A wet SMA actuator is characterized by an SMA wire embedded within a compliant fluid-filled tube. Heating and cooling of the SMA wire produce a linear contraction and extension of the wire. Thermal energy can be transferred to and from the wire using combinations of resistive heating and free/forced convection using hot and cold fluid. The goal of this paper is to analyze the speed and efficiency of wet SMA actuators using a variety of control strategies involving different combinations of electrical and thermofluidic inputs. A computational fluid dynamic model is used in conjunction with a temperature-strain model to simulate the thermal response of the wire and compute strains, contraction/extension times and efficiency. The simulations produce cycling rates of up to 5 Hz for electrical heating and fluidic cooling, and up to 2 Hz for fluidic heating and cooling. The results demonstrate efficiencies up to 0.5% for electric heating and up to 0.2% for fluidic heating.

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