Hybrid Tunable Magnet Actuator

Design of a Linearized Force-Flux Tunable Magnet Actuator

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Abstract

Recent studies have shown that tunable magnets (soft permanent magnets) can significantly reduce Joule heating in electromagnetic actuators. To achieve high motion accuracy and repeatability, this article proposes a novel actuator design with a linearized force-flux relation. In prior designs of variable reluctance tunable magnet actuators, the force and flux are related quadratically via a C-shaped actuator. Hybrid tunable magnet actuators based on biased fluxes are developed using lumped parameter models. Using finite element analysis, it is shown that the force-flux relation is symmetric linear around the mid position depending on the magnetic flux direction in the magnet. Within a position range of ±500 μm and a force range of ±20 N, the linear fit produces a negligible error of 0.08 N. Finally, this linear relationship is validated with a 0.03-N error in an experimental setup.