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Proceedings Paper

Topology optimization and detailed finite element modeling of piezoelectric actuators: effect of external loads and detail geometry on actuator output
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Paper Abstract

Compliant mechanical amplifiers are often used to amplify small motions such as those of PZT actuators, since they do not incur displacement losses that frequently occur in pin-jointed mechanisms. Their optimal design is key to maximizing actuator performance. Our previous work was focused on developing a topology optimization methodology wherein the size of the design domain and the location of the PZT actuator were pre-defined. The resultant solution was one that maximized stroke amplification. In this paper we study the effects of stack and structural properties on resultant topology and output stroke with focus on quantitative performance for practical application. The motivating example is an actuator-design problem where +/- 400micrometers stroke and 45 N force is required. The problem is solved using topology design methodology and the results obtained are verified using finite element analysis. We demonstrate that magnitude of output displacement is extremely sensitive to preload on the compliant mechanical amplifier, amplifier and actuator material, topology interpretation while converting it into a solid model, and magnitude of applied voltage. We discuss effects of asymmetric placement of the PZT stack, multiple stacks, and increased stack length on resultant displacement.

Paper Details

Date Published: 10 July 2002
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4693, Smart Structures and Materials 2002: Modeling, Signal Processing, and Control, (10 July 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.475209
Show Author Affiliations
Smita Bharti, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)
Mary I. Frecker, The Pennsylvania State Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4693:
Smart Structures and Materials 2002: Modeling, Signal Processing, and Control
Vittal S. Rao, Editor(s)

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