Basics And Types In Thermal Actuator Design
Actuators are various system components that move and control mechanisms or systems. Actuators require control signals and energy sources. Operation in this actuator is after receiving a control signal, the actuator will respond by converting energy into mechanical motion. The control system can be a mechanical or electrical system that is based on software, humans, or other types of inputs. In the thermal actuator design, there are thermal sensitive materials used in thermal actuators to respond to temperature fluctuations. This causes the piston component of the actuator to move. These materials can be engineered to balance the growth adjusted to the rising temperature. Another response is to push the piston out of the actuator. When the thermal actuator is exposed to a decrease in temperature, the thermal sensitive materials in the contract can retract the piston position.
Thermal actuators are also known as a stroke. The term stroke refers to the distance that the piston travels out of the linear actuator. Many thermal actuators have pistons that can extend between 0.015 inches and 0.500 inches. Thermal actuators are made to react to temperatures between 86 degrees Fahrenheit or 30 degrees Celsius and temperatures 572 degrees Fahrenheit or 300 degrees Celsius.
Actuator Type With Function
Thermal actuator designs have various types and functions respectively. The following are various types and functions of actuators:
- Hydraulic actuator
Hydraulic actuators consist of cylindrical motor components that use hydraulic power to facilitate mechanical operations that provide output in the form of oscillation, linear or rotatory motion. Hydraulic actuators will exert considerable strength. In the hydraulic cylinder consists of hollow cylindrical tube components that make the piston can glide in the operation of the system. In the hydraulic actuator, there are single acting and double acting. Single action will be when the piston moves only in one direction, so the spring will be used to give a back blow in the piston. Whereas, double acting is used when pressure is applied to each side of the piston, the difference in pressure between the two sides of the piston will make the piston move to one side or the other side. This type of thermal actuator design is as follows:
- Hydraulic actuators can maintain a sizeable force;
- Limited acceleration of the equator will also limit its use;
- Hydraulic actuators convert mechanical movements into linear motion;
- The response given is a circular or oscillating motion;
- Hydraulic actuators consist of fluid motors with hydraulic power to assist mechanical operations;
- Hydraulic actuators can be applied in the vehicle.
- Pneumatic Actuator
Pneumatic actuators convert the energy produced by high pressure or vacuum compressed air into linear or rotary motion. Pneumatic actuators are responsible for turning pressure into strength. The advantages of pneumatic actuators are as follows:
- Pneumatic energy responds quickly to start signals and stop signals;
- Save backup resources for its operations;
- Pneumatic actuators produce great strength;
This pneumatic actuator can be applied to pneumatic brakes that are very responsive to small changes in pressure. Another example application is the Rack and Pinion actuators that are used to control pipe valves. Different thermal actuator designs also have different functions.
- Mechanical Actuators
Mechanical actuators consist of pulleys, gears, rails, chains, and supporting devices. This mechanical actuator will provide linear motion. One example of the application of this mechanical actuator is the crankshaft.
- Electric Actuator
The electric actuator provides the actuation or torque force used to start the motor. This type of actuator converts electrical energy into mechanical torque, the electric motor remains the main driving force by providing torque to operate the hydraulic accumulator. Following are some explanations about thermal actuator design with electric actuator types:
- Electric actuators are supported by motors that can convert electrical energy into mechanical torque;
- Electrical energy is used to drive equipment that controls the flow of water in pipes and responds to electrical signals;
- Electric actuators have low prices;
- Electric actuators can be used for a solenoid-based electric bell-ringing mechanism.
- Thermal Or Magnetic Actuators
Thermal actuators can be driven by thermal and magnetic energy applications. The advantage of this type of actuator is that it is compact, economical, lightweight, and offers high power density. An example of a thermal actuator is the thermostat. The thermal actuator design is adapted to the type of actuator.