Browse Publications Technical Papers 2007-01-3129

Ultra High Efficiency and Reliability in New Generation Pump 2007-01-3129

Piezoelectric pumps offer great potential as an alternative electro-mechanical actuator and as a hydraulic power source. As an actuator, this pump may provide solutions to control system problems in robotics, process control, bioengineering, advanced remote control (telepresence), and automation. As a hydraulic power source they may be useful for active thermal cooling, fluid management, and metering pumps in life support applications. The benefits of piezoelectric based pumps and actuators include increased efficiency, self-cooling, lightweight, compact size, high mechanical reliability, positive displacement, self-priming, no lubrication, no vibration, and rotational inertia.
Oceaneering Space Systems (OSS) has produced two successful piezoelectric pump prototypes. The first one is a double-acting diaphragm pump driven by piezoelectric PolyVinylidine DiFluoride (PVDF) polymer. The second prototype is a Lead Zirconate Titanate (PZT) thermoplastic laminated pump. The thermoplastic material acts as a dielectric material between the layers of PZT; and adds durability to the final PZT-thermoplastic composite.
Based on the mathematical characterization and fabrication technology developed during the course of past work, it is now possible to envision improved design concepts. This paper provides an overview of the past work, describes improved design concepts for new generation of piezoelectric based “capacitive motors” and pumps, and outlines the benefits of the proposed technology in several applications relevant to the Constellation Program, including predicted system efficiencies near 90%.


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