Design of Actuation for Bistable Structures Using Smart Materials
Several smart materials such as shape memory alloys (SMA) and electroactive polymers (EAP) have good properties in small scales and are often a good choice for tiny surface deflection applications. However they need continuous powering to keep their shape change, leading to a significant loss of energy. An interesting approach is to associate a smart material with a bistable element, which provides two stable positions without power. This action requires some energy to snap from one position to the other one. This association gives a very power-efficient solution. In this paper, we present a mechanical study on the actuation of a bistable structure, using a distributed torque actuation that is very suitable for smart materials. We provide an approach to optimize the actuation location, this allow to use less powerful and more compact actuators.
Pietro VINCENZINI and Giuseppe D'ARRIGO
P. Cazottes et al., "Design of Actuation for Bistable Structures Using Smart Materials ", Advances in Science and Technology, Vol. 54, pp. 287-292, 2008