The latest news from academia, regulators
research labs and other things of interest
Posted: Aug 05, 2012
New Piezo Bimorph Actuators are Smaller, Require Lower Voltage, by PI Ceramic
(Nanowerk News) Bimorph piezo actuators achieve a mechanical amplification effect by different layers expanding at different rates. The new actuators are co-fired, i.e. they are monolithic and all layers are produced in one step.
They achieve long travel ranges with motion to 2 mm and nanometer resolution. Response times are in the millisecond range, important for fast switching or scanning applications. Due to the monolithic design they provide excellent mechanical stability, low operating voltage and can be operated at temperatures to 150°C.
Typical applications of bimorph piezos
Pneumatic valves, fast optical switches, beam deflection, micropositioning acceleration sensors, medical device engineering, semiconductor manufacturing, aerospace, bio-nanotechnology and automotive.
The piezo bimorph actuators can be factory equipped with position feedback sensors for closed-loop operation. Controllers, OEM driver electronics / piezo power supplies are also available.
Variety of Different Shapes, Even with Central Aperture
The new bimorph actuators come in a variety of standard and custom shapes, from rectangular stripes to triangles, circular disks with optional aperture etc.
Compact versions with only a few millimeters in size can be produced.
Piezoceramic Actuator Basics
A piezo actuator is a ceramic device that converts electrical energy into mechanical energy or motion with high precision, speed and force. There is no friction and wear involved resulting in a device with very high motion resolution and virtually unlimited lifetime.
Two basic types of piezo actuators are common: bulk / stacked / glued discrete actuators and cofired (multilayer, monolithic) actuators. Ceramic, Physik Instrumente's electroceramics division manufactures both types and is set up for custom designs even in smaller production runs at a competitive price.