Piezoelectric Actuators for Tactor Technology

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Office of the Secretary of Defense
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 41284
Amount: $69,067.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 1998
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
247 Third Street, Cambridge, MA, 02142
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Dr. Jeanne Sullivan Falco
 (617) 441-9207
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution
Especially during emergencies, pilots face ey might look away from their altitude and orientation sensor displays when something else demands their attention. It would help pilots, in the language of microcontrollers, to be de and orientation sensors rather than having to constantly displays. Input from a tactile actuator array could accomplish this goal by giving a physical interrupt to the pilot. Piezoceramics appear to be the most promising actuator material for the tactile actuator arrays. Lead Zirconate Titanat (PXT) is a commercially available piezoceramic material that has a long history of use as an actuator. PZTs have a high energy output per unit mass and volume and draw little power at low frequencies. The amplitude of PZTs can be smoothly varied and they can produce non-sinusoidal inputs. PZTs have already been shown to survive and operate in the harsh environment of space. Since the piezoelectric effect is due to a change in the applied electric field, PZT actuators do not produce magnetic fields. The Phase I effort will examine various actuator technologies and develop initial prototype designs. Phase II will refine these designs and then build and test prototypes of two candidate designs.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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