Due to their manifold application possibilities, shape memory alloys (SMA) become more and more common in all kinds of industrial tasks. For an operation in mass-manufactured products, it is inevitable to investigate the fundamental properties of the respective material and to perfect the fabrication process. A potential use of SMAs in aerospace is even more demanding, since the testing and qualification is quite complex, and the components are solely built in small batch series. In order to prove possible approaches for manufacturing, for this paper several specimens of two generations of an intelligent redundant spacecraft actuator were assembled. Evaluating the intrinsic effect of SMA-wires, it was possible to detect signs of fatigue in the material and realize preventive maintenance. Beside a description of the manufacturing steps of both generations, the test results are presented in detail and it can be concluded that the second generation is, due to its design, more suitable for a serial production as well as more robust and efficient. It is shown that over the lifetime of the actuator the properties of the SMA-material are continuously changing.

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