There is a demand for hybrid actuation systems which combine actuation and valving systems in a compact package. MR fluids can be used in valves to control the motion of an output cylinder. Such a valving system will have no moving parts and thus can be used in applications where there is high centrifugal loading. In the current setup, MR valves are configured in the form of a Wheatstone bridge where the two arms form the high and low pressure sides of the output cylinder. The actuation is performed using a compact piezoelectric stack driven actuator. The frequency rectification of the piezo stack motion is done using reed valves. This actuator and valve configuration form a compact hydraulic system with electro-mechanical valves. The advantages of such systems are that part count is low, fewer moving parts and the ability to control the motion of the output cylinder by controlling the fluid flow through the MR valves. By the application of different magnetic fields in the arms of the bridge (by applying different currents to the magnetic circuits), we can control the differential pressure seen by the output cylinder. This allows us to design different controllers for the system. The two systems in this configuration have been separately evaluated. The piezo pump system was first tested for its performance and efficiency with conventional hydraulic fluid and MR fluid. At this stage, the MR valve setup has not been added to isolate the actuating system from the valve system and the MR fluid acts merely as a transmission fluid. The Wheatstone bridge setup was then added and the efficiency of the MR valve was tested against a dummy mechanical valve. The modeling of the valve was done on the basis of standard rheological models like Bingham Plastic and bi-viscous models. Data for bi-directional actuation of the output cylinder is presented and assessed analytically.
Bi-Directional Actuation of a Piston Using MR Valves and a Piezoelectric Pump
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John, S, Yoo, J, Sirohi, J, & Wereley, NM. "Bi-Directional Actuation of a Piston Using MR Valves and a Piezoelectric Pump." Proceedings of the ASME 2005 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition. Aerospace. Orlando, Florida, USA. November 5–11, 2005. pp. 411-420. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/IMECE2005-82771
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