This paper presents research on the application of magnetic shape memory alloys (MSMAs) in actuator design. MSMAs are a relatively new group of so-called smart materials that are distinguished by repeatable strains up to 6% and dynamics much better than that of thermally activated shape memory alloys (SMAs). The shape change mechanism in MSMAs is based on the rearrangement of martensite cells in the presence of an external magnetic field. In the first part of the article a review of the current state of MSMA actuator design is presented, followed by a description of the design, modelling and control of a newly proposed actuator. The developed actuator works with MSMA samples of 3 × 10 × 32 mm3
, guaranteeing an available operating range of up to 1 mm, despite its great deformation range and dynamics. In the paper its dynamics model is proposed and its transfer function is derived. Moreover, the generalised Prandtl-Ishlinskii model of MSMA-actuator hysteresis is proposed. This model is then inverted and used in the control system for hysteresis compensation. A special test stand was designed and built to test the MSMA actuator with compensation. The step responses are recorded, showing that the compensated MSMA actuator exhibits the positioning accuracy as ±2 µm. As a result, the authors decided to apply a control system based on an inverse hysteresis model. The paper concludes with a summary of the research results, with theoretical analysis compared with the registered actuator characteristics.
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