Special Issue "Miniature and Micro-Actuators"

A special issue of Actuators (ISSN 2076-0825).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Jose Luis Sanchez-Rojas
Website
Guest Editor
Microsystems, Actuators and Sensors Lab, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, 13071, Ciudad Real, Spain
Interests: MEMS/NEMS; Piezoelectric microsystems; integrated sensors and transducers; miniaturization of instrumentation for applications in chemistry, food technology, robotics, biotechnology and IoT
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In this Special issue, a wide range of topics will be covered, including the design, fabrication, characterization, packaging, and system integration or final applications of miniature actuators, ranging from the centimeter down to the micrometer scale. The main focus of the issue is miniaturization, regardless the materials employed or the device principle. Furthermore, basic as well as more application-oriented research topics are considered, such as:

  • Material research oriented to actuator microsystems: polymers, organic materials, piezoelectric materials, nitrides, shape memory alloys, thermoelectric materials, other functional thin film materials, thick and thin films;
  • Processes and fabrication technologies for miniaturized actuator systems: deposition techniques, lithography, etching and ablation techniques, hybrid technologies, inkjet or 3D printing;
  • Functional surfaces in actuator microdevices: hydrophobic/hydrophilic functionalization, tribological functions, biomimetic surfaces;
  • Modelling and simulation of actuator microsystems from packaged systems down to device level, and CAD tools;
  • Electrostatic, piezoelectric, mechanical, thermal, acoustic, magnetic or any physical actuation principles;
  • Optical MEMS (MOEMS), optoelectronic actuators;
  • Chemical and bioactuators, and artificial muscles;
  • Calibration, characterization and testing techniques for miniature and micro-actuators;
  • Reliability, failure analysis, degradation mechanisms, life time prediction;
  • System integration, interface electronics, packaging and assembly, 3D integration techniques, micromechatronics, and microrobotics;
  • Applications and markets, monitoring, control and measurement systems based on miniaturized/microactuators.

Prof. Dr. Jose Luis Sanchez-Rojas
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

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 quarterly 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 1000 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

  • Materials for microactuators 
  • Processes and fabrication of miniaturized actuators
  • Modelling and simulation 
  • Actuation principles micromechanisms and geometry scaling 
  • Characterization and testing techniques for micro-actuators 
  • Final applications of miniaturized or micro-actuator devices and systems

Published Papers (3 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Presentation, Modeling and Experiments of an Electrostatic Actuator Based Catom for Programmable Matter
Actuators 2020, 9(2), 43; https://doi.org/10.3390/act9020043 - 04 Jun 2020
Abstract
Nowadays, the concept of programmable matter paves the way for promising applications such as reshaping an object to test different configurations, modeling or rapid prototyping. Based on elementary modules, such matter can be arranged and disassembled easily according to the needs of the [...] Read more.
Nowadays, the concept of programmable matter paves the way for promising applications such as reshaping an object to test different configurations, modeling or rapid prototyping. Based on elementary modules, such matter can be arranged and disassembled easily according to the needs of the designers. Several solutions have been proposed to implement this concept. Most of them are based on modular self-reconfigurable robotics (SMR) that can work together and move relatively to one another in order to change their configuration. Achieving such behavior requires to solve some technological challenges in particular module’s geometry and actuation. In this paper, we build and develop a proof of concept for a catom based on electrostatic actuation. The modeling and analysis of the actuator functioning as catom is given after a comparison of various possible actuation. Simulations as well as experiments validations are afterwards carried out to confirm and demonstrate the efficiency of electrostatic actuation to achieve latching capabilities of the proposed catom. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Miniature and Micro-Actuators)
Open AccessArticle
Development of Haptic Stylus for Manipulating Virtual Objects in Mobile Devices
Actuators 2020, 9(2), 30; https://doi.org/10.3390/act9020030 - 14 Apr 2020
Abstract
In mobile devices, the screen size limits conveyance of immersive experiences; haptic feedback coupled with visual feedback is expected to have a better effect to maximize the level of immersion. Therefore, this paper presents a miniature tunable haptic stylus based on magnetorheological (MR) [...] Read more.
In mobile devices, the screen size limits conveyance of immersive experiences; haptic feedback coupled with visual feedback is expected to have a better effect to maximize the level of immersion. Therefore, this paper presents a miniature tunable haptic stylus based on magnetorheological (MR) fluids to provide kinesthetic information to users. The designed stylus has a force generation, force transmission, and housing part; moreover, in the stylus, all three operating modes of MR fluids contribute to the haptic actuation to produce a wide range of resistive force generated by MR fluids in a limited size, thereby providing a variety of pressing sensations to users. A universal testing machine was constructed to evaluate haptic performance of the proposed haptic stylus, whose resistive force was measured with the constructed setup as a function of pressed depth and input current, and by varying the pressed depth and pressing speed. Under maximum input voltage, the stylus generates a wide range of resistive force from 2.33 N to 27.47 N, whereas under maximum pressed depth it varied from 1.08 N to 27.47 N with a corresponding change in voltage input from 0 V to 3.3 V. Therefore, the proposed haptic stylus can create varied haptic sensations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Miniature and Micro-Actuators)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Piezoelectric Actuators for Tactile and Elasticity Sensing
Actuators 2020, 9(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/act9010021 - 19 Mar 2020
Abstract
Piezoelectric actuators have achieved remarkable progress in many fields, being able to generate forces or displacements to perform scanning, tuning, manipulating, tactile sensing or delivering functions. In this work, two piezoelectric PZT (lead zirconate titanate) bimorph actuators, with different tip contact materials, were [...] Read more.
Piezoelectric actuators have achieved remarkable progress in many fields, being able to generate forces or displacements to perform scanning, tuning, manipulating, tactile sensing or delivering functions. In this work, two piezoelectric PZT (lead zirconate titanate) bimorph actuators, with different tip contact materials, were applied as tactile sensors to estimate the modulus of elasticity, or Young’s modulus, of low-stiffness materials. The actuators were chosen to work in resonance, taking advantage of a relatively low resonant frequency of the out-of-plane vibrational modes, associated with a convenient compliance, proven by optical and electrical characterization. Optical measurements performed with a scanning laser vibrometer confirmed that the displacement per applied voltage was around 437 nm/V for the resonator with the lower mass tip. In order to determine the modulus of elasticity of the sensed materials, the stiffness coefficient of the resonator was first calibrated against a force sensor, obtaining a value of 1565 ± 138 N/m. The actuators were mounted in a positioning stage to allow approximation and contact of the sensor tip with a set of target materials. Electrical measurements were performed using the resonator as part of an oscillator circuit, and the modulus of elasticity of the sample was derived from the contact resonant frequency curve of the cantilever–sample system. The resulting sensor is an effective, low-cost and non-destructive solution compared to atomic force microscopy (AFM) techniques. Materials with different modulus of elasticity were tested and the results compared to values reported in the literature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Miniature and Micro-Actuators)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop