Wire rope (or cables) are a fundamental structural element in many engineering applications. Recently, there has been growing interest in stranding NiTi wires into cables to scale up the adaptive properties of NiTi tension elements and to make use of the desirable properties of wire rope. Exploratory experiments were performed to study the actuation behavior of two NiTi shape memory alloy cables and straight monofilament wire of the same material. The specimens were held under various dead loads ranging from 50 MPa to 400 MPa and thermally cycled 25 times from 140°C to 5°C at a rate of 12°C/min. Performance metrics of actuation stroke, residual strain, and work output were measured and compared between specimen types. The 7x7 cable exhibited similar actuation to the single straight wire, but with slightly longer stroke and marginally more shakedown, while maintaining equivalent specific work output. This leads to the conclusion that the 7x7 cable effectively scaled up the adaptive properties the straight wire. Under loads below 150 MPa, the 1x27 cable had up to double the actuation stroke and work output, but exhibited larger shakedown and poorer performance when loaded higher.
Daniel B. Biggs and John A. Shaw, "Experimental characterization of shape memory alloy actuator cables," Proc. SPIE 9800, Behavior and Mechanics of Multifunctional Materials and Composites 2016, 98000D (Presented at SPIE Smart Structures and Materials + Nondestructive Evaluation and Health Monitoring: March 21, 2016; Published: 18 April 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2219502.
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