Two-Step Electroplating Process in Fabrication of Thermal Bimorph Cantilever Actuator for Flow Control Application


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This work proposes a novel and simple fabrication process of a nickel-copper thermal bimorph actuator. This new fabrication process employs only two-step electroplating technique that is easy, cheap and compatible for various materials. In this study, the total thickness of fabricated cantilever actuator is around 80 μm, i.e. 30±10 and 50±10 μm for nickel and copper, respectively, and its length is equal to 22.5 mm. For actuator’s width, it is varied as 258±7, 351±7 and 447±7 μm. After heating by applying current through the actuator’s structure, the actuator bends up due to the elongation mismatch between copper and nickel elements. It is found that the deflection becomes larger for a narrower actuator. From the experiments, the deflection at current of 2.5A for 258±7 μm wide actuator is approximately equal to 4 mm. In addition, the response of all actuators is faster than 1 Hz. With obtained large deflection and fast response, the fabricated actuators are viable to employ for flow control applications.



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Edited by:

R. Varatharajoo, E. J. Abdullah, D. L. Majid, F. I. Romli, A. S. Mohd Rafie and K. A. Ahmad




A. Pimpin et al., "Two-Step Electroplating Process in Fabrication of Thermal Bimorph Cantilever Actuator for Flow Control Application", Applied Mechanics and Materials, Vol. 225, pp. 367-371, 2012

Online since:

November 2012




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