A high-displacement and high-force actuator.
NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a new linear actuator from liquid crystalline elastomer material. The feedback-controlled flexible actuator is the first actuator that is based on a polymer that can produce high displacement and high force. The compact actuator can produce bidirectional response for hundreds of cycles. NASA Langley developed the new actuator for controlling the position of optical components. It may also serve as an alternative to solenoid or hydraulic valves for certain applications.