Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Evaluation of a Mesoscale Thermal Actuator in Open and Closed Operating Cycles

Version 1 : Received: 15 September 2019 / Approved: 16 September 2019 / Online: 16 September 2019 (10:56:57 CEST)

How to cite: Burugupally, S.P. Evaluation of a Mesoscale Thermal Actuator in Open and Closed Operating Cycles. Preprints 2019, 2019090162 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201909.0162.v1). Burugupally, S.P. Evaluation of a Mesoscale Thermal Actuator in Open and Closed Operating Cycles. Preprints 2019, 2019090162 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201909.0162.v1).

Abstract

Thermal-based actuators are known for generating large force and displacement strokes at mesoscale (millimeter) regime. In particular, two-phase thermal actuators are found to benefit from the scaling laws of physics at mesoscale to offer large force and displacement strokes; but they have low thermal efficiencies. As an alternative, a combustion-based thermal actuator is proposed and its performance is studied in both open and closed cycle operations. Through a physics-based lumped-parameter model, we investigate the behavior and performance of the actuator using a spring-mass-damper analogy and taking an air standard cycle approach. Three observations are reported: (1) the mesoscale actuator can generate peak forces of up to 400 N and displacement strokes of about 16 cm suitable for practical applications; (2) an increase in heat input to the actuator results in increasing the thermal efficiency of the actuator for both open and closed cycles; and (3) for a specific heat input, both the open and closed cycle operations respond differently \textemdash different stroke lengths, peak pressures, and thermal efficiencies.

Subject Areas

thermal actuator; compliant architecture; open and closed operating cycles; mesoscale

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