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Proceedings Paper

VIACT (versatile integrated actuator) multitasking planar microrobot
Author(s): Rad H. Dabbaj
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Paper Abstract

The VIACTTM is a new MEMS electrostatic actuator technology potentially capable of realising a number of batchfabricated actuator/sensor transducers including those deflecting in the same or opposite directions, bi-directional, 1D and 2D. The technology can be applied to a wide range of microrobotic and micromechanic applications. This paper reports FEA modelling and simulation, using ANSYS software, of the electromechanical parts of a MEMS-based multitasking walking microrobot, capable of locomotion and equipped with a number of microtools. The few mm2 microrobot comprises a number of VIACTTM cascade microactuators forming eight legs for forward/backward locomotion (via CMS) and side turn and tilt, a microscoop, a combination microtool for gripping, digging, sampling, cutting and lifting tasks, an antenna and solar panel deployment mechanisms. The output energy capability of these actuators is approximately 500 and 1700 pJ/mm2 at 35 and 65 volt, respectively, giving microrobot's load-carrying capability of 10x and 25x its own weight at 35 and 65 volts, respectively. When integrated with smart electronics and/or power supply, the microrobot can potentially be remotely-controlled or autonomous. With two structural polysilicon layers and one insulating layer, the whole structure can be batch-fabricated using conventional micromachining techniques. Among its applications include micromanipulation, microassembley and chemical and biological microwaste disposal.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 July 2003
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5055, Smart Structures and Materials 2003: Smart Electronics, MEMS, BioMEMS, and Nanotechnology, (22 July 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.508185
Show Author Affiliations
Rad H. Dabbaj, Consultant (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5055:
Smart Structures and Materials 2003: Smart Electronics, MEMS, BioMEMS, and Nanotechnology
Vijay K. Varadan; Laszlo B. Kish, Editor(s)

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