Volume ready customizable nitinol actuator

Volume ready customizable nitinol actuator

The S125 is a volume-ready Shape Memory Alloy wire actuator, with a MOSFET switching & protection circuitry on a Printed Circuit Board substrate. The ideal uses are latch or trigger release mechanisms for battery-powered devices.

The S125 is a short-stroke latch-release or trigger-release mechanism featuring totally silent operation and thin profile typical of our Shape Memory Alloy constant-force actuators. (more…)

Wax Pillbox Actuator Testing & Characterization

Wax Pillbox Actuator Testing & Characterization

We designed and built a new pillbox wax actuator without a ‘fill hole’ because that hole took up extra height. We filled hot wax (90˚C) through the piston hole using a ‘shim’ between the o-ring and piston to allow air and excess wax to escape.

Size: 18mm x 6 mm with 6mm diameter plunger
Weight: 8.3 grams filled (estimated 0.4 grams wax)
Stroke: ~2mm (seems to be independent of load)
Force: Tested to 50 pounds (see photo) with no noticeable change
Reset Force: Seems to require ~5 lbs to fully reset (more…)

Paraffin Wax Actuator Build Process

Paraffin Wax Actuator Build Process

Main components:
Sigma Aldrich Wax PN 327204-1KG ( 53-57˚C MP)
TEMPCO Swaged Cartridge Heaters

Operating parameters:
Voltage: 120 vac, 300 Watt, 109W/sq. in., Diameter: 1/4”

Actuation time at 120 volts AC:
~75 seconds to fully actuate at full load if ‘cold’ ~(room temp) (more…)

High Force Valve Actuator

High Force Valve Actuator

This prototype actuator was designed to provide 24 pounds of force and 3/8″ of stroke. There is a U-shaped Nitinol wire actuator on each side of the PCB (only one is currently installed), and they operate on a shared linkage. The SMA wire used here was 0.020″ diameter. The 3D printed ‘sled’ moves to the left when energized: compressing a spring that is pre-loaded to 12 pounds. If the load exceeds 12 pounds, the SMA wire can still contract by compressing the spring further. This protects the SMA wire from damage if the load exceeds the maximum design stress of the Nitinol wire. (more…)

Advanced Low Profile SMA Actuator

Advanced Low Profile SMA Actuator

Here is our latest actuator:

-Our custom MOSFET/Protection Circuit is on each PCB-Actuator
-Typical 3-wire interface: Power, Ground, and Enable. When you raise the Enable line logic level HIGH, we energize until you lower the Enable. The actuator moves to the end of stroke, and ‘holds’ there safely until you release it (set Enable to Low).
-The actuators typically operate from 3 to 12 volts
-Typical stroke is in the 0.1″ to 0.25″ range
-Typical force is in the 0.5# to 5.0# range (more…)