A single-stage servovalve using direct piezoelectric actuator drive is described. The single-stage servovalve design offers higher bandwidth than conventional two-stage valves. It takes advantage of the high energy density in piezoelectric materials while addressing the need for internal amplification of stroke. When used alone, the valve can regulate pressure, and when used in combination with a hydraulic output device it forms part of an effective servohydraulic actuator. Development of a direct drive prototype valve is described. Discussion includes design issues related to low stroke smart material actuators such as piezoelectrics. Component and subsystem testing and results are reviewed. Electronic drive and control of the piezoelectric and overall device along with performance in the control of fluid flow is discussed. The value of the new servovalve is shown in the combination of the valve with a hydraulic output device. Data are supplied for this servohydraulic actuator. The new actuator shows promise for a motion simulator application and more generally for motion control at higher bandwidth than is possible with currently available servohydraulics.
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Jason E. Lindler, Eric H. Anderson, "Piezoelectric direct drive servovalve", Proc. SPIE 4698, Smart Structures and Materials 2002: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies, (9 July 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.475095; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.475095

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