Electro-mechanical actuators and tunable reflectors based on carbon nanotubes
ALTAIR Center proposes to develop a new class of nano-electro-mechanical systems (NEMS) based on carbon nanotubes operating at low control voltages. The proposed system consists of thin film of an appropriate solid-state material sandwiched between two nanolayers of carbon nanotubes embedded into a special matrix. The device takes advantage of recently demonstrated effect of elongation or contraction of the single-walled carbon nanotubes as a result of injection of charges of different polarity. The thin film NEMS fabricated in such a way may be used in various nano-electro-mechanical devices, artificial muscles, electrical actuators, thin film reflectors with variable focus, etc. In Phase I of this project we will perform technology development and will prove feasibility of the proposed concept by fabricating a model actuator and demonstrating its performance. In Phase II the technology will be completely optimized and applied to fabrication of Prototype NEMS devices based on carbon NT, such as efficient low-voltage actuators and reflectors with variable focal distance for immediate implementation in current and future NASA missions.
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ALTAIR Center, LLC
1 Chartwell Circle Shrewsbury, MA 01545
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