8 April 2008 A thermokinetically driven metal-hydride actuator
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Abstract
The purpose of this study is to develop a novel thermokinetically-driven actuator technology based on the physics of metal hydrides (MH's). A metal hydride absorbs and desorbs hydrogen due to the imposed temperature swing(s). The MH can also work as an effective thermally-driven hydrogen compressor producing more than 5,000 psia net pressure swing. The MH actuation system can be built in a simple structure, exhibits high power, produces soft actuating, and is essentially noiseless. Moreover, it is much more powerful and compact than conventional pneumatic systems that require bulky auxiliary systems. It is our belief that the MH actuators are useful for many emerging industrial, biorobotic, and civil structural applications. In this paper, we report the recent preliminary experimental results for a laboratory-prototyped MH actuation system. In particular, the dynamic response characteristics, enhanced controllability, thermodynamic performances, and reliability of the metal hydride actuator were studied in order to estimate the actuation capability of the MH actuator. A unique design of the MH actuator was created. It encases a so-called "porous metal hydride (PMH)" in the reactor to effectively achieve desirable performance by improving overall thermal conductance.
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Kwangmok Jung, Kwang J. Kim, "A thermokinetically driven metal-hydride actuator", Proc. SPIE 6932, Sensors and Smart Structures Technologies for Civil, Mechanical, and Aerospace Systems 2008, 69322Z (8 April 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.776614; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.776614
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