Electromagnetic Actuators

A special issue of Actuators (ISSN 2076-0825). This special issue belongs to the section "Miniaturized and Micro Actuators".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2024) | Viewed by 18360

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Mechanical Engineering Area, Universidad de Alcalá, Alcalá de Henares, Spain
Interests: electromagnetic actuators; MEMS; magnetorquers; superconducting actuators; magneto-mechanical systems; geared motors; electromagnetic medical devices

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Guest Editor
Mechanical Engineering Area, Universidad de Alcalá, Alcalá de Henares, Spain
Interests: electromagnetic rotary and linear actuators; MEMS; magneto-mechanical systems; superconducting levitation; magnetic damping

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Electromagnetic actuators are key machine components extensively applied when accuracy and reliability are required. Robotics, transportation, space and aeronautics, microelectronics, medical instruments and manufacturing increasingly demand optimized and efficient electromagnetic actuators for their processes and applications. This increasing demand is even more stimulated by the recent decarbonization policies established mostly worldwide, which encourage the development of clean and highly effective electrically powered machines. Electromagnetic actuators can satisfy those sustainability requirements and, at the same time, offer high power/torque densities, accuracy, control and efficiency.

This Special Issue intends to disseminate recent advances in electromagnetic actuators design, optimization, manufacturing, test, operation and control, covering everything from macroscale large electromagnetic actuators to microscale electromagnetic systems.

This Special Issue includes contributions related (but not limited) to the following topics:

  • Rotary electromagnetic actuators: DC and/or AC motors, stepper motors, geared electromagnetic motors and motor-reducers.
  • Axial and radial flux motors.
  • Linear electromagnetic actuators: solenoids, voice coils, DC and AC linear electric motors.
  • MEMS (Micro-ElectroMechanical Systems), electromagnetic microactuators.
  • Other type of electromagnetic actuators: relays, switches, magnetorquers, spherical actuators, magnetorheological actuators, direct drives, magnetically geared actuators, magnetomechanical systems, superconductivity-based actuators and electromagnets.

Dr. Efren Diez-Jimenez
Dr. Ignacio Valiente Blanco
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Actuators is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • rotary electromagnetic actuators
  • linear electromagnetic actuators
  • DC electric motors
  • AC electric motors
  • geared motors
  • MEMS
  • relays
  • electromagnets

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Research

18 pages, 5984 KiB  
Article
Magnetic Performance of Eddy Current Suppressing Structures in Additive Manufacturing
by Carsten Klein, Christopher May and Matthias Nienhaus
Actuators 2024, 13(3), 94; https://doi.org/10.3390/act13030094 - 28 Feb 2024
Viewed by 1289
Abstract
Additively manufactured soft-magnetic components are inherently bulky leading to significant eddy current losses when applied to electrical machines. Prior works have addressed this issue by implementing structures based on the Hilbert space-filling curve which include eddy current suppressing gaps, thereby reducing the fill [...] Read more.
Additively manufactured soft-magnetic components are inherently bulky leading to significant eddy current losses when applied to electrical machines. Prior works have addressed this issue by implementing structures based on the Hilbert space-filling curve which include eddy current suppressing gaps, thereby reducing the fill factor of the soft-magnetic component. The present research aims at investigating a number of space-filling curves in addition to sheets in order to find the optimal eddy current suppressing structure from an electromagnetic point of view. By means of both analysis and finite-element simulation, it was shown that sheets are superior at minimizing eddy current losses while space-filling curves excel at maximizing the fill factor. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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19 pages, 4097 KiB  
Article
Practical and Rapid Motor Sizing Technique Using Existing Electrical Motor
by Yong-Chul Kim, Jung-Ho Han and Ju Lee
Actuators 2023, 12(12), 430; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12120430 - 21 Nov 2023
Viewed by 1436
Abstract
Electrical motor design requires considerable work and resources. In the field, motor designers need to decide on competitive motor sizing quickly to compete with other motor suppliers. Generally, expensive FEM S/W is required to obtain accurate motor sizing results, but buying and maintaining [...] Read more.
Electrical motor design requires considerable work and resources. In the field, motor designers need to decide on competitive motor sizing quickly to compete with other motor suppliers. Generally, expensive FEM S/W is required to obtain accurate motor sizing results, but buying and maintaining many licenses is costly. Moreover, patience is required to obtain the results from FEM analysis. In this paper, a motor sizing technique using an existing production motor is presented to enable responding to urgent requests from customers without using FEM analysis. In order to enhance the fidelity of the results, magnetic flux losses due to magnet coatings and non-linear characteristics are considered during the motor sizing process. The proposed sizing method is verified via a comparison with FEM analysis and the test results and shows reasonable performance. Also, this method has the substantial advantage of outputting accurate results instantly. The method can help with the modification design of electrical motors without using expensive FEM S/W and does not require a certain level of skill or experience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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21 pages, 2947 KiB  
Article
Optimal Design Method of Post-Assembly Magnetizing Device with Field–Circuit Coupling Analysis
by Zi-Ang Zhu, Yun-Chong Wang, Xue-Fei Qin, Lei Yao, Johan Gyselinck and Jian-Xin Shen
Actuators 2023, 12(10), 383; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12100383 - 11 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1317
Abstract
Post-assembly magnetization can significantly simplify the manufacturing of the rotor of permanent magnet (PM) electrical machines. The optimization of the post-assembly magnetizing device using finite element analysis (FEA) is time-consuming; therefore, a globally optimal solution aiming at achieving an adequate magnetizing level and [...] Read more.
Post-assembly magnetization can significantly simplify the manufacturing of the rotor of permanent magnet (PM) electrical machines. The optimization of the post-assembly magnetizing device using finite element analysis (FEA) is time-consuming; therefore, a globally optimal solution aiming at achieving an adequate magnetizing level and minimal energy consumption is difficult to achieve. In this paper, a field–circuit coupling analysis (FCCA) model is proposed to optimize the auxiliary stator-type magnetizing device for interior permanent magnet synchronous machines (IPMSMs). A reasonable simplification of the highly saturated magnetic circuit is made based on FEA results so that the magnetic equivalent circuit (MEC) model can be established. On the other hand, the eddy currents in the PMs are equivalent to an eddy current short-circuit; thus, by converting the field calculation into a circuit calculation, the time cost can be reduced significantly, which greatly improves the speed of multi-objective optimization of the magnetizing device with multiple degrees of freedom. A V-type IPMSM is taken as a study case, and its post-assembly magnetizing device is optimized with the proposed method. FEA and experimental results show that the PMs are fully magnetized, while the required energy consumption is greatly reduced when compared with an existing magnetizing device. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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15 pages, 15125 KiB  
Article
Experimental Validation of a Permanent Magnets Magnetorheological Device under a Standardized Worldwide Harmonized Light-Duty Test Cycle
by Claudia Simonelli, Luca Sani, Nicolò Gori, Miguel Fernández-Muñoz, Antonino Musolino and Rocco Rizzo
Actuators 2023, 12(10), 375; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12100375 - 29 Sep 2023
Viewed by 1284
Abstract
In this paper, the experimental validation of an innovative clutch based on magnetorheological fluids (MRFs) excited by permanent magnets is described. The device, used in automotive applications to engage and disengage the vacuum pump, is tested using a standardized Worldwide harmonized Light-duty Test [...] Read more.
In this paper, the experimental validation of an innovative clutch based on magnetorheological fluids (MRFs) excited by permanent magnets is described. The device, used in automotive applications to engage and disengage the vacuum pump, is tested using a standardized Worldwide harmonized Light-duty Test Cycle (WLTC). A test bench is built, and the system is observed in its operation for one hour, considering two consecutive WLTCs. The temperature increase slightly impacts the clutch’s behavior; in particular, the on-state performance of the device, mainly determined by the magnetic field-induced torque, remains largely unaffected by the temperature increase. The results showed that the performance of the proposed MRF-based device is only marginally affected by the phenomena that take place during the actual operation (e.g., temperature increase, shaft slip), confirming the effectiveness of the design. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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19 pages, 14212 KiB  
Article
Multi-Objective Optimization Design of Permanent Magnet Eddy Current Coupler Based on SCG-BP Neural Network Modeling and the ONDX-NSGA-II Algorithm
by Dazhi Wang, Bowen Niu, Pengyi Pan and Guofeng Sun
Actuators 2023, 12(10), 367; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12100367 - 25 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1250
Abstract
There is a complex coupling relationship between the structural parameters and various performance indicators of a permanent magnet eddy current coupler. In order to obtain the optimal combination of structural parameters that can improve the overall performance of the coupler, it is necessary [...] Read more.
There is a complex coupling relationship between the structural parameters and various performance indicators of a permanent magnet eddy current coupler. In order to obtain the optimal combination of structural parameters that can improve the overall performance of the coupler, it is necessary to reasonably balance the contradiction and competition among performance indicators of the permanent magnet eddy current coupler. A multi-objective optimization method for permanent magnet eddy current couplers based on scaled conjugate gradient back propagation neural network modeling, improved opposition-based learning, and normal distribution crossover operator non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm-II is proposed. The optimization results are compared with those of the traditional non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm-II and the Pareto envelope-based selection algorithm-II, and it is verified that the proposed multi-objective optimization algorithm is accurate, reliable, and has better convergence and versatility. Compared with the original model, the output torque of the optimized coupler increased by 8.54%, and the eddy current loss and cost decreased by 3.71% and 8.74%, respectively. Finally, the correctness of the theoretical analysis was verified through 3D finite element simulation and an experimental simulation platform. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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19 pages, 6613 KiB  
Article
Force-Fighting Phenomena and Disturbance Rejection in Aircraft Dual-Redundant Electro-Mechanical Actuation Systems
by Young Tak Han, Sang-Duck Im and Bongsu Hahn
Actuators 2023, 12(8), 310; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12080310 - 28 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1316
Abstract
This paper presents a robust control system that addresses two key challenges in redundant actuators using Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motors (PMSM) for an aircraft nose wheel steering system: the elimination of force-fighting phenomena and the ability to respond effectively to unexpected disturbances. In [...] Read more.
This paper presents a robust control system that addresses two key challenges in redundant actuators using Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motors (PMSM) for an aircraft nose wheel steering system: the elimination of force-fighting phenomena and the ability to respond effectively to unexpected disturbances. In detail, a control method was devised to enhance the mitigation of force-fighting phenomena and disturbances by accurately observing and compensating for the torque-induced load applied to the PMSM. This was achieved through the utilization of a Q-filter-based Disturbance Observer (DOB). The proposed control approach was implemented and evaluated on a redundant system consisting of the PMSM and the nose wheel steering system. The performance of the proposed method was verified through extensive simulation studies. The simulation results confirmed the effectiveness and reliability of the method in accurately observing and responding to the force-fighting phenomenon that occurs in the redundant driving device. By subjecting the system to various scenarios and disturbances, the simulation provided a comprehensive evaluation of the proposed method’s ability to handle force-fighting phenomena. The results demonstrated that the method successfully observed and responded to the force-fighting phenomenon, thereby mitigating its adverse effects on the system’s performance. Therefore, these outcomes serve as empirical evidence supporting the validity and efficiency of the proposed method in addressing the force-fighting phenomenon encountered in the redundant driving device. These findings substantiate the effectiveness of the proposed approach and its potential for practical implementation in real-world systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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17 pages, 8958 KiB  
Article
Design and Optimization of a Permanent Magnet-Based Spring–Damper System
by Nicolò Gori, Claudia Simonelli, Antonino Musolino, Rocco Rizzo, Efren Díez Jiménez and Luca Sani
Actuators 2023, 12(7), 291; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12070291 - 18 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1330
Abstract
This paper reports the design and optimization of a permanent magnet-based spring. The aim of the optimization, performed using a particular form of the self-organizing map (SOM) algorithm, was to determine the dimensions of a ring PM-based spring with a force–displacement curve similar [...] Read more.
This paper reports the design and optimization of a permanent magnet-based spring. The aim of the optimization, performed using a particular form of the self-organizing map (SOM) algorithm, was to determine the dimensions of a ring PM-based spring with a force–displacement curve similar to a desired one. For each step in the optimization process, a spring composed of different ring-shaped magnets was analyzed using a semi-analytical model. Its characteristic was compared with the desired one to search for a minimum cost function obtained by subtracting the evaluated and the desired force–displacement curve. The resulting algorithm was efficient in the design of a spring with a desired characteristic. The geometry obtained was used to study an electrodynamic damper based on the exploitation of the interaction between the moving magnet of the spring and a conductive cylinder. A parametric analysis was performed: the damping effect grows when the cylinder thickness increases and decreases with the gap between the cylinder and the magnets. Also, the cylinder thickness needed to reduce to one the number of overshoots in the moving magnet’s position decreases with the gap increase. Computations were performed using the research code EN4EM (Electric Network 4 ElectroMagnetics) developed by the authors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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19 pages, 14341 KiB  
Article
Tele-Guidance of a Soft Magnetic Microrobot Transported by a Fluid in a Vascular Network
by Ahmed Chah and Karim Belharet
Actuators 2023, 12(7), 283; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12070283 - 12 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1401
Abstract
Electromagnetic actuation represents a novel wireless control approach utilized for the manipulation of magnetic microrobots, particularly in the context of diverse minimally invasive therapeutic applications. This study presented contributions relating to the integration of a human operator into the control system of an [...] Read more.
Electromagnetic actuation represents a novel wireless control approach utilized for the manipulation of magnetic microrobots, particularly in the context of diverse minimally invasive therapeutic applications. This study presented contributions relating to the integration of a human operator into the control system of an electromagnetic actuation framework through haptic assistance. The intervention of a human operator serves multiple purposes, encompassing the safe piloting of the microrobot during the procedure and the utilization of the doctor’s expertise. Consequently, this human-in-the-loop approach not only ensures heightened safety but also enhances public acceptability, particularly in the realm of drug delivery within the human body. To facilitate these objectives, a haptic device was proposed to propel and orient the microrobots within blood vessels, thereby enabling their targeted delivery. Additionally, a novel magnetic guidance strategy was introduced, relying on the utilization of two magnetic forces to simplify and optimize the guidance process. The electromagnetic actuation system, developed in our research laboratory, offers a comprehensive workspace that has been obtained through analytical and quantitative modeling of the magnetic field generated by the system. With an accessible workspace encompassing a cubic volume of 70 mm in length, the system facilitates easy access from all four lateral sides. Such an architectural design allows for efficient manipulation of microparticles within a significantly larger 3D workspace, surpassing the limitations imposed by traditional systems primarily confined to a small central area, as observed in existing literature. Experimental evaluations encompassing both 2D and 3D scenarios were conducted to validate the efficacy of the magnetic navigation platform. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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15 pages, 3656 KiB  
Article
Power Saving in Magnetorquers by Operating in Cryogenic Environments
by Gabriel Villalba-Alumbreros, Diego Lopez-Pascual, Ignacio Valiente-Blanco and Efren Diez-Jimenez
Actuators 2023, 12(5), 181; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12050181 - 22 Apr 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2272
Abstract
Satellites with cryogenic instrumentation have great potential for military, commercial, and scientific space missions due to the increased sensitivity of their sensors, even for Low Earth Orbit (LEO) missions. For these missions, magnetorquers are a common electromagnetic actuation solution for controlling the attitude [...] Read more.
Satellites with cryogenic instrumentation have great potential for military, commercial, and scientific space missions due to the increased sensitivity of their sensors, even for Low Earth Orbit (LEO) missions. For these missions, magnetorquers are a common electromagnetic actuation solution for controlling the attitude and orientation of the satellite. As for any other component of a satellite, the optimization of power consumption and weight is always beneficial for the design. In this work, we propose a novel idea to reduce power consumption during magnetorquer operation: installing the magnetorquer in the cryogenic area of the satellite, instead of installing an actuator in the hot area. As the electric resistivity of the wire is greatly reduced, power consumption is also reduced. However, the heat generated in the magnetorquer, even if lower, must still be dissipated by the cryocooling system, which has an additional energetic cost. The cryogenic temperature range where this effect is beneficial, and the amount of power saved, was determined as a function of different cryocooler technologies’ efficiency and the purity of the copper wire material. It is analytically demonstrated that the operation of the magnetorquer in a temperature range from 10 to 40 K could save energy with respect to operation at 300 K if the copper wires have a residual resistance ratio larger than 200 RRR. A prototype magnetorquer suitable for cryogenic temperatures was manufactured and tested at liquid nitrogen temperature, 77 K, to experimentally demonstrate the variation in the energy consumption. The magnetorquer comprised an iron core with copper wire winding that achieved 1.42 Am2 by applying 0.565 W at 0.5 A. When operating submerged in liquid nitrogen at a temperature of 77 K, the power used by the magnetorquer was reduced by eight times due to the change in electrical resistivity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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17 pages, 5170 KiB  
Article
Analytical Analysis of a Novel Flux Adjustable Permanent Magnet Eddy Current Coupling with Double-Sided Conductor
by Deshan Kong, Dazhi Wang, Yongliang Ni, Keling Song, Yufei Qi and Yanming Li
Actuators 2023, 12(3), 105; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12030105 - 25 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1542
Abstract
The permanent magnet eddy current coupling is widely used in fan and pump equipment as an energy-saving speed control device. The traditional coupling speed adjustment method occupies too much axial space, limiting its application in the process of upgrading old equipment. This paper [...] Read more.
The permanent magnet eddy current coupling is widely used in fan and pump equipment as an energy-saving speed control device. The traditional coupling speed adjustment method occupies too much axial space, limiting its application in the process of upgrading old equipment. This paper proposes a novel flux adjustable permanent magnet eddy current coupling with a double-sided conductor to reduce the coupling axial distance while increasing the coupling output torque. The relative angle between the permanent magnet rings is controlled to adjust the output torque, and the double-sided conductor structure is used to improve the output torque. The working principle of the proposed design is illustrated. An analytical model for estimating the regulation performance of the proposed structure is proposed, which introduces the regulated reluctance into the equivalent magnetic circuit method. Based on this model, the expressions for magnetic flux density, eddy current density, and output torque are established. Finally, the accuracy of the analytical model was verified by the 3D finite element method, and the parameter sensitivity analysis was performed. The analysis results show that this device can achieve a relatively large range of output torque regulation under the condition of a fixed air gap, and the output torque is greatly improved by adopting a double-sided conductor structure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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17 pages, 6409 KiB  
Article
A Novel Ultra-Low Power Consumption Electromagnetic Actuator Based on Potential Magnetic Energy: Theoretical and Finite Element Analysis
by M. Albertos-Cabanas, D. Lopez-Pascual, I. Valiente-Blanco, G. Villalba-Alumbreros and M. Fernandez-Munoz
Actuators 2023, 12(2), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12020087 - 16 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1904
Abstract
A novel concept of a rotary electromagnetic actuator for positioning with ultra-low power consumption is presented. The device is based on harnessing potential magnetic energy stored between permanent magnets facing each other with opposing magnetization polarities. When combined with an active electromagnetic control [...] Read more.
A novel concept of a rotary electromagnetic actuator for positioning with ultra-low power consumption is presented. The device is based on harnessing potential magnetic energy stored between permanent magnets facing each other with opposing magnetization polarities. When combined with an active electromagnetic control and passive stabilization system, the rotor of the device can switch between stable equilibrium positions in a fast way with a minimal fraction of the power and energy consumption of a traditional electromagnetic actuator. In this paper, a theoretical model, supported by finite element analysis results, is presented. The actuator has been designed in detail to operate as an optical filter wheel actuator. Calculations demonstrate that the device has the potential to provide a power-consumption saving of up to 86.6% and an energy consumption reduction of up to 58.6% with respect to a traditional filter wheel actuator. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Actuators)
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