

    Yu, Xing; Scott, Stacy A; Pritchard, Rhys; Houston, Todd A; Ralph, Stephen J; Blanchard, Helen

    2015-09-01

    Intracellular and extracellular functions of human galectin-1 are influenced by its redox surroundings due to the presence of six cysteines within its amino acid sequence. Galectin-1 recognises intracellular-membrane-anchored Ras proteins that act as molecular switches regulating multiple signal transduction pathways. Human tumours frequently express Ras proteins that have become continuously activated due to point mutations, and this typically leads to deregulation of tumour cell growth, angiogenesis and invasion of metastatic cancer cells. Of significance is that galectin-1 preferably recognises H-Ras, one of the human Ras isoforms, and in particular galectin-1 recognition of the H-Ras farnesyl moiety is paramount to H-Ras membrane anchorage, a prerequisite step for H-Ras-mediated signal transduction regulating normal cell growth and malignant transformation. Herein the impact of the redox state on galectin-1's ability to interact with farnesyl analogues is explored. We demonstrate for the first time that reduced galectin-1 directly binds farnesyl and does so in a carbohydrate-independent manner. A K28T mutation abolishes farnesyl recognition by reduced dimeric galectin-1 whilst its carbohydrate-binding activity is retained, thus demonstrating the presence of an independent region on galectin-1 pertaining to growth inhibitory activity. Intriguingly, oxidised galectin-1 also recognises farnesyl, the biological implication of this novel finding is yet to be elucidated. Further, the redox effect on galectin-1 extracellular function was investigated and we discover that oxidised galectin-1 demonstrates a protective effect upon acute lymphoblastic leukaemia cells challenged by oxidative stress.

  8. Flexure-based nanomagnetic actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasquez, Daniel James

    Nanometer-scale actuators powered through applied-magnetic fields have been designed, fabricated, and tested. These actuators consist of one or more ferromagnetic elements attached to a mechanical flexure. Two types of flexures were studied including a cantilever beam that is fixed on one end, and free on the other. The free end of the cantilever is attached to a, ferromagnetic element allowing a bending torque to be applied by a magnetic field. The second type of actuator design uses a set of torsion beams that are each anchored on one end, and attached to the magnetic element on the other end. The torsion beams are designed such that the application of a magnetic field will result in a twist along the long axis of the beam with little to no bending. The smallest fabricated and tested device is a cantilever-based ferromagnetic actuator that consists of a single 1.5-mum-long, 338-nm-wide, and 50-nm-thick nickel element, and a 2.2-mum-long, 110-nm-wide, and 30-nm-thick gold cantilever beam. A deflection of over 17° was measured for this actuator, while a similar one with a 10.1-mum long cantilever beam experienced measured deflections up to 57°. Torsion-based ferromagnetic actuators have been fabricated and tested with 110-nm-wide, and 50-rim-thick magnetic elements. Such magnetic elements contain only a single saturated magnetic domain. The ultimate scalability of ferromagnetic actuation is limited by the ability of thermal noise to affect the temporal stability of a nanometer-scale magnet. Theory to describe thermal noise and ultimate scalability of the ferromagnetic actuators has been developed. The size of the ferromagnetic actuators studied in this manuscript are smaller than most plant and animal cells. This enables the possibility of such actuators to manipulate a, living cell on an intracellular level. Other potential applications of such small actuators include MHz, to GHz frequency resonators, and tunable optical filters.

  9. Magnetostrictive Actuators For Cryogenic Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dolgin, Benjamin P.

    1996-01-01

    Linear-translation motors containing magnetostrictive actuator elements proposed for use in making fine position adjustments on scientific instruments at temperatures from near absolute zero to room temperature. Actuators produce small increments of linear motion and operate in "set-and-forget" mode in sense they automatically lock themselves against motion when power not applied. Do not consume or dissipate power when stationary. Proposed linear-translation motors also made to produce large maximum displacements.

  10. Actuation of atomic force microscopy microcantilevers using contact acoustic nonlinearities

    SciTech Connect

    Torello, D.; Degertekin, F. Levent

    2013-11-15

    A new method of actuating atomic force microscopy (AFM) cantilevers is proposed in which a high frequency (>5 MHz) wave modulated by a lower frequency (∼300 kHz) wave passes through a contact acoustic nonlinearity at the contact interface between the actuator and the cantilever chip. The nonlinearity converts the high frequency, modulated signal to a low frequency drive signal suitable for actuation of tapping-mode AFM probes. The higher harmonic content of this signal is filtered out mechanically by the cantilever transfer function, providing for clean output. A custom probe holder was designed and constructed using rapid prototyping technologies and off-the-shelf components and was interfaced with an Asylum Research MFP-3D AFM, which was then used to evaluate the performance characteristics with respect to standard hardware and linear actuation techniques. Using a carrier frequency of 14.19 MHz, it was observed that the cantilever output was cleaner with this actuation technique and added no significant noise to the system. This setup, without any optimization, was determined to have an actuation bandwidth on the order of 10 MHz, suitable for high speed imaging applications. Using this method, an image was taken that demonstrates the viability of the technique and is compared favorably to images taken with a standard AFM setup.

  11. A compact electroactive polymer actuator suitable for refreshable Braille display

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Kailiang; Liu, Sheng; Lin, Minren; Wang, Yong; Zhang, Q. M.

    2007-04-01

    The large strain, high elastic modulus, and easy processing of P(VDF-TrFE-CFE) electrostrictive terpolymer make it very attractive to replace low strain piezoceramics and piezopolymers in many applications with much improved performance. In this paper, a compact polymer actuator is developed utilizing the electrostrictive terpolymer, which is suitable for full page Braille Display and graphic display. Key issues related to the reliability of electroactive polymers used in the compact actuators and for the mass fabrication of these polymer actuators are investigated. Making use of a recently developed conductive polymer, a screen printing deposition method was developed which enables direct deposition very thin conductive polymer electrode layer (< 0.1 μm) with strongly bonding to the terpolymer surface and short fabrication time. It was observed that the thin conductive polymer electrodes lead to the self-healing of the polymer after electric breakdown. An EAP compact Braille actuator was designed and fabricated with these terpolymer films wound on a spring core. The test results demonstrate that the EAP Braille actuator meets all the functional requirements of actuators for refreshable full Braille display, which offers compact size, reduced cost and weight.

  12. A small and fast piezo-actuated legged robot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yumaryanto, Abdul A.; An, Jaebum; Lee, Sangyoon

    2007-04-01

    In this paper we present the development of a small and fast LIPCA-actuated mobile robot. LIPCA (Lightweight Piezoceramic Composite curved Actuator) is a piezo-composite actuator that uses a PZT layer sandwiched between composite materials of carbon/epoxy and glass/epoxy layers to amplify the displacement. Three versions of LIPCA robots have been developed thus far to implement a small and autonomous robot. The design of the first prototype was inspired by a six-legged insect like a cockroach. Its maximum speed is 173 mm/sec with the voltage input of 400 Vpp at 40 Hz frequency. As the result of a slight modification in the design, a faster LIPCA robot was developed. However their structures are not strong enough to carry a load heavier than 20 gram, which can be a major obstacle to implementing autonomous robots. By several changes in the mechanism, the LIPCA-actuated robot has been improved such that it is able to carry a weight as much as 60 gram. For all the prototypes we used two LIPCA strips that are placed oppositely in the middle of the robot body. The LIPCA strips are driven by a square signal function of high AC voltage with the phase difference of 180°. All the experimental results show a possibility of a small and fast walking robot actuated by LIPCA without using any conventional electromagnetic actuator.

  13. Probabilistic Analysis of Space Shuttle Body Flap Actuator Ball Bearings

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oswald, Fred B.; Jett, Timothy R.; Predmore, Roamer E.; Zaretsky, Erwin V.

    2008-01-01

    A probabilistic analysis, using the 2-parameter Weibull-Johnson method, was performed on experimental life test data from space shuttle actuator bearings. Experiments were performed on a test rig under simulated conditions to determine the life and failure mechanism of the grease lubricated bearings that support the input shaft of the space shuttle body flap actuators. The failure mechanism was wear that can cause loss of bearing preload. These tests established life and reliability data for both shuttle flight and ground operation. Test data were used to estimate the failure rate and reliability as a function of the number of shuttle missions flown. The Weibull analysis of the test data for the four actuators on one shuttle, each with a 2-bearing shaft assembly, established a reliability level of 96.9 percent for a life of 12 missions. A probabilistic system analysis for four shuttles, each of which has four actuators, predicts a single bearing failure in one actuator of one shuttle after 22 missions (a total of 88 missions for a 4-shuttle fleet). This prediction is comparable with actual shuttle flight history in which a single actuator bearing was found to have failed by wear at 20 missions.

  14. Probabilistic Analysis of Space Shuttle Body Flap Actuator Ball Bearings

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oswald, Fred B.; Jett, Timothy R.; Predmore, Roamer E.; Zaretsky, Erin V.

    2007-01-01

    A probabilistic analysis, using the 2-parameter Weibull-Johnson method, was performed on experimental life test data from space shuttle actuator bearings. Experiments were performed on a test rig under simulated conditions to determine the life and failure mechanism of the grease lubricated bearings that support the input shaft of the space shuttle body flap actuators. The failure mechanism was wear that can cause loss of bearing preload. These tests established life and reliability data for both shuttle flight and ground operation. Test data were used to estimate the failure rate and reliability as a function of the number of shuttle missions flown. The Weibull analysis of the test data for a 2-bearing shaft assembly in each body flap actuator established a reliability level of 99.6 percent for a life of 12 missions. A probabilistic system analysis for four shuttles, each of which has four actuators, predicts a single bearing failure in one actuator of one shuttle after 22 missions (a total of 88 missions for a 4-shuttle fleet). This prediction is comparable with actual shuttle flight history in which a single actuator bearing was found to have failed by wear at 20 missions.

  15. Strategies for Self-Repairing Shape Memory Alloy Actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Langbein, Sven; Czechowicz, Alexander Jaroslaw; Meier, Horst

    2011-07-01

    Shape memory alloys (SMAs) are thermally activated smart materials. Due to their ability to change into a previously imprinted actual shape by the means of thermal activation, they are suitable as actuators for microsystems and, within certain limitations, macroscopic systems. A commonly used shape memory actuator type is an alloy of nickel and titanium (NiTi), which starts to transform its inner phase from martensitic to austenitic structure at a certain austenite start temperature. Retransformation starts at martensitic start temperature after running a hysteresis cycle. Most SMA-systems use straight wire actuators because of their simple integration, the occurring cost reduction and the resulting miniaturization. Unfortunately, SMA-actuators are only seldom used by constructors and system developers. This is due to occurring functional fatigue effects which depend on boundary conditions like system loads, strains, and number of cycles. The actuating stroke does not reduce essentially during the first thousand cycles. Striking is the elongation of the wire while maintaining the stroke during cycling (walking). In order to create a system which adjusts and repairs itself, different concepts to solve this problem are presented. They vary from smart control methods to constructive solutions with calibration systems. The systems are analyzed due to their effective, life cycle, and system costs showing outstanding advantages in comparison to commonly used SMA actuators.

  16. Large Scale Magnetostrictive Valve Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Richard, James A.; Holleman, Elizabeth; Eddleman, David

    2008-01-01

    Marshall Space Flight Center's Valves, Actuators and Ducts Design and Development Branch developed a large scale magnetostrictive valve actuator. The potential advantages of this technology are faster, more efficient valve actuators that consume less power and provide precise position control and deliver higher flow rates than conventional solenoid valves. Magnetostrictive materials change dimensions when a magnetic field is applied; this property is referred to as magnetostriction. Magnetostriction is caused by the alignment of the magnetic domains in the material s crystalline structure and the applied magnetic field lines. Typically, the material changes shape by elongating in the axial direction and constricting in the radial direction, resulting in no net change in volume. All hardware and testing is complete. This paper will discuss: the potential applications of the technology; overview of the as built actuator design; discuss problems that were uncovered during the development testing; review test data and evaluate weaknesses of the design; and discuss areas for improvement for future work. This actuator holds promises of a low power, high load, proportionally controlled actuator for valves requiring 440 to 1500 newtons load.

  17. Influence of abuse history on gastric sensorimotor function in functional dyspepsia.

    PubMed

    Geeraerts, B; Van Oudenhove, L; Fischler, B; Vandenberghe, J; Caenepeel, P; Janssens, J; Tack, J

    2009-01-01

    Patients with functional gastrointestinal disorders have elevated rates of sexual or physical abuse, which may be associated with altered rectal sensorimotor function in irritable bowel syndrome. The aim was to study the association between abuse history and gastric sensorimotor function in functional dyspepsia (FD). We studied gastric sensorimotor function with barostat (sensitivity, compliance and accommodation) and gastric emptying test in 233 consecutive FD patients from a tertiary care centre (162 women, mean age 41.6 +/- 0.9). Patients filled out self-report questionnaires on history of sexual and physical abuse during childhood or adulthood. Eighty-four patients (out of 198, 42.4%) reported an overall history of abuse [sexual and physical in respectively 30.0% (60/200) and 20.3% (42/207)]. FD patients reporting general as well as severe childhood sexual abuse have significantly lower discomfort thresholds during gastric distension [respectively 10.5 +/- 0.4 vs 7.5 +/- 1.0 mmHg above minimal distending pressure (MDP), P = 0.014 and 10.5 +/- 0.4 vs 6.6 +/- 1.2 mmHg above MDP, P = 0.007]. The corresponding intra-balloon volume was also significantly lower (respectively 579 +/- 21 vs 422 +/- 59 mL, P = 0.013 and 579 +/- 19 vs 423 +/- 79 mL, P = 0.033). Gastric accommodation was significantly more pronounced in patients reporting rape during adulthood (91 +/- 12 vs 130 +/- 40 mL, P = 0.016). Abuse history was not associated with differences in gastric emptying. A history of abuse is associated with alterations in gastric sensorimotor function in FD. Particularly sexual abuse, rather than physical abuse, may influence gastric sensitivity and motor function. PMID:18694440

  18. Explosive actuated valve

    DOEpatents

    Byrne, Kenneth G.

    1983-01-01

    1. A device of the character described comprising the combination of a housing having an elongate bore and including a shoulder extending inwardly into said bore, a single elongate movable plunger disposed in said bore including an outwardly extending flange adjacent one end thereof overlying said shoulder, normally open conduit means having an inlet and an outlet perpendicularly piercing said housing intermediate said shoulder and said flange and including an intermediate portion intersecting and normally openly communicating with said bore at said shoulder, normally closed conduit means piercing said housing and intersecting said bore at a location spaced from said normally open conduit means, said elongate plunger including a shearing edge adjacent the other end thereof normally disposed intermediate both of said conduit means and overlying a portion of said normally closed conduit means, a deformable member carried by said plunger intermediate said flange and said shoulder and normally spaced from and overlying the intermediate portion of said normally open conduit means, and means on the housing communicating with the bore to retain an explosive actuator for moving said plunger to force the deformable member against the shoulder and extrude a portion of the deformable member out of said bore into portions of the normally open conduit means for plugging the same and to effect the opening of said normally closed conduit means by the plunger shearing edge substantially concomitantly with the plugging of the normally open conduit means.

  19. Quick actuating closure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    White, III, Dorsey E. (Inventor); Updike, deceased, Benjamin T. (Inventor); Allred, Johnny W. (Inventor)

    1989-01-01

    A quick actuating closure for a pressure vessel 80 in which a wedge ring 30 with a conical outer surface 31 is moved forward to force shear blocks 40, with conical inner surfaces 41, radially outward to lock an end closure plug 70 within an opening 81 in the pressure vessel 80. A seal ring 60 and a preload ramp 50 sit between the shear blocks 40 and the end closure plug 70 to provide a backup sealing capability. Conical surfaces 44 and 55 of the preload ramp 50 and the shear blocks 40 interact to force the seal ring 60 into shoulders 73 and 85 in the end closure plug 70 and opening 81 to form a tight seal. The end closure plug 70 is unlocked by moving the wedge ring 30 rearward, which causes T-bars 32 of the wedge ring 30 riding within T -slots 42 of the shear blocks 40 to force them radially inward. The end closure plug 70 is then removed, allowing access to the interior of the pressure vessel 80.

  20. Downhole hydraulic actuated pump

    SciTech Connect

    Roeder, G.K.

    1988-09-06

    This patent describes a downhole hydraulically actuated pump assembly of the type having a main housing within which an engine and pump is enclosed; a connecting rod, an engine piston, a pump plunger, means by which the engine and connecting rod reciprocate the pump plunger and thereby produces fluid; the main housing has a lower end having a formation fluid inlet; and upper end having a power fluid inlet; and, a produced fluid outlet; the plunger divides one marginal end of the housing into upper and lower production chambers; the lower end of the connecting rod is hollow and extends through the plunger into fluid communication with the formation fluid inlet to provide a source of formation fluid for the upper and lower production chambers; a traveling value assembly contained within the plunger and arranged to transfer formation fluid from the hollow rod, through the plunger, and into the upper and lower production chambers, respectively, as the plunger upstrokes and downstrokes; produced fluid valve means by which fluid flows from the upper and lower production chambers and through the produced fluid outlet.

  1. Carbon nanotube array actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geier, S.; Mahrholz, T.; Wierach, P.; Sinapius, M.

    2013-09-01

    Experimental investigations of highly vertically aligned carbon nanotubes (CNTs), also known as CNT-arrays, are the main focus of this paper. The free strain as result of an active material behavior is analyzed via a novel experimental setup. Previous test experiences of papers made of randomly oriented CNTs, also called Bucky-papers, reveal comparably low free strain. The anisotropy of aligned CNTs promises better performance. Via synthesis techniques like chemical vapor deposition (CVD) or plasma enhanced CVD (PECVD), highly aligned arrays of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) are synthesized. Two different types of CNT-arrays are analyzed, morphologically first, and optically tested for their active characteristics afterwards. One type of the analyzed arrays features tube lengths of 750-2000 μm with a large variety of diameters between 20 and 50 nm and a wave-like CNT-shape. The second type features a maximum, almost uniform, length of 12 μm and a constant diameter of 50 nm. Different CNT-lengths and array types are tested due to their active behavior. As result of the presented tests, it is reported that the quality of orientation is the most decisive property for excellent active behavior. Due to their alignment, CNT-arrays feature the opportunity to clarify the actuation mechanism of architectures made of CNTs.

  2. Multiple switch actuator

    DOEpatents

    Beyer, Edward T.

    1976-01-06

    The present invention relates to switches and switch actuating devices to be operated for purposes of arming a bomb or other missile as it is dropped or released from an aircraft. The particular bomb or missile in which this invention is applied is one in which there is a plurality of circuits which are to be armed by the closing of switches upon dropping or releasing of the bomb. The operation of the switches to closed position is normally accomplished by means of a pull-out wire; that is, a wire which is withdrawn from the bomb or missile at the time of release of the bomb, one end of the wire being attached to the aircraft. The conditions to be met are that the arming switches must be positively and surely maintained in open position until the bomb is released and the arming action is effected. The action of the pull-out wire in achieving the arming action must be sure and positive with minimum danger of malfunctioning, jamming or binding.

  3. Low backlash direct drive actuator

    DOEpatents

    Kuklo, T.C.

    1994-10-25

    A low backlash direct drive actuator is described which comprises a motor such as a stepper motor having at least 200 steps per revolution; a two part hub assembly comprising a drive hub coaxially attached to the shaft of the motor and having a plurality of drive pins; a driven hub having a plurality of bores in one end thereof in alignment with the drive pins in the drive hub and a threaded shaft coaxially mounted in an opposite end of the driven hub; and a housing having a central bore therein into which are fitted the drive hub and driven hub, the housing having a motor mount on one end thereof to which is mounted the stepper motor, and a closed end portion with a threaded opening therein coaxial with the central bore in the housing and receiving therein the threaded shaft attached to the driven hub. Limit switches mounted to the housing cooperate with an enlarged lip on the driven hub to limit the lateral travel of the driven hub in the housing, which also acts to limit the lateral travel of the threaded shaft which functions as a lead screw. 10 figs.

  4. Low backlash direct drive actuator

    DOEpatents

    Kuklo, Thomas C.

    1994-01-01

    A low backlash direct drive actuator is described which comprises a motor such as a stepper motor having at least 200 steps per revolution; a two part hub assembly comprising a drive hub coaxially attached to the shaft of the motor and having a plurality of drive pins; a driven hub having a plurality of bores in one end thereof in alignment with the drive pins in the drive hub and a threaded shaft coaxially mounted in an opposite end of the driven hub; and a housing having a central bore therein into which are fitted the drive hub and driven hub, the housing having a motor mount on one end thereof to which is mounted the stepper motor, and a closed end portion with a threaded opening therein coaxial with the central bore in the housing and receiving therein the threaded shaft attached to the driven hub. Limit switches mounted to the housing cooperate with an enlarged lip on the driven hub to limit the lateral travel of the driven hub in the housing, which also acts to limit the lateral travel of the threaded shaft which functions as a lead screw.

  5. Fully redundant mechanical release actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lucy, Melvin H. (Inventor)

    1987-01-01

    A system is described for performing a mechanical release function exhibiting low shock. This system includes two pyrotechnic detents fixed mounted in opposing axial alignment within a cylindrical housing having two mechanical bellows. Two mechanical bellow assemblies, each having one end hermetically bonded to the housing and the other to the respective actuator pin extending from either end of the housing, ensure that all outgassing and contamination from the operation of the pyrotechnic devices will be contained within the housing and bellows. The pin on one end of the assembly is fixed mounted and supported, via a bolt or ball-and-socket joint so that when the charge corresponding to that pin ignites, the entire assembly will exhibit rectilinear movement, including the opposing pin providing the unlatching motion. The release detent pin is supported by a linear bearing and when its corresponding pyrotechnic charge ignites the pin is retracted within the housing producing the same unlatching motion without movement of the entire assembly, thus providing complete mechanical, electrical and pyrotechnic redundancy for the unlatching pin.

  6. Lightweight Exoskeletons with Controllable Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph; Mavrodis, Constantinos; Melli-Huber, Juan; Fisch, Avi (Alan)

    2004-01-01

    A proposed class of lightweight exoskeletal electromechanical systems would include electrically controllable actuators that would generate torques and forces that, depending on specific applications, would resist and/or assist wearers movements. The proposed systems would be successors to relatively heavy, bulky, and less capable human-strength-amplifying exoskeletal electromechanical systems that have been subjects of research during the past four decades. The proposed systems could be useful in diverse applications in which there are needs for systems that could be donned or doffed easily, that would exert little effect when idle, and that could be activated on demand: examples of such applications include (1) providing controlled movement and/or resistance to movement for physical exercise and (2) augmenting wearers strengths in the performance of military, law-enforcement, and industrial tasks. An exoskeleton according to the proposal would include adjustable lightweight graphite/epoxy struts and would be attached to the wearer's body by belts made of hook-and-pile material. At selected rotary and linear joints, the exoskeleton would be fitted, variously, with lightweight, low-power-consumption rotary and linear brakes, clutches, and motors. The exoskeleton would also be equipped with electronic circuitry for monitoring, control, and possibly communication with external electronic circuits that would perform additional monitoring and control functions.

  7. A study on the effect of surface topography on the actuation performance of stacked-rolled dielectric electro active polymer actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sait, Usha; Muthuswamy, Sreekumar

    2016-05-01

    Dielectric electro active polymer (DEAP) is a suitable actuator material that finds wide applications in the field of robotics and medical areas. This material is highly controllable, flexible, and capable of developing large strain. The influence of geometrical behavior becomes critical when the material is used as miniaturized actuation devices in robotic applications. The present work focuses on the effect of surface topography on the performance of flat (single sheet) and stacked-rolled DEAP actuators. The non-active areas in the form of elliptical spots that affect the performance of the actuator are identified using scanning electron microscope (SEM) and energy dissipated X-ray (EDX) experiments. Performance of DEAP actuation is critically evaluated, compared, and presented with analytical and experimental results.

  8. Performance range of SMA actuator wires and SMA-FRP structure in terms of manufacturing, modeling and actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hübler, M.; Gurka, M.; Schmeer, S.; Breuer, U. P.

    2013-09-01

    In this contribution we present a comprehensive theoretical and experimental description of an active shape memory alloy (SMA) fiber reinforced composite (FRP) hybrid structure. The major influences on actuation performance arising from variations in the design and manufacturing process are discussed, utilizing a new phenomenological model to describe the actuating SMA material. The different material properties for the activated, respective the unactivated, SMA as well as the influence of different loading conditions or pre-treatment of the material are taken into account in this model. To validate our material model we performed new actuation experiments with an exemplary SMA-FRP structure, which we compared to finite element (FE) simulation results. Our FE-model is based on a material model for the actuating SMA elements derived from experiments and data on the actual microscopic geometry of the hybrid composite. Therefore it is able to predict very precisely the actuation behavior of a typical FRP structure for industrial use cases: a thin walled CFRP sheet with SMA wires attached to the top for performing a bending motion with a maximum deflection of approx. 25% of its length.

  9. Bioinspired Smart Actuator Based on Graphene Oxide-Polymer Hybrid Hydrogels.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tao; Huang, Jiahe; Yang, Yiqing; Zhang, Enzhong; Sun, Weixiang; Tong, Zhen

    2015-10-28

    Rapid response and strong mechanical properties are desired for smart materials used in soft actuators. A bioinspired hybrid hydrogel actuator was designed and prepared by series combination of three trunks of tough polymer-clay hydrogels to accomplish the comprehensive actuation of "extension-grasp-retraction" like a fishing rod. The hydrogels with thermo-creep and thermo-shrinking features were successively irradiated by near-infrared (NIR) to execute extension and retraction, respectively. The GO in the hydrogels absorbed the NIR energy and transformed it into thermo-energy rapidly and effectively. The hydrogel with adhesion or magnetic force was adopted as the "hook" of the hybrid hydrogel actuator for grasping object. The hook of the hybrid hydrogel actuator was replaceable according to applications, even with functional materials other than hydrogels. This study provides an innovative concept to explore new soft actuators through combining response hydrogels and programming the same stimulus.

  10. Influence of aging on medial olivocochlear system function

    PubMed Central

    Lisowska, Grażyna; Namyslowski, Grzegorz; Orecka, Boguslawa; Misiolek, Maciej

    2014-01-01

    Background There is still controversy regarding the influence of aging on medial olivocochlear (MOC) system function. The main objective of this study is to measure age-related changes of MOC system function in people with normal hearing thresholds. Method Bilateral assessment of the MOC effect for click-evoked otoacoustic emissions (CEOAEs; at 70±3 dB peak sound pressure level [pSPL], click at 50/second, 260 repeats, 2.5–20 millisecond window) and for distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs; with [frequencies] f2/f1=1.22, [levels of primary tones] L1=65 dB SPL and L2=55 dB SPL; DP-grams for 2f1–f2 were collected for the f1 frequencies varying from 977 Hz to 5,164 kHz, with the resolution of four points per octave) was performed in a group of 146 (n=292 ears) healthy, right-handed subjects aged from 10–60 years with a bilateral hearing threshold from 0.25–4.0 kHz, not exceeding 20 dB hearing level; normal tympanograms; and a threshold of the contralateral stapedial reflex for broadband noise (BBN) of 75 dB SPL or higher. The MOC inhibition was assessed on the basis of changes in OAE level during BBN contralateral stimulation at 50 dB sensation level (mean, 65±3 dB SPL). Results Comparative analysis of the MOC effect for CEOAE and DPOAE showed the weakest effect in the oldest age group (41–60 years) at almost all tested frequencies. Moreover, a weak, albeit significant, positive correlation between the level of OAE and the size of the MOC effect was documented. Conclusion On the basis of our study, we have found a decrease in the strength of the MOC system with increasing age in normally hearing subjects, as reflected by a decrease of the OAE suppression effects in older individuals and an increase of the number of CEOAE and DPOAE enhancements during contralateral acoustic stimulation in the elderly, especially in the high-frequency range. PMID:24959071

  11. Experimental aerodynamics of mesoscale trailing-edge actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solovitz, Stephen Adam

    Uninhabited air vehicles (UAVs) are commonly designed with high-aspect ratio wings, which can be susceptible to significant aeroelastic vibrations. These modes can result in a loss of control or structural failure, and new techniques are necessary to alleviate them. A multidisciplinary effort at Stanford developed a distributed flow control method that used small trailing-edge actuators to alter the aerodynamic loads at specific spanwise locations along an airplane wing. This involved design and production of the actuators, computational and experimental study of their characteristics, and application to a flexible wing. This project focused on the experimental response. The actuators were based on a Gurney flap, which is a trailing-edge flap of small size and large deflection, typically about 2% of the chord and 90 degrees, respectively. Because of the large deflection, there is a significant change to the wing camber, increasing the lift. However, due to the small size, the drag does not increase substantially, and the performance is actually improved for high lift conditions. For this project, a 1.5% flap was divided into small span segments (5.2% of the chord), each individually controllable. These devices are termed microflaps or Micro Trailing-edge Effectors (MiTEs). The aerodynamic response was examined to determine the effects of small flap span, the influence of the device structure, and the transient response to relatively rapid MiTE actuation. Measurements included integrated loads, pressure profiles, wake surveys, and near-wake studies using particle image velocimetry. The basic response was similar to a Gurney flap, as full-span actuation of the devices produced a lift increment of about +0.25 when applied towards the pressure surface. For partial actuated spans, the load increment was approximately linear with the actuated span, regardless of configuration. The primary effects occurred within two device spans, indicating that most of the load was

  12. Development and testing of a magnetorheological actuator for an assistive knee brace

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Jinzhou; Liao, Wei-Hsin

    2008-03-01

    This paper proposes an assistive knee brace that is aimed to provide assistance to old or disabled people. A magnetorheological (MR) actuator is developed to be used in assistive knee braces to provide controllable torque. The MR actuator consists of a DC motor and an MR brake/clutch. When active torque is needed, the DC motor works and the MR actuator functions as a clutch to transfer the torque generated by the motor to the leg; when passive torque is desired, the DC motor is turned off and the MR actuator functions as a brake to provide controllable passive torque. The prototype of this MR actuator is fabricated and experiments are carried out to investigate the characteristics of the MR actuator. The results show that the MR actuator is able to provide sufficient torque needed for normal human activities. Adaptive control is proposed for controlling the MR actuator. Experiments of the MR actuator under control are performed to study the torque tracking ability of the system.

  13. Stable electroosmotically driven actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-04-01

    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.

  14. Optical pendulum generator based on photomechanical liquid-crystalline actuators.

    PubMed

    Tang, Rong; Liu, Ziyi; Xu, Dandan; Liu, Jian; Yu, Li; Yu, Haifeng

    2015-04-29

    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.

  15. Optical pendulum generator based on photomechanical liquid-crystalline actuators.

    PubMed

    Tang, Rong; Liu, Ziyi; Xu, Dandan; Liu, Jian; Yu, Li; Yu, Haifeng

    2015-04-29

    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. PMID:25875214

  16. Ferroelectric actuator testing for deformable-mirror applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costello, Thomas P.; Schell, John D.

    1992-01-01

    Low voltage ferroelectric microdisplacement actuators are excellent candidates for use in zonal correction deformable mirrors (DMs) used in adaptive optical systems. Selection/specification is a critical process, however, since the device's electro-mechanical performance largely determines the mirror performance, and its electrical load characteristics strongly influence the cost of drive electronics. Several commercially available low voltage actuator devices were tested to establish a database for new DM designs. Both quasi-static and dynamic response characteristics were investigated. Test results are presented and conclusions are drawn concerning the merits of each device for typical deformable mirror applications.

  17. A meta-analysis of zooplankton functional traits influencing ecosystem function.

    PubMed

    Hébert, Marie-Pier; Beisner, Beatrix E; Maranger, Roxane

    2016-04-01

    The use of functional traits to characterize community composition has been proposed as a more effective way to link community structure to ecosystem functioning. Organismal morphology, body stoichiometry, and physiology can be readily linked to large-scale ecosystem processes through functional traits that inform on interspecific and species-environment interactions; yet such effect traits are still poorly included in trait-based approaches. Given their key trophic position in aquatic ecosystems, individual zooplankton affect energy fluxes and elemental processing. We compiled a large database of zooplankton traits contributing to carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus cycling and examined the effect of classification and habitat (marine vs. freshwater) on trait relationships. Respiration and nutrient excretion rates followed mass-dependent scaling in both habitats, with exponents ranging from 0.70 to 0.90. Our analyses revealed surprising differences in allometry and respiration between habitats, with freshwater species having lower length-specific mass and three times higher mass-specific respiration rates. These differences in traits point to implications for ecological strategies as well as overall carbon storage and fluxes based on habitat type. Our synthesis quantifies multiple trait relationships and links organisms to ecosystem processes they influence, enabling a more complete integration of aquatic community ecology and biogeochemistry through the promising use of effect traits. PMID:27220222

  18. A meta-analysis of zooplankton functional traits influencing ecosystem function.

    PubMed

    Hébert, Marie-Pier; Beisner, Beatrix E; Maranger, Roxane

    2016-04-01

    The use of functional traits to characterize community composition has been proposed as a more effective way to link community structure to ecosystem functioning. Organismal morphology, body stoichiometry, and physiology can be readily linked to large-scale ecosystem processes through functional traits that inform on interspecific and species-environment interactions; yet such effect traits are still poorly included in trait-based approaches. Given their key trophic position in aquatic ecosystems, individual zooplankton affect energy fluxes and elemental processing. We compiled a large database of zooplankton traits contributing to carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus cycling and examined the effect of classification and habitat (marine vs. freshwater) on trait relationships. Respiration and nutrient excretion rates followed mass-dependent scaling in both habitats, with exponents ranging from 0.70 to 0.90. Our analyses revealed surprising differences in allometry and respiration between habitats, with freshwater species having lower length-specific mass and three times higher mass-specific respiration rates. These differences in traits point to implications for ecological strategies as well as overall carbon storage and fluxes based on habitat type. Our synthesis quantifies multiple trait relationships and links organisms to ecosystem processes they influence, enabling a more complete integration of aquatic community ecology and biogeochemistry through the promising use of effect traits.

  19. The LDCM actuator for vibration suppression

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ide, Eric N.; Lindner, Douglas K.

    1988-01-01

    A linear dc motor (LDCM) has been proposed as an actuator for the COFS I mast and the COFS program ground test Mini-Mast. The basic principles of operation of the LDCM as an actuator for vibration suppression in large flexible structures are reviewed. Because of force and stroke limitations, control loops are required to stabilize the actuator, which results in a non-standard actuator-plant configuration. A simulation model that includes LDCM actuator control loops and a finite element model of the Mast is described, with simulation results showing the excitation capability of the actuator.

  20. Actuator selection for large space structures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reddy, A. S. S. R.; Ruan, Mifang

    1990-01-01

    The paper discusses the process of selecting the actuator locations and the determination of the required number of actuators for large space structures. The selection is based on the definitions of the degree of controllability, the independence of actuators, and the effectiveness of the individual actuators. An algorithm is developed that can be used for the selection of the essential number of actuators and for finding some defects of the system, such as the insuffiency of the available actuator locations for effective control of the whole system or a too crowded frequency distribution. The efficiency of the algorithm was demonstrated by an application to the Space Station.

  1. Chord-wise Tip Actuation on Flexible Flapping Plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Nathan; Gharib, Morteza

    2015-11-01

    The aerodynamic characteristics of low aspect ratio flapping plates are strongly influenced by the interaction between tip and edge vortices. This has led to the development of tip actuation mechanisms which bend the tip towards the root of the plate in the span-wise direction during oscillation to investigate its impact. In our current work, a tip actuation mechanism to bend a flat plate's two free corners towards one another in the chord-wise direction is developed using a shape memory alloy. The aerodynamic forces and resulting flow field are investigated from dynamically altering the tip chord-wise curvature while flapping. The frequency of oscillation, stroke angle, flexibility, and tip actuation timing are independently varied to determine their individual effects. These results will further the fundamental understanding of flapping wing aerodynamics. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship under Grant No. DGE 1144469.

  2. Parylene coated carbon nanotube actuators for tactile stimulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bubak, Grzegorz; Ansaldo, Alberto; Gendron, David; Brayda, Luca; Ceseracciu, Luca; Ricci, Davide

    2015-04-01

    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.

  3. Actuator and aerodynamic modeling for high-angle-of-attack aeroservoelasticity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brenner, Martin J.

    1993-01-01

    Accurate prediction of airframe/actuation coupling is required by the imposing demands of modern flight control systems. In particular, for agility enhancement at high angle of attack and low dynamic pressure, structural integration characteristics such as hinge moments, effective actuator stiffness, and airframe/control surface damping can have a significant effect on stability predictions. Actuator responses are customarily represented with low-order transfer functions matched to actuator test data, and control surface stiffness is often modeled as a linear spring. The inclusion of the physical properties of actuation and its installation on the airframe is therefore addressed in this paper using detailed actuator models which consider the physical, electrical, and mechanical elements of actuation. The aeroservoelastic analysis procedure is described in which the actuators are modeled as detailed high-order transfer functions and as approximate low-order transfer functions. The impacts of unsteady aerodynamic modeling on aeroservoelastic stability are also investigated in this paper by varying the order of approximation, or number of aerodynamic lag states, in the analysis. Test data from a thrust-vectoring configuration of an F/A-18 aircraft are compared to predictions to determine the effects on accuracy as a function of modeling complexity.

  4. Actuator and aerodynamic modeling for high-angle-of-attack aeroservoelasticity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brenner, Martin J.

    1993-01-01

    Accurate prediction of airframe/actuation coupling is required by the imposing demands of modern flight control systems. In particular, for agility enhancement at high angle of attack and low dynamic pressure, structural integration characteristics such as hinge moments, effective actuator stiffness, and airframe/control surface damping can have a significant effect on stability predictions. Actuator responses are customarily represented with low-order transfer functions matched to actuator test data, and control surface stiffness is often modeled as a linear spring. The inclusion of the physical properties of actuation and its installation on the airframe is therefore addressed using detailed actuator models which consider the physical, electrical, and mechanical elements of actuation. The aeroservoelastic analysis procedure is described in which the actuators are modeled as detailed high-order transfer functions and as approximate low-order transfer functions. The impacts of unsteady aerodynamic modeling on aeroservoelastic stability are also investigated by varying the order of approximation, or number of aerodynamic lag states, in the analysis. Test data from a thrust-vectoring configuration of an F/A-l8 aircraft are compared to predictions to determine the effects on accuracy as a function of modeling complexity.

  5. Viscous rotary vane actuator/damper. [for Mariner and Viking programs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harper, J. D.

    1976-01-01

    A compact viscous rotary actuator/damper for use on the Mariner '71 and Viking Programs was developed. Several functions were combined into this single mechanism to control the deployment, latching, and damping of the solar panel arrays used on these space vehicles. The design, development, and testing of the actuator/damper are described, and major problems encountered are discussed.

  6. Zero-Net Mass-Flux Actuator Cavity Vortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krieg, Michael; Mohseni, Kamran

    2013-11-01

    Zero-Net Mass-Flux (ZNMT) devices are used commonly as synthetic jet actuators for flow control in various applications. The authors have recently proposed using larger ZNMF jet actuators for underwater propulsion; similar to squid and jellyfish. Generally the external flow generated by these devices is characterized according to momentum and energy transfer rates, and little attention is paid to the dynamics of flow inside the cavity. In fact the flow inside the cavity, especially during the refilling phase is not only highly dynamic but greatly influences the pressure distribution at the opening as well as the external flow during the following jetting phase. A completely transparent axisymmetric ZNMF cavity was constructed in order to investigate the internal vortex dynamics. The flow is seeded with reflective particles and illumined with a laser sheet bisecting the axis of symmetry. Standard 2D DPIV techniques are used to recover the velocity field in this cross section. During filling it is observed that a starting jet extending from the opening to the inside of the cavity rolls into a vortex ring much like the jetting phase. However, the effect of the cavity walls becomes apparent almost immediately. In this talk we characterize how the circulation within the cavity decays as a function of both cavity/orifice geometry and the mass flux program. In addition a load cell measures the total thrust acting on the device which is used to validate pressure calculations performed on the moving surface inside the cavity, showing excellent agreement. This work is supported by a grant from the Office of Naval Research.

  7. Thermally Actuated Primary Mirror for Space Exoplanet Imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Angel, J. R.; Kang, T.; Cuerden, B.; Stahl, P.; Guyon, O.

    2007-05-01

    Figure correction by thermal actuation of telescope primary mirrors will be valuable for space telescopes aimed at very high contrast imaging. It is planned that the primary mirror of TOPS (Telescope to Observe Planetary Systems) will be made with this technology. TOPS will use phase induced intensity apodization (PIAA, Guyon et al, 2003-2007) to obtain very high suppression of diffracted light at very close inner working angle. TOPS II, a scaled-up version with a 2 m primary would readily detect earth-like planets in the habitable zone of nearby stars, provided low order wavefront errors are very accurately controlled. This is best done at the primary, to avoid propagation effects. The correction concept relies on the low but finite thermal expansion of honeycomb mirrors made from fused silica, a material commonly used for precision lightweight space optics. The mirror will be figured for the highest accuracy passive figure. The residual low order errors with likely few nm amplitude will be sensed on-orbit and nulled out by slightly varying the temperature of the back faceplate and individual rib elements. Resistive heating will be balanced in a servo control loop against radiative loss to cold fingers inserted in each honeycomb cell. Preliminary finite element models indicate that, for a mirror with n cells, up to n Zernike modes can be corrected to better than 90% fidelity, with still higher accuracy for the lower modes. For a honeycomb test mirror of borosilicate glass interferometric measurements show a single cell influence function with 300 nm stroke and 5 minute time constant is readily achieved. As the next step, it is planned that full actuation of all cells of a prototype mirror will be undertaken at MSFC, leading toward a 2 m flight demonstrator.

  8. Micromechanism linear actuator with capillary force sealing

    DOEpatents

    Sniegowski, Jeffry J.

    1997-01-01

    A class of micromachine linear actuators whose function is based on gas driven pistons in which capillary forces are used to seal the gas behind the piston. The capillary forces also increase the amount of force transmitted from the gas pressure to the piston. In a major subclass of such devices, the gas bubble is produced by thermal vaporization of a working fluid. Because of their dependence on capillary forces for sealing, such devices are only practical on the sub-mm size scale, but in that regime they produce very large force times distance (total work) values.

  9. Characterization of electrostatic glass actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moser, R.; Wüthrich, R.; Sache, L.; Higuchi, T.; Bleuler, H.

    2003-06-01

    Electrostatic glass actuators are a promising concept for various applications. The use of the interaction between glassy substances and electrostatic fields allows synchronous propulsion akin to the electret actuator. Even though some properties of electrostatic glass motors have been observed and described, a characterization is still missing. The authors would like to present the experimental work leading to the determination of the optimal glass blend and to the optimal electrode pattern in order to maximize the exploitable forces. An analytical model is also presented, satisfactorily close to the measured data. These measurements and models constitute a tool to design electrostatic glass actuators such as, for example, a miniature disk drive, which is presented as one of several promising applications.

  10. Wellhead with hydraulic pump actuator

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, H.D.; Brown, M.A.; Rohling, L.J.

    1984-07-31

    A wellhead assembly especially suited for oil wells has a wide working pressure range and employs three components which fit together to seal the well casing, hold the tubing against high wellhead pressures, and provide a connection to the tubing through which the sucker rods are operated. The primary casing seal is formed by the mating contact of metal surfaces that are not subject to deterioration. The actuator for the subsurface pump is a vertically disposed hydraulic cylinder unit aligned with the sucker rods and forming the uppermost section of an elongated cylindrical housing, which also has a lowermost section on the wellhead that provides the outlets for the fluid pumped from the well, and an intermediate, control section that contains a spool valve for controlling the hydraulic actuator. The spool is shifted by the piston and rod of the hydraulic actuator at the upper and lower limits of their stroke to thereby reciprocate the sucker rods and operate the subsurface pump.

  11. A Parylene Bellows Electrochemical Actuator

    PubMed Central

    Li, Po-Ying; Sheybani, Roya; Gutierrez, Christian A.; Kuo, Jonathan T. W.; Meng, Ellis

    2011-01-01

    We present the first electrochemical actuator with Parylene bellows for large-deflection operation. The bellows diaphragm was fabricated using a polyethylene-glycol-based sacrificial molding technique followed by coating in Parylene C. Bellows were mechanically characterized and integrated with a pair of interdigitated electrodes to form an electrochemical actuator that is suitable for low-power pumping of fluids. Pump performance (gas generation rate and pump efficiency) was optimized through a careful examination of geometrical factors. Overall, a maximum pump efficiency of 90% was achieved in the case of electroplated electrodes, and a deflection of over 1.5 mm was demonstrated. Real-time wireless operation was achieved. The complete fabrication process and the materials used in this actuator are bio-compatible, which makes it suitable for biological and medical applications. PMID:21318081

  12. Electromechanical propellant control system actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, W. Neill; Weir, Rae Ann

    1990-01-01

    New control mechanism technologies are currently being sought to provide alternatives to hydraulic actuation systems. The Propulsion Laboratory at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) is involved in the development of electromechanical actuators (EMA's) for this purpose. Through this effort, an in-house designed electromechanical propellant valve actuator has been assembled and is presently being evaluated. This evaluation will allow performance comparisons between EMA and hydraulics systems. The in-house design consists of the following hardware: a three-phase brushless motor, a harmonic drive, and an output spline which will mate with current Space Shuttle Main Engine (SSME) propellant control valves. A resolver and associated electronics supply position feedback for the EMA. System control is provided by a solid-state electronic controller and power supply. Frequency response testing has been performed with further testing planned as hardware and test facilities become available.

  13. A hybrid actuated microrobot using an electromagnetic field and flagellated bacteria for tumor-targeting therapy.

    PubMed

    Li, Donghai; Choi, Hyunchul; Cho, Sunghoon; Jeong, Semi; Jin, Zhen; Lee, Cheong; Ko, Seong Young; Park, Jong-Oh; Park, Sukho

    2015-08-01

    In this paper, we propose a new concept for a hybrid actuated microrobot for tumor-targeting therapy. For drug delivery in tumor therapy, various electromagnetic actuated microrobot systems have been studied. In addition, bacteria-based microrobot (so-called bacteriobot), which use tumor targeting and the therapeutic function of the bacteria, has also been proposed for solid tumor therapy. Compared with bacteriobot, electromagnetic actuated microrobot has larger driving force and locomotive controllability due to their position recognition and magnetic field control. However, because electromagnetic actuated microrobot does not have self-tumor targeting, they need to be controlled by an external magnetic field. In contrast, the bacteriobot uses tumor targeting and the bacteria's own motility, and can exhibit self-targeting performance at solid tumors. However, because the propulsion forces of the bacteria are too small, it is very difficult for bacteriobot to track a tumor in a vessel with a large bloodstream. Therefore, we propose a hybrid actuated microrobot combined with electromagnetic actuation in large blood vessels with a macro range and bacterial actuation in small vessels with a micro range. In addition, the proposed microrobot consists of biodegradable and biocompatible microbeads in which the drugs and magnetic particles can be encapsulated; the bacteria can be attached to the surface of the microbeads and propel the microrobot. We carried out macro-manipulation of the hybrid actuated microrobot along a desired path through electromagnetic field control and the micro-manipulation of the hybrid actuated microrobot toward a chemical attractant through the chemotaxis of the bacteria. For the validation of the hybrid actuation of the microrobot, we fabricated a hydrogel microfluidic channel that can generate a chemical gradient. Finally, we evaluated the motility performance of the hybrid actuated microrobot in the hydrogel microfluidic channel. We expect

  14. A hybrid actuated microrobot using an electromagnetic field and flagellated bacteria for tumor-targeting therapy.

    PubMed

    Li, Donghai; Choi, Hyunchul; Cho, Sunghoon; Jeong, Semi; Jin, Zhen; Lee, Cheong; Ko, Seong Young; Park, Jong-Oh; Park, Sukho

    2015-08-01

    In this paper, we propose a new concept for a hybrid actuated microrobot for tumor-targeting therapy. For drug delivery in tumor therapy, various electromagnetic actuated microrobot systems have been studied. In addition, bacteria-based microrobot (so-called bacteriobot), which use tumor targeting and the therapeutic function of the bacteria, has also been proposed for solid tumor therapy. Compared with bacteriobot, electromagnetic actuated microrobot has larger driving force and locomotive controllability due to their position recognition and magnetic field control. However, because electromagnetic actuated microrobot does not have self-tumor targeting, they need to be controlled by an external magnetic field. In contrast, the bacteriobot uses tumor targeting and the bacteria's own motility, and can exhibit self-targeting performance at solid tumors. However, because the propulsion forces of the bacteria are too small, it is very difficult for bacteriobot to track a tumor in a vessel with a large bloodstream. Therefore, we propose a hybrid actuated microrobot combined with electromagnetic actuation in large blood vessels with a macro range and bacterial actuation in small vessels with a micro range. In addition, the proposed microrobot consists of biodegradable and biocompatible microbeads in which the drugs and magnetic particles can be encapsulated; the bacteria can be attached to the surface of the microbeads and propel the microrobot. We carried out macro-manipulation of the hybrid actuated microrobot along a desired path through electromagnetic field control and the micro-manipulation of the hybrid actuated microrobot toward a chemical attractant through the chemotaxis of the bacteria. For the validation of the hybrid actuation of the microrobot, we fabricated a hydrogel microfluidic channel that can generate a chemical gradient. Finally, we evaluated the motility performance of the hybrid actuated microrobot in the hydrogel microfluidic channel. We expect

  15. Ionic and viscoelastic mechanisms of a bucky-gel actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kruusamäe, Karl; Sugino, Takushi; Asaka, Kinji

    2015-07-01

    Ionic electromechanically active polymers (IEAPs) are considered attractive candidates for soft, miniature, and lightweight actuators. The bucky-gel actuator is a carbonaceous subtype of IEAP that due to its structure (i.e. two highly porous electrodes sandwiching a thin ion-permeable electrolyte layer) and composition (i.e. being composed of soft porous polymer, carbon nanotubes, and ionic liquid) is very similar to an electric double-layer capacitor. In response to the voltage applied between the electrodes of a bucky-gel actuator, the laminar structure bends. The time domain behavior exhibits, however, a phenomenon called the back-relaxation, i.e., after some time the direction of bending is reversed even though voltage remains constant. In spite of the working mechanism of IEAP actuators being generally attributed to the transport of ions within the soft multilayer system, the specific details remain unclear. A so-called two-carrier model proposes that the bending and subsequent back-relaxation are caused by the relocation of two ionic species having different mobilities as they enter and exit the electrode layers. By adopting the two-carrier model for bucky-gel actuators, we see very good agreement between the mathematical representation and the experimental data of the electromechanical behavior. Furthermore, since the bucky-gel actuator is viscoelastic, we propose to use the time domain response of a blocking force as the key parameter related to the inner ionic mechanism. We also introduce a method to estimate the viscoelastic creep compliance function from the time domain responses for curvature and blocking force. This analysis includes four types of bucky-gel actuators of varying composition and structure.

  16. The viscoelastic effect in bending bucky-gel actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kruusamäe, Karl; Mukai, Ken; Sugino, Takushi; Asaka, Kinji

    2014-03-01

    Electromechanically active polymers (EAP) are considered a good actuator candidate for a variety of reasons, e.g. they are soft, easy to miniaturize and operate without audible noise. The main structural component in EAPs is, as the name states, a type of deformable polymer. As polymers are known to exhibit a distinct mechanical response, the nature of polymer materials should never be neglected when characterizing and modeling the performance of EAP actuators. Bucky-gel actuators are a subtype of EAPs where ion-containing polymer membrane acts as an electronically insulating separator between two electrodes of carbon nanotubes and ionic liquid. In many occasions, the electrodes also contain polymer for the purpose of binding it together. Therefore, mechanically speaking, bucky-gel actuators are composite structures with layers of different mechanical nature. The viscoelastic response and the shape change property are perhaps the most characteristic effects in polymers. These effects are known to have high dependence on factors such as the type of polymer, the concentration of additives and the structural ratio of different layers. At the same time, most reports about optimization of EAP actuators describe the alteration of electromechanical performance dependent on the same factors. In this paper, the performance of bucky-gel actuators is measured as a function between the output force and bending deflection. It is observed that effective stiffness of these actuators depends on the input voltage. This finding is also supported by dynamic mechanical analysis which demonstrates that the viscoelastic response of bucky-gel laminate depends on both frequency and temperature. Moreover, the dynamic mechanical analysis reveals that in the range of standard operation temperatures, tested samples were in their glass transition region, which made it possible to alter their shape by using mechanical fixing. The mechanical fixity above 90% was obtained when high

  17. Fast-acting valve actuator

    DOEpatents

    Cho, Nakwon

    1980-01-01

    A fast-acting valve actuator utilizes a spring driven pneumatically loaded piston to drive a valve gate. Rapid exhaust of pressurized gas from the pneumatically loaded side of the piston facilitates an extremely rapid piston stroke. A flexible selector diaphragm opens and closes an exhaust port in response to pressure differentials created by energizing and de-energizing a solenoid which controls the pneumatic input to the actuator as well as selectively providing a venting action to one side of the selector diaphragm.

  18. Electrostatically actuatable light modulating device

    DOEpatents

    Koehler, Dale R.

    1991-01-01

    The electrostatically actuatable light modulator utilizes an opaque substrate plate patterned with an array of aperture cells, the cells comprised of physically positionable dielectric shutters and electrostatic actuators. With incorporation of a light source and a viewing screen, a projection display system is effected. Inclusion of a color filter array aligned with the aperture cells accomplishes a color display. The system is realized in terms of a silicon based manufacturing technology allowing fabrication of a high resolution capability in a physically small device which with the utilization of included magnification optics allows both large and small projection displays.

  19. Electrodynamic actuators for rocket engine valves

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fiet, O.; Doshi, D.

    1972-01-01

    Actuators, employed in acoustic loudspeakers, operate liquid rocket engine valves by replacing light paper cones with flexible metal diaphragms. Comparative analysis indicates better response time than solenoid actuators, and improved service life and reliability.

  20. Method and apparatus for actuating vehicle transmission

    SciTech Connect

    Ishida, H.; Ishihara, M.; Uriuhara, M.

    1988-11-15

    This patent describes a method of actuating a vehicle parallel-gear transmission having gears and an internal lever for moving shift blocks connected with shift rods and shift forks for changing gear ratios of the transmission, a hydraulically controlled select actuator operatively connected to the internal lever for moving the internal lever in a select direction, a hydraulically controlled shift actuator operatively connected to the internal lever for moving the internal lever in a shift direction substantially normal to the select direction, a hydraulically controlled clutch actuator for connecting and disconnecting a clutch of the transmission, and a common fluid discharge passage connected to fluid discharge ports of the select and shift actuators and a fluid discharge port of the clutch actuator, the select and shift actuators being alternately actuatable to effect a gear changing operation.

  1. Propellant-powered actuator for gas generators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Makowski, M. J.

    1972-01-01

    Hydrazine operated monopropellant generators are used for spacecraft rocket engines and propellant pressurization systems. Measured work output of monopropellant actuators compares favorably with output of squib-type actuators.

  2. New electrode materials for dielectric elastomer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, Wei; Lam, Tuling; Biggs, James; Hu, Liangbing; Yu, Zhibin; Ha, Soonmok; Xi, Dongjuan; Senesky, Matthew K.; Grüner, George; Pei, Qibing

    2007-04-01

    Dielectric elastomer actuators exert strain due to an applied electric field. With advantageous properties such as high efficiency and their light weight, these actuators are attractive for a variety of applications ranging from biomimetic robots, medical prosthetics to conventional pumps and valves. The performance and reliability however, are limited by dielectric breakdown which occurs primarily from localized defects inherently present in the polymer film during actuation. These defects lead to electric arcing, causing a short circuit that shuts down the entire actuator and can lead to actuator failure at fields significantly lower than the intrinsic strength of the material. This limitation is particularly a problem in actuators using large-area films. Our recent studies have shown that the gap between the strength of the intrinsic material and the strength of large-area actuators can be reduced by electrically isolating defects in the dielectric film. As a result, the performance and reliability of dielectric elastomers actuators can be substantially improved.

  3. Design and reliability of a MEMS thermal rotary actuator.

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, Michael Sean; Corwin, Alex David

    2007-09-01

    direction to increase the available output force. This new design was tested and shown to operate in one case out to greater than 360 million cycles without any skipping, after which the test was stopped without failure. The output force was also measured as a function of input voltage (Figure 4), and shown to be higher than the previous design. The maximum force shown in the figure is a limit of the gauge used, not the actuator itself. Continued work for this design will focus on understanding the actuator performance while driving a load, as all current tests were performed with no load on the output gear.

  4. Modelling and control of double-cone dielectric elastomer actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Branz, F.; Francesconi, A.

    2016-09-01

    Among various dielectric elastomer devices, cone actuators are of large interest for their multi-degree-of-freedom design. These objects combine the common advantages of dielectric elastomers (i.e. solid-state actuation, self-sensing capability, high conversion efficiency, light weight and low cost) with the possibility to actuate more than one degree of freedom in a single device. The potential applications of this feature in robotics are huge, making cone actuators very attractive. This work focuses on rotational degrees of freedom to complete existing literature and improve the understanding of such aspect. Simple tools are presented for the performance prediction of the device: finite element method simulations and interpolating relations have been used to assess the actuator steady-state behaviour in terms of torque and rotation as a function of geometric parameters. Results are interpolated by fit relations accounting for all the relevant parameters. The obtained data are validated through comparison with experimental results: steady-state torque and rotation are determined at a given high voltage actuation. In addition, the transient response to step input has been measured and, as a result, the voltage-to-torque and the voltage-to-rotation transfer functions are obtained. Experimental data are collected and used to validate the prediction capability of the transfer function in terms of time response to step input and frequency response. The developed static and dynamic models have been employed to implement a feedback compensator that controls the device motion; the simulated behaviour is compared to experimental data, resulting in a maximum prediction error of 7.5%.

  5. Distributed structural control using multilayered piezoelectric actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cudney, Harley H.; Inman, Daniel J.; Oshman, Yaakov

    1990-01-01

    A method of segmenting piezoelectric sensors and actuators is proposed which can preclude the currently experienced cancelation of sensor signals, or the reduction of actuator effectiveness, due to the integration of the property undergoing measurement or control. The segmentation method is demonstrated by a model developed for beam structures, to which multiple layers of piezoelectric materials are attached. A numerical study is undertaken of increasing active and passive damping of a beam using the segmented sensors and actuators over unsegmented sensors and actuators.

  6. Piezoelectric Actuators On A Cold Finger

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuo, Chin-Po; Garba, John A.; Glaser, Robert J.

    1995-01-01

    Developmental system for active suppression of vibrations of cold finger includes three piezoelectric actuators bonded to outer surface. Actuators used to suppress longitudinal and lateral vibrations of upper end of cold finger by applying opposing vibrations. Cold finger in question is part of a cryogenic system associated with an infrared imaging detector. When fully developed, system would be feedback sensor/control/actuator system automatically adapting to changing vibrational environment and suppresses pressure-induced vibrations by imposing compensatory vibrations via actuators.

  7. Torque characteristics of a 122-centimeter butterfly valve with a hydro/pneumatic actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lin, F. N.; Moore, W. I.; Lundy, F. E.

    1981-01-01

    Actuating torque data from field testing of a 122-centimeter (48 in.) butterfly valve with a hydro/pneumatic actuator is presented. The hydraulic cylinder functions as either a forward or a reverse brake. Its resistance torque increases when the valve speeds up and decreases when the valve slows down. A reduction of flow resistance in the hydraulic flow path from one end of the hydraulic cylinder to the other will effectively reduce the hydraulic resistance torque and hence increase the actuating torque. The sum of hydrodynamic and friction torques (combined resistance torque) of a butterfly valve is a function of valve opening time. An increase in the pneumatic actuating pressure will result in a decrease in both the combined resistance torque and the actuator opening torque; however, it does shorten the valve opening time. As the pneumatic pressure increases, the valve opening time for a given configuration approaches an asymptotical value.

  8. Dielectric elastomer bending tube actuators with rigid electrode structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wehrheim, F.; Schlaak, H. F.; Meyer, J.-U.

    2010-04-01

    The common approach for dielectric elastomer actuators (DEA) is based on the assumption that compliant electrodes are a fundamental design requirement. For tube-like applications compliant electrodes cause a change of the actuator diameter during actuation and would require additional support-structures. Focused on thinwalled actuator-tube geometries room consumption and radial stabilityr epresent crucial criteria. Following the ambition of maximum functional integration, the concept of using a rigid electrode structure arises. This structure realizes both, actuation and support characteristics. The intended rigid electrode structure is based on a stacked DEA with a non-compressible dielectric. Byactu ation, the displaced dielectric causes an overlap. This overlap serves as an indicator for geometrical limitations and has been used to extract design rules regarding the electrode size, electrode distance and maximum electrode travel. Bycons idering the strain in anydir ection, the mechanical efficiencyhas been used to define further design aspects. To verifyt he theoretic analysis, a test for determination of the compressive stress-strain-characteristics has been applied for different electrode setups. As result the geometrydep ending elastic pressure module has been formulated by implementation of a shape factor. The presented investigations consider exclusive the static behavior of a DEA-setup with rigid electrodes.

  9. Magnetic Actuation of Self-Assembled DNA Hinges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  10. Optimized actuators for ultrathin deformable primary mirrors.

    PubMed

    Laslandes, Marie; Patterson, Keith; Pellegrino, Sergio

    2015-05-20

    A novel design and selection scheme for surface-parallel actuators for ultrathin, lightweight mirrors is presented. The actuation system consists of electrodes printed on a continuous layer of piezoelectric material bonded to an optical-quality substrate. The electrodes provide almost full coverage of the piezoelectric layer, in order to maximize the amount of active material that is available for actuation, and their shape is optimized to maximize the correctability and stroke of the mirror for a chosen number of independent actuators and for a dominant imperfection mode. The starting point for the design of the electrodes is the observation that the correction of a figure error that has at least two planes of mirror symmetry is optimally done with twin actuators that have the same optimized shape but are rotated through a suitable angle. Additional sets of optimized twin actuators are defined by considering the intersection between the twin actuators, and hence an arbitrarily fine actuation pattern can be generated. It is shown that this approach leads to actuator systems with better performance than simple, geometrically based actuators. Several actuator patterns to correct third-order astigmatism aberrations are presented, and an experimental demonstration of a 41-actuator mirror is also presented. PMID:26192533

  11. Carbon nanotube-polymer composite actuators

    DOEpatents

    Gennett, Thomas; Raffaelle, Ryne P.; Landi, Brian J.; Heben, Michael J.

    2008-04-22

    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. Optimizing Sensor and Actuator Arrays for ASAC Noise Control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palumbo, Dan; Cabell, Ran

    2000-01-01

    This paper summarizes the development of an approach to optimizing the locations for arrays of sensors and actuators in active noise control systems. A type of directed combinatorial search, called Tabu Search, is used to select an optimal configuration from a much larger set of candidate locations. The benefit of using an optimized set is demonstrated. The importance of limiting actuator forces to realistic levels when evaluating the cost function is discussed. Results of flight testing an optimized system are presented. Although the technique has been applied primarily to Active Structural Acoustic Control systems, it can be adapted for use in other active noise control implementations.

  13. Energy minimization for self-organized structure formation and actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kofod, Guggi; Wirges, Werner; Paajanen, Mika; Bauer, Siegfried

    2007-02-01

    An approach for creating complex structures with embedded actuation in planar manufacturing steps is presented. Self-organization and energy minimization are central to this approach, illustrated with a model based on minimization of the hyperelastic free energy strain function of a stretched elastomer and the bending elastic energy of a plastic frame. A tulip-shaped gripper structure illustrates the technological potential of the approach. Advantages are simplicity of manufacture, complexity of final structures, and the ease with which any electroactive material can be exploited as means of actuation.

  14. Light-Controlled Graphene-Elastin Composite Hydrogel Actuators

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Eddie; Desai, Malav S.; Lee, Seung-Wuk

    2013-01-01

    Hydrogels actuators (HAs) that can reversibly respond to stimuli have applications in diverse fields. However, faster response rates and improved control over actuation timing and location are required to fulfill their potential. To address these criteria, we synthesized near-infrared light-driven HAs by interfacing genetically engineered elastin-like polypeptides with reduced-graphene oxide sheets. The resulting nanocomposites exhibited rapid and tunable motions controlled by light position, intensity, and path, including finger-like flexing and crawling. This work demonstrates the ability of rationally designed proteins to be combined with synthetic nanoparticles for the creation of macroscale functional materials. PMID:23647361

  15. Muscular MEMS—the engineering of liquid crystal elastomer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petsch, S.; Khatri, B.; Schuhladen, S.; Köbele, L.; Rix, R.; Zentel, R.; Zappe, H.

    2016-08-01

    A new class of soft-matter actuator, the liquid crystal elastomer (LCE), shows promise for application in a wide variety of mechanical microsystems. Frequently referred to as an ‘artificial muscle’, this family of materials exhibits large actuation stroke and generates considerable force, in a compact form which may easily be combined with the structures and devices commonly used in microsystems and MEMS. We show here how standard microfabrication techniques may be used to integrate LCEs into mechanical microsystems and present an in-depth analysis of their mechanical and actuation properties. Using an example from micro-optics and optical MEMS, we demonstrate that their performance and flexibility allows realization of entirely new types of tunable optical functionality.

  16. MRI compatibility of robot actuation techniques--a comparative study.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Gregory S; Krieger, Axel; Iordachita, Iulian; Csoma, Csaba; Whitcomb, Louis L; Gabor, Fichtinger

    2008-01-01

    This paper reports an experimental evaluation of the following three different MRI-compatible actuators: a Shinsei ultrasonic motor a Nanomotion ultrasonic motor and a pneumatic cylinder actuator. We report the results of a study comparing the effect of these actuators on the signal to noise ratio (SNR) of MRJ images under a variety of experimental conditions. Evaluation was performed with the controller inside and outside the scanner room and with both 1.5T and 3T MRI scanners. Pneumatic cylinders function with no loss of SNR with controller both inside and outside of the scanner room. The Nanomotion motor performs with moderate loss of SNR when moving during imaging. The Shinsei is unsuitable for motion during imaging. All may be used when motion is appropriately interleaved with imaging cycles.

  17. Electroactive Polymer (EAP) Actuators for Future Humanlike Robots

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2009-01-01

    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.

  18. Smart patch piezoceramic actuator issues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Griffin, Steven F.; Denoyer, Keith K.; Yost, Brad

    1993-01-01

    The Phillips Laboratory is undertaking the challenge of finding new and innovative ways to integrate sensing, actuation, and the supporting control and power electronics into a compact self-contained unit to provide vibration suppression for a host structure. This self-contained unit is commonly referred to as a smart patch. The interfaces to the smart patch will be limited to standard spacecraft power and possibly a communications line. The effort to develop a smart patch involves both contractual and inhouse programs which are currently focused on miniaturization of the electronics associated with vibrational control using piezoceramic sensors and actuators. This paper is comprised of two distinct parts. The first part examines issues associated with bonding piezoceramic actuators to a host structure. Experimental data from several specimens with varying flexural stiffness are compared to predictions from two piezoelectric/substructure coupling models, the Blocked Force Model and the Uniform Strain Model with Perfect Bonding. The second part of the paper highlights a demonstration article smart patch created using the insights gained from inhouse efforts at the Phillips Laboratory. This demonstration article has self contained electronics on the same order of size as the actuator powered by a voltage differential of approximately 32 volts. This voltage is provided by four rechargeable 8 volt batteries.

  19. SMA actuators for morphing wings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brailovski, V.; Terriault, P.; Georges, T.; Coutu, D.

    An experimental morphing laminar wing was developed to prove the feasibility of aircraft fuel consumption reduction through enhancement of the laminar flow regime over the wing extrados. The morphing wing prototype designed for subsonic cruise flight conditions (Mach 0.2 … 0.3; angle of attack - 1 … +2∘), combines three principal subsystems: (1) flexible extrados, (2) rigid intrados and (3) an actuator group located inside the wing box. The morphing capability of the wing relies on controlled deformation of the wing extrados under the action of shape memory alloys (SMA) actuators. A coupled fluid-structure model of the morphing wing was used to evaluate its mechanical and aerodynamic performances in different flight conditions. A 0.5 m chord and 1 m span prototype of the morphing wing was tested in a subsonic wind tunnel. In this work, SMA actuators for morphing wings were modeled using a coupled thermo-mechanical finite element model and they were windtunnel validated. If the thermo-mechanical model of SMA actuators presented in this work is coupled with the previously developed structureaerodynamic model of the morphing wing, it could serve for the optimization of the entire morphing wing system.

  20. APOE genotype influences functional status among elderly without dementia

    SciTech Connect

    Albert, S.M.; Jacobs, D.M.; Stern, Y.

    1995-12-18

    The presence of apolipoprotein-{epsilon}4 (APOE-{epsilon}4) significantly increases the risk of Alzheimer`s disease (AD). The association between APOE-{epsilon}4 status and functional abilities was explored further in a multicultural sample of community-dwelling, nondemented elders. The sample was limited to cognitively-intact, community-dwelling elders, who were free of stroke or other neurologic disability. In 218 elders who met research criteria, the presence of APOE-{epsilon}4 was associated with poorer functional status, apart from the effects of neuropsychological performance, gender, age, and education (OR = 2.5, 95% CI: 1.3, 4.9). In 158 subjects without an APOE-{epsilon}4 allele, 50% reported no functional limitation; in the 60 subjects with an {epsilon}4 allele, only 28% reported no functional limitation (P < .01). The relationship was not explained by the distribution of co-morbidities. The association between poorer function and the presence of an APOE-{epsilon}4 allele was evident in each ethnic group. In path analyses, the presence of an APOE-{epsilon}4 allele was associated with decreased functional ability in non-demented elders not simply through an association with poorer cognitive status, but also independently. These results suggest that the APOE-{epsilon}4 genotype is associated with functional deficit in people with normal neuropsychological profiles. 29 refs., 1 fig., 3 tabs.

  1. Non-explosive actuation for the ORBCOMM (TM) satellite

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robinson, Anthony; Courtney, Craig; Moran, Tom

    1995-01-01

    Spool-based non-explosive actuator (NEA) devices are used for three important holddown and release functions during the establishment of the ORBCOMM (TM) constellation. Non-explosive separation nuts are used to restrain and release the 26 individual satellites into low earth orbit. Cable release mechanisms based on the same technology are used to release the solar arrays and antenna boom.

  2. Two-position wax-motor rotary actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stange, W. C.

    1979-01-01

    Two position rotary actuator rotates shaft by precisely 180 deg and rotates it back on command. Mechanism consumes 11 watts of power and functions over wide range of temperatures under high vacuum for long unattended periods. Light weight device may be used to flip magnetometer for calibration in magnetic field.

  3. A swimming robot actuated by living muscle tissue.

    PubMed

    Herr, Hugh; Dennis, Robert G

    2004-10-28

    Biomechatronics is the integration of biological components with artificial devices, in which the biological component confers a significant functional capability to the system, and the artificial component provides specific cellular and tissue interfaces that promote the maintenance and functional adaptation of the biological component. Based upon functional performance, muscle is potentially an excellent mechanical actuator, but the larger challenge of developing muscle-actuated, biomechatronic devices poses many scientific and engineering challenges. As a demonstratory proof of concept, we designed, built, and characterized a swimming robot actuated by two explanted frog semitendinosus muscles and controlled by an embedded microcontroller. Using open loop stimulation protocols, the robot performed basic swimming maneuvers such as starting, stopping, turning (turning radius ~400 mm) and straight-line swimming (max speed >1/3 body lengths/second). A broad spectrum antibiotic/antimycotic ringer solution surrounded the muscle actuators for long term maintenance, ex vivo. The robot swam for a total of 4 hours over a 42 hour lifespan (10% duty cycle) before its velocity degraded below 75% of its maximum. The development of functional biomechatronic prototypes with integrated musculoskeletal tissues is the first critical step toward the long term objective of controllable, adaptive and robust biomechatronic robots and prostheses.

  4. Piezoelectric multilayer actuator life test.

    PubMed

    Sherrit, Stewart; Bao, Xiaoqi; Jones, Christopher M; Aldrich, Jack B; Blodget, Chad J; Moore, James D; Carson, John W; Goullioud, Renaud

    2011-04-01

    Potential NASA optical missions such as the Space Interferometer Mission require actuators for precision positioning to accuracies of the order of nanometers. Commercially available multilayer piezoelectric stack actuators are being considered for driving these precision mirror positioning mechanisms. These mechanisms have potential mission operational requirements that exceed 5 years for one mission life. To test the feasibility of using these commercial actuators for these applications and to determine their reliability and the redundancy requirements, a life test study was undertaken. The nominal actuator requirements for the most critical actuators on the Space Interferometry Mission (SIM) in terms of number of cycles was estimated from the Modulation Optics Mechanism (MOM) and Pathlength control Optics Mechanism (POM) and these requirements were used to define the study. At a nominal drive frequency of 250 Hz, one mission life is calculated to be 40 billion cycles. In this study, a set of commercial PZT stacks configured in a potential flight actuator configuration (pre-stressed to 18 MPa and bonded in flexures) were tested for up to 100 billion cycles. Each test flexure allowed for two sets of primary and redundant stacks to be mechanically connected in series. The tests were controlled using an automated software control and data acquisition system that set up the test parameters and monitored the waveform of the stack electrical current and voltage. The samples were driven between 0 and 20 V at 2000 Hz to accelerate the life test and mimic the voltage amplitude that is expected to be applied to the stacks during operation. During the life test, 10 primary stacks were driven and 10 redundant stacks, mechanically in series with the driven stacks, were open-circuited. The stroke determined from a strain gauge, the temperature and humidity in the chamber, and the temperature of each individual stack were recorded. Other properties of the stacks, including the

  5. CNT/conductive polymer composites for low-voltage driven EAP actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugino, Takushi; Shibata, Yoshiyuki; Kiyohara, Kenji; Asaka, Kinji

    2012-04-01

    We investigated the effects of additives incorporated into the electrode layer in order to improve the actuation performance of dry-type carbon nanotube (CNT) actuators. Especially, the addition of conductive nano-particles such as polyaniline (PANI) and polypyrrole (PPy) improves actuation performance very much rather than the addition of nonconductive nano-particles such as mesoprous silica (MCM-41 type). In this paper, we studied on the influences of applied voltage, species of ionic liquid (IL), amounts of IL, thickness of actuator to optimize actuation performance. Imidazolium type ionic liquids with three different anions, that is, 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium (EMI) as a cation and tetrafluoroborate (BF4), trifluoromethanesulfonate (OTf), and bis(trifluoromethanesulfonyl)imide (TFSI) as anions were chosen in this study. EMIBF4 is the most suitable IL for our CNT actuator including PANI in the electrode layer. We tuned the amount of IL and the thickness of actuator. As a result, the strain was improved to be 2.2% at 0.1 Hz by applying the voltage of 2.5 V. This improved value is almost 2 times larger than our previous results. We also show the potential of improved CNT actuators for a thin and light Braille display.

  6. Direct Adaptive Control of Systems with Actuator Failures: State of the Art and Continuing Challenges

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tao, Gang; Joshi, Suresh M.

    2008-01-01

    In this paper, the problem of controlling systems with failures and faults is introduced, and an overview of recent work on direct adaptive control for compensation of uncertain actuator failures is presented. Actuator failures may be characterized by some unknown system inputs being stuck at some unknown (fixed or varying) values at unknown time instants, that cannot be influenced by the control signals. The key task of adaptive compensation is to design the control signals in such a manner that the remaining actuators can automatically and seamlessly take over for the failed ones, and achieve desired stability and asymptotic tracking. A certain degree of redundancy is necessary to accomplish failure compensation. The objective of adaptive control design is to effectively use the available actuation redundancy to handle failures without the knowledge of the failure patterns, parameters, and time of occurrence. This is a challenging problem because failures introduce large uncertainties in the dynamic structure of the system, in addition to parametric uncertainties and unknown disturbances. The paper addresses some theoretical issues in adaptive actuator failure compensation: actuator failure modeling, redundant actuation requirements, plant-model matching, error system dynamics, adaptation laws, and stability, tracking, and performance analysis. Adaptive control designs can be shown to effectively handle uncertain actuator failures without explicit failure detection. Some open technical challenges and research problems in this important research area are discussed.

  7. Electro-Active Polymer (EAP) Actuators for Planetary Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bar-Cohen, Y.; Leary, S.; Shahinpoor, M.; Harrison, J. O.; Smith, J.

    1999-01-01

    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

  8. Influence of experimental hypokinesia on gastric secretory function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markova, O. O.; Vavryshchuk, V. I.; Rozvodovskyy, V. I.; Proshcheruk, V. A.

    1980-01-01

    The gastric secretory function of rats was studied in 4, 8, 16 and 30 day hypokinesia. Inhibition of both the gastric juice secretory and acid producing functions was found. The greatest inhibition was observed on day 8 of limited mobility. By days 16 and 30 of the experiment, a tendency of the gastric secretory activity to return to normal was observed, although it remained reduced.

  9. Influence of fatigue on construction workers’ physical and cognitive function

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, M.; Murphy, L. A.; Fang, D.

    2015-01-01

    Background Despite scientific evidence linking workers’ fatigue to occupational safety (due to impaired physical or cognitive function), little is known about this relationship in construction workers. Aims To assess the association between construction workers’ reported fatigue and their perceived difficulties with physical and cognitive functions. Methods Using data from a convenience sample of US construction workers participating in the 2010–11 National Health Interview Survey two multivariate weighted logistic regression models were built to predict difficulty with physical and with cognitive functions associated with workers’ reported fatigue, while controlling for age, smoking status, alcohol consumption status, sleep hygiene, psychological distress and arthritis status. Results Of 606 construction workers surveyed, 49% reported being ‘tired some days’ in the past 3 months and 10% reported ‘tired most days or every day’. Compared with those feeling ‘never tired’, workers who felt ‘tired some days’ were significantly more likely to report difficulty with physical function (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 2.03; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.17–3.51) and cognitive function (AOR = 2.27; 95% CI 1.06–4.88) after controlling for potential confounders. Conclusions Our results suggest an association between reported fatigue and experiencing difficulties with physical and cognitive functions in construction workers. PMID:25701835

  10. Influencing factors on color and product-function association.

    PubMed

    Ko, Ya-Hsien

    2011-06-01

    The associations of age, sex, and matching types with color and product-function were examined in a real-world product scenario (shampoo) among 128 volunteers (M age = 29.3 yr.; SD = 15.6). A pilot study identified eight popular colors and eight product-functions. The association between color and product-function was explored in the main sample. Responses suggested seven pairings of color/product-functions: Red/Hot oil treatment, Yellow/Bright and shiny hair, Green/Herbal extracts, Blue/Deep cleaning, Purple/Soothing, Black/Antiseptic, and White/Anti-dandruff. Analyses indicated that adult participants required more repetitions for retention, as did memorization with random pairing compared to participant-selected pairings. There were statistically significant correlations of responses to colors and product functions. With known color/product-function associations, manufacturers might promote their products more effectively. It is suggested that the associations might be sex- or culture-specific. PMID:21879633

  11. Sandia's Arbitrary Waveform MEMO Actuator

    2003-08-07

    SAMA is a multichannel, arbitrary waveform generator program for driving microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). It allows the user to piece together twelve available wave parts, thereby permitting the user to create practically any waveform, or upload a previously constructed signal. The waveforms (bundled together as a signal) may simultaneously be output through four different channels to actuate MEMS devices, and the number of output channels may be increased depending on the DAQ card or instrument utilized.more » Additionally, real-time changes may be made to the frequency and amplitude. The signal may be paused temporarily. The waveform may be saved to file for future uploading. Recent work for this version has focused on modifications that will allow loading previously generated arbitrary waveforms, independent channel waveform amplification, adding a pause function, separating the "modify waveform: and "end program" functions, and simplifying the user interface by adding test blocks with statements to help the user program and output the desired signals. The program was developed in an effort to alleviate some of the limitations of Micro Driver. For example, Micro Driver will not allow the user to select a segment of a sine wave, but rather the user is limited to choosing either a whole or half sine wave pattern. It therefore becomes quite difficult ot construct partial sine wave patterns out of a "ramp" waveparts for several reasons. First, one must determine on paper how many data points each ramp will cover, and what the slopes of these ramps will be. Second, from what was observed, Micro Driver has difficulty processing more than six distinct waveparts during sequencing. The program will allow the user to input the various waves into the desired sequence; however, it will not allow the user to compile them (by clicking "ok" and returning to the main screen). Third, should the user decide that they want to increase the amplitute of the output signal

  12. Sandia's Arbitrary Waveform MEMO Actuator

    SciTech Connect

    Brian Sosnowchik, Mark Jenkins

    2003-08-07

    SAMA is a multichannel, arbitrary waveform generator program for driving microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). It allows the user to piece together twelve available wave parts, thereby permitting the user to create practically any waveform, or upload a previously constructed signal. The waveforms (bundled together as a signal) may simultaneously be output through four different channels to actuate MEMS devices, and the number of output channels may be increased depending on the DAQ card or instrument utilized. Additionally, real-time changes may be made to the frequency and amplitude. The signal may be paused temporarily. The waveform may be saved to file for future uploading. Recent work for this version has focused on modifications that will allow loading previously generated arbitrary waveforms, independent channel waveform amplification, adding a pause function, separating the "modify waveform: and "end program" functions, and simplifying the user interface by adding test blocks with statements to help the user program and output the desired signals. The program was developed in an effort to alleviate some of the limitations of Micro Driver. For example, Micro Driver will not allow the user to select a segment of a sine wave, but rather the user is limited to choosing either a whole or half sine wave pattern. It therefore becomes quite difficult ot construct partial sine wave patterns out of a "ramp" waveparts for several reasons. First, one must determine on paper how many data points each ramp will cover, and what the slopes of these ramps will be. Second, from what was observed, Micro Driver has difficulty processing more than six distinct waveparts during sequencing. The program will allow the user to input the various waves into the desired sequence; however, it will not allow the user to compile them (by clicking "ok" and returning to the main screen). Third, should the user decide that they want to increase the amplitute of the output signal, they must

  13. Microprocessor controlled proof-mass actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horner, Garnett C.

    1987-01-01

    The objective of the microprocessor controlled proof-mass actuator is to develop the capability to mount a small programmable device on laboratory models. This capability will allow research in the active control of flexible structures. The approach in developing the actuator will be to mount all components as a single unit. All sensors, electronic and control devices will be mounted with the actuator. The goal for the force output capability of the actuator will be one pound force. The programmable force actuator developed has approximately a one pound force capability over the usable frequency range, which is above 2 Hz.

  14. Fish-skeleton visualization of bending actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakshatharan, Sunjai; Punning, Andres; Assi, Siim; Johanson, Urmas; Aabloo, Alvo

    2016-04-01

    We present a novel experimental method for qualitative visualization and quantitative characterization of the time-dependent behavior of bending ionic electroactive polymer actuators. The thin fibers, attached to the actuator, represent the surface normal at the given points of the bending actuator. The structure, formed by the skeleton of many adjacent fibers, amplifies the visual overview about the whole actuator. The four coordinates formed by four tips of two fibers enable determining the axial as well as the bending strains of a bending actuator.

  15. Executive function influences sedentary behavior: A longitudinal study

    PubMed Central

    Loprinzi, Paul D.; Nooe, Allison

    2016-01-01

    Background: No study has evaluated the effects of executive function on follow-up sedentary behavior, which was this study’s purpose. Methods: A longitudinal design was employed among 18 young adult college students (Mage = 23.7 years; 88.9% female). Accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity, along with executive function, were assessed at baseline. Approximately 8 weeks later, re-assessment of accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity occurred. Executive function was assessed using the Parametric Go/No-Go (PGNG) computer task. From this, 2 primary executive function outcome parameters were evaluated, including the Simple Rule and Repeating Rule. Results: After adjusting for baseline sedentary behavior, age, gender, body mass index and baseline moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), for every 25% increase in the number of correctly identified targets for the Repeating rule at the baseline assessment, participants engaged in 91.8 fewer minutes of sedentary behavior at the follow-up assessment (β = -91.8; 95% CI: -173.5, -10.0; P = 0.03). Results were unchanged when also adjusting for total baseline or follow-up physical activity. Conclusion: Greater executive function is associated with less follow-up sedentary behavior. PMID:27766234

  16. Avian ecosystem functions are influenced by small mammal ecosystem engineering

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Birds are important mobile link species that contribute to landscape-scale patterns by means of pollination, seed dispersal, and predation. Birds are often associated with habitats modified by small mammal ecosystem engineers. We investigated whether birds prefer to forage on degu (Octodon degus) runways by comparing their foraging effort across sites with a range of runway densities, including sites without runways. We measured granivory by granivorous and omnivorous birds at Rinconada de Maipú, central Chile. As a measure of potential bird foraging on insects, we sampled invertebrate prey richness and abundance across the same sites. We then quantified an index of plot-scale functional diversity due to avian foraging at the patch scale. Results We recorded that birds found food sources sooner and ate more at sites with higher densities of degu runways, cururo mounds, trees, and fewer shrubs. These sites also had higher invertebrate prey richness but lower invertebrate prey abundance. This implies that omnivorous birds, and possibly insectivorous birds, forage for invertebrates in the same plots with high degu runway densities where granivory takes place. In an exploratory analysis we also found that plot-scale functional diversity for four avian ecosystem functions were moderately to weakly correllated to expected ecosystem function outcomes at the plot scale. Conclusions Degu ecosystem engineering affects the behavior of avian mobile link species and is thus correlated with ecosystem functioning at relatively small spatial scales. PMID:24359802

  17. Dielectric elastomer actuators for facial expression

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yuzhe; Zhu, Jian

    2016-04-01

    Dielectric elastomer actuators have the advantage of mimicking the salient feature of life: movements in response to stimuli. In this paper we explore application of dielectric elastomer actuators to artificial muscles. These artificial muscles can mimic natural masseter to control jaw movements, which are key components in facial expressions especially during talking and singing activities. This paper investigates optimal design of the dielectric elastomer actuator. It is found that the actuator with embedded plastic fibers can avert electromechanical instability and can greatly improve its actuation. Two actuators are then installed in a robotic skull to drive jaw movements, mimicking the masseters in a human jaw. Experiments show that the maximum vertical displacement of the robotic jaw, driven by artificial muscles, is comparable to that of the natural human jaw during speech activities. Theoretical simulations are conducted to analyze the performance of the actuator, which is quantitatively consistent with the experimental observations.

  18. The influence of the choice of the oceanic phase function on imaging under water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braesicke, K.; Repasi, E.

    2015-05-01

    There is a large diversity of phase functions for the computer simulation of light under water. Some papers look at the influence of these phase functions on the results of computer simulations of the remote sensing reflectance. We study the influence of these phase functions on the computer simulation of the resulting image of a target illuminated by a laser. For these simulations we are only interested in those parts of the light that reach the camera position. Therefor we investigate the influence of the phase function on the image. We use a Monte Carlo Simulator with several Fournier-Forand, Henyey-Greenstein phase functions. The resulting signals at the receiver of these simulations are compared to a simulation with a Petzold function that is based on measurements of the phase function.

  19. Chapter 8. Resident Group Influences on Team Functioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burford, Gale E.; Fulcher, Leon C.

    2006-01-01

    Research has documented important interplays between the diagnostic characteristics of residents in group care centers and the functioning of staff teams responsible for the delivery of services. Factors that impact on the quality of working life satisfactions and frustrations are variable over time and may originate from within the team, the…

  20. Early Hormonal Influences on Cognitive Functioning in Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Resnick, Susan M.; And Others

    1986-01-01

    Reports the results of cognitive test performance and early childhood activities in individuals with congenital adrenal hyperplasia, an autosomal recessive disorder associated with elevated prenatal adrenal androgen levels, demonstrating the effects of early exposure to excess androgenizing hormones on sexually dimorphic cognitive functioning.…

  1. Light-Driven Polymeric Bimorph Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adamovsky, Gregory; Sarkisov, Sergey S.; Curley, Michael J.

    2009-01-01

    Light-driven polymeric bimorph actuators are being developed as alternatives to prior electrically and optically driven actuators in advanced, highly miniaturized devices and systems exemplified by microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), micro-electro-optical-mechanical systems (MEOMS), and sensor and actuator arrays in smart structures. These light-driven polymeric bimorph actuators are intended to satisfy a need for actuators that (1) in comparison with the prior actuators, are simpler and less power-hungry; (2) can be driven by low-power visible or mid-infrared light delivered through conventional optic fibers; and (3) are suitable for integration with optical sensors and multiple actuators of the same or different type. The immediate predecessors of the present light-driven polymeric bimorph actuators are bimorph actuators that exploit a photorestrictive effect in lead lanthanum zirconate titanate (PLZT) ceramics. The disadvantages of the PLZT-based actuators are that (1) it is difficult to shape the PLZT ceramics, which are hard and brittle; (2) for actuation, it is necessary to use ultraviolet light (wavelengths < 380 nm), which must be generated by use of high-power, high-pressure arc lamps or lasers; (3) it is difficult to deliver sufficient ultraviolet light through conventional optical fibers because of significant losses in the fibers; (4) the response times of the PLZT actuators are of the order of several seconds unacceptably long for typical applications; and (5) the maximum mechanical displacements of the PLZT-based actuators are limited to those characterized by low strains beyond which PLZT ceramics disintegrate because of their brittleness. The basic element of a light-driven bimorph actuator of the present developmental type is a cantilever beam comprising two layers, at least one of which is a polymer that exhibits a photomechanical effect (see figure). The dominant mechanism of the photomechanical effect is a photothermal one: absorption of

  2. Variable stiffness actuator based on fluidic flexible matrix composites and piezoelectric-hydraulic pump

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Gi-Woo; Li, Suyi; Wang, K. W.

    2010-04-01

    Recently, a new biological-inspired fluidic flexible matrix composite (in short, F2MC) concept has been developed for linear/torsional actuation and structural stiffness tailoring. Although the actuation and the variable stiffness features of the F2MC have been successfully demonstrated individually, their combined functions and full potentials were not yet manifested. In addition, the current hydraulic pressurization systems are bulky and heavy, limiting the potential of the F2MC actuator. To address these issues, we synthesize a new variable stiffness actuator concept that can provide both effective actuation and tunable stiffness (dual-mode), incorporating the F2MC with a compact piezoelectric-hydraulic pump (in short, PHP). This dual-mode mechanism will significantly enhance the potential of the F2MC adaptive structures.

  3. Inline-actuated suspension for the fine head positioning of HDD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lau, Gih Keong; Du, Hejun

    2006-07-01

    A new design of inline-actuated suspension is developed for application in the dual-stage head positioning of hard disk drives (HDD). This design exploits a parallel mechanism to convert longitudinal piezoelectric actuation into a lateral stroke. It is embodied in an elongated portion of a slender load beam. Besides serving the intended function of adequate stroke, the new design significantly improves shock resistance and dynamics. Its sway frequency improves by 19%, as compared to a push-pull design. In addition, the piezoelectric plate for inline actuation is subjected to 66% less shock-induced stress than the pair for push-pull actuation. The new actuator only requires standard manufacturing and assembly processes for realization and no costly miniaturization.

  4. Efficient Hybrid Actuation Using Solid-State Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leo, Donald J.; Cudney, Harley H.; Horner, Garnett (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Piezohydraulic actuation is the use of fluid to rectify the motion of a piezoelectric actuator for the purpose of overcoming the small stroke limitations of the material. In this work we study a closed piezohydraulic circuit that utilizes active valves to rectify the motion of a hydraulic end affector. A linear, lumped parameter model of the system is developed and correlated with experiments. Results demonstrate that the model accurately predicts the filtering of the piezoelectric motion caused by hydraulic compliance. Accurate results are also obtained for predicting the unidirectional motion of the cylinder when the active valves are phased with respect to the piezoelectric actuator. A time delay associated with the mechanical response of the valves is incorporated into the model to reflect the finite time required to open or close the valves. This time delay is found to be the primary limiting factor in achieving higher speed and greater power from the piezohydraulic unit. Experiments on the piezohydraulic unit demonstrate that blocked forces on the order of 100 N and unloaded velocities of 180 micrometers/sec are achieved.

  5. Epoxy hydrogels as sensors and actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calvert, Paul; Patra, Prabir; Duggal, Deepak

    2007-04-01

    Most hydrogel actuators and sensors are made via acrylate polymerizations. Because these chain reactions are inhibited by oxygen, it is difficult to prepare thin films or dots with good control. Epoxy curing chemistry is much less sensitive to experimental conditions. We have previously shown that hydrogels formed from reaction between water-soluble amines and epoxides can be readily printed. If the gel is filled with conducting carbon at a level close to the percolation threshold, the resistance changes as water is taken up or removed from the gel. In particular, a pH decrease results in ionization of amine groups and drives swelling of the gel. By incorporating an enzyme, such as glucose oxidase, that releases hydrogen ions when its substrate is present, a resistance change can be used to measure substrate concentrations. These gels also respond to stress with a change in resistance. By making the gel the anode or cathode of an electrolytic cell, they can also be formed as actuators that expand or contract as the pH changes locally. Epoxy chemistry has been little explored for gels. It is very versatile and could be used to make a wide range of gel composites with one or more phases, varying water contents, varying functional groups and a range of electrical conductivity.

  6. Surface micromachined electrostatically actuated micro peristaltic pump.

    PubMed

    Xie, Jun; Shih, Jason; Lin, Qiao; Yang, Bozhi; Tai, Yu-Chong

    2004-10-01

    An electrostatically actuated micro peristaltic pump is reported. The micro pump is entirely surface micromachined using a multilayer parylene technology. Taking advantage of the multilayer technology, the micro pump design enables the pumped fluid to be isolated from the electric field. Electrostatic actuation of the parylene membrane using both DC and AC voltages was demonstrated and applied to fluid pumping based on a 3-phase peristaltic sequence. A maximum flow rate of 1.7 nL min(-1) and an estimated pumping pressure of 1.6 kPa were achieved at 20 Hz phase frequency. A dynamic analysis was also performed with a lumped-parameter model for the peristaltic pump. The analysis results allow a quantitative understanding of the peristaltic pumping operation, and correctly predict the trends exhibited by the experimental data. The small footprint of the micro pump is well suited for large-scale integration of microfluidics. Moreover, because the same platform technology has also been used to fabricate other devices (e.g. valves, electrospray ionization nozzles, filters and flow sensors), the integration of these different devices can potentially lead to versatile and functional micro total analysis systems (microTAS).

  7. Laser microfluidics: fluid actuation by light

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delville, Jean-Pierre; de Saint Vincent, Matthieu Robert; Schroll, Robert D.; Chraïbi, Hamza; Issenmann, Bruno; Wunenburger, Régis; Lasseux, Didier; Zhang, Wendy W.; Brasselet, Etienne

    2009-03-01

    The development of microfluidic devices is still hindered by the lack of robust fundamental building blocks that constitute any fluidic system. An attractive approach is optical actuation because light field interaction is contactless and dynamically reconfigurable, and solutions have been anticipated through the use of optical forces to manipulate microparticles in flows. Following the concept of an 'optical chip' advanced from the optical actuation of suspensions, we propose in this survey new routes to extend this concept to microfluidic two-phase flows. First, we investigate the destabilization of fluid interfaces by the optical radiation pressure and the formation of liquid jets. We analyze the droplet shedding from the jet tip and the continuous transport in laser-sustained liquid channels. In the second part, we investigate a dissipative light-flow interaction mechanism consisting in heating locally two immiscible fluids to produce thermocapillary stresses along their interface. This opto-capillary coupling is implemented in adequate microchannel geometries to manipulate two-phase flows and propose a contactless optical toolbox including valves, droplet sorters and switches, droplet dividers or droplet mergers. Finally, we discuss radiation pressure and opto-capillary effects in the context of the 'optical chip' where flows, channels and operating functions would all be performed optically on the same device.

  8. Thermal degradation of carotenes and influence on their physiological functions.

    PubMed

    Jonsson, L

    1991-01-01

    Raw carrot juice contains a considerable amount of alpha- and beta-carotene, which makes carrot an excellent source of vitamin A. Heat treatment of the juice at temperatures comparable to those at pasteurization and boiling does not change the carotenes, while heating at temperatures used during sterilization results in rearrangement of the carotene molecules and a decrease in total carotenes. The all-trans alpha- and beta-carotenes appear partly as cis-isomers, especially the 13-cis-isomer. Isomerization of the carotenes leads to a decrease in their vitamin A activity. Carotenes also seem to be anticarcinogens but the extent to which this property is influenced by isomerization is still unknown.

  9. Genetic Ancestry Influences Asthma Susceptibility and Lung Function Among Latinos

    PubMed Central

    Pino-Yanes, Maria; Thakur, Neeta; Gignoux, Christopher R.; Galanter, Joshua M.; Roth, Lindsey A.; Eng, Celeste; Nishimura, Katherine K.; Oh, Sam S.; Vora, Hita; Huntsman, Scott; Nguyen, Elizabeth A.; Hu, Donglei; Drake, Katherine A.; Conti, David V.; Moreno-Estrada, Andres; Sandoval, Karla; Winkler, Cheryl A.; Borrell, Luisa N.; Lurmann, Fred; Islam, Talat S.; Davis, Adam; Farber, Harold J.; Meade, Kelley; Avila, Pedro C.; Serebrisky, Denise; Bibbins-Domingo, Kirsten; Lenoir, Michael A.; Ford, Jean G.; Brigino-Buenaventura, Emerita; Rodriguez-Cintron, William; Thyne, Shannon M.; Sen, Saunak; Rodriguez-Santana, Jose R.; Bustamante, Carlos D.; Williams, L. Keoki; Gilliland, Frank D.; Gauderman, W. James; Kumar, Rajesh; Torgerson, Dara G.; Burchard, Esteban G.

    2014-01-01

    Background Childhood asthma prevalence and morbidity varies among Latinos in the United States, with Puerto Ricans having the highest and Mexicans the lowest. Objective To determine whether genetic ancestry is associated with the odds of asthma among Latinos, and secondarily whether genetic ancestry is associated with lung function among Latino children. Methods We analyzed 5,493 Latinos with and without asthma from three independent studies. For each participant we estimated the proportion of African, European, and Native American ancestry using genome-wide data. We tested whether genetic ancestry was associated with the presence of asthma and lung function among subjects with and without asthma. Odds ratios (OR) and effect sizes were assessed for every 20% increase in each ancestry. Results Native American ancestry was associated with lower odds of asthma (OR=0.72, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.66–0.78, p=8.0×10−15), while African ancestry was associated with higher odds of asthma (OR=1.40, 95%CI: 1.14–1.72, p=0.001). These associations were robust to adjustment for covariates related to early life exposures, air pollution and socioeconomic status. Among children with asthma, African ancestry was associated with lower lung function, including both pre- and post-bronchodilator measures of forced expiratory volume in the first second (−77±19 ml, p=5.8×10−5 and −83±19 ml, p=1.1×10−5, respectively) and forced vital capacity (−100±21 ml, p=2.7×10−6 and −107±22 ml, p=1.0×10−6, respectively). Conclusion Differences in the proportions of genetic ancestry can partially explain disparities in asthma susceptibility and lung function among Latinos. PMID:25301036

  10. Enhancement of EAP actuated facial expressions by designed chamber geometry in elastomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanson, D.; Bergs, R.; Tadesse, Y.; White, V.; Priya, S.

    2006-03-01

    In this paper, the authors explore various ways that designed chambering of elastomers can enhance electroactive polymer (EAP) actuation. Such enhancements include structuring of chambers for various mechanical functions and advantages, boosting of surface area of a polymer for enhanced ionic migration, construction of advanced electret foams for sensing and for tunable hydrophobicity for micro/pumping action, and distribution of composite EAP devices throughout the chambered elastomer to achieve discrete controllability of electroactive polymer actuators. The authors also discuss the chambering of EAP materials themselves for enhanced actuation effects. With varied design of the chambers of the elastomer, the mechanical and structural properties of the elastomer can be tuned to greatly enhance EAP actuation. The chambers can be designed in accordion-like bellows to achieve extreme elongation with low forces, in spiral geometries to effect negative or neutral poisson's ratio under actuation, and with embedded fluidic bellows for fluidic actuation or sensing. These are but a few examples of the advantages that can be achieved via designed chambering of elastomers. The authors also discuss various application uses of the described chambering technologies. Such chambered elastomers, combined with advanced muscle-like actuators, can substantially benefit facelike robots (useful for entertainment and education etc), prosthetics, and numerous modalities of bio-inspired locomotion. In the efforts of the authors to generate facial expression robots with low-power lightweight actuators is described.

  11. Parametric study of synthetic jet actuators on a backward facing step

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sassoon, Aaron M.

    The ability of synthetic jet actuators to leverage natural instabilities in the flow field due to separation is reviewed for applications towards virtual shape change. The separating flow over a backward facing step of height h is studied under the influence of an actuator upstream and downstream of separation. Experimental tests were conducted in a wind tunnel using particle imaging velocimetry and time-averaged static pressure data to measure and analyze the affected flow fields and pressure distribution. By placing a second actuator downstream of separation, the ability to influence the pressure distribution has been shown. The two actuators demonstrated the ability to affect Cp and dCp/dx in the region from 0 - 6h after the step.

  12. Piezoelectric step-motion actuator

    DOEpatents

    Mentesana; Charles P.

    2006-10-10

    A step-motion actuator using piezoelectric material to launch a flight mass which, in turn, actuates a drive pawl to progressively engage and drive a toothed wheel or rod to accomplish stepped motion. Thus, the piezoelectric material converts electrical energy into kinetic energy of the mass, and the drive pawl and toothed wheel or rod convert the kinetic energy of the mass into the desired rotary or linear stepped motion. A compression frame may be secured about the piezoelectric element and adapted to pre-compress the piezoelectric material so as to reduce tensile loads thereon. A return spring may be used to return the mass to its resting position against the compression frame or piezoelectric material following launch. Alternative embodiment are possible, including an alternative first embodiment wherein two masses are launched in substantially different directions, and an alternative second embodiment wherein the mass is eliminated in favor of the piezoelectric material launching itself.

  13. Impact micro-positioning actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cuerden, Brian (Inventor); Angel, J. Roger P. (Inventor); Burge, James H. (Inventor); DeRigne, Scott T. (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    An impact micro-positioning actuator. In one aspect of the invention, a threaded shaft is threadably received in a nut and the nut is impacted by an impacting device, causing the nut first to rotate relative to the shaft by slipping as a result of shaft inertia and subsequently to stick to the shaft as a result of the frictional force therebetween. The nut is returned to its initial position by a return force provided by a return mechanism after impact. The micro-positioning actuator is further improved by controlling at least one and preferably all of the following: the friction, the impact provided by the impacting device, the return force provided by the return mechanism, and the inertia of the shaft. In another aspect of the invention, a threaded shaft is threadably received in a nut and the shaft is impacted by an impacting device, causing the shaft to rotate relative to the nut.

  14. Hydraulically amplified PZT mems actuator

    DOEpatents

    Miles, Robin R.

    2004-11-02

    A hydraulically amplified microelectromechanical systems actuator. A piece of piezoelectric material or stacked piezo bimorph is bonded or deposited as a thin film. The piece is operatively connected to a primary membrane. A reservoir is operatively connected to the primary membrane. The reservoir contains a fluid. A membrane is operatively connected to the reservoir. In operation, energizing the piezoelectric material causing the piezoelectric material to bow. Bowing of the piezoelectric material causes movement of the primary membrane. Movement of the primary membrane results in a force in being transmitted to the liquid in the reservoir. The force in the liquid causes movement of the membrane. Movement of the membrane results in an operating actuator.

  15. Propeller pitch change actuation system

    SciTech Connect

    Kusiak, E.H.

    1988-06-28

    An apparatus is described for adjusting the pitch of a variable pitch propeller blade characterized by: an actuator for setting the pitch of the propeller blade the actuator having; a rotatable screw for setting propeller pitch, a nut mounted for longitudinal motion along the screw as the screw is rotated, means for connecting the nut to the propeller blade to adjust the pitch of the propeller blade as the screw rotates, and a rotatable means mounted within the nut for locking the nut against longitudinal motion if the rotatable means is not rotating with the longitudinal motion of the nut and for allowing the nut to move longitudinally if the rotatable means is rotating with the longitudinal motion of the nut.

  16. The Tacrolimus Metabolism Rate Influences Renal Function after Kidney Transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Thölking, Gerold; Fortmann, Christian; Koch, Raphael; Gerth, Hans Ulrich; Pabst, Dirk; Pavenstädt, Hermann; Kabar, Iyad; Hüsing, Anna; Wolters, Heiner

    2014-01-01

    The effective calcineurin inhibitor (CNI) tacrolimus (Tac) is an integral part of the standard immunosuppressive regimen after renal transplantation (RTx). However, as a potent CNI it has nephrotoxic potential leading to impaired renal function in some cases. Therefore, it is of high clinical impact to identify factors which can predict who is endangered to develop CNI toxicity. We hypothesized that the Tac metabolism rate expressed as the blood concentration normalized by the dose (C/D ratio) is such a simple predictor. Therefore, we analyzed the impact of the C/D ratio on kidney function after RTx. Renal function was analyzed 1, 2, 3, 6, 12 and 24 months after RTx in 248 patients with an immunosuppressive regimen including basiliximab, tacrolimus, mycophenolate mofetil and prednisolone. According to keep the approach simple, patients were split into three C/D groups: fast, intermediate and slow metabolizers. Notably, compared with slow metabolizers fast metabolizers of Tac showed significantly lower estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) values at all the time points analyzed. Moreover, fast metabolizers underwent more indication renal biopsies (p = 0.006) which revealed a higher incidence of CNI nephrotoxicity (p = 0.015) and BK nephropathy (p = 0.024) in this group. We herein identified the C/D ratio as an easy calculable risk factor for the development of CNI nephrotoxicity and BK nephropathy after RTx. We propose that the simple C/D ratio should be taken into account early in patient’s risk management strategies. PMID:25340655

  17. The tacrolimus metabolism rate influences renal function after kidney transplantation.

    PubMed

    Thölking, Gerold; Fortmann, Christian; Koch, Raphael; Gerth, Hans Ulrich; Pabst, Dirk; Pavenstädt, Hermann; Kabar, Iyad; Hüsing, Anna; Wolters, Heiner; Reuter, Stefan; Suwelack, Barbara

    2014-01-01

    The effective calcineurin inhibitor (CNI) tacrolimus (Tac) is an integral part of the standard immunosuppressive regimen after renal transplantation (RTx). However, as a potent CNI it has nephrotoxic potential leading to impaired renal function in some cases. Therefore, it is of high clinical impact to identify factors which can predict who is endangered to develop CNI toxicity. We hypothesized that the Tac metabolism rate expressed as the blood concentration normalized by the dose (C/D ratio) is such a simple predictor. Therefore, we analyzed the impact of the C/D ratio on kidney function after RTx. Renal function was analyzed 1, 2, 3, 6, 12 and 24 months after RTx in 248 patients with an immunosuppressive regimen including basiliximab, tacrolimus, mycophenolate mofetil and prednisolone. According to keep the approach simple, patients were split into three C/D groups: fast, intermediate and slow metabolizers. Notably, compared with slow metabolizers fast metabolizers of Tac showed significantly lower estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) values at all the time points analyzed. Moreover, fast metabolizers underwent more indication renal biopsies (p = 0.006) which revealed a higher incidence of CNI nephrotoxicity (p = 0.015) and BK nephropathy (p = 0.024) in this group. We herein identified the C/D ratio as an easy calculable risk factor for the development of CNI nephrotoxicity and BK nephropathy after RTx. We propose that the simple C/D ratio should be taken into account early in patient's risk management strategies. PMID:25340655

  18. Actuator device for artificial leg

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burch, J. L. (Inventor)

    1976-01-01

    An actuator device is described for moving an artificial leg of a person having a prosthesis replacing an entire leg and hip joint. The device includes a first articulated hip joint assembly carried by the natural leg and a second articulated hip joint assembly carried by the prosthesis whereby energy from the movement of the natural leg is transferred by a compressible fluid from the first hip joint assembly to the second hip joint assembly for moving the artificial leg.

  19. The MJS-77 magnetometer actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stange, W. C.

    1977-01-01

    A two-position (0 deg and 180 deg) actuating mechanism (flipper) driven by alternately-heated wax motors (pellets) used to rotate the low field triaxial fluxgate magnetometer experiment on the 1977 Mariner Jupiter-Saturn spacecraft to its 0 deg and 180 deg positions is described. The magnetic field, power requirements, weight and volume of this device are discussed. The problems encountered in design and development of this mechanism are presented.

  20. The MJS-77 magnetometer actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stange, W. C.

    1977-01-01

    A two-position (0 deg and 180 deg) actuating mechanism (flipper) driven by alternately-heated wax motors (pellets) will be used to rotate the low field triaxial fluxgate magnetometer experiment on the 1977 Mariner Jupiter-Saturn spacecraft to its 0 deg and 180 deg positions. The magnetic field, power requirements, weight and volume of this device are very restrictive. The problems encountered in design and development of this mechanism are presented.

  1. New configurations of oscillatory flow pumps using bimorph piezoelectric actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vatanabe, Sandro L.; Pires, Rogério F.; Nakasone, Paulo H.; Silva, Emílio C. N.

    2008-03-01

    Precision flow pumps have been widely studied over the last three decades. They have been applied in the areas of Biology, Pharmacy and Medicine in applications usually related to the dosage of medicine and chemical reagents. In addition, thermal management solutions for electronic devices have also been recently developed using these kinds of pumps offering better performance with low noise and low power consumption. In previous works was presented the working principle of a pump based on the use of a bimorph piezoelectric actuator inserted in a fluid channel to generate flow. This work presents a novel configuration of piezoelectric flow pumps using a bimorph piezoelectric actuator of different aspect ratio. Sensibility studies of the rectangular cross-sectional area channel are conducted computationally (CFD) and three parameters are investigated: resonance frequency and oscillation amplitude of the piezoelectric actuator, and pressure inside the channel. Also, experimental tests are conducted to verify the influence of clamps' rigidity and actuator's insulator. The experimental results show that improving these two aspects it is possible to achieve higher flow rates.

  2. Designing light responsive bistable arches for rapid, remotely triggered actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Matthew L.; Shankar, M. Ravi; Backman, Ryan; Tondiglia, Vincent P.; Lee, Kyung Min; McConney, Michael E.; Wang, David H.; Tan, Loon-Seng; White, Timothy J.

    2014-03-01

    Light responsive azobenzene functionalized polymer networks enjoy several advantages as actuator candidates including the ability to be remotely triggered and the capacity for highly tunable control via light intensity, polarization, wavelength and material alignments. One signi cant challenge hindering these materials from being employed in applications is their often relatively slow actuation rates and low power densities, especially in the absence of photo-thermal e ects. One well known strategy employed in nature for increasing actuation rate and power output is the storage and quick release of elastic energy (e.g., the Venus ytrap). Using nature as inspiration we have conducted a series of experiments and developed an equilibrium mechanics model for investigating remotely triggered snap-through of bistable light responsive arches made from glassy azobenzene functionalized polymers. After brie y discussing experimental observations we consider in detail a geometrically exact, planar rod model of photomechanical snap-through. Theoretical energy release characteristics and unique strain eld pro les provide insight toward design strategies for improved actuator performance. The bistable light responsive arches presented here are potentially a powerful option for remotely triggered, rapid motion from apparently passive structures in applications such as binary optical switches and positioners, surfaces with morphing topologies, and impulse locomotion in micro or millimeter scale robotics.

  3. Influence of cigarette smoking on human autonomic function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Niedermaier, O. N.; Smith, M. L.; Beightol, L. A.; Zukowska-Grojec, Z.; Goldstein, D. S.; Eckberg, D. L.

    1993-01-01

    BACKGROUND. Although cigarette smoking is known to lead to widespread augmentation of sympathetic nervous system activity, little is known about the effects of smoking on directly measured human sympathetic activity and its reflex control. METHODS AND RESULTS. We studied the acute effects of smoking two research-grade cigarettes on muscle sympathetic nerve activity and on arterial baroreflex-mediated changes of sympathetic and vagal neural cardiovascular outflows in eight healthy habitual smokers. Measurements were made during frequency-controlled breathing, graded Valsalva maneuvers, and carotid baroreceptor stimulation with ramped sequences of neck pressure and suction. Smoking provoked the following changes: Arterial pressure increased significantly, and RR intervals, RR interval spectral power at the respiratory frequency, and muscle sympathetic nerve activity decreased. Plasma nicotine levels increased significantly, but plasma epinephrine, norepinephrine, and neuropeptide Y levels did not change. Peak sympathetic nerve activity during and systolic pressure overshoots after Valsalva straining increased significantly in proportion to increases of plasma nicotine levels. The average carotid baroreceptor-cardiac reflex relation shifted rightward and downward on arterial pressure and RR interval axes; average gain, operational point, and response range did not change. CONCLUSIONS. In habitual smokers, smoking acutely reduces baseline levels of vagal-cardiac nerve activity and completely resets vagally mediated arterial baroreceptor-cardiac reflex responses. Smoking also reduces muscle sympathetic nerve activity but augments increases of sympathetic activity triggered by brief arterial pressure reductions. This pattern of autonomic changes is likely to influence smokers' responses to acute arterial pressure reductions importantly.

  4. Thin film composite actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Su, Quanmin; Kim, Taesung; Zheng, Yun; Wuttig, Manfred R.

    1995-05-01

    The mechanical properties of Ni50Ti50 deposited on Si substrates were studied focussing on the interaction of the film and substrate. This interaction determines the transformation characteristics through interface accommodation and mechanical constraints exerted by the substrate stiffness. Substrate stiffness, controlled by the film/substrate thickness ratio, was found to have a substantial influence on the output energy of the film/substrate composite. A switch type composite based on this knowledge was fabricated and tested. The thermo-mechanical properties of Terfenol-D thin films deposited on Si substrates were studied by static and dynamic measurements of film/substrate composite cantilevers. The Curie transition, (Delta) E effect and mechanical damping of the film were measured simultaneously. The stress in the film was controlled by annealing below the recrystallization temperature and determined to vary from -500 MPa, compression, in as deposited films to +480 MPa, tension, in annealed films. The Curie temperature shifts from 80 degree(s)C to 140 degree(s)C as the tension increases while the structure of the film remains amorphous. The stress change induced by annealing also drastically effects the film's damping characteristics. The (Delta) E effect of the amorphous material, about 20%, was used to estimate the magnetostriction, (lambda) s approximately equals 4 (DOT) 10-3.

  5. Loss-of-function variants influence the human serum metabolome.

    PubMed

    Yu, Bing; Li, Alexander H; Metcalf, Ginger A; Muzny, Donna M; Morrison, Alanna C; White, Simon; Mosley, Thomas H; Gibbs, Richard A; Boerwinkle, Eric

    2016-08-01

    The metabolome is a collection of small molecules resulting from multiple cellular and biological processes that can act as biomarkers of disease, and African-Americans exhibit high levels of genetic diversity. Exome sequencing of a sample of deeply phenotyped African-Americans allowed us to analyze the effects of annotated loss-of-function (LoF) mutations on 308 serum metabolites measured by untargeted liquid and gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. In an independent sample, we identified and replicated four genes harboring six LoF mutations that significantly affected five metabolites. These sites were related to a 19 to 45% difference in geometric mean metabolite levels, with an average effect size of 25%. We show that some of the affected metabolites are risk predictors or diagnostic biomarkers of disease and, using the principle of Mendelian randomization, are in the causal pathway of disease. For example, LoF mutations in SLCO1B1 elevate the levels of hexadecanedioate, a fatty acid significantly associated with increased blood pressure levels and risk of incident heart failure in both African-Americans and an independent sample of European-Americans. We show that SLCO1B1 LoF mutations significantly increase the risk of incident heart failure, thus implicating the metabolite in the causal pathway of disease. These results reveal new avenues into gene function and the understanding of disease etiology by integrating -omic technologies into a deeply phenotyped population study. PMID:27602404

  6. Loss-of-function variants influence the human serum metabolome

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Bing; Li, Alexander H.; Metcalf, Ginger A.; Muzny, Donna M.; Morrison, Alanna C.; White, Simon; Mosley, Thomas H.; Gibbs, Richard A.; Boerwinkle, Eric

    2016-01-01

    The metabolome is a collection of small molecules resulting from multiple cellular and biological processes that can act as biomarkers of disease, and African-Americans exhibit high levels of genetic diversity. Exome sequencing of a sample of deeply phenotyped African-Americans allowed us to analyze the effects of annotated loss-of-function (LoF) mutations on 308 serum metabolites measured by untargeted liquid and gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. In an independent sample, we identified and replicated four genes harboring six LoF mutations that significantly affected five metabolites. These sites were related to a 19 to 45% difference in geometric mean metabolite levels, with an average effect size of 25%. We show that some of the affected metabolites are risk predictors or diagnostic biomarkers of disease and, using the principle of Mendelian randomization, are in the causal pathway of disease. For example, LoF mutations in SLCO1B1 elevate the levels of hexadecanedioate, a fatty acid significantly associated with increased blood pressure levels and risk of incident heart failure in both African-Americans and an independent sample of European-Americans. We show that SLCO1B1 LoF mutations significantly increase the risk of incident heart failure, thus implicating the metabolite in the causal pathway of disease. These results reveal new avenues into gene function and the understanding of disease etiology by integrating -omic technologies into a deeply phenotyped population study. PMID:27602404

  7. Cortical control of VTA function and influence on nicotine reward.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jie; Gao, Ming; Shen, Jian-Xin; Shi, Wei-Xing; Oster, Andrew M; Gutkin, Boris S

    2013-10-15

    Tobacco use is a major public health problem. Nicotine acts on widely distributed nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the brain and excites dopamine (DA) neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA). The elicited increase of DA neuronal activity is thought to be an important mechanism for nicotine reward and subsequently the transition to addiction. However, the current understanding of nicotine reward is based predominantly on the data accumulated from in vitro studies, often from VTA slices. Isolated VTA slices artificially terminate communications between neurons in the VTA and other brain regions that may significantly alter nicotinic effects. Consequently, the mechanisms of nicotinic excitation of VTA DA neurons under in vivo conditions have received only limited attention. Building upon the existing knowledge acquired in vitro, it is now time to elucidate the integrated mechanisms of nicotinic reward on intact systems that are more relevant to understanding the action of nicotine or other addictive drugs. In this review, we summarize recent studies that demonstrate the impact of prefrontal cortex (PFC) on the modulation of VTA DA neuronal function and nicotine reward. Based on existing evidence, we propose a new hypothesis that PFC-VTA functional coupling serves as an integration mechanism for nicotine reward. Moreover, addiction may develop due to nicotine perturbing the PFC-VTA coupling and thereby eliminating the PFC-dependent cognitive control over behavior.

  8. Loss-of-function variants influence the human serum metabolome

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Bing; Li, Alexander H.; Metcalf, Ginger A.; Muzny, Donna M.; Morrison, Alanna C.; White, Simon; Mosley, Thomas H.; Gibbs, Richard A.; Boerwinkle, Eric

    2016-01-01

    The metabolome is a collection of small molecules resulting from multiple cellular and biological processes that can act as biomarkers of disease, and African-Americans exhibit high levels of genetic diversity. Exome sequencing of a sample of deeply phenotyped African-Americans allowed us to analyze the effects of annotated loss-of-function (LoF) mutations on 308 serum metabolites measured by untargeted liquid and gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. In an independent sample, we identified and replicated four genes harboring six LoF mutations that significantly affected five metabolites. These sites were related to a 19 to 45% difference in geometric mean metabolite levels, with an average effect size of 25%. We show that some of the affected metabolites are risk predictors or diagnostic biomarkers of disease and, using the principle of Mendelian randomization, are in the causal pathway of disease. For example, LoF mutations in SLCO1B1 elevate the levels of hexadecanedioate, a fatty acid significantly associated with increased blood pressure levels and risk of incident heart failure in both African-Americans and an independent sample of European-Americans. We show that SLCO1B1 LoF mutations significantly increase the risk of incident heart failure, thus implicating the metabolite in the causal pathway of disease. These results reveal new avenues into gene function and the understanding of disease etiology by integrating -omic technologies into a deeply phenotyped population study.

  9. Subsea valve actuator for ultra deepwater

    SciTech Connect

    Ali, S.Z.; Skeels, H.B.; Montemayor, B.K.; Williams, M.R.

    1996-12-31

    This paper reviews the continuing development of gate valve and actuator technology for subsea completions extending into ultra deep water. The basic technical challenges inherent to subsea valve actuators are reviewed, along with the various factors which affect the design and performance of these devices in deepwater applications. The high external ambient pressures which occur in deep water, coupled with high specific gravity hydraulic control fluids, are shown to have a significant impact on the performance of the actuators. This paper presents design and analysis methods and the verification test procedures which are required to develop and qualify new deep water actuator designs. Gate valve actuators of the type described in this paper are currently in use on subsea christmas trees on the world`s deepest subsea wells offshore Brazil (water depths >3,000 feet). New applications of the deepwater actuators are in process for upcoming Gulf of Mexico subsea production systems in water depths approaching 6,000 feet. The actuator/valve development method described in this paper has been confirmed by performance verification testing of full scale valves and actuators using a hyperbaric chamber to simulate ultra deepwater operating conditions. Performance of the test valves and actuators correlated very well with analytical predictions. Test results have confirmed that the new valve actuator designs will satisfy API 17D performance requirements for water depths up to 7,500 feet, well in excess of the upcoming GOM application.

  10. Actuators for a space manipulator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chun, W.; Brunson, P.

    1987-01-01

    The robotic manipulator can be decomposed into distinct subsytems. One particular area of interest of mechanical subsystems is electromechanical actuators (or drives). A drive is defined as a motor with an appropriate transmission. An overview is given of existing, as well as state-of-the-art drive systems. The scope is limited to space applications. A design philosophy and adequate requirements are the initial steps in designing a space-qualified actuator. The focus is on the d-c motor in conjunction with several types of transmissions (harmonic, tendon, traction, and gear systems). The various transmissions will be evaluated and key performance parameters will be addressed in detail. Included in the assessment is a shuttle RMS joint and a MSFC drive of the Prototype Manipulator Arm. Compound joints are also investigated. Space imposes a set of requirements for designing a high-performance drive assembly. Its inaccessibility and cryogenic conditions warrant special considerations. Some guidelines concerning these conditions are present. The goal is to gain a better understanding in designing a space actuator.

  11. Myocardial functional preservation during ischemia: influence of beta blocking agents.

    PubMed

    Toleikis, P M; Tomlinson, C W

    1997-11-01

    To determine whether prior acute Beta blockade protects the heart against the deleterious effects of normothermic low flow global ischemia on myocardial function, aortic pressure, developed pressure, dP/dtmax and end diastolic pressure were monitored in isolated perfused rabbit hearts prior to, during and following 30 and 60 min ischemia, during which either Krebs-Henseleit (control) or Beta blocking agents. Bevantolol (cardioselective) or Propranolol (non-selective) were perfused through the heart. Control hearts made ischemic for 30 min and then reperfused had significantly elevated end diastolic (p < .01) and aortic pressures (p < .01) and reduced developed pressure relative to baseline (p < .05). Hearts treated with Bevantolol or Propranolol (3 x 10(-5) m/l) 5 min prior to and during 30 min ischemia recovered preischemic developed pressure and dP/dtmax (p > 0.05), while end diastolic pressure was elevated (p < .01, p < .05 respectively). Aortic pressure was unchanged relative to baseline (p > .05). Comparison of indices from hearts under Beta blockade with controls showed that following 30 min ischemia and recovery, the Bevantolol treated group had reduced aortic pressure (p < .01) and end diastolic pressure (p < .05) and increased percent developed pressure and percent dP/dtmax (p < .001) relative to control. In the propranolol treated group, end diastolic pressure was reduced and percent developed pressure (p < .01) and percent dP/dtmax (p < .001) were increased relative to unblocked hearts. Following 60 min ischemia and 30 min reperfusion, reduction in all functional indices occurred, however dP/dtmax was unchanged from baseline in the Propranolol and Bevantolol treated groups. Comparison between groups showed that the Bevantolol treated group had significantly better dP/dtmax and developed pressure (p < .05), whereas the Propranolol group shows no significant difference from baseline (p > .05) (K-H). We conclude that following short periods of ischemia

  12. Adrenocortical LDL receptor function negatively influences glucocorticoid output.

    PubMed

    van der Sluis, Ronald J; Van Eck, Miranda; Hoekstra, Menno

    2015-09-01

    Over 50% of the cholesterol needed by adrenocortical cells for the production of glucocorticoids is derived from lipoproteins. However, the overall contribution of the different lipoproteins and associated uptake pathways to steroidogenesis remains to be determined. Here we aimed to show the importance of LDL receptor (LDLR)-mediated cholesterol acquisition for adrenal steroidogenesis in vivo. Female total body LDLR knockout mice with a human-like lipoprotein profile were bilaterally adrenalectomized and subsequently provided with one adrenal either expressing or genetically lacking the LDLR under their renal capsule to solely modulate adrenocortical LDLR function. Plasma total cholesterol levels and basal plasma corticosterone levels were identical in the two types of adrenal transplanted mice. Strikingly, restoration of adrenal LDLR function significantly reduced the ACTH-mediated stimulation of adrenal steroidogenesis (P<0.001), with plasma corticosterone levels that were respectively 44-59% lower (P<0.01) as compared to adrenal LDLR negative controls. In addition, LDLR positive adrenal transplanted mice exhibited a significant decrease (-39%; P<0.001) in their plasma corticosterone level under fasting stress conditions. Biochemical analysis did not show changes in the expression of genes involved in cholesterol mobilization. However, LDLR expressing adrenal transplants displayed a marked 62% reduction (P<0.05) in the transcript level of the key steroidogenic enzyme HSD3B2. In conclusion, our studies in a mouse model with a human-like lipoprotein profile provide the first in vivo evidence for a novel inhibitory role of the LDLR in the control of adrenal glucocorticoid production. PMID:26136384

  13. Paternal fenvalerate exposure influences reproductive functions in the offspring.

    PubMed

    Xia, Dong; Parvizi, Nahid; Zhou, Yuchuan; Xu, Kesi; Jiang, Hui; Li, Rongjie; Hang, Yiqiong; Lu, Yang

    2013-11-01

    Fenvalerate (Fen), a synthetic pyrethroid insecticide, has been shown to have adverse effects on male reproductive system. Thus, the aim of the present study was to elucidate whether these adverse effects are passed from exposed male mice to their offspring. Adult male mice received Fen (10 mg/kg) daily for 30 days and mated with untreated females to produce offspring. Fenvalerate significantly changed the methylation status of angiotensin I-converting enzyme (Ace), forkhead box O3 (Foxo3a), huntingtin-associated protein 1 (Hap1), nuclear receptor subfamily 3 (Nr3c2), promyelocytic leukemia (Pml), and Prostaglandin F2 receptor negative regulator (Ptgfrn) genes in paternal mice sperm genomic DNA. Further, Fen significantly increased sperm abnormalities; serum testosterone and estradiol-17ß level in adult male (F0) and their male offspring (F1). Further, paternal Fen treatment significantly increased the length of estrous cycle, serum estradiol-17ß concentration in estrus, and progesterone levels in diestrus in female offspring (F1). These findings suggest that adverse effects of paternal Fen exposure on reproductive functions can be seen not only in treated males (F0) but also in their offsprings. PMID:23548413

  14. Primate genome architecture influences structural variation mechanisms and functional consequences.

    PubMed

    Gokcumen, Omer; Tischler, Verena; Tica, Jelena; Zhu, Qihui; Iskow, Rebecca C; Lee, Eunjung; Fritz, Markus Hsi-Yang; Langdon, Amy; Stütz, Adrian M; Pavlidis, Pavlos; Benes, Vladimir; Mills, Ryan E; Park, Peter J; Lee, Charles; Korbel, Jan O

    2013-09-24

    Although nucleotide resolution maps of genomic structural variants (SVs) have provided insights into the origin and impact of phenotypic diversity in humans, comparable maps in nonhuman primates have thus far been lacking. Using massively parallel DNA sequencing, we constructed fine-resolution genomic structural variation maps in five chimpanzees, five orang-utans, and five rhesus macaques. The SV maps, which are comprised of thousands of deletions, duplications, and mobile element insertions, revealed a high activity of retrotransposition in macaques compared with great apes. By comparison, nonallelic homologous recombination is specifically active in the great apes, which is correlated with architectural differences between the genomes of great apes and macaque. Transcriptome analyses across nonhuman primates and humans revealed effects of species-specific whole-gene duplication on gene expression. We identified 13 gene duplications coinciding with the species-specific gain of tissue-specific gene expression in keeping with a role of gene duplication in the promotion of diversification and the acquisition of unique functions. Differences in the present day activity of SV formation mechanisms that our study revealed may contribute to ongoing diversification and adaptation of great ape and Old World monkey lineages.

  15. Primate genome architecture influences structural variation mechanisms and functional consequences

    PubMed Central

    Gokcumen, Omer; Tischler, Verena; Tica, Jelena; Zhu, Qihui; Iskow, Rebecca C.; Lee, Eunjung; Fritz, Markus Hsi-Yang; Langdon, Amy; Stütz, Adrian M.; Pavlidis, Pavlos; Benes, Vladimir; Mills, Ryan E.; Park, Peter J.; Lee, Charles; Korbel, Jan O.

    2013-01-01

    Although nucleotide resolution maps of genomic structural variants (SVs) have provided insights into the origin and impact of phenotypic diversity in humans, comparable maps in nonhuman primates have thus far been lacking. Using massively parallel DNA sequencing, we constructed fine-resolution genomic structural variation maps in five chimpanzees, five orang-utans, and five rhesus macaques. The SV maps, which are comprised of thousands of deletions, duplications, and mobile element insertions, revealed a high activity of retrotransposition in macaques compared with great apes. By comparison, nonallelic homologous recombination is specifically active in the great apes, which is correlated with architectural differences between the genomes of great apes and macaque. Transcriptome analyses across nonhuman primates and humans revealed effects of species-specific whole-gene duplication on gene expression. We identified 13 gene duplications coinciding with the species-specific gain of tissue-specific gene expression in keeping with a role of gene duplication in the promotion of diversification and the acquisition of unique functions. Differences in the present day activity of SV formation mechanisms that our study revealed may contribute to ongoing diversification and adaptation of great ape and Old World monkey lineages. PMID:24014587

  16. Magnetically actuated microshutter arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mott, David B.; Aslam, Shahid; Blumenstock, Kenneth A.; Fettig, Rainer K.; Franz, David E.; Kutyrev, Alexander S.; Li, Mary J.; Monroy, Carlos J.; Moseley, S. Harvey; Schwinger, David S.

    2001-10-01

    Two-dimensional microshutter arrays are being developed at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) for the Next Generation Space Telescope (NGST) for use in the near-infrared region. Functioning as focal plane object selection devices, the microshutter arrays are 2-D programmable masks with high efficiency and high contrast. The NGST environment requires cryogenic operation at 45 K. Arrays are close-packed silicon nitride membranes with a unit cell size of 100x100 micrometer. Individual shutters are patterned with a torsion flexure permitting shutters to open 90 degrees with minimized mechanical stress concentration. The mechanical shutter arrays are fabricated with MEMS technologies. The processing includes a RIE front-etch to form shutters out of the nitride membrane, an anisotropic back-etch for wafer thinning, and a deep RIE (DRIE) back-etch down to the nitride shutter membrane to form frames and to relieve the shutters from the silicon substrate. A layer of magnetic material is deposited onto each shutter. Onto the side-wall of the support structure a metal layer is deposited that acts as a vertical hold electrode. Shutters are rotated into the support structure by means of an external magnet that is swept across the shutter array for opening. Addressing is performed through a scheme using row and column address lines on each chip and external addressing electronics.

  17. Silkworm protein: its possibility as an actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Hyoung-Joon; Myung, Seung Jun; Kim, Heung Soo; Jung, Woochul; Kim, Jaehwan

    2006-03-01

    The possibility of silkworm (Bombyx mori) protein as a base material of biomimetic actuator was investigated in this paper. Silkworm films were prepared from high concentrations of regenerated fibroin in aqueous solution. Films with thickness of about 100 μm were prepared for coating electrodes. The cast silk films were coated by very thin gold electrode on both sides of the film. Tensile test of cast film showed bi-modal trend, which is typical stress-strain relation of polymeric film. As the test of a possible biomimetic actuator, silkworm film actuator provides bending deformations according to the magnitude and frequency of the applied electric filed. Although the present bending deformation of silkworm film actuator is smaller than that of Electro-Active Paper actuator, it provides the possibility of biomimetic actuator.

  18. Microwave Power for Smart Membrane Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2002-01-01

    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.

  19. Electromechanical actuator for thrust vector control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zubkow, Zygmunt

    Attention is given to the development and testing of electromechanical actuator (EMA) systems for use in first- and second-stage thrust vector control of rocket engines. An overview of the test program is also presented. Designs for both first- and second-stage actuators employ redundant dc brushless, three-phase rare-earth permanent magnet motors. The first-stage actuator is about 28 hp per motor and uses a roller screw. Second-stage thrust vector control is implemented with a much smaller actuator of about 1 hp per motor. This actuator uses a gear drive with a recycling ball screw mechanism. An operational EMA is presented. This 6.5-in. actuator is capable of a stall force of 1350 pounds per motor and a frequency response of about 5 HZ.

  20. Factors influencing reticulophagocytic function in insulin-treated diabetes

    SciTech Connect

    Lawrence, S.; Charlesworth, J.A.; Pussell, B.A.; Campbell, L.V.; Kotowicz, M.A.

    1984-09-01

    The splenic component of reticulophagocytic function (RPF) was examined in 29 insulin-treated diabetic subjects (13 type I and 16 type II) by measurement of clearance of altered, radiolabeled, autologous erythrocytes. Double-isotope studies were performed with cells altered by: (1) preincubation with N-ethylmaleimide (NEM) and (2) coating with IgG antibody to the Rhesus (Rh) D antigen, labeled with 99mTc and 51Cr, respectively. HLA typing for the A, B, and DR loci was performed in those patients showing a defect in the clearance of IgG-coated cells. Values for half-life (t1/2) were correlated with the incidence of diabetic complications, levels of HbA1, and circulating immune complexes (CIC). Two patterns of abnormal clearance were observed: first, an isolated defect of IgG-coated cell clearance in 7 patients (3 had the HLA B8/DR3 haplotype) and second, abnormal removal of both types of cell in a further 7 patients (3 had B8/DR3). There was no correlation between half-lives as measured by the two methods, although exclusion of the patients with a defect of IgG-coated cell clearance alone yielded a highly significant correlation for the remaining 15 Rh-positive patients (P less than 0.01). Abnormalities of IgG-coated cell clearance were more frequent in patients with HbA1 greater than 9% (P less than 0.02), while t1/2 of NEM-altered cells was significantly greater in patients with CIC (P less than 0.05). There was no correlation between t1/2 and the incidence of peripheral complications.

  1. Differential Light Chain Assembly Influences Outer Arm Dynein Motor Function

    PubMed Central

    DiBella, Linda M.; Gorbatyuk, Oksana; Sakato, Miho; Wakabayashi, Ken-ichi; Patel-King, Ramila S.; Pazour, Gregory J.; Witman, George B.; King, Stephen M.

    2005-01-01

    Tctex1 and Tctex2 were originally described as potential distorters/sterility factors in the non-Mendelian transmission of t-haplotypes in mice. These proteins have since been identified as subunits of cytoplasmic and/or axonemal dyneins. Within the Chlamydomonas flagellum, Tctex1 is a subunit of inner arm I1. We have now identified a second Tctex1-related protein (here termed LC9) in Chlamydomonas. LC9 copurifies with outer arm dynein in sucrose density gradients and is missing only in those strains completely lacking this motor. Zero-length cross-linking of purified outer arm dynein indicates that LC9 interacts directly with both the IC1 and IC2 intermediate chains. Immunoblot analysis revealed that LC2, LC6, and LC9 are missing in an IC2 mutant strain (oda6-r88) that can assemble outer arms but exhibits significantly reduced flagellar beat frequency. This defect is unlikely to be due to lack of LC6, because an LC6 null mutant (oda13) exhibits only a minor swimming abnormality. Using an LC2 null mutant (oda12-1), we find that although some outer arm dynein components assemble in the absence of LC2, they are nonfunctional. In contrast, dyneins from oda6-r88, which also lack LC2, retain some activity. Furthermore, we observed a synthetic assembly defect in an oda6-r88 oda12-1 double mutant. These data suggest that LC2, LC6, and LC9 have different roles in outer arm assembly and are required for wild-type motor function in the Chlamydomonas flagellum. PMID:16195342

  2. Actuation fluid adapter for hydraulically-actuated electronically-controlled fuel injector and engine using same

    DOEpatents

    Keyster, Eric S.; Merchant, Jack A.

    2002-01-01

    A fuel injector adapter consists of a block defining a pressure communication passage therethrough and an actuation fluid passage. The actuation fluid passage includes three separate branches that open through an outer surface of the block at three separate locations.

  3. Improving dry carbon nanotube actuators by chemical modifications, material hybridization, and proper engineering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Biso, Maurizio; Ansaldo, Alberto; Ricci, Davide

    2013-04-01

    Low voltage, dry electrochemical actuators can be prepared by using a gel made of carbon nanotubes and ionic liquid.1 Their performance can be significantly improved by combining physical and chemical modifications with a proper engineering. We demonstrated that multi walled carbon nanotubes can be effectively used for actuators preparation;2 we achieved interesting performance improvements by chemically cross linking carbon nanotubes using both aromatic and aliphatic diamines;3 we introduced a novel hybrid material, made by in-situ chemical polymerization of pyrrole on carbon nanotubes, that further boosts actuation by taking advantage of the peculiar properties of both materials in terms of maximum strain and conductivity;4 we investigated the influence of actuator thickness showing that the generated strain at high frequency is strongly enhanced when thickness is reduced. To overcome limitations set by bimorphs, we designed a novel actuator in which a metal spring, embedded in the solid electrolyte of a bimorph device, is used as a non-actuating counter plate resulting in a three electrode device capable of both linear and bending motion. Finally, we propose a way to model actuators performance in terms of purely material-dependent parameters instead of geometry-dependent ones.5

  4. An experimental study of plasma aerodynamic actuation on a round jet in cross flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, Sheng-ji; Xiao, Yang; He, Li-ming; Jin, Tao; Zhang, Qian; Hou, Peng-hui; Zhao, Zi-chen

    2015-03-01

    The present paper is performed on the effect of plasma aerodynamic actuation on a round jet in cross flow field with a low Reynolds number by using smoke visualization. The actuator is constituted by an electrode pair separated by a dielectric Al2O3 sheet. Several AC supply conditions are utilized. The experimental result shows a closing-in tendency of the jet flow toward the wall after being induced by plasma aerodynamic actuation, and such tendency is increasingly intensified as the actuation voltage increases. Numerical simulation is also performed. The simulation results show that an induced vortex pair is generated by plasma aerodynamic actuation near the wall flow field. The rotation direction of the induced vortex pair reverses against the counter-rotating vortex pair generated by a round jet in a cross flow without plasma aerodynamic actuation. Then the strength and structural size of the counter-rotating vortex pair are significantly reduced, resulting in the intensified near-wall effect of the jet flow. Three electrode-typed actuators (straight, 150°-elliptic arc and 180°-elliptic arc with the same streamwise extent) are placed at the exit of round jet to research the influence of electrode structure on jet in cross flow. The result shows that the longer the arc electrode surrounding the hole, the stronger the induced jet that flow near the wall is.

  5. Design and performances of JPCam actuator system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casalta, Joan Manel; Canchado, Manuel; Molins, Albert; Redondo, Miguel; Tomàs, Albert; Catalan, Albert

    2014-07-01

    JPCam is designed to perform the Javalambre-PAU Astrophysical Survey (J-PAS), a photometric survey of the northern sky with the new JST telescope being constructed in the Observatorio Astrofísico of Javalambre in Spain by CEFCA (Centro de Estudios de Física del Cosmos de Aragón). SENER has been responsible for the design, manufacturing, verification and delivery of the JPCam Actuator System that will be installed between the Telescope and the cryogenic Camera Subsystem. The main function is to control the instrument position to guarantee the image quality required during observations in all field of view and compensate deformations produced by gravity and temperature changes. The paper summarizes the main aspects of the hexapod design and earliest information related of integration and performances tests results.

  6. The actuated latch pin and its development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lawlor, P. J.

    1980-01-01

    An actuated latch pin developed to meet the need for a reusable locking device is described. The unit can function as a pin puller or as a pin pusher latch. Initial prototype testing demonstrated the feasibility of the device with the unit being driven from a 28 V dc supply and using 15 W to drive a 12 mm diameter pin through a stroke of 10 mm with a side load of 100 N in 120 ms. High wear rates with a MOS2 lubrication on the ballscrew and angular contact bearings have necessitated the reduction in the duty cycle from 1000 cycles in air and vacuum to 100 in air and 1000 in vacuum.

  7. Fluidic self-actuating control assembly

    DOEpatents

    Grantz, Alan L.

    1979-01-01

    A fluidic self-actuating control assembly for use in a reactor wherein no external control inputs are required to actuate (scram) the system. The assembly is constructed to scram upon sensing either a sudden depressurization of reactor inlet flow or a sudden increase in core neutron flux. A fluidic control system senses abnormal flow or neutron flux transients and actuates the system, whereupon assembly coolant flow reverses, forcing absorber balls into the reactor core region.

  8. Direct-drive field actuator motors

    DOEpatents

    Grahn, A.R.

    1995-07-11

    A high-torque, low speed, positive-drive field actuator motor is disclosed including a stator carrying at least one field actuator which changes in dimension responsive to application of an energy field, and at least one drive shoe movable by the dimensional changes of the field actuator to contact and move a rotor element with respect to the stator. Various embodiments of the motor are disclosed, and the rotor element may be moved linearly or arcuately. 37 figs.

  9. Direct-drive field actuator motors

    DOEpatents

    Grahn, Allen R.

    1995-01-01

    A high-torque, low speed, positive-drive field actuator motor including a stator carrying at least one field actuator which changes in dimension responsive to application of an energy field, and at least one drive shoe movable by the dimensional changes of the field actuator to contact and move a rotor element with respect to the stator. Various embodiments of the motor are disclosed, and the rotor element may be moved linearly or arcuately.

  10. MRI-powered Actuators for Robotic Interventions

    PubMed Central

    Vartholomeos, Panagiotis; Qin, Lei; Dupont, Pierre E.

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents a novel actuation technology for robotically assisted MRI-guided interventional procedures. Compact and wireless, the actuators are both powered and controlled by the MRI scanner. The design concept and performance limits are described and derived analytically. Simulation and experiments in a clinical MR scanner are used to validate the analysis and to demonstrate the capability of the approach for needle biopsies. The concepts of actuator locking mechanisms and multi-axis control are also introduced. PMID:22287082

  11. Real-Time Prognostics of a Rotary Valve Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Daigle, Matthew

    2015-01-01

    Valves are used in many domains and often have system-critical functions. As such, it is important to monitor the health of valves and their actuators and predict remaining useful life. In this work, we develop a model-based prognostics approach for a rotary valve actuator. Due to limited observability of the component with multiple failure modes, a lumped damage approach is proposed for estimation and prediction of damage progression. In order to support the goal of real-time prognostics, an approach to prediction is developed that does not require online simulation to compute remaining life, rather, a function mapping the damage state to remaining useful life is found offline so that predictions can be made quickly online with a single function evaluation. Simulation results demonstrate the overall methodology, validating the lumped damage approach and demonstrating real-time prognostics.

  12. Smart structures for deformable mirrors actuated by shape memory alloy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riva, M.; Bettini, P.; Di Landro, L.; Sala, G.; Zerbi, F. M.

    2010-07-01

    Deformable mirrors actuated by smart structures are promising devices for next generation astronomical instrumentation. Thermal activated Shape Memory Alloys are materials able to recover their original shape, after an external deformation, if heated above a characteristic temperature. If the recovery of the shape is completely or partially prevented by the presence of constraints, the material can generate recovery stress. Thanks to this feature, these materials can be positively exploited in Smart Structures if properly embedded into host materials. This paper will show the technological processes developed for an efficient use of SMA-based actuators embedded in smart structures tailored to astronomical instrumentation. In particular the analysis of the interface with the host material. Some possible modeling approaches to the actuators behavior will be addressed taking into account trade-offs between detailed analysis and overall performance prediction as a function of the computational time. We developed a combined Finite Element and Raytracing analysis devoted to a parametric performance predictions of a SMA based substrate applicable to deformable mirrors. We took in detail into account the possibility to change the focal length of the mirror keeping a satisfactory image quality. Finally a possible approach with some preliminary results for an efficient control system for the strongly non-linear SMA actuators will be presented.

  13. Complaint liquid metal electrodes for dielectric elastomer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finkenauer, Lauren R.; Majidi, Carmel

    2014-03-01

    This work presents a liquid-phase metal electrode to be used with poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) for a dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA). DEAs are favorable for soft-matter applications where high efficiency and response times are desirable. A consistent challenge faced during the fabrication of these devices is the selection and deposition of electrode material. While numerous designs have been demonstrated with a variety of conductive elastomers and greases, these materials have significant and often intrinsic shortcomings, e.g. low conductivity, hysteresis, incapability of large deformations, and complex fabrication requirements. The liquid metal alloy eutectic Gallium-Indium (EGaIn) is a promising alternative to existing compliant electrodes, having both high conductivity and complete soft-matter functionality. The liquid electrode shares almost the same electrical conductivity as conventional metal wiring and provides no mechanical resistance to bending or stretching of the DEA. This research establishes a straightforward and effective method for quickly depositing EGaIn electrodes, which can be adapted for batch fabrication, and demonstrates the successful actuation of sample curved cantilever elastomer actuators using these electrodes. As with the vast majority of electrostatically actuated elastomer devices, the voltage requirements for these curved DEAs are still quite significant, though modifications to the fabrication process show some improved electrical properties. The ease and speed with which this method can be implemented suggests that the development of a more electronically efficient device is realistic and worthwhile.

  14. Conducting IPN actuator/sensor for biomimetic vibrissa system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Festin, N.; Plesse, C.; Pirim, P.; Chevrot, C.; Vidal, F.

    2014-03-01

    Electroactive polymers, or EAPs, are polymers that exhibit a change in size or shape when stimulated by an electric field. The most common applications of this type of material are in actuators and sensors. One promising technology is the elaboration of electronic conducting polymers based actuators with Interpenetrating Polymer Networks (IPNs) architecture. Their many advantageous properties as low working voltage, light weight and high lifetime make them very attractive for various applications including robotics. Conducting IPNs were fabricated by oxidative polymerization of 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene within a flexible Solid Polymer Electrolytes (SPE) combining poly(ethylene oxide) and Nitrile Butadiene Rubber. SPE mechanical properties and ionic conductivities in the presence of 1-ethyl-3- methylimidazolium bis-(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)-imide (EMITFSI) have been characterized. The presence of the elastomer within the SPE greatly improves the actuator performances. The free strain as well as the blocking force was characterized as a function of the actuator length. The sensing properties of those conducting IPNs allow their integration into a biomimetic perception prototype: a system mimicking the tactile perception of rat vibrissae.

  15. High-frequency synthetic ultrasound array incorporating an actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ritter, Timothy A.; Shrout, Thomas R.; Shung, K. Kirk

    2001-05-01

    Ultrasound imaging at frequencies above 20 MHz relies almost exclusively on single-element transducers. IN order to apply array technology at these frequencies, several practical problems must be solved, including spatial scale and fabrication limitations, low device capacitance, and lack of a hardware beamformer. One method of circumventing these problems is to combine an array, an actuator, and a synthetic aperture software beamformer. The array can use relatively wide elements spaced on a coarse pitch. The actuator is used to move the array in short steps (less than the element pitch), and pulse-echo data is acquired at intermediate sample positions. The synthetic aperture beamformer reconstructs the image from the pulse-echo data. A 50 MHz example is analyzed in detail. Estimates of signal-to-noise reveal performance comparable to a standard phased array; furthermore, the actuated array requires half the number of elements, the elements are 8x wider, and only one channel is required. Simulated three-dimensional point spread functions demonstrate side lobe levels approaching - 40dB and main beam widths of 50 to 100 microns. A 50 MHz piezo-composite array design has been tested which displays experimental bandwidth of 70% while maintaining high sensitivity. Individual composite sub-elements are 18 microns wide. Once this array is integrated with a suitable actuator, it is anticipated that a tractable method of imaging with high frequency arrays will result.

  16. Surface micromachined sensors and actuators

    SciTech Connect

    Sniegowski, J.J.

    1995-08-01

    A description of a three-level mechanical polysilicon surface-micromachining technology including a discussion of the advantages of this level of process complexity is presented. This technology is capable of forming mechanical elements ranging from simple cantilevered beams to complex, interconnected, interactive, microactuated micromechanisms. The inclusion of a third deposited layer of mechanical polysilicon greatly extends the degree of complexity available for micromechanism design. Additional features of the Sandia three-level process include the use of Chemical-Mechanical Polishing (CMP) for planarization, and the integration of micromechanics with the Sandia CMOS circuit process. The latter effort includes a CMOS-first, tungsten metallization process to allow the CMOS electronics to withstand high-temperature micromechanical processing. Alternatively, a novel micromechanics-first approach wherein the micromechanical devices are processed first in a well below the surface of the CMOS starting material followed by the standard, aluminum metallization CMOS process is also being pursued. Following the description of the polysilicon surface micromachining are examples of the major sensor and actuator projects based on this technology at the Microelectronics Development Laboratory (MDL) at Sandia National Laboratories. Efforts at the MDL are concentrated in the technology of surface micromachining due to the availability of and compatibility with standard CMOS processes. The primary sensors discussed are a silicon nitride membrane pressure sensor, hot polysilicon filaments for calorimetric gas sensing, and a smart hydrogen sensor. Examples of actuation mechanisms coupled to external devices are also presented. These actuators utilize the three-level process (plus an additional passive level) and employ either surface tension or electrostatic forces.

  17. Shear-flow excitation mechanisms of recessed localized arc-filament plasma actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kleinman, R. R.; Bodony, D. J.; Freund, J. B.

    2010-11-01

    Localized arc-filament plasma actuators, placed near the nozzle lip of a laboratory jet, have recently been demonstrated to have sufficient control authority to significantly excite the jet downstream [M. Samimy et al., J. Fluid Mech. 578, 305 (2007)]. This class of plasma actuator, which in this application is recessed in a small cavity near the nozzle lip, causes intense local heating. This heating is thought to be the root mechanism of its influence on the flow, but how this principally entropic thermal source couples with the vortical jet shear layer turbulence downstream is unclear. We investigate this using direct numerical simulations, which match the flow conditions of the corresponding experiment, including Reynolds number, but are two-dimensional to ease computational expense. Despite this obvious modeling approximation, the simulations include the key features of the laboratory system: a thin boundary layer, a plasma-like thermal source in a small recessed cavity, a nozzle lip, and a downstream free shear layer. Results are shown to match the temperature and near-field pressure measured in the laboratory actuators. It is found that the cavity, which was initially included to shield the actuator plasma from the flow, is essential for its action. Thermal expansion within the cavity leads to an ejection of fluid from it, which perturbs the boundary layer and the downstream mixing layer. There is a finite baroclinic torque, but its effects are relatively minor. An alternate actuator designed to mimic the pressure effects of the full actuator, without its concomitant thermal heating, is nearly as effective at exciting the shear layer. An actuator model without the cavity recess does not provide effective actuation. These results suggest that there is significant potential to optimize the actuation authority through design of cavity recesses that augment its effect.

  18. Using Diffusion Bonding in Making Piezoelectric Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sager, Frank E.

    2003-01-01

    and pressure for a specified curing time. The pressure, temperature, and time depend on the piezoelectric material selected. At the end of the diffusion-bonding process, the resulting laminated piezoelectric actuator is tested to verify the adequacy of the mechanical output as a function of an applied DC voltage.

  19. Design of electro-active polymer gels as actuator materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popovic, Suzana

    Smart materials, alternatively called active or adaptive, differ from passive materials in their sensing and activation capability. These materials can sense changes in environment such as: electric field, magnetic field, UV light, pH, temperature. They are capable of responding in numerous ways. Some change their stiffness properties (electro-rheological fluids), other deform (piezos, shape memory alloys, electrostrictive materials) or change optic properties (electrochromic polymers). Polymer gels are one of such materials which can change the shape, volume and even optical properties upon different applied stimuli. Due to their low stiffness property they are capable of having up to 100% of strain in a short time, order of seconds. Their motion resembles the one of biosystems, and they are often seen as possible artificial muscle materials. Despite their delicate nature, appropriate design can make them being used as actuator materials which can form controllable surfaces and mechanical switches. In this study several different groups of polymer gel material were investigated: (a) acrylamide based gels are sensitive to pH and electric field and respond in volume change, (b) polyacrylonitrile (PAN) gel is sensitive to pH and electric field and responds in axial strain and bending, (c) polyvinylalcohol (PVA) gel is sensitive to electric field and responds in axial strain and bending and (d) perfluorinated sulfonic acid membrane, Nafion RTM, is sensitive to electric field and responds in bending. Electro-mechanical and chemo-mechanical behavior of these materials is a function of a variety of phenomena: polymer structure, affinity of polymer to the solvent, charge distribution within material, type of solvent, elasticity of polymer matrix, etc. Modeling of this behavior is a task aimed to identify what is driving mechanism for activation and express it in a quantitative way in terms of deformation of material. In this work behavior of the most promising material as

  20. Toward standardization of EAP actuators test procedures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernandez, Diego; Moreno, Luis; Baselga, Juan

    2005-05-01

    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

  1. Reactive actuators and sensors integrated in one device: mimicking brain-muscles feedback communication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Otero, Toribio F.; Martinez, Jose G.

    2013-04-01

    Artificial muscles based on carbon derivative molecular structures are chemical (electro-chemo-mechanical) actuators. The electrochemical reaction drives the film volume variation and the actuation. The applied current controls the movement rate and the charge controls the amplitude of the displacement (Faraday' motors). Any working or surrounding variable influencing the reaction rate will be sensed by the muscle potential, or by the consumed electrical energy, evolution during actuation. Experimental results and full theoretical description of the basic reactive material and of any dual electrochemical sensing-actuator will be presented. During current flow the muscle potential and the consumed electrical energy evolution are influenced by the working variables: temperature, electrolyte concentration, driving current, film volume variation (external pressure, applied strain, hanged masses, obstacles in its way). The working muscle becomes an electrochemical sensor. Only two connecting wires contain actuating (current) and sensing (potential) signals read and controlled, at any time from the computer-generator. One device integrates several sensing and actuating tools working simultaneously mimicking muscles/brain feedback communication.

  2. Analysis of the deformational behaviour of a bimorph configuration with piezoelectric actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beckert, Wieland; Pfundtner, Goesta

    2002-08-01

    The stimulation of controlled deformation in lightweight constructions by means of actuator units as an integrated part of the structure currently represents an attractive subject in engineering. A common design uses a piezoelectric film that is bonded to a shell component by an adhesive layer and induces a bending deformation in the structure. A simplified beam design has been used as a test set-up to characterize the actuator performance of a given system under practical conditions. The bimorph configuration consists of an actuator unit, the bonding adhesive and the substrate material from which the lateral bending deflection of the free end, induced by actuation of the piezoelectric film, is measured. An improved theoretical approach is presented that combines a comprehensive composite theory analysis of the bending with a detailed analytical approach for the gradual stress transfer from the edges of the piezoceramic induced by a deformational misfit between the layers. The results are validated by a finite element analysis of the system. They reveal a substantial influence of the assumptions for the transverse (width direction) state of deformation for which free bending appears to be the most realistic for the test geometry. The study is completed by an experimental analysis that investigates the influence of adhesive stiffness and layer thickness on the actuator performance of a system consisting of a steel substrate and a carbon fibre reinforced substrate and a prototypic PZT actuator module. The results are correlated to the model providing a confirmation of the essential trends.

  3. A multi-segment soft actuator for biomedical applications based on IPMCs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Dongxu; Wang, Yanjie; Liu, Jiayu; Luo, Meng; Li, Dichen; Chen, Hualing

    2015-04-01

    With rapid progress of biomedical devices towards miniaturization, flexibility, multifunction and low cost, the restrictions of traditional mechanical structures become particularly apparent, while soft materials become research focus in broad fields. As one of the most attractive soft materials, Ionic Polymer-Metal Composite (IPMC) is widely used as artificial muscles and actuators, with the advantages of low driving-voltage, high efficiency of electromechanical transduction and functional stabilization. In this paper, a new intuitive control method was presented to achieve the omnidirectional bending movements and was applied on a representative actuation structure of a multi-degree-offreedom soft actuator composed of two segments bar-shaped IPMC with a square cross section. Firstly, the bar-shaped IPMCs were fabricated by the solution casting method, reducing plating, autocatalytic plating method and cut into shapes successively. The connectors of the multi-segment IPMC actuator were fabricated by 3D printing. Then, a new control method was introduced to realize the intuitive mapping relationship between the actuator and the joystick manipulator. The control circuit was designed and tested. Finally, the multi-degree-of-freedom actuator of 2 segments bar-shaped IPMCs was implemented and omnidirectional bending movements were achieved, which could be a promising actuator for biomedical applications, such as endoscope, catheterism, laparoscopy and the surgical resection of tumors.

  4. Euler force actuation mechanism for siphon valving in compact disk-like microfluidic chips

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Yongbo; Fan, Jianhua; Zhou, Song; Zhou, Teng; Wu, Junfeng; Li, Yin; Liu, Zhenyu; Xuan, Ming; Wu, Yihui

    2014-01-01

    Based on the Euler force induced by the acceleration of compact disk (CD)-like microfluidic chip, this paper presents a novel actuation mechanism for siphon valving. At the preliminary stage of acceleration, the Euler force in the tangential direction of CD-like chip takes the primary place compared with the centrifugal force to function as the actuation of the flow, which fills the siphon and actuates the siphon valving. The Euler force actuation mechanism is demonstrated by the numerical solution of the phase-field based mathematical model for the flow in siphon valve. In addition, experimental validation is implemented in the polymethylmethacrylate-based CD-like microfluidic chip manufactured using CO2 laser engraving technique. To prove the application of the proposed Euler force actuation mechanism, whole blood separation and plasma extraction has been conducted using the Euler force actuated siphon valving. The newly introduced actuation mechanism overcomes the dependence on hydrophilic capillary filling of siphon by avoiding external manipulation or surface treatments of polymeric material. The sacrifice for highly integrated processing in pneumatic pumping technique is also prevented by excluding the volume-occupied compressed air chamber. PMID:24753736

  5. Euler force actuation mechanism for siphon valving in compact disk-like microfluidic chips.

    PubMed

    Deng, Yongbo; Fan, Jianhua; Zhou, Song; Zhou, Teng; Wu, Junfeng; Li, Yin; Liu, Zhenyu; Xuan, Ming; Wu, Yihui

    2014-03-01

    Based on the Euler force induced by the acceleration of compact disk (CD)-like microfluidic chip, this paper presents a novel actuation mechanism for siphon valving. At the preliminary stage of acceleration, the Euler force in the tangential direction of CD-like chip takes the primary place compared with the centrifugal force to function as the actuation of the flow, which fills the siphon and actuates the siphon valving. The Euler force actuation mechanism is demonstrated by the numerical solution of the phase-field based mathematical model for the flow in siphon valve. In addition, experimental validation is implemented in the polymethylmethacrylate-based CD-like microfluidic chip manufactured using CO2 laser engraving technique. To prove the application of the proposed Euler force actuation mechanism, whole blood separation and plasma extraction has been conducted using the Euler force actuated siphon valving. The newly introduced actuation mechanism overcomes the dependence on hydrophilic capillary filling of siphon by avoiding external manipulation or surface treatments of polymeric material. The sacrifice for highly integrated processing in pneumatic pumping technique is also prevented by excluding the volume-occupied compressed air chamber.

  6. Control of supersonic axisymmetric base flows using passive splitter plates and pulsed plasma actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reedy, Todd Mitchell

    influenced considerably, the area-integrated pressure was only slightly affected. Normalized RMS levels indicate that base pressure fluctuations were significantly reduced with the addition of the splitter plates. Power-spectral-density estimates revealed a spectral broadening of fluctuating energy for the 1/2 cylinder configuration and a bimodal distribution for the 1/3 and 1/4 cylinder configurations. It was concluded that the recirculation region is not the most sensitive location to apply flow control; rather, the shear layer may be a more influential site for implementing flow control methodologies. For active flow control, pulsed plasma-driven fluidic actuators were investigated. Initially, the performance of two plasma actuator designs was characterized to determine their potential as supersonic flow control devices. For the first actuator considered, the pulsed plasma jet, electro-thermal heating from an electric discharge heats and pressurizes gas in a small cavity which is exhausted through a circular orifice forming a synthetic jet. Depending on the electrical energy addition, peak jet velocities ranged between 130 to nearly 500 m/s when exhausted to quiescent, ambient conditions. The second plasma actuator investigated is the localized arc filament plasma actuator (LAFPA), which created fluidic perturbations through the rapid, local thermal heating, generated from an electric arc discharge between two electrodes within a shallow open cavity. Electrical and emission properties of the LAFPA were first documented as a function of pressure in a quiescent, no-flow environment. Rotational and vibrational temperatures from N2 spectra were obtained for select plasma conditions and ambient pressures. Results further validate that the assumption of optically thin conditions for these electric arc plasmas is not necessary valid, even at low ambient pressure. Breakdown voltage, sustained plasma voltage, power, and energy per pulse were demonstrated to decrease with

  7. NASA pyrotechnically actuated systems program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schulze, Norman R.

    1993-01-01

    The Office of Safety and Mission Quality initiated a Pyrotechnically Actuated Systems (PAS) Program in FY-92 to address problems experienced with pyrotechnically actuated systems and devices used both on the ground and in flight. The PAS Program will provide the technical basis for NASA's projects to incorporate new technological developments in operational systems. The program will accomplish that objective by developing/testing current and new hardware designs for flight applications and by providing a pyrotechnic data base. This marks the first applied pyrotechnic technology program funded by NASA to address pyrotechnic issues. The PAS Program has been structured to address the results of a survey of pyrotechnic device and system problems with the goal of alleviating or minimizing their risks. Major program initiatives include the development of a Laser Initiated Ordnance System, a pyrotechnic systems data base, NASA Standard Initiator model, a NASA Standard Linear Separation System and a NASA Standard Gas Generator. The PAS Program sponsors annual aerospace pyrotechnic systems workshops.

  8. Microfabricated electroactive carbon nanotube actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahluwalia, Arti; Baughman, Ray H.; De Rossi, Danilo; Mazzoldi, Alberto; Tesconi, Mario; Tognetti, Alessandro; Vozzi, Giovanni

    2001-07-01

    A variety of microfabrication techniques have been developed at the University of Pisa. They are based either on pressure or piston actuated microsyringes or modified ink-jet printers. This work present the results of a study aimed at fabricating carbon nanotube (NT) actuators using micro-syringes. In order to prevent the nanotubes from aggregating into clumps, they were enclosed in a partially cross-linked polyvinylalcohol - polyallylamine matrix. After sonication the solution remained homogenously dispersed for about 40 minutes, which was sufficient time for deposition. Small strips of NT, about 5 mm across and 15 mm long were deposited. Following deposition, the films were baked at 80 degree(s)C and their thickness, impedance and mechanical resistance measured. The results indicate that 50 minutes of baking time is sufficient to give a constant resistivity of 1.12 x 10-2 (Omega) m per layer similar to a typical semiconductor, and each layer has a thickness of about 6 micrometers .

  9. Sensors and actuators based on SOI materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanz-Velasco, Anke; Nafari, Alexandra; Rödjegård, Henrik; Bring, Martin; Hedsten, Karin; Enoksson, Peter; Bengtsson, Stefan

    2006-05-01

    Examples of using SOI materials for formation of novel sensor and actuator structures at Chalmers University of Technology are given. Using SOI material gives advantages in formation of sensor and actuator structures, such as a nanoindentation force sensor, a three-axis accelerometer, a miniaturized pinball game and integration of diffractive optical elements onto silicon.

  10. Integrated piezoelectric actuators in deep drawing tools

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neugebauer, R.; Mainda, P.; Drossel, W.-G.; Kerschner, M.; Wolf, K.

    2011-04-01

    The production of car body panels are defective in succession of process fluctuations. Thus the produced car body panel can be precise or damaged. To reduce the error rate, an intelligent deep drawing tool was developed at the Fraunhofer Institute for Machine Tools and Forming Technology IWU in cooperation with Audi and Volkswagen. Mechatronic components in a closed-loop control is the main differentiating factor between an intelligent and a conventional deep drawing tool. In correlation with sensors for process monitoring, the intelligent tool consists of piezoelectric actuators to actuate the deep drawing process. By enabling the usage of sensors and actuators at the die, the forming tool transform to a smart structure. The interface between sensors and actuators will be realized with a closed-loop control. The content of this research will present the experimental results with the piezoelectric actuator. For the analysis a production-oriented forming tool with all automotive requirements were used. The disposed actuators are monolithic multilayer actuators of the piezo injector system. In order to achieve required force, the actuators are combined in a cluster. The cluster is redundant and economical. In addition to the detailed assembly structures, this research will highlight intensive analysis with the intelligent deep drawing tool.

  11. The influence of optimism on functionality after total hip replacement surgery.

    PubMed

    Balck, Friedrich; Lippmann, Maike; Jeszenszky, Csilla; Günther, Klaus-Peter; Kirschner, Stephan

    2016-08-01

    Among other factors, optimism has been shown to significantly influence the course of some diseases (cancer, HIV, coronary heart disease). This study investigated whether optimism of a patient before a total hip replacement can predict the functionality of the lower limbs 3 and 6 months after surgery. A total of 325 patients took part in the study (age: 58.7 years; w: 55%). The functionality was measured with the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities arthrosis index, and optimism with the Life Orientation Test. To analyse the influences of age, gender and optimism, general linear models were calculated. In optimistic patients, functionality improved significantly over time. The study showed a clear influence of dispositional optimism on the recovery after total hip replacement in the first 3 months after surgery.

  12. Actuator lifetime predictions for Ni60Ti40 shape memory alloy plate actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Robert; Ottmers, Cade; Hewling, Brett; Lagoudas, Dimitris

    2016-04-01

    Shape memory alloys (SMAs), due to their ability to repeatedly 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 of predicting actuator lifetimes. Previous efforts have been effective at predicting actuator lifetimes for isobaric dogbone test specimens. This study builds on previous work and investigates the actuation fatigue response of plate actuators with various stress concentrations through the use of digital image correlation and finite element simulations.

  13. The impact of objective function selection on the influence of individual data points

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wright, David; Thyer, Mark; Westra, Seth; McInerney, David

    2016-04-01

    Across the field of hydrology practitioners apply a range of objective functions which are selected based upon the intended model application and suitability of the objective function assumptions to the data in question. Despite most objective functions providing fundamentally different calibration results there are currently limited methods for comparison of alternatives. Influence diagnostics quantify the impact of individual data points on model performance, parameters and predictions. The goal of this study is to use compare four commonly applied objective functions in hydrology using influence diagnostics to provide insights on how objective function selection changes the influence of individual data points on model calibration. The specific aims are to: 1) explore the impact on magnitude of influence of objective functions, 2) investigate similarities between influential points identified by objective functions and, 3) categorise flows that are influential under objective functions. We use case-deletion influence diagnostics to examine four objective functions: Standard Least Squares (SLS), Weighted Least Squares (WLS), Log transformed flows (LOG) and the Kling-Gupta Efficiency (KGE). We apply these objective functions to six scenarios: two conceptual hydrological models (GR4J and IHACRES) across three catchment case studies with varying runoff coefficients (0.14 to 0.57). We quantify influence using the case-deletion relative change in flow metrics: mean flow prediction, maximum flow prediction, and the 10th percentile low flow prediction. The results show that when using objective functions SLS and KGE influential data points have larger magnitude influence (maximum of 10% change in the flow metrics across all data points for both objective functions) than heteroscedastic WLS and LOG (WLS maximum of 8% and LOG maximum of 6% change in the flow metrics). SLS and KGE identify similar influential points (75% of the most influential points are common to both

  14. Piezoelectric Actuator/Sensor Technology at Rockwell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Neurgaonkar, Ratnakar R.

    1996-01-01

    We describe the state-of-the art of piezoelectric materials based on perovskite and tungsten bronze families for sensor, actuator and smart structure applications. The microstructural defects in these materials have been eliminated to a large extent and the resulting materials exhibit exceedingly high performance for various applications. The performance of Rockwell actuators/sensors is at least 3 times better than commercially available products. These high performance actuators are being incorporated into various applications including, DOD, NASA and commercial. The multilayer actuator stacks fabricated from our piezoceramics are advantageous for sensing and high capacitance applications. In this presentation, we will describe the use of our high performance piezo-ceramics for actuators and sensors, including multilayer stacks and composite structures.

  15. Adding realism to simulated sensors and actuators.

    PubMed

    Rosen, C; Jeppsson, U; Rieger, L; Vanrolleghem, P A

    2008-01-01

    In this paper, we propose a statistical theoretical framework for incorporation of sensor and actuator faults in dynamic simulations of wastewater treatment operation. Sensor and actuator faults and failures are often neglected in simulations for control strategy development and testing, although it is well known that they represent a significant obstacle for realising control at full-scale facilities. The framework for incorporating faults and failures is based on Markov chains and displays the appealing property of easy transition of sensor and actuator history into a model for fault generation. The paper briefly describes Markov theory and how this is used together with models for sensor and actuator dynamics to achieve a realistic simulation of measurements and actuators.

  16. Lead magnesium niobate actuator for micropositioning

    DOEpatents

    Swift, Charles D.; Bergum, John W.

    1994-01-01

    An improved lead magnesium niobate actuator is disclosed comprising a cylindrical lead magnesium niobate crystal stack mounted in a cylindrical casing wherein a bias means, such as one or more belleville washers, is located between one end of the crystal stack and a partially closed end of the casing; and adjustment means are provided which bear against the opposite end of the crystal stack, whereby an adjustable compressive force is constantly applied against the crystal stack, whether the crystal stack is actuated in an extended position, or is in an unactuated contracted position. In a preferred embodiment, cooling ports are provided for the circulation of coolant in the actuator to cool the crystal stack, and provision is made for removal and replacement of the crystal stack without disconnecting the actuator from the external device being actuated.

  17. Lead magnesium niobate actuator for micropositioning

    DOEpatents

    Swift, C.D.; Bergum, J.W.

    1994-10-25

    An improved lead magnesium niobate actuator is disclosed comprising a cylindrical lead magnesium niobate crystal stack mounted in a cylindrical casing wherein a bias means, such as one or more belleville washers, is located between one end of the crystal stack and a partially closed end of the casing; and adjustment means are provided which bear against the opposite end of the crystal stack, whereby an adjustable compressive force is constantly applied against the crystal stack, whether the crystal stack is actuated in an extended position, or is in an unactuated contracted position. In a preferred embodiment, cooling ports are provided for the circulation of coolant in the actuator to cool the crystal stack, and provision is made for removal and replacement of the crystal stack without disconnecting the actuator from the external device being actuated. 3 figs.

  18. Conducting IPN actuators for biomimetic vision system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Festin, Nicolas; Plesse, Cedric; Chevrot, Claude; Teyssié, Dominique; Pirim, Patrick; Vidal, Frederic

    2011-04-01

    In recent years, many studies on electroactive polymer (EAP) actuators have been reported. One promising technology is the elaboration of electronic conducting polymers based actuators with Interpenetrating Polymer Networks (IPNs) architecture. Their many advantageous properties as low working voltage, light weight and high lifetime (several million cycles) make them very attractive for various applications including robotics. Our laboratory recently synthesized new conducting IPN actuators based on high molecular Nitrile Butadiene Rubber, poly(ethylene oxide) derivative and poly(3,4-ethylenedioxithiophene). The presence of the elastomer greatly improves the actuator performances such as mechanical resistance and output force. In this article we present the IPN and actuator synthesis, characterizations and design allowing their integration in a biomimetic vision system.

  19. Design Optimization Tool for Synthetic Jet Actuators Using Lumped Element Modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gallas, Quentin; Sheplak, Mark; Cattafesta, Louis N., III; Gorton, Susan A. (Technical Monitor)

    2005-01-01

    The performance specifications of any actuator are quantified in terms of an exhaustive list of parameters such as bandwidth, output control authority, etc. Flow-control applications benefit from a known actuator frequency response function that relates the input voltage to the output property of interest (e.g., maximum velocity, volumetric flow rate, momentum flux, etc.). Clearly, the required performance metrics are application specific, and methods are needed to achieve the optimal design of these devices. Design and optimization studies have been conducted for piezoelectric cantilever-type flow control actuators, but the modeling issues are simpler compared to synthetic jets. Here, lumped element modeling (LEM) is combined with equivalent circuit representations to estimate the nonlinear dynamic response of a synthetic jet as a function of device dimensions, material properties, and external flow conditions. These models provide reasonable agreement between predicted and measured frequency response functions and thus are suitable for use as design tools. In this work, we have developed a Matlab-based design optimization tool for piezoelectric synthetic jet actuators based on the lumped element models mentioned above. Significant improvements were achieved by optimizing the piezoceramic diaphragm dimensions. Synthetic-jet actuators were fabricated and benchtop tested to fully document their behavior and validate a companion optimization effort. It is hoped that the tool developed from this investigation will assist in the design and deployment of these actuators.

  20. An investigation of electrochemomechanical actuation of conductive Polyacrylonitrile (PAN) nanofiber composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonzalez, Mark A.; Walter, Wayne W.

    2014-03-01

    A polymer-based nanofiber composite actuator designed for contractile actuation was fabricated by electrospinning, stimulated by electrolysis, and characterized by electrochemical and mechanical testing to address performance limitations and understand the activation processing effects on actuation performance. Currently, Electroactive polymers (EAPs) have provided uses in sensory and actuation technology, but have either low force output or expand rather than contract, falling short in capturing the natural kinetics and mechanics of muscle needed to provide breakthroughs in the bio-medical and robotic fields. In this study, activated Polyacrylonitrile (PAN) fibers have demonstrated biomimetic functionalities similar to the sarcomere contraction responsible for muscle function. Activated PAN has also been shown to contract and expand by electrolysis when in close vicinity to the anode and cathode, respectively. PAN nanofibers (~500 nm) especially show faster response to changes in environmental pH and improved mechanical properties compared to larger diameter fibers. Tensile testing was conducted to examine changes in mechanical properties between annealing and hydrolysis processing. Voltage driven transient effects of localized pH were examined to address pHdefined actuation thresholds of PAN fibers. Electrochemical contraction rates of the PAN/Graphite composite actuator demonstrated up to 25%/min. Strains of 58.8%, ultimate stresses up to 77.1 MPa, and moduli of 0.21 MPa were achieved with pure PAN nanofiber mats, surpassing mechanical properties of natural muscles. Further improvements, however, to contraction rates and Young's moduli were found essential to capture the function and performance of skeletal muscles appropriately.

  1. Kinematics, influence functions and field quantities for disturbance propagation from moving disturbance sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Das, A.

    1984-01-01

    A unified method is presented for deriving the influence functions of moving singularities which determine the field quantities in aerodynamics and aeroacoustics. The moving singularities comprise volume and surface distributions having arbitrary orientations in space and to the trajectory. Hence one generally valid formula for the influence functions which reveal some universal relationships and remarkable properties in the disturbance fields. The derivations used are completely consistent with the physical processes in the propagation field, such that treatment renders new descriptions for some standard concepts. The treatment is uniformly valid for subsonic and supersonic Mach numbers.

  2. Free-form Light Actuators — Fabrication and Control of Actuation in Microscopic Scale

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Hao; Wasylczyk, Piotr; Parmeggiani, Camilla; Martella, Daniele; Wiersma, Diederik Sybolt

    2016-01-01

    Liquid crystalline elastomers (LCEs) are smart materials capable of reversible shape-change in response to external stimuli, and have attracted researchers' attention in many fields. Most of the studies focused on macroscopic LCE structures (films, fibers) and their miniaturization is still in its infancy. Recently developed lithography techniques, e.g., mask exposure and replica molding, only allow for creating 2D structures on LCE thin films. Direct laser writing (DLW) opens access to truly 3D fabrication in the microscopic scale. However, controlling the actuation topology and dynamics at the same length scale remains a challenge. In this paper we report on a method to control the liquid crystal (LC) molecular alignment in the LCE microstructures of arbitrary three-dimensional shape. This was made possible by a combination of direct laser writing for both the LCE structures as well as for micrograting patterns inducing local LC alignment. Several types of grating patterns were used to introduce different LC alignments, which can be subsequently patterned into the LCE structures. This protocol allows one to obtain LCE microstructures with engineered alignments able to perform multiple opto-mechanical actuation, thus being capable of multiple functionalities. Applications can be foreseen in the fields of tunable photonics, micro-robotics, lab-on-chip technology and others. PMID:27285398

  3. Free-form Light Actuators - Fabrication and Control of Actuation in Microscopic Scale.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Hao; Wasylczyk, Piotr; Parmeggiani, Camilla; Martella, Daniele; Wiersma, Diederik Sybolt

    2016-01-01

    Liquid crystalline elastomers (LCEs) are smart materials capable of reversible shape-change in response to external stimuli, and have attracted researchers' attention in many fields. Most of the studies focused on macroscopic LCE structures (films, fibers) and their miniaturization is still in its infancy. Recently developed lithography techniques, e.g., mask exposure and replica molding, only allow for creating 2D structures on LCE thin films. Direct laser writing (DLW) opens access to truly 3D fabrication in the microscopic scale. However, controlling the actuation topology and dynamics at the same length scale remains a challenge. In this paper we report on a method to control the liquid crystal (LC) molecular alignment in the LCE microstructures of arbitrary three-dimensional shape. This was made possible by a combination of direct laser writing for both the LCE structures as well as for micrograting patterns inducing local LC alignment. Several types of grating patterns were used to introduce different LC alignments, which can be subsequently patterned into the LCE structures. This protocol allows one to obtain LCE microstructures with engineered alignments able to perform multiple opto-mechanical actuation, thus being capable of multiple functionalities. Applications can be foreseen in the fields of tunable photonics, micro-robotics, lab-on-chip technology and others. PMID:27285398

  4. The fabrication and characterisation of piezoelectric actuators for active x-ray optics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Dou; Rodriguez Sanmartin, Daniel; Button, Tim W.; Meggs, Carl; Atkins, Carolyn; Doel, Peter; Brooks, David; Feldman, Charlotte; Willingale, Richard; Michette, Alan; Pfauntsch, Slawka; Sahraei, Shahin; James, Ady; Dunare, Camelia; Stevenson, Tom; Parkes, William; Smith, Andrew; Wang, Hongchang

    2009-08-01

    Piezoelectric actuators are widely employed in adaptive optics to enable an actively controlled mirror surface and improve the optical resolution and sensitivity. Currently two new prototype adaptive X-ray optical systems are under development through the Smart X-ray Optics project in a UK based consortium. One proposed technology is micro-structured optical arrays (MOAs) which uses aligned micro-channels structures obtained by deep silicon etching using both dry and wet techniques and bonded piezoelectric actuators to produce a micro-focused X-ray source for biological applications. The other technology is large scale optics which uses a thin shell mirror segment with 20-40 bonded piezo-actuators for the next generation of X-ray telescopes with an aim to achieve a resolution greater than that currently available by Chandra (0.5"). The Functional Materials Group of Birmingham University has the capability of fabricating a wide range of piezo-actuators including, for example, unimorph, bimorph and active fibre composites (AFC) by using a viscous plastic processing technique. This offers flexibility in customising the shapes (from planar to 3-D helix) and feature sizes (>20 μm) of the actuators, as well as achieving good piezoelectric properties. PZT unimorph actuators are being developed in this programme according to the design and implementation of the proposed mirror and array structures. Precise controls on the dimension, thickness, surface finishing and the curvature have been achieved for delivering satisfactory actuators. Results are presented regarding the fabrication and characterisation of such piezo-actuators, as well as the progress on the large optic and MOAs prototypes employing the piezo-actuators.

  5. Influence of social cognition on daily functioning in schizophrenia: study of incremental validity and mediational effects.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Domínguez, Sara; Penadés, Rafael; Segura, Bàrbara; González-Rodríguez, Alexandre; Catalán, Rosa

    2015-02-28

    While the role of impaired neurocognition in accounting for functional outcome in schizophrenia is generally established, the influence of social cognition on this relationship is far from clear. This study aims to explore in depth the nature of the relationship between neurocognition, social cognition and daily functioning in people with schizophrenia. Twenty-one individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia and 15 controls completed the assessment of symptom severity, neuropsychological status, social cognition (Theory of Mind and affect processing) and other functional measures. A statistical mediation model based on hierarchical regression analyses was used to establish the mediation path with significant variables. Social cognition played a mediating role between neurocognition and functioning, accounting for significant trends in incremental variance in specific functional indexes (interpersonal behavior and employment/occupation). Consequently, this study adds to the evidence underlining the importance of targeting not only social cognitive or neurocognitive functions but to combine both interventions to reveal the best daily functioning results in schizophrenia patients.

  6. Influence of longitudinal temperature distribution on current limiting function of Superconducting Fault Current Limiting Cable (SFCLC)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kojima, H.; Osawa, T.; Hayakawa, N.; Hanai, M.; Okubo, H.

    2014-05-01

    We have proposed a Superconducting Fault Current Limiting Cable (SFCLC), which is an HTS cable with fault current limiting function. SFCLC is expected to limit the fault current and also immediately recover the cable function after the fault clearance. In the SFCLC operation, a longitudinal temperature distribution will exist due to heat penetration, AC loss, dielectric loss and the performance of cryocooling system, which will influence its current limitation characteristics. In this paper, we investigate the influence of the longitudinal temperature distribution on current limiting function and temperature rise after the current limitation of SFCLC. We suggested the effective measures of parameter control, i.e. decreasing the critical current (Ic@77K), n value at flux flow region (n1-0), increasing the coefficient of longitudinal temperature gradient (α), inflow temperature (Tin) to achieve both the higher current limiting function and the lower temperature rise.

  7. Hand-actuated engine starter

    SciTech Connect

    Lindstrom, F.B.

    1987-01-27

    This patent describes a hand-actuated starter for an internal combustion engine wherein a first clutch member is journalled on a first shaft and a second clutch member is mounted on an engine shaft. The first clutch member has a pulley and is axially displaceable with respect to the second clutch member in response to rotation of the pulley, the first shaft and first clutch member having first and second mutually engaging bearing surfaces respectively. The improvement described here is wherein one of the surfaces has threads and the other of the surfaces has a helical groove and a helical spring in the groove positioned to engage the threads. The spring is radially displaceable in the groove.

  8. Droplet actuator analyzer with cartridge

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Gregory F. (Inventor); Sturmer, Ryan A. (Inventor); Paik, Philip Y. (Inventor); Srinivasan, Vijay (Inventor); Pollack, Michael G. (Inventor); Pamula, Vamsee K. (Inventor); Brafford, Keith R. (Inventor); West, Richard M. (Inventor)

    2011-01-01

    A droplet actuator with cartridge is provided. According to one embodiment, a sample analyzer is provided and includes an analyzer unit comprising electronic or optical receiving means, a cartridge comprising self-contained droplet handling capabilities, and a wherein the cartridge is coupled to the analyzer unit by a means which aligns electronic and/or optical outputs from the cartridge with electronic or optical receiving means on the analyzer unit. According to another embodiment, a sample analyzer is provided and includes a sample analyzer comprising a cartridge coupled thereto and a means of electrical interface and/or optical interface between the cartridge and the analyzer, whereby electrical signals and/or optical signals may be transmitted from the cartridge to the analyzer.

  9. Lost-motion valve actuator

    SciTech Connect

    Burris, W.J. III; Ringgenberg, P.D.

    1987-04-07

    A lost-motion valve actuator is described for a bore closure valve employed in a well bore, comprising: operating connector means adapted to move the bore closure valve between open and closed positions through longitudinal movement of the operating connector means. The operating connector means comprises an operating connector and a connector insert defining a recess therebetween; locking dog means comprising at least one locking dog received in the recess and spring biasing means adapted to urge at least one locking dog radially inwardly; and mandrel means slidably received within the operating connector means and including dog slot means associated therewith. The dog slot means comprises an annular slot on the exterior of the mandrel means adapted to lockingly receive at least one inwardly biased locking dog when proximate thereto, whereby longitudinal movement of the mandrel means is transmitted to the operating connector means.

  10. Magnetic actuation of hair cells

    PubMed Central

    Rowland, David; Roongthumskul, Yuttana; Lee, Jae-Hyun; Cheon, Jinwoo; Bozovic, Dolores

    2011-01-01

    The bullfrog sacculus contains mechanically sensitive hair cells whose stereociliary bundles oscillate spontaneously when decoupled from the overlying membrane. Steady-state offsets on the resting position of a hair bundle can suppress or modulate this native motility. To probe the dynamics of spontaneous oscillation in the proximity of the critical point, we describe here a method for mechanical actuation that avoids loading the bundles or contributing to the viscous drag. Magnetite beads were attached to the tips of the stereocilia, and a magnetic probe was used to impose deflections. This technique allowed us to observe the transition from multi-mode to single-mode state in freely oscillating bundles, as well as the crossover from the oscillatory to the quiescent state. PMID:22163368

  11. Magnetic actuation of hair cells.

    PubMed

    Rowland, David; Roongthumskul, Yuttana; Lee, Jae-Hyun; Cheon, Jinwoo; Bozovic, Dolores

    2011-11-01

    The bullfrog sacculus contains mechanically sensitive hair cells whose stereociliary bundles oscillate spontaneously when decoupled from the overlying membrane. Steady-state offsets on the resting position of a hair bundle can suppress or modulate this native motility. To probe the dynamics of spontaneous oscillation in the proximity of the critical point, we describe here a method for mechanical actuation that avoids loading the bundles or contributing to the viscous drag. Magnetite beads were attached to the tips of the stereocilia, and a magnetic probe was used to impose deflections. This technique allowed us to observe the transition from multi-mode to single-mode state in freely oscillating bundles, as well as the crossover from the oscillatory to the quiescent state. PMID:22163368

  12. Pressure-actuated joint system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McGuire, John R. (Inventor)

    2004-01-01

    A pressure vessel is provided that includes first and second case segments mated with one another. First and second annular rubber layers are disposed inboard of the first and second case segments, respectively. The second annular rubber layer has a slot extending from the radial inner surface across a portion of its thickness to define a main body portion and a flexible portion. The flexible portion has an interfacing surface portion abutting against an interfacing surface portion of the first annular rubber layer to follow movement of the first annular rubber layer during operation of the pressure vessel. The slot receives pressurized gas and establishes a pressure-actuated joint between the interfacing surface portions. At least one of the interfacing surface portions has a plurality of enclosed and sealed recesses formed therein.

  13. The influence of depression on processing speed and executive function in nondemented subjects aged 75.

    PubMed

    Jungwirth, Susanne; Zehetmayer, Sonja; Hinterberger, Margareta; Kudrnovsky-Moser, Stephan; Weissgram, Silvia; Tragl, Karl Heinz; Fischer, Peter

    2011-09-01

    Neuropsychological deficits are commonly found to be part of depression in old age and might simultaneously represent early symptoms of dementia. We investigated the influence of depression on processing speed and executive function in subjects who did not develop dementia during the following 5 years to examine whether these neuropsychological dysfunctions are due to depression or are influenced by other causes (e.g., education, cerebral comorbidity). A total of 287 subjects aged 75 (mean: 75.76) were available for analyses. Processing speed was measured by the Trail Making Test-A, Executive Function by the Trail Making Test-B and Verbal Fluency. DSM-IV-criteria were used for diagnosing depression. Cerebral comorbidity (e.g., stroke, Parkinson's disease), sex, education, antidepressant, and/or benzodiazepine medication, and a history of depression were taken into account as covariates. Univariate analyses and multiple regression analyses were calculated. Higher education was strongly related to better performance in all three psychometric tests. Cerebral comorbidity significantly slowed TMT-A performance and reduced Verbal Fluency scores. In multiple regression analysis depression showed only a minor, slowing influence on TMT-A and TMT-B performance. Depression only had a minor influence on processing speed and executive function in this sample of nondemented subjects. By comparison, the influence of education and cerebral comorbidity was seen to be stronger.

  14. A novel frequency tuned wireless actuator with snake-like motion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Kewei; Zhu, Qianke; Chai, Yuesheng

    2016-07-01

    In this work, we propose a novel wireless actuator which is composed of magnetostrictive material/copper bi-layer film. The actuator can be controlled to move like a snake bi-directionally along a pipe by tuning the frequency of external magnetic field near its first order resonant frequency. The governing equation for the actuator is established and the vibration mode shape function is derived. Theoretical analysis shows that motion of the actuator is achieved by asymmetric vibration mode shape, specific vibration bending deformation, and effective net total impacting force. The simulation and experimental results well confirm the theoretical analysis. This work provides contribution to the development of wireless micro robots and autonomous magnetostrictive sensors.

  15. Real-Time Implementation of Intelligent Actuator Control with a Transducer Health Monitoring Capability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jethwa, Dipan; Selmic, Rastko R.; Figueroa, Fernando

    2008-01-01

    This paper presents a concept of feedback control for smart actuators that are compatible with smart sensors, communication protocols, and a hierarchical Integrated System Health Management (ISHM) architecture developed by NASA s Stennis Space Center. Smart sensors and actuators typically provide functionalities such as automatic configuration, system condition awareness and self-diagnosis. Spacecraft and rocket test facilities are in the early stages of adopting these concepts. The paper presents a concept combining the IEEE 1451-based ISHM architecture with a transducer health monitoring capability to enhance the control process. A control system testbed for intelligent actuator control, with on-board ISHM capabilities, has been developed and implemented. Overviews of the IEEE 1451 standard, the smart actuator architecture, and control based on this architecture are presented.

  16. ToF-SIMS Characterization of Biocompatible Silk/Polypyrrole Electromechanical Actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bradshaw, Nathan; Severt, Sean; Wang, Zhaoying; Klemke, Carly; Larson, Jesse; Zhu, Zihua; Murphy, Amanda; Leger, Janelle

    2015-03-01

    Materials capable of controlled movements that can also interface with biological environments are highly sought after for biomedical devices such as valves, blood vessel sutures, cochlear implants and controlled drug release devices. Recently we have reported the synthesis of films composed of a conductive interpenetrating network of the biopolymer silk fibroin and poly(pyrrole). These silk-PPy composites function as bilayer electromechanical actuators in a biologically-relevant environment, can be actuated repeatedly, and are able to generate forces comparable with natural muscle (>0.1 MPa), making them an ideal candidate for interfacing with biological tissues. Here, time of flight secondary ion mass spectrometry was used to investigate the migration of ions in the devices during actuation. These findings will be discussed in the context of the actuation mechanism and opportunities for further improvements in device stability and performance.

  17. Enhanced Actuation Performance and Reduced Heat Generation in Shear-Bending Mode Actuator at High Temperature.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jianguo; Liu, Guoxi; Cheng, Jinrong; Dong, Shuxiang

    2016-08-01

    The actuation performance, strain hysteresis, and heat generation of the shear-bending mode actuators based on soft and hard BiScO3-PbTiO3 (BS-PT) ceramics were investigated under different thermal (from room temperature to 300 °C) and electrical loadings (from 2 to 10 kV/cm and from 1 to 1000 Hz). The actuator based on both soft and hard BS-PT ceramics worked stably at the temperature as high as 300 °C. The maximum working temperature of this shear-bending actuators is 150 °C higher than those of the traditional piezoelectric actuators based on commercial Pb(Zr, Ti)O3 materials. Furthermore, although the piezoelectric properties of soft-type ceramics based on BS-PT ceramics were superior to those of hard ceramics, the maximum displacement of the actuator based on hard ceramics was larger than that fabricated by soft ceramics at high temperature. The maximum displacement of the actuator based on hard ceramics was [Formula: see text] under an applied electric field of 10 kV/cm at 300 °C. The strain hysteresis and heat generation of the actuator based on hard ceramics was smaller than those of the actuator based on soft ceramics in the wide temperature range. These results indicated that the shear-bending actuator based on hard piezoelectric ceramics was more suitable for high-temperature piezoelectric applications. PMID:27214895

  18. Out-of-Plane Translational PZT Bimorph Actuator with Archimedes’ Spiral Actuating Tethers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Chenye; Liu, Sanwei; Livermore, Carol

    2015-12-01

    The design, finite element analysis (FEA), and experimental characterization of a MEMS out-of-plane (vertical) translational lead-zirconate-titanate (PZT) bimorph actuator supported on Archimedes’ spiral tethers are presented. Two types of bimorph actuators with different electrode patterns (with spiral tethers half actuated or fully actuated) are designed and fabricated. Both designs are fabricated by commercial processes and are compatible with integration into more complex MEMS systems. Finite element analysis (FEA) was used to analyze and predict the displacements of both types of actuators. The deflections of both fully- actuated and half-actuated devices were measured experimentally to validate the design. At an applied voltage of 110V, the out-of-plane deflections of the actuators with half-actuated and fully-actuated tethers were measured at about 17 μm and 29 μm respectively, in good agreement with FEA predictions of 17.1 μm and 25.8 μm. The corresponding blocking forces are predicted as 10 mN and 17 mN by FEA.

  19. Using an adoption design to separate genetic, prenatal, and temperament influences on toddler executive function.

    PubMed

    Leve, Leslie D; DeGarmo, David S; Bridgett, David J; Neiderhiser, Jenae M; Shaw, Daniel S; Harold, Gordon T; Natsuaki, Misaki N; Reiss, David

    2013-06-01

    Poor executive functioning has been implicated in children's concurrent and future behavioral difficulties, making work aimed at understanding processes related to the development of early executive function (EF) critical for models of developmental psychopathology. Deficits in EF have been associated with adverse prenatal experiences, genetic influences, and temperament characteristics. However, our ability to disentangle the predictive and independent effects of these influences has been limited by a dearth of genetically informed research designs that also consider prenatal influences. The present study examined EF and language development in a sample of 361 toddlers who were adopted at birth and reared in nonrelative adoptive families. Predictors included genetic influences (as inherited from birth mothers), prenatal risk, and growth in child negative emotionality. Structural equation modeling indicated that the effect of prenatal risk on toddler effortful attention at age 27 months became nonsignificant once genetic influences were considered in the model. In addition, genetic influences had unique effects on toddler effortful attention. Latent growth modeling indicated that increases in toddler negative emotionality from 9 to 27 months were associated with poorer delay of gratification and poorer language development. Similar results were obtained in models incorporating birth father data. Mechanisms of intergenerational transmission of EF deficits are discussed.

  20. Active Damping Using Distributed Anisotropic Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schiller, Noah H.; Cabell, Randolph H.; Quinones, Juan D.; Wier, Nathan C.

    2010-01-01

    A helicopter structure experiences substantial high-frequency mechanical excitation from powertrain components such as gearboxes and drive shafts. The resulting structure-borne vibration excites the windows which then radiate sound into the passenger cabin. In many cases the radiated sound power can be reduced by adding damping. This can be accomplished using passive or active approaches. Passive treatments such as constrained layer damping tend to reduce window transparency. Therefore this paper focuses on an active approach utilizing compact decentralized control units distributed around the perimeter of the window. Each control unit consists of a triangularly shaped piezoelectric actuator, a miniature accelerometer, and analog electronics. Earlier work has shown that this type of system can increase damping up to approximately 1 kHz. However at higher frequencies the mismatch between the distributed actuator and the point sensor caused control spillover. This paper describes new anisotropic actuators that can be used to improve the bandwidth of the control system. The anisotropic actuators are composed of piezoelectric material sandwiched between interdigitated electrodes, which enables the application of the electric field in a preferred in-plane direction. When shaped correctly the anisotropic actuators outperform traditional isotropic actuators by reducing the mismatch between the distributed actuator and point sensor at high frequencies. Testing performed on a Plexiglas panel, representative of a helicopter window, shows that the control units can increase damping at low frequencies. However high frequency performance was still limited due to the flexible boundary conditions present on the test structure.

  1. Magnetic suspension characteristics of electromagnetic actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rao, Dantam K.; Dill, J.; Zorzi, E.

    1993-01-01

    Electromagnetic actuators that use a current-carrying coil (which is placed in a magnetic field) to generate mechanical force are conceptually attractive components for active control of rotating shafts. In one concept that is being tested in the laboratory, the control forces from such actuators are applied on the flexibly supported bearing housings of the rotor. Development of this concept into a practical reality requires a clear and thorough understanding of the role of electromechanical parameters of these actuators in delivering the right amount of control force at the right phase into the rotor. The electromechanical parameters of the actuators investigated are the mass of the armature, stiffness of its suspension, electrical resistance, and inductance of the coils. Improper selection of these parameters can result in degradation in their performance, leading to mistuning between the actuator and the rotor. Through a simple analysis, it is shown that use of such mistuned actuators could result in sharp fluctuations in the phase of the control force delivered into the rotor around the critical speeds. These sharp fluctuations in phase, called 'Phase Glitches', are undesirable. Hence, future designs of controllers should take into account the undesirable mistuning effects between the actuator and the rotor caused by the phase glitches.

  2. Elastomeric actuator devices for magnetic resonance imaging

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dubowsky, Steven (Inventor); Hafez, Moustapha (Inventor); Jolesz, Ferenc A. (Inventor); Kacher, Daniel F. (Inventor); Lichter, Matthew (Inventor); Weiss, Peter (Inventor); Wingert, Andreas (Inventor)

    2008-01-01

    The present invention is directed to devices and systems used in magnetic imaging environments that include an actuator device having an elastomeric dielectric film with at least two electrodes, and a frame attached to the actuator device. The frame can have a plurality of configurations including, such as, for example, at least two members that can be, but not limited to, curved beams, rods, plates, or parallel beams. These rigid members can be coupled to flexible members such as, for example, links wherein the frame provides an elastic restoring force. The frame preferably provides a linear actuation force characteristic over a displacement range. The linear actuation force characteristic is defined as .+-.20% and preferably 10% over a displacement range. The actuator further includes a passive element disposed between the flexible members to tune a stiffness characteristic of the actuator. The passive element can be a bi-stable element. The preferred embodiment actuator includes one or more layers of the elastomeric film integrated into the frame. The elastomeric film can be made of many elastomeric materials such as, for example, but not limited to, acrylic, silicone and latex.

  3. Thermostatic Valves Containing Silicone-Oil Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bhandari, Pradeep; Birur, Gajanana C.; Bame, David P.; Karlmann, Paul B.; Prina, Mauro; Young, William; Fisher, Richard

    2009-01-01

    Flow-splitting and flow-mixing thermally actuated spool valves have been developed for controlling flows of a heat-transfer fluid in a temperature-regulation system aboard the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover. Valves like these could also be useful in terrestrial temperature-regulation systems, including automobile air-conditioning systems and general refrigeration systems. These valves are required to provide smoother actuation over a wider temperature range than the flow-splitting, thermally actuated spool valves used in the Mars Explorer Rover (MER). Also, whereas the MER valves are unstable (tending to oscillate) in certain transition temperature ranges, these valves are required not to oscillate. The MER valves are actuated by thermal expansion of a wax against spring-loaded piston rods (as in common automotive thermostats). The MSL valves contain similar actuators that utilize thermal expansion of a silicone oil, because silicone-oil actuators were found to afford greater and more nearly linear displacements, needed for smoother actuation, over the required wider temperature range. The MSL valves also feature improved spool designs that reflect greater understanding of fluid dynamics, consideration of pressure drops in valves, and a requirement for balancing of pressures in different flow branches.

  4. Influence of multi-scale hydrologic controls on river network connectivity and riparian function

    EPA Science Inventory

    The ecological functions of rivers and streams and their associated riparian zones are strongly influenced by surface and subsurface hydrologic routing of water within river basins and river networks. Hydrologic attributes of the riparian area for a given stream reach are typica...

  5. The Influence of Acculturation on Family Functioning among Hispanic Americans in a Bicultural Community.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ramirez, Jorge I; Hosch, Harmon M.

    It has been observed that the process of acculturation is a potential source of stress. The population of El Paso-Ciudad Juarez border region of Texas and Mexico can be considered as highly vulnerable to the influence of acculturative stress on family functioning. An empirical study was conducted to investigate the relationship between…

  6. The Influence of Sex Hormones on Functional Cerebral Asymmetries in Postmenopausal Women

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bayer, Ulrike; Erdmann, Gisela

    2008-01-01

    Studies investigating changes in functional cerebral asymmetries (FCAs) with hormonal fluctuations during the menstrual cycle in young women have led to controversial hypotheses about an influence of estrogen (E) and/or progesterone (P) on FCAs. Based on methodical, but also on principal problems in deriving conclusions about hormone effects from…

  7. Manual Signing in Adults with Intellectual Disability: Influence of Sign Characteristics on Functional Sign Vocabulary

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meuris, Kristien; Maes, Bea; De Meyer, Anne-Marie; Zink, Inge

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of sign characteristics in a key word signing (KWS) system on the functional use of those signs by adults with intellectual disability (ID). Method: All 507 signs from a Flemish KWS system were characterized in terms of phonological, iconic, and referential characteristics.…

  8. Information-generated Influence as a Function of Locus-of-Control Patterns in Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wolk, Stephen; Eliot, John

    1974-01-01

    Investigated the degree to which an individual disregards information about himself and his environment, as a function of his locus of control patterns, and hence is less responsive to or influenced by a given segment of information. Subjects were 341 fourth- and fifth-grade children. (SDH)

  9. Anisotropy of Electroactive Strain in Textured Polypyrrole Actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pytel, Rachel; Thomas, Edwin; Hunter, Ian

    2006-03-01

    Polypyrrole has been extensively studied as an electroactive material, but these studies have provided little insight to the influence that morphology has on actuation at the nanoscale. By discovering and exploiting the connection between nanoscale transport events and macroscale active strain, we can learn how to process polypyrrole and other conducting polymers for improved electroactive device performance. We show that by controlling polymer chain configuration and packing, a conducting polymer actuator can be engineered that shows a significantly larger macroscopic electroactive response for a given set of driving conditions. We utilize different modes of deformation to impart orientation textures that can be observed via synchrotron x-ray diffraction and electronic and ionic resistance measurements. Certain textures enhance pathways for ion transport between polymer chains, resulting in an anisotropic electroactive strain response that can be harnessed when making polypyrrole-driven devices. This response provides valuable insight to the mechanism of polypyrrole actuation on the nanoscale, supporting a mechanism where counterions migrate to locations between the oriented polymer chains.

  10. Evaluation of Dielectric-Barrier-Discharge Actuator Substrate Materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilkinson, Stephen P.; Siochi, Emilie J.; Sauti, Godfrey; Xu, Tian-Bing; Meador, Mary Ann; Guo, Haiquan

    2014-01-01

    A key, enabling element of a dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) actuator is the dielectric substrate material. While various investigators have studied the performance of different homogeneous materials, most often in the context of related DBD experiments, fundamental studies focused solely on the dielectric materials have received less attention. The purpose of this study was to conduct an experimental assessment of the body-force-generating performance of a wide range of dielectric materials in search of opportunities to improve DBD actuator performance. Materials studied included commonly available plastics and glasses as well as a custom-fabricated polyimide aerogel. Diagnostics included static induced thrust, electrical circuit parameters for 2D surface discharges and 1D volume discharges, and dielectric material properties. Lumped-parameter circuit simulations for the 1D case were conducted showing good correspondence to experimental data provided that stray capacitances are included. The effect of atmospheric humidity on DBD performance was studied showing a large influence on thrust. The main conclusion is that for homogeneous, dielectric materials at forcing voltages less than that required for streamer formation, the material chemical composition appears to have no effect on body force generation when actuator impedance is properly accounted for.

  11. Integration of fluidic jet actuators in composite structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schueller, Martin; Lipowski, Mathias; Schirmer, Eckart; Walther, Marco; Otto, Thomas; Geßner, Thomas; Kroll, Lothar

    2015-04-01

    Fluidic Actuated Flow Control (FAFC) has been introduced as a technology that influences the boundary layer by actively blowing air through slots or holes in the aircraft skin or wind turbine rotor blade. Modern wing structures are or will be manufactured using composite materials. In these state of the art systems, AFC actuators are integrated in a hybrid approach. The new idea is to directly integrate the active fluidic elements (such as SJAs and PJAs) and their components in the structure of the airfoil. Consequently, the integration of such fluidic devices must fit the manufacturing process and the material properties of the composite structure. The challenge is to integrate temperature-sensitive active elements and to realize fluidic cavities at the same time. The transducer elements will be provided for the manufacturing steps using roll-to-roll processes. The fluidic parts of the actuators will be manufactured using the MuCell® process that provides on the one hand the defined reproduction of the fluidic structures and, on the other hand, a high light weight index. Based on the first design concept, a demonstrator was developed in order to proof the design approach. The output velocity on the exit was measured using a hot-wire anemometer.

  12. The Influence of Frontal Lobe Tumors and Surgical Treatment on Advanced Cognitive Functions.

    PubMed

    Fang, Shengyu; Wang, Yinyan; Jiang, Tao

    2016-07-01

    Brain cognitive functions affect patient quality of life. The frontal lobe plays a crucial role in advanced cognitive functions, including executive function, meta-cognition, decision-making, memory, emotion, and language. Therefore, frontal tumors can lead to serious cognitive impairments. Currently, neurosurgical treatment is the primary method to treat brain tumors; however, the effects of the surgical treatments are difficult to predict or control. The treatment may both resolve the effects of the tumor to improve cognitive function or cause permanent disabilities resulting from damage to healthy functional brain tissue. Previous studies have focused on the influence of frontal lesions and surgical treatments on patient cognitive function. Here, we review cognitive impairment caused by frontal lobe brain tumors. PMID:27072331

  13. Electrical bending actuation of gold-films with nanotextured surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kwan, K. W.; Gao, P.; Martin, C. R.; Ngan, A. H. W.

    2015-01-01

    An actuating material system comprising a gold-film with nanotextured surface was fabricated. Using electroless gold plating onto a substrate of porous anodized aluminum oxide, a thin film of gold with a high density of short gold nanofibers on its surface was made. When one end of such a film was connected to an ion generator, bending was achieved upon electrical charging in air. Experiments showed that the free end of an 8 mm film could be displaced by more than 1.6 mm with a bending strain of 0.08%. In contrast with other types of thin-film artificial muscle materials, the present Au-film did not require any electrolyte to function. With the relatively easy fabrication method, this nanotextured film shows promising actuation behavior in air.

  14. Integration of motor proteins - towards an ATP fueled soft actuator.

    PubMed

    Kakugo, Akira; Shikinaka, Kazuhiro; Gong, Jian Ping

    2008-09-01

    We present a soft bio-machine constructed from biological motors (actin/myosin). We have found that chemically cross-linked polymer-actin complex gel filaments can move on myosin coated surfaces with a velocity as high as that of native F-actin, by coupling to ATP hydrolysis. Additionally, it is shown that the velocity of polymer-actin complex gel depends on the species of polycations binding to the F-actins. Since the design of functional actuators of well-defined size and morphology is important, the structural behavior of polymer-actin complexes has been investigated. Our results show that the morphology and growth size of polymer-actin complex can be controlled by changes in the electrostatic interactions between F-actins and polycations. Our results indicate that bio actuators with desired shapes can be created by using a polymer-actin complex. PMID:19325826

  15. Modelling of spring roll actuators based on viscoelastic dielectric elastomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Junshi; Chen, Hualing; Tang, Liling; Li, Bo; Sheng, Junjie; Liu, Lei

    2015-06-01

    In this article, the effect of viscoelastic deformation is analyzed theoretically to evaluate the performance of spring roll dielectric elastomer (DE) actuators. By patterning the electrodes on the rolls, respectively, two functions are studied: axial elongation and bending. The thermodynamic model of viscoelastic DE spring roll is established, and the governing equation is deduced by the free energy method. It is found that when the applied voltage is static and relatively small, both the axial elongated and bending deformed spring rolls can reach equilibrium after viscoelastic relaxation. The evolutions in different timescales and the final profile are presented. The dynamic response is studied as well, by applying a sinusoidal voltage. For the axial elongated spring roll, viscoelasticity can reduce amplitude and increase mean stretch of the actuator. For the bending deformed spring rolls, the results indicate that the spring stiffness has a more significant impact on dynamic performance compared to the effect of voltage.

  16. Pick-and-place using chemically actuated microgrippers.

    PubMed

    Randhawa, Jatinder S; Leong, Timothy G; Bassik, Noy; Benson, Bryan R; Jochmans, Matthew T; Gracias, David H

    2008-12-24

    In this communication, we demonstrate the concept of single-use, chemically triggered, reversible tools in the form of mobile grippers that can be used to manipulate micro-objects. Both the closing and opening of the mobile grippers are triggered by chemicals, namely acetic acid (CH(3)COOH) and hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)), respectively. The grippers close and open en masse based on chemically triggered, mechanical property changes within trilayer joints patterned within the gripper, and no external power is needed for operation. We describe the actuation of the gripper using a multilayer thin film model and demonstrate the utility of the gripper by picking-and-placing 200 microm diameter tubes and beads. Our pick-and-place microgripper is a first step toward the development of functional Micro Chemo-Mechanical Systems (MCMS), which are actuated by chemistry as opposed to electricity [as in Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS)].

  17. Light-Powered Self-Healable Metallosupramolecular Soft Actuators.

    PubMed

    Borré, Etienne; Stumbé, Jean-François; Bellemin-Laponnaz, Stéphane; Mauro, Matteo

    2016-01-22

    Supramolecular functional materials able to respond to external stimuli have several advantages over their classical covalent counterparts. The preparation of soft actuators with the ability to respond to external stimuli in a spatiotemporal fashion, to self-repair, and to show directional motion, is currently one of the most challenging research goals. Herein, we report a series of metallopolymers based on zinc(II)-terpyridine coordination nodes and bearing photoisomerizable diazobenzene units and/or solubilizing luminescent phenylene-ethynylene moieties. These supramolecular polymers act as powerful gelating agents at low critical gelation concentrations. The resulting multiresponsive organogels display light-triggered mechanical actuation and luminescent properties. Furthermore, owing to the presence of dynamic coordinating bonds, they show self-healing abilities. PMID:26679405

  18. Active optics with a minimum number of actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemaitre, Gerard R.

    2014-06-01

    Optics for astronomy implies powerful developments of active and adaptive optics methods applied to instrumentation from X-rays to the near infrared for the design of telescopes, spectrographs, and coronagraph planet finders. This presentation particularly emphasizes the development of active optics methods. Highly accurate and remarkably smooth surfaces from active optics methods allow new optical systems that use highly aspheric and non-axisymmetric - freeform - surfaces. Depending on the goal and performance required for a deformable optical surface, elasticity theory analysis is carried out either with small deformation thin plate theory, large deformation thin plate theory, shallow spherical shell theory, or the weakly conical shell theory. A mirror thickness distribution is then determined as a function of associated bending actuators and boundary conditions. For a given optical shape to generate, one searches for optical solutions with a minimum number of actuators.

  19. Development of a Prototype Over-Actuated Biomimetic Prosthetic Hand

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Matthew R.; Walter, Wayne

    2015-01-01

    The loss of a hand can greatly affect quality of life. A prosthetic device that can mimic normal hand function is very important to physical and mental recuperation after hand amputation, but the currently available prosthetics do not fully meet the needs of the amputee community. Most prosthetic hands are not dexterous enough to grasp a variety of shaped objects, and those that are tend to be heavy, leading to discomfort while wearing the device. In order to attempt to better simulate human hand function, a dexterous hand was developed that uses an over-actuated mechanism to form grasp shape using intrinsic joint mounted motors in addition to a finger tendon to produce large flexion force for a tight grip. This novel actuation method allows the hand to use small actuators for grip shape formation, and the tendon to produce high grip strength. The hand was capable of producing fingertip flexion force suitable for most activities of daily living. In addition, it was able to produce a range of grasp shapes with natural, independent finger motion, and appearance similar to that of a human hand. The hand also had a mass distribution more similar to a natural forearm and hand compared to contemporary prosthetics due to the more proximal location of the heavier components of the system. This paper describes the design of the hand and controller, as well as the test results. PMID:25790306

  20. Power Actuation and Switching Module Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wester, Gene W.; Carr, Greg; Deligiannis, Frank; Jones, Loren; Lam, Barbara; Sauers, Jim; Haskell, Russ; Mulvey, Jim

    2004-01-01

    The Deep Space Avionics (DSA) Project is developing a Power Actuation and Switching Module (PASM). This component enables a modular and scalable design approach for power switching applications, which can result in a wide variety of power switching architectures using this simple building block. The PASM is designed to provide most of the necessary power switching functions of spacecraft for various Deep Space missions including future missions to Mars, comets, Jupiter and its moons. It is fabricated using an A SIC process that is tolerant of high radiation. The development includes two application specific integrated circuits (ASICs) and support circuitry all packaged using High Density Interconnect (HDI) technology. It can be operated in series or parallel with other PASMs, It can be used as a high-side or low-side switch and it can drive thruster valves, pyrotechnic devices such as NASA standard initiators, bus shunt resistors, and regular spacecraft component loads. Each PASM contains two independent switches with internal current limiting and over-current trip-off functions to protect the power subsystem from load faults. During turnon and turnoff each switch can limit the rate of current change (di/dt) to a value determined by the user. Threeway majority-voted On/Off commandability and full switch status telemetry (both analog and digital) are built into the module. This paper describes the development process used to design, model, fabricate, and test these compact and versatile power switches. Preliminary test results from prototype HDI PASM hardware are also discussed.

  1. Piezo stack actuation control system for sperm injection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, K. K.; Putra, A. S.

    2005-12-01

    Among the electric motor drives, the piezoelectric actuator (PA) is one drive which is becoming very popular in high precision biomedical applications, such as intracytoplasmic sperm injection. The main benefits of a PA include low thermal losses and, most importantly, the high precision and accuracy achievable consequent of the driect drive principle. One major source of uncertainties in PA control design is the hysteresis behavior which yields a rate-independent lag and residual displacement near zero input, reducing the precision of the actuators. Due to the typical precision positioning requirements and low offset tolerance of PA applications, the design and control of these systems, under the influence of these uncertainties, is particularly challenging since conventional PID control usually does not suffice in these application domains to meet the stringent performance requirements. In this paper, we consider the design and realization of a piezo stack actuator which is capable of linear motion and non-full rotation to fulfill the stringent requirements associated with sperm injection applications. A complementary precise control system is developed employing a robust adaptive control algorithm to reject the hysteresis phenomenon associated with general PAs and to achieve rapid and highly precise positioning. The controller comprises of a PID feedback component and an adaptive component for hysteresis compensation. The adaptive component is continuously refined based on just prevailing input and output signals. In the paper, it will be proven that the tracking error can asymptotically converge to zero. In addition, analytical quantification is given to illustrate the improvement of the system's transient performance. Real-time experimental results verify the effectiveness of the proposed micro actuator for high precision motion trajectory tracking in intracytoplasmic sperm injection using mice eggs.

  2. Bluff Body Flow Control Using Plasma Actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Flint

    2005-11-01

    In this study, the use of single dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuators for the control of bluff body flow separation is investigated. In particular, surface mounted plasma actuators are used to reduce both drag and unsteady vortex shedding from circular cylinders in cross-flow. It is demonstrated that the plasma-induced surface blowing gives rise to a local Coanda effect that promotes the maintenance of flow attachment. Large reductions in vortex shedding and drag are demonstrated for Reynolds numbers ˜ 10^410^5. Both steady and unsteady plasma-induced surface blowing is explored. Results are presented from experiments involving both two and four surface mounted actuators.

  3. Membrane Mirrors With Bimorph Shape Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yang, Eui-Hyeok

    2003-01-01

    Deformable mirrors of a proposed type would be equipped with relatively-large-stroke microscopic piezoelectric actuators that would be used to maintain their reflective surfaces in precise shapes. These mirrors would be members of the class of MEMS-DM (for microelectromechanical system deformable mirror) devices, which offer potential for a precise optical control in adaptive-optics applications in such diverse fields as astronomy and vision science. The proposed mirror would be fabricated, in part, by use of a membrane-transfer technique. The actuator design would contain bimorph-type piezoelectric actuators.

  4. Microcantilever actuation via periodic internal heating

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Jungchul; King, William P.

    2007-12-15

    This paper reports electrothermal actuation of silicon microcantilevers having integrated resistive heaters. Periodic electrical excitation induced periodic resistive heating in the cantilever, while the cantilever deflection was monitored with a photodetector. Excitation was either at the cantilever resonant frequency, f{sub 0}, f{sub 0}/2, or f{sub 0}/3. When the time averaged maximum cantilever temperature was 174 deg. C, the cantilever out-of-plane actuation amplitude was 484 nm near the cantilever resonance frequency of 24.9 kHz. This actuation was sufficiently large to operate the cantilever in intermittent contact mode and scan a calibration grating of height of 20 nm.

  5. Refreshable Braille Displays Using EAP Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2010-01-01

    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..

  6. Refreshable Braille displays using EAP actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2010-04-01

    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.

  7. Optimization Strategies for Sensor and Actuator Placement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Padula, Sharon L.; Kincaid, Rex K.

    1999-01-01

    This paper provides a survey of actuator and sensor placement problems from a wide range of engineering disciplines and a variety of applications. Combinatorial optimization methods are recommended as a means for identifying sets of actuators and sensors that maximize performance. Several sample applications from NASA Langley Research Center, such as active structural acoustic control, are covered in detail. Laboratory and flight tests of these applications indicate that actuator and sensor placement methods are effective and important. Lessons learned in solving these optimization problems can guide future research.

  8. Misfire tolerant combustion-powered actuation

    DOEpatents

    Spletzer, Barry L.; Fischer, Gary J.; Marron, Lisa C.; Kuehl, Michael A.

    2001-01-01

    The present invention provides a combustion-powered actuator that is suitable for intermittent actuation, that is suitable for use with atmospheric pressure carburetion, and that requires little electrical energy input. The present invention uses energy from expansion of pressurized fuel to effectively purge a combustion chamber, and to achieve atmospheric pressure carburetion. Each purge-fill-power cycle can be independent, allowing the actuator to readily tolerate misfires. The present invention is suitable for use with linear and rotary operation combustion chambers, and is suitable for use in a wide variety of applications.

  9. A Model of the THUNDER Actuator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Curtis, Alan R. D.

    1997-01-01

    A THUNDER actuator is a composite of three thin layers, a metal base, a piezoelectric wafer and a metal top cover, bonded together under pressure and at high temperature with the LaRC SI polyimid adhesive. When a voltage is applied between the metal layers across the PZT the actuator will bend and can generate a force. This document develops and describes an analytical model the transduction properties of THUNDER actuators. The model development is divided into three sections. First, a static model is described that relates internal stresses and strains and external displacements to the thermal pre-stress and applied voltage. Second, a dynamic energy based model is described that allows calculation of the resonance frequencies, developed force and electrical input impedance. Finally, a fully coupled electro-mechanical transducer model is described. The model development proceeds by assuming that both the thermal pre-stress and the piezoelectric actuation cause the actuator to deform in a pure bend in a single plane. It is useful to think of this as a two step process, the actuator is held flat, differential stresses induce a bending moment, the actuator is released and it bends. The thermal pre-stress is caused by the different amounts that the constituent layers shrink due to their different coefficients of thermal expansion. The adhesive between layers sets at a high temperature and as the actuator cools, the metal layers shrink more than the PZT. The PZT layer is put into compression while the metal layers are in tension. The piezoelectric actuation has a similar effect. An applied voltage causes the PZT layer to strain, which in turn strains the two metal layers. If the PZT layer expands it will put the metal layers into tension and PZT layer into compression. In both cases, if shear force effects are neglected, the actuator assembly will experience a uniform in-plane strain. As the materials each have a different elastic modulus, different stresses will

  10. [The influence of external factors on the auditory function in the students residing in a megapolis].

    PubMed

    Levina, Iu V; Kudeeva, Ia Iu; Ibragimov, Sh I

    2013-01-01

    The objective of the present study was to estimate the auditory function in the students aged from 20 to 30 years and the noise load associated with the use of mobile phones, listening to music through headphones, attending concerts and youth clubs. The secondary objective was to assess the influence of these factors on the auditory function depending on their type, intensity, and duration. It is shown that the auditory threshold in the frequency range between 125 and 8000 Hz in 97% of the examined students do not exceed 25 dB varying from 5 to 15 dB The main factor influencing the auditory function is the use of players and headphones followed by mobile phones and deafening music in youth clubs.

  11. Maternal and offspring pools of osteocalcin influence brain development and functions.

    PubMed

    Oury, Franck; Khrimian, Lori; Denny, Christine A; Gardin, Antoine; Chamouni, Alexandre; Goeden, Nick; Huang, Yung-yu; Lee, Hojoon; Srinivas, Prashanth; Gao, Xiao-Bing; Suyama, Shigetomo; Langer, Thomas; Mann, John J; Horvath, Tamas L; Bonnin, Alexandre; Karsenty, Gerard

    2013-09-26

    The powerful regulation of bone mass exerted by the brain suggests the existence of bone-derived signals modulating this regulation or other functions of the brain. We show here that the osteoblast-derived hormone osteocalcin crosses the blood-brain barrier, binds to neurons of the brainstem, midbrain, and hippocampus, enhances the synthesis of monoamine neurotransmitters, inhibits GABA synthesis, prevents anxiety and depression, and favors learning and memory independently of its metabolic functions. In addition to these postnatal functions, maternal osteocalcin crosses the placenta during pregnancy and prevents neuronal apoptosis before embryos synthesize this hormone. As a result, the severity of the neuroanatomical defects and learning and memory deficits of Osteocalcin(-/-) mice is determined by the maternal genotype, and delivering osteocalcin to pregnant Osteocalcin(-/-) mothers rescues these abnormalities in their Osteocalcin(-/-) progeny. This study reveals that the skeleton via osteocalcin influences cognition and contributes to the maternal influence on fetal brain development.

  12. High output paraffin actuators: Utilization in aerospace mechanisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tibbitts, Scott

    1988-01-01

    High Output Paraffin (HOP) thermal actuators were developed to provide an alternative to conventional aerospace actuators: HOP actuators directly convert temperature changes to useful mechanical work. When fabricated with internal resistance heating elements, they provide an electric linear motor. For applications in which slower response times are acceptable or preferred, HOP actuators have distinct advantages over conventional approaches.

  13. TECHNICAL NOTE: Multiple-degrees-of-freedom electroelastomer roll actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pei, Qibing; Rosenthal, Marcus; Stanford, Scott; Prahlad, Harsha; Pelrine, Ron

    2004-10-01

    Electroelastomers (electroactive elastomers) such as the 3M VHB 4910 acrylic adhesive films have exhibited up to 380% strain in area expansion at 5 6 kV when they are highly prestrained. By rolling highly prestrained electroelastomer films around a compression spring, we have demonstrated multifunctional electroelastomer rolls (MERs, or spring rolls) that combine load bearing, actuation, and sensing functions. We extended the design to two-degree-of-freedom (2-DOF) and 3-DOF spring rolls by patterning the electrodes to align radially on two and four circumferential spans of the rolls, respectively. Multiple-DOF spring rolls retain the linear actuation of 1-DOF spring rolls with additional bending actuation. Mathematical equations are derived to correlate the bending angle and lateral force of the rolls with the actuated stroke in one of the electroded spans. Two-DOF spring rolls with a 1.4 cm outside diameter, 6.8 cm axial length, and 11 g weight have been fabricated; these rolls have a 90° maximum actuation bending angle, 0.7 N maximum lateral force, and up to 15 N blocked axial force. Three-DOF spring rolls with a 2.3 cm outside diameter, 9.0 cm axial length, and 29 g weight exhibit a 35° maximum bending angle and 1.0 N maximum lateral force. These specifications can be modified by variations in roll parameters according to the equations. Multi-DOF spring rolls are easy to fabricate, compact, multifunctional, and mechanically robust. They represent a radically new actuation technology and may enable a number of unique applications. We have demonstrated a small walking robot, MERbot, with one 2-DOF spring roll as each of its six legs. The robot's speed is as high as 13.6 cm s-1 or two-thirds of its length per second. 'Sushi rolls' have also been fabricated: these consist of six 2-DOF springs connected in series and monolithic in structure. The sushi rolls can be driven so as to generate wavelike or serpentine motion.

  14. Air Ambient-Operated pNIPAM-Based Flexible Actuators Stimulated by Human Body Temperature and Sunlight.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Yuki; Kanao, Kenichiro; Arie, Takayuki; Akita, Seiji; Takei, Kuniharu

    2015-05-27

    Harnessing a natural power source such as the human body temperature or sunlight should realize ultimate low-power devices. In particular, macroscale and flexible actuators that do not require an artificial power source have tremendous potential. Here we propose and demonstrate electrically powerless polymer-based actuators operated at ambient conditions using a packaging technique in which the stimulating power source is produced by heat from the human body or sunlight. The actuating angle, force, and reliability are discussed as functions of temperature and exposure to sunlight. Furthermore, a wearable device platform and a smart curtain actuated by the temperature of human skin and sunlight, respectively, are demonstrated as the first proof-of-concepts. These nature-powered actuators should realize a new class of ultimate low-power devices.

  15. Nylon-muscle-actuated robotic finger

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Lianjun; Jung de Andrade, Monica; Rome, Richard S.; Haines, Carter; Lima, Marcio D.; Baughman, Ray H.; Tadesse, Yonas

    2015-04-01

    This paper describes the design and experimental analysis of novel artificial muscles, made of twisted and coiled nylon fibers, for powering a biomimetic robotic hand. The design is based on circulating hot and cold water to actuate the artificial muscles and obtain fast finger movements. The actuation system consists of a spring and a coiled muscle within a compliant silicone tube. The silicone tube provides a watertight, expansible compartment within which the coiled muscle contracts when heated and expands when cooled. The fabrication and characterization of the actuating system are discussed in detail. The performance of the coiled muscle fiber in embedded conditions and the related characteristics of the actuated robotic finger are described.

  16. Actuators Based on Liquid Crystalline Elastomer Materials

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Hongrui; Li, Chensha; Huang, Xuezhen

    2013-01-01

    Liquid crystalline elastomers (LCEs) exhibit a number of remarkable physical effects, including the unique, high-stroke reversible mechanical actuation when triggered by external stimuli. This article reviews some recent exciting developments in the field of LCEs materials with an emphasis on their utilization in actuator applications. Such applications include artificial muscles, industrial manufacturing, health and microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). With suitable synthetic and preparation pathways and well-controlled actuation stimuli, such as heat, light, electric and magnetic field, excellent physical properties of LCE materials can be realized. By comparing the actuating properties of different systems, general relationships between the structure and the property of LCEs are discussed. How these materials can be turned into usable devices using interdisciplinary techniques is also described. PMID:23648966

  17. Research on Plasma Synthetic Jet Actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Che, X. K.; Nie, W. S.; Hou, Z. Y.

    2011-09-01

    Circular dielectric barrier surface discharge (DBDs) actuator is a new concept of zero mass synthetic jet actuator. The characteristic of discharge and flow control effect of annular-circular plasma synthetic jet actuator has been studied by means of of numerical simulation and experiment. The discharge current density, electron density, electrostatic body force density and flowfield have been obtained. The results show annular-circular actuator can produce normal jet whose velocity will be greater than 2.0 m/s. The jet will excite circumfluence. In order to insure the discharge is generated in the exposed electrode annular and produce centripetal and normal electrostatic body force, the width and annular diameter of exposed electrode must be big enough, or an opposite phase drove voltage potential should be applied between the two electrodes.

  18. Actuator grouping optimization on flexible space reflectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, Jeffrey R.; Wang, K. W.; Fang, Houfei; Quijano, Ubaldo

    2011-03-01

    With the rapid advances in deployable membrane and mesh antenna technologies, the feasibility of developing large, lightweight reflectors has greatly improved. In order to achieve the required accuracy, precision surface control is needed on these lightweight reflectors. While studies have shown that domain control of space reflectors via Polyvinylidene Fluoride (PVDF) actuators is promising, the challenge is to realistically control a large number of distributed actuators with limited number of power supplies. In this research, a new En Mass Elimination method is synthesized to determine the optimal grouping of actuators when the actuator number exceeds the number of power supplies available. An analytical model is developed and the methodology is demonstrated numerically through system simulation on the derived model.

  19. Actuators based on liquid crystalline elastomer materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Hongrui; Li, Chensha; Huang, Xuezhen

    2013-05-01

    Liquid crystalline elastomers (LCEs) exhibit a number of remarkable physical effects, including the unique, high-stroke reversible mechanical actuation when triggered by external stimuli. This article reviews some recent exciting developments in the field of LCE materials with an emphasis on their utilization in actuator applications. Such applications include artificial muscles, industrial manufacturing, health and microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). With suitable synthetic and preparation pathways and well-controlled actuation stimuli, such as heat, light, electric and magnetic fields, excellent physical properties of LCE materials can be realized. By comparing the actuating properties of different systems, general relationships between the structure and the properties of LCEs are discussed. How these materials can be turned into usable devices using interdisciplinary techniques is also described.

  20. Feasibility of transparent flexible ultrasonic haptic actuator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akther, Asma; Kafy, Abdullahil; Kim, Hyun Chan; Kim, Jaehwan

    2016-04-01

    Ultrasonic haptics actuator is a device that can create a haptic feedback to user's hand. The modulation of ultrasonic frequency can give different textures to the users. In this study, a feasibility of the ultrasonic haptic actuator made on a flexible piezoelectric substrate is investigated. As the piezoelectric substrate helps to propagate flexural waves, a pair of interdigital transducer (IDT) with reflectors can produce standing waves, which can increase the vibrational displacement of the actuator. A pair of IDT pattern was fabricated on a piezoelectric polymer substrate. A finite element analysis is at first performed to design the actuator. A sinusoidal excitation voltage is applied on IDT electrodes at ultrasonic frequencies and the displacement waveforms are found. The displacement waveforms clearly represent how ultrasonic waves propagate through the piezoelectric substrate.

  1. Self-actuating reactor shutdown system

    DOEpatents

    Barrus, Donald M.; Brummond, Willian A; Peterson, Leslie F.

    1988-01-01

    A control system for the automatic or self-actuated shutdown or "scram" of a nuclear reactor. The system is capable of initiating scram insertion by a signal from the plant protection system or by independent action directly sensing reactor conditions of low-flow or over-power. Self-actuation due to a loss of reactor coolant flow results from a decrease of pressure differential between the upper and lower ends of an absorber element. When the force due to this differential falls below the weight of the element, the element will fall by gravitational force to scram the reactor. Self-actuation due to high neutron flux is accomplished via a valve controlled by an electromagnet and a thermionic diode. In a reactor over-power, the diode will be heated to a change of state causing the electromagnet to be shorted thereby actuating the valve which provides the changed flow and pressure conditions required for scramming the absorber element.

  2. Tension Stiffened and Tendon Actuated Manipulator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doggett, William R. (Inventor); Dorsey, John T. (Inventor); Ganoe, George G. (Inventor); King, Bruce D. (Inventor); Jones, Thomas C. (Inventor); Mercer, Charles D. (Inventor); Corbin, Cole K. (Inventor)

    2015-01-01

    A tension stiffened and tendon actuated manipulator is provided performing robotic-like movements when acquiring a payload. The manipulator design can be adapted for use in-space, lunar or other planetary installations as it is readily configurable for acquiring and precisely manipulating a payload in both a zero-g environment and in an environment with a gravity field. The manipulator includes a plurality of link arms, a hinge connecting adjacent link arms together to allow the adjacent link arms to rotate relative to each other and a cable actuation and tensioning system provided between adjacent link arms. The cable actuation and tensioning system includes a spreader arm and a plurality of driven and non-driven elements attached to the link arms and the spreader arm. At least one cable is routed around the driven and non-driven elements for actuating the hinge.

  3. Serpentine Robot Arm Contains Electromagnetic Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moya, Israel A.; Studer, Philip A.

    1994-01-01

    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.

  4. Mirrors Containing Biomimetic Shape-Control Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph; Mouroulis, Pantazis; Bao, Xiaoqi; Sherrit, Stewart

    2003-01-01

    Curved mirrors of a proposed type would comprise lightweight sheets or films containing integral, biologically inspired actuators for controlling their surface figures. These mirrors could be useful in such applications as collection of solar energy, focusing of radio beams, and (provided sufficient precision could be achieved) imaging. These mirrors were originally intended for use in outer space, but it should also be possible to develop terrestrial versions. Several prior NASA Tech Briefs articles have described a variety of approaches to the design of curved, lightweight mirrors containing integral shape-control actuators. The primary distinction between the present approach and the prior approaches lies in the actuator design concept, which involves shapes and movements reminiscent of those of a variety of small, multi-armed animals. The shape and movement of an actuator of this type can also be characterized as reminiscent of that of an umbrella. This concept can be further characterized as a derivative of that of multifinger grippers, the fingers of which are bimorph bending actuators (see Figure 1). The fingers of such actuators can be strips containing any of a variety of materials that have been investigated for use as actuators, including such electroactive polymers as ionomeric polymer/metal composites (IPMCs), ferroelectric polymers, and grafted elastomers. A mirror according to this proposal would be made from a sheet of one of the actuator composites mentioned above. The design would involve many variables, including the pre-curvature and stiffness of the mirror sheet, the required precision of figure control, the required range of variation in focal length (see Figure 2), the required precision of figure control for imaging or non-imaging use, the bending and twisting moments needed to effect the required deformations, and voltage-tomoment coefficients of the actuators, and the voltages accordingly required for actuation. A typical design would call

  5. Fabrication of lead zirconate titanate actuator via suspension polymerization casting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miao, Weiguo

    2000-10-01

    The research presented herein has focused on the fabrication of a lead zirconate titanate (PZT) telescopic actuator from Suspension Polymerization Casting (SPC). Two systems were studied: an acrylamide-based hydrogel, and an acrylate-based nonaqueous system. Analytical tools such as thermomechanical analysis (TMA), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), chemorheology, thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), and differential thermal analysis (DTA) were used to investigate the polymerization and burnout processes. The acrylamide hydrogel polymerization casting process used hydroxymethyl acrylamide (HMAM) monofunctional monomer with methylenebisacrylamide (MBAM) difunctional monomer, or used methacrylamide (MAM) as monofunctional monomer. High solid loading PZT slurries with low viscosities were obtained by optimizing the amounts of dispersant and the PZT powders. The overall activation energy of gelation was calculated to be 60--76 kJ/mol for the monomer solution, this energy was increased to 91 kJ/mol with the addition of PZT powder. The results show that the PZT powder has a retardation effect on gelation. Although several PZT tubes were made using the acrylamide-based system, the demolding and drying difficulties made this process unsuitable for building internal structures, such as the telescopic actuator. The acrylate-based system was used successfully to build telescopic actuator. Efforts were made to study the influence of composition and experimental conditions on the polymerization process. Temperature was found to have the largest impact on polymerization. To adjust the polymerization temperature and time, initiator and/or catalyst were used. PZT powder has a catalytic effect on the polymerization process. Compared with acrylamide systems, acrylate provided a strong polymer network to support the ceramic green body. This high strength is beneficial for the demolding process, but it can easily cause cracks during the burnout process. To solve the burnout issue

  6. Factors that influence physical function and emotional well-being among Medicare-Medicaid enrollees.

    PubMed

    Wright, Kathy D; Pepper, Ginette A; Caserta, Michael; Wong, Bob; Brunker, Cherie P; Morris, Diana L; Burant, Christopher J; Hazelett, Susan; Kropp, Denise; Allen, Kyle R

    2015-01-01

    Dually enrolled Medicare-Medicaid older adults are a vulnerable population. We tested House's Conceptual Framework for Understanding Social Inequalities in Health and Aging in Medicare-Medicaid enrollees by examining the extent to which disparities indicators, which included race, age, gender, neighborhood poverty, education, income, exercise (e.g., walking), and physical activity (e.g., housework) influence physical function and emotional well-being. This secondary analysis included 337 Black (31%) and White (69%) older Medicare-Medicaid enrollees. Using path analysis, we determined that race, neighborhood poverty, education, and income did not influence physical function or emotional well-being. However, physical activity (e.g., housework) was associated with an increased self-report of physical function and emotional well-being of β = .23, p < .001; β = .17, p < .01, respectively. Future studies of factors that influence physical function and emotional well-being in this population should take into account health status indicators such as allostatic load, comorbidity, and perceived racism/discrimination.

  7. The Influence of Neurocognitive Functioning on Proactive Coping Behaviors in Adults With HIV.

    PubMed

    Cody, Shameka L; Fazeli, Pariya L; D Moneyham, Linda; Vance, David E

    2016-10-01

    Although many can appreciate the life-sustaining benefits of combination antiretroviral therapy, some adults with HIV continue to have difficulty managing physical, neurocognitive, and everyday stressors. Fortunately, some adults with HIV are able to use accumulated resources (e.g., social networks) to help them engage in proactive coping behaviors such as planning and problem solving. Others, however, manage their stressors by engaging in avoidant coping, isolating themselves, or ruminating about the negative aspects of their situation. Perhaps, the capacity to engage in proactive coping may be influenced by damage to the frontal-striatal-thalamo circuitry, a region of the brain responsible for executive functioning and often compromised in adults with HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders. This study examined potential neurocognitive influences on proactive coping behaviors in adults with HIV (N = 98). Participants were administered a series of neurocognitive and psychosocial measures to determine if neurocognitive functioning and other factors that have been associated with coping in other populations, such as spirituality/religiosity, influenced proactive coping behaviors. Multiple regression analysis revealed that spirituality/religiosity (p = .002), rather than neurocognitive functioning (Useful Field of View, p = .277; Trails A, p = .701; Trails B, p = .365; Wechsler Memory Scale-III Digit Span, p = .864), was a significant predictor of proactive coping. Interventions to address spirituality/religiosity needs of adults with HIV may possibly facilitate proactive coping behaviors and improve mood, both of which are important for healthy neurocognitive functioning. PMID:27579965

  8. Unusual and Superfast Temperature-Triggered Actuators.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Shaohua; Liu, Fangyao; Lerch, Arne; Ionov, Leonid; Agarwal, Seema

    2015-09-01

    A superfast actuator based on a bilayer fibrous mat shows folding/unfolding and the formation of 3D structures in a fraction of a second. The actuation is reversible for many cycles without losing its form and size, with unfolding at room temperature and folding above 35 °C. The system is promising for making 3D bioscaffolds, electrodes, and micro-/macroactuators. PMID:26186175

  9. Microelectromechanical Systems Actuator Based Reconfigurable Printed Antenna

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simons, Rainee N. (Inventor)

    2005-01-01

    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.

  10. Redundancy of hydraulic flight control actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chenoweth, C. C.; Ryder, D. R.

    1976-01-01

    The constraint of requiring airplanes to have inherent aerodynamic stability can be removed by using active control systems. The resulting airplane requires control system reliability approaching that of the basic airframe. Redundant control actuators can be used to achieve the required reliability, but create mechanization and operational problems. Of numerous candidate systems, two different approaches to solving the problems associated with redundant actuators which appear the most likely to be used in advanced airplane control systems are described.

  11. Digital flight control actuation system study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rossing, R.; Hupp, R.

    1974-01-01

    Flight control actuators and feedback sensors suitable for use in a redundant digital flight control system were examined. The most appropriate design approach for an advanced digital flight control actuation system for development and use in a fly-by-wire system was selected. The concept which was selected consisted of a PM torque motor direct drive. The selected system is compatible with concurrent and independent development efforts on the computer system and the control law mechanizations.

  12. Handbook of actuators and edge alignment sensors

    SciTech Connect

    Krulewich, D A

    1992-11-01

    This actuator and sensor handbook was developed during a cooperative project between the NASA-Marshall Space Flight Center, the SDI-Directed Energy Program and LLNL. The common purpose of the joint effort was to develop precision actuators and sensors for the NASA initiated SpacE Laser ENE-rgy Program (SELENE). The purpose of the SELENE Program is to develop a highly cost effective segmented adaptive optics system for beaming laser power directly to spacecraft in earth orbit.

  13. Wireless Displacement Sensing of Micromachined Spiral-Coil Actuator Using Resonant Frequency Tracking

    PubMed Central

    Ali, Mohamed Sultan Mohamed; AbuZaiter, Alaa; Schlosser, Colin; Bycraft, Brad; Takahata, Kenichi

    2014-01-01

    This paper reports a method that enables real-time displacement monitoring and control of micromachined resonant-type actuators using wireless radiofrequency (RF). The method is applied to an out-of-plane, spiral-coil microactuator based on shape-memory-alloy (SMA). The SMA spiral coil forms an inductor-capacitor resonant circuit that is excited using external RF magnetic fields to thermally actuate the coil. The actuation causes a shift in the circuit's resonance as the coil is displaced vertically, which is wirelessly monitored through an external antenna to track the displacements. Controlled actuation and displacement monitoring using the developed method is demonstrated with the microfabricated device. The device exhibits a frequency sensitivity to displacement of 10 kHz/μm or more for a full out-of-plane travel range of 466 μm and an average actuation velocity of up to 155 μm/s. The method described permits the actuator to have a self-sensing function that is passively operated, thereby eliminating the need for separate sensors and batteries on the device, thus realizing precise control while attaining a high level of miniaturization in the device. PMID:25014100

  14. Wireless displacement sensing of micromachined spiral-coil actuator using resonant frequency tracking.

    PubMed

    Ali, Mohamed Sultan Mohamed; AbuZaiter, Alaa; Schlosser, Colin; Bycraft, Brad; Takahata, Kenichi

    2014-01-01

    This paper reports a method that enables real-time displacement monitoring and control of micromachined resonant-type actuators using wireless radiofrequency (RF). The method is applied to an out-of-plane, spiral-coil microactuator based on shape-memory-alloy (SMA). The SMA spiral coil forms an inductor-capacitor resonant circuit that is excited using external RF magnetic fields to thermally actuate the coil. The actuation causes a shift in the circuit's resonance as the coil is displaced vertically, which is wirelessly monitored through an external antenna to track the displacements. Controlled actuation and displacement monitoring using the developed method is demonstrated with the microfabricated device. The device exhibits a frequency sensitivity to displacement of 10 kHz/µm or more for a full out-of-plane travel range of 466 µm and an average actuation velocity of up to 155 µm/s. The method described permits the actuator to have a self-sensing function that is passively operated, thereby eliminating the need for separate sensors and batteries on the device, thus realizing precise control while attaining a high level of miniaturization in the device.

  15. Laser and Surface Processes of NiTi Shape Memory Elements for Micro-actuation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nespoli, Adelaide; Biffi, Carlo Alberto; Previtali, Barbara; Villa, Elena; Tuissi, Ausonio

    2014-04-01

    In the current microtechnology for actuation field, shape memory alloys (SMA) are considered one of the best candidates for the production of mini/micro devices thanks to their high power-to-weight ratio as function of the actuator weight and hence for their capability of generating high mechanical performance in very limited spaces. In the microscale the most suitable conformation of a SMA actuator is given by a planar wavy formed arrangement, i.e., the snake-like shape, which allows high strokes, considerable forces, and devices with very low sizes. This uncommon and complex geometry becomes more difficult to be realized when the actuator dimensions are scaled down to micrometric values. In this work, micro-snake-like actuators are laser machined using a nanosecond pulsed fiber laser, starting from a 120- μm-thick NiTi sheet. Chemical and electrochemical surface polishes are also investigated for the removal of the thermal damages of the laser process. Calorimetric and thermo-mechanical tests are accomplished to assess the NiTi microdevice performance after each step of the working process. It is shown that laser machining has to be followed by some post-processes in order to obtain a micro-actuator with good thermo-mechanical properties.

  16. Osmotic actuation modelling for innovative biorobotic solutions inspired by the plant kingdom.

    PubMed

    Sinibaldi, E; Puleo, G L; Mattioli, F; Mattoli, V; Di Michele, F; Beccai, L; Tramacere, F; Mancuso, S; Mazzolai, B

    2013-06-01

    Osmotic-driven plant movements are widely recognized as impressive examples of energy efficiency and low power consumption. These aspects motivate the interest in developing an original biomimetic concept of new actuators based on the osmotic principle exploited by plants. This study takes a preliminary step in this direction, by modelling the dynamic behaviour of two exemplificative yet relevant implementations of an osmotic actuator concept. In more detail, the considered implementations differ from each other in the way actuation energy storage is achieved (through a piston displacement in the former case, through membrane bulging in the latter). The dynamic problem is analytically solved for both cases; scaling laws for the actuation figures of merit (namely characteristic time, maximum force, maximum power, power density, cumulated work and energy density) as a function of model parameters are obtained for the bulging implementation. Starting from such performance indicators, a preliminary dimensioning of the envisaged osmotic actuator is exemplified, based on design targets/constraints (such as characteristic time and/or maximum force). Moreover, model assumptions and limitations are discussed towards effective prototypical development and experimental testing. Nonetheless, this study takes the first step towards the design of new actuators based on the natural osmotic principle, which holds potential for disruptive innovation in many fields, including biorobotics and ICT solutions. PMID:23648821

  17. Soft robotics: a review and progress towards faster and higher torque actuators (presentation video)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shepherd, Robert

    2014-03-01

    Last year, nearly 160,000 industrial robots were shipped worldwide—into a total market valued at 26 Bn (including hardware, software, and peripherals).[1] Service robots for professional (e.g., defense, medical, agriculture) and personal (e.g., household, handicap assistance, toys, and education) use accounted for 16,000 units, 3.4 Bn and 3,000,000 units, $1.2 Bn respectively.[1] The vast majority of these robotic systems use fully actuated, rigid components that take little advantage of passive dynamics. Soft robotics is a field that is taking advantage of compliant actuators and passive dynamics to achieve several goals: reduced design, manufacturing and control complexity, improved energy efficiency, more sophisticated motions, and safe human-machine interactions to name a few. The potential for societal impact is immense. In some instances, soft actuators have achieved commercial success; however, large scale adoption will require improved methods of controlling non-linear systems, greater reliability in their function, and increased utility from faster and more forceful actuation. In my talk, I will describe efforts from my work in the Whitesides group at Harvard to prove sophisticated motions in these machines using simple controls, as well capabilities unique to soft machines. I will also describe the potential for combinations of different classes of soft actuators (e.g., electrically and pneumatically actuated systems) to improve the utility of soft robots. 1. World Robotics - Industrial Robots 2013, 2013, International Federation of Robotics.

  18. Closed-loop control of a shape memory alloy actuation system for variable area fan nozzle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barooah, Prabir; Rey, Nancy

    2002-07-01

    Shape Memory Alloys have been used in a wide variety of actuation applications. A bundled shape memory alloy cable actuator, capable of providing large force and displacement has been developed by United Technologies Corporation (patents pending) for actuating a Variable Area fan Nozzle (VAN). The ability to control fan nozzle exit area is an enabling technology for the next generation turbofan engines. Performance benefits for VAN engines are estimated to be up to 9% in Thrust Specific Fuel Consumption (TSFC) compared to traditional fixed geometry designs. The advantage of SMA actuated VAN design is light weight and low complexity compared to conventionally actuated designs. To achieve the maximum efficiency from a VAN engine, the nozzle exit area has to be continuously varied for a certain period of time during climb, since the optimum nozzle exit area is a function of several flight variables (flight Mach number, altitude etc). Hence, the actuator had to be controlled to provide the time varying desired nozzle area. A new control algorithm was developed for this purpose, which produced the desired flap area by metering the resistive heating of the SMA actuator. Since no active cooling was used, reducing overshoot was a significant challenge of the controller. A full scale, 2 flap model of the VAN system was built, which was capable of simulating a 20% nozzle area variation, and tested under full scale aerodynamic load in NASA Langley Jet Exit Test facility. The controller met all the requirements of the actuation system and was able to drive the flap position to the desired position with less than 2% overshoot in step input tests. The controller is based on a adaptive algorithm formulation with logical switches that reduces its overshoot error. Although the effectiveness of the controller was demonstrated in full scale model tests, no theoretical results as to its stability and robustness has been derived. Stability of the controller will have to be investigated

  19. An external disturbance sensor for ionic polymer metal composite actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bakhtiarpour, Parisa; Parvizi, Amin; Müller, Martin; Shahinpoor, Mohsen; Marti, Othmar; Amirkhani, Masoud

    2016-01-01

    Ionic polymer metal composite (IPMC) is a fast-growing type of smart material with a wide range of applications. IPMC has been used extensively as an actuator, but for effective usage, one must add a self-sensing ability to it. Two common self-sensing techniques are mechanical-to-electrical transducer and surface resistance. The first one cannot be used while the actuator is running, and the second one needs a sample modification. In this work, we present a new self-sensing method, which can measure external disturbance in the presence of actuator voltage without any sample modification. The resistance across an IPMC sample follows Ohm’s law at sufficiently high frequency. We exploit the frequency dependency of the resistance across the sample to design the self-sensing method. In this technique a function generator, a lock-in amplifier and an isolation circuit were employed to measure an external impulse or steady disturbance. As implementing this technique does not require any change to the IPMC specimen or electrical connection (hanger), it can be added to any existing electroactive device.

  20. A Portable Analyzer for Pouch-Actuated, Immunoassay Cassettes

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Xianbo; Liu, Changchun; Mauk, Michael G.; Hart, Robert W.; Chen, Dafeng; Qiu, Jing; Kientz, Terry; Fiene, Jonathan; Bau, Haim H.

    2011-01-01

    A portable, small footprint, light, general purpose analyzer (processor) to control the flow in immunoassay cassettes and to facilitate the detection of test results is described. The durable analyzer accepts disposable cassettes that contain pouches and reaction chambers for various unit operations such as hydration of dry reagents, stirring, and incubation. The analyzer includes individually controlled, linear actuators to compress the pouches in the cassette, which facilitates the pumping and mixing of sample and reagents, and to close diaphragm-based valves for flow control. The same types of actuators are used to compress pouches and actuate valves. The analyzer also houses a compact OEM scanner/reader to excite fluorescence and detect emission from labels. The analyzer is hydraulically isolated from the cassette, reducing the possibility of cross-contamination. The analyzer facilitates programmable, automated execution of a sequence of operations such as pumping and valving in a timely fashion, reducing the level of expertise required from the operator and the possibility for errors. The analyzer’s design is modular and expandable to accommodate cassettes of various complexities and additional functionalities. In this paper, the utility of the analyzer has been demonstrated with the execution of a simple, consecutive, lateral flow assay of a model biological system and the test results were detected with up converting phosphor labels that are excited at infrared frequencies and emit in the visible spectrum. PMID:22125359