Implementation of Exaggerated Actuation and Bearing-Free Rotational Mobility in Smart Hinges
Small Business Information
4300 San Mateo Blvd., Ne, Suite A220, Albuquerque, NM, 87110
Dirk B. Warnaar
AbstractUnder the proposed research a single degree-of-freedom hinge will be developed that exaggerates actuation by either a piezoceramic or a shape-memory alloy. The proposed hinge is a marriage of two concepts, one providing exaggerated excitation and the other providing bearing-free rotational mobility. The first concept translates the relatively small motion achievable with smart materials (shape-memory alloys or piezoceramics) into a large rotation using appropriate rolling contact surfaces. The second concept comprises a hinge equipped with conical inserts that when activated allow free rotational movement about the hinge's axis but otherwise pre-load the hinge. The rotational mobility of this hinge does therefore not compromise the load carrying capability of the hinge, nor its predictability and reliability. The features of the aforementioned concepts are combined to create a low cost versatile hinge that provides actuation, is highly reliable and predictable.
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