Magnetorheological fluids (MRF) are magnetically controlled fluids and they find more and more industrial applications in actuation functions. These include shock absorbers, semi-active dampers, clutches, brakes, haptic actuators & devices. Several of these applications have been studied by Cedrat Technologies for its industrial customers, and a device-oriented test bench has been developed in order to characterise the magneto-mechanical properties of MRF such as the magnetisation curve, the yield stress ….
The article describes a linear magnetic flip-flop micro actuator, designed with FLUX software, assembled and characterised for a specific application requiring low losses at function states. The micro size allows reducing the energy required for actuation. Permanent magnets ensure bistability and suppress losses at functional states. Although the actuator is less than 1 g, the blocking force is about 0.1N and the stroke is 0.6mm. Firstly, the paper describes the main functionality of the actuator. Then are presented measured characteristics and results are compared with FLUX software computation. Finally perspectives of further miniaturisation are discussed.
Magnetostriction occurs in the most ferromagnetic materials and leads to many effects [1,2]. The most useful one to refer to is the Joule effect. It is responsible for the expansion (positive magnetostriction) or the contraction (negative) of a rod subjected to a longitudinal static magnetic field. In a given material, this magnetostrain is quadratic and occurs always in the same direction whatever is the field direction. Giant Magnetostrictive Materials (GMM), especially Rare earth-iron discovered by A.E.Clark , feature magnetostrains which are two orders of magnitude larger than Nickel. Among them, bulk Tb0.3Dy0.7Fe1.9, called Terfenol-D, presents the best compromise between a large magnetostrain and a low magnetic field, at room temperature.
Good limitations of the current in a circuit using an electromechanical breaker suppose a very fast opening of the contacts. Due to the fact that the electrodynamic repulsive forces do not generate enough acceleration, an actuator has to be used to improve the breaker performances. Since a traditional reluctant magnetic device is too slow for the application concerned, a propeller based on the Thomson effect has been chosen. FLUX2D simulations make possible a good understanding of the propeller’s operation and thus the improvement of its design.