The use of ‘multifunctional’ Shape Memory Alloy wires as embedded actuators and sensors has been proposed for numerous novel applications. The SMA wires are actuated as a result of the Joule heating induced by passing electric current through it. The resistance of the SMA wire can simultaneously be measured during its actuation enabling it to be used as sensor data that relates to the strain and temperature of the wire. In order to control actuation stroke from the SMA wire, the Joule heating (electric power supplied to the SMA wire) of the wire needs to be controlled. Therefore, a 6-channel power controller device has been developed that simultaneously controls the power supplied to six different SMA wires and measures the resistance of these wires during excitation. This paper continues from the previously presented concept of a multi-channel power controller implementation. The focus of this paper is to discuss the operation, calibration methods and optimization techniques to improve the performance and robustness of the device and to eliminate the issues in multi-channel implementation. Further, this device is implemented in a test setup to study the position control of SMA wire using resistance feedback. Results of these tests can be utilized in practical applications involving SMA wires as embedded actuators and sensors, such as Smart Inhaler system being developed at North Carolina State University.
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Development of a 6-Channel Power Controller for Simultaneous Actuation and Resistance Measurement of SMA Wires
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Hangekar, R, Furst, S, & Seelecke, S. "Development of a 6-Channel Power Controller for Simultaneous Actuation and Resistance Measurement of SMA Wires." Proceedings of the ASME 2010 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems. ASME 2010 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems, Volume 2. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA. September 28–October 1, 2010. pp. 461-470. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/SMASIS2010-3846
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