Small electromechanical and piezoelectric moving devices and their drives

The LAI is specialized in modeling (using developed analytical models and FEM) and design optimization of rotating and linear electric and piezoelectric motors and actuators. The design optimization is performed using deterministic methods (based on various gradient methods – the commercial software ProDesign) or stochastic ones (a genetic algorithm developed by the LAI members, or design for experiment). The power range is from several kW (electric traction) down to uW (MEMS – batch-processed motor placed on a silicon chip). To miniaturize an electric drive and increase its reliability by eliminating position sensors, sensorless control algorithms are applied. A broad set of electromagnetic phenomena is exploited to estimate the rotor/mover position. Among them, two completely new ones are used: the first one is the magnetic anisotropy of permanent magnet materials (MAM method) and the second is the local B-H hysteresis loops. In the field of piezoelectric actuators, two main axis of research are followed. One axis concerns the generation of a touch feeling: a piezoelectric actuator generates vibrations of a touch screen so that the user’s finger feels a modified friction coefficient when it touches the screen. The second axis concerns generation of high forces in a reduced volume.

Current Projects

Smart gripper based on Shape Memory Alloys  Integrated selector system High Speed Ventilator  
Very high-speed miniaturized motor Auto-adaptive synchronous motor Nondestructive detection sensor technology  
Cardiac assist system SmartWrist