Full Content is available to subscribers

Subscribe/Learn More  >

Experimental Investigation of High-Speed/High-Voltage SMA Actuation

[+] Author Affiliations
Paul Motzki, Tom Gorges

Center for Mechatronics and Automation Technologies (ZeMA) gGmbH, Saarbruecken, Germany

Thomas Würtz, Stefan Seelecke

Saarland University, Saarbruecken, Germany

Paper No. SMASIS2017-3787, pp. V001T02A002; 6 pages
  • ASME 2017 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems
  • Volume 1: Development and Characterization of Multifunctional Materials; Mechanics and Behavior of Active Materials; Bioinspired Smart Materials and Systems; Energy Harvesting; Emerging Technologies
  • Snowbird, Utah, USA, September 18–20, 2017
  • Conference Sponsors: Aerospace Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5825-7
  • Copyright © 2017 by ASME


The thermal shape memory effect describes the ability of a deformed material to return to its original shape when heated. This effect is found in shape memory alloys (SMAs) such as nickel-titanium (NiTi). SMA actuator wire is known for its high energy density and allows for the construction of compact systems. An additional advantage is the so-called “self-sensing” effect, which can be used for sensor tasks within an actuator-sensor-system.

In most applications, a current is used to heat the SMA wires through joule heating. Usually a current between zero and four ampere is recommended by the SMA wire manufacturers depending on the wire diameter. Therefore, supply voltage is adjusted to the SMA wire’s electrical resistance to reach the recommended current.

The focus of this work is to use supply voltages of magnitudes higher than the recommended supply voltages on SMA actuator wires. This actuation method has the advantage of being able to use industry standard voltage supplies for SMA actuators. Additionally, depending on the application, faster actuation and higher strokes can be achieved.

The high voltage results in a high current in the SMA wire. To prevent the wire from being destroyed by the high current, short pulses in the micro- and millisecond range are used.

As part of the presented work, a test setup has been constructed to examine the effects of the crucial parameters such as supply voltage amplitude, pulse duration, wire diameter and wire pre-tension. The monitored parameters in this setup are the wire displacement, wire current and force generated by the SMA wire. All sensors in this setup and their timing is validated through several experiments. Additionally, a highspeed optical camera system is used to record qualitative videos of the SMA wire’s behavior under there extreme conditions. This optical feedback is necessary to fully understand and interpret the measured force and displacement signals.

Copyright © 2017 by ASME



Interactive Graphics


Country-Specific Mortality and Growth Failure in Infancy and Yound Children and Association With Material Stature

Use interactive graphics and maps to view and sort country-specific infant and early dhildhood mortality and growth failure data and their association with maternal

Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In