Substantial research has been conducted in the development of hybrid hydraulic actuators driven by various smart materials. The basic operation of these actuators involves high frequency bidirectional length change of an active material stack (rod) which is converted to unidirectional motion of a hydraulic fluid by a set of active or passive valves. In this paper, we present the design and experimental test results of a compact hybrid actuation driven by the electrostrictive material PMN. The active material was actuated at different frequencies, with variations in the applied voltage and fluid bias pressure to study their effects on performance. The tests were carried out under no-load conditions and also with external weights to find the maximum flow rate and blocked force respectively. The maximum actuator velocity was calculated to be 330 mm/s and the corresponding flow rate was 42.5 cc/s. The blocked force of the actuator was found to be 63 N and the maximum power output was 8 W. Dynamic tests were also conducted to find the PMN stack response without any fluid loads. Results of the experiments are presented and compared with simulation data.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.