Servicio de Información Comunitario sobre Investigación y Desarrollo - CORDIS

Side Arm Actuator

A novel E-core actuator design has been developed which potentially offers scope for improving the performance of the valve actuators, specifically in terms of enhancing the force capability at large air gaps. Although being very similar to a standard actuator topology with an E-core stator and a plain rectangular armature, additional components of force are introduced by incorporating pole extensions to regions of the E-core stator and corresponding apertures in the armature. Extensive modelling studies were performed to optimise actuator performance, gain a fundamental understanding of the various design trade-offs and the scope for tailoring the nature of the force-displacement characteristics. An experimental actuator was manufactured and its static performance was assessed on a test-rig. Although this actuator demonstrated useful improvements in force capability at large air gaps, practical problems were encountered with armature rotation and the large consequent torques which are produced. It is recognised that the further exploitation of this technology is contingent on establishing a reliable and cost-effective means of limiting armature rotation to a greater degree than is currently required by actuators with plain armatures. A patent has been granted on this technology, and although the particular embodiment studied in this project is unlikely to be commercially viable as it stands, many of the underlying concepts for enhancing force characteristics by employing pole extensions are likely to be considered in future actuator designs.

Reported by

The University of Sheffield
Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, The University of Sheffield, Mappin St
United Kingdom
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