Research that includes: 

  • Photosynthetic fuel cell
  • Surface-tension and osmotic driven micropower sources
  • Silicon-based rotary engine power system
  • Proximity power sensor for energy management

APP45: MEMS Rotary Engine Power System / Engine Fluid Management System

Brenda Haendler

A MEMS fuel vaporization and injection system for the Wankel engine is being designed, fabricated and characterized with the long-range goal of incorporating this system as the engine’s intake manifold. To attain this goal it is essential to gain an understanding of microscale evaporation, namely the phase eruption phenomena, of liquid hydrocarbon fuels in microchannels.

Project end date: 07/30/06

APP98: Thermal Analysis and Design of ARCTIC Cryo Cooler

Christopher Hogue

To develop the thermal models necessary for the design, analysis, and fabrication of the heat transfer components of the ARCTIC Cryo Cooler.

Project end date: 07/30/06

APP95: ARCTIC: A Rotary Compressor Thermally Insulated microCooler

Josh Heppner

To manufacturer a packaged & fully integrated micro refrigeration system capable of cooling down to negative 25 degrees Celsius.

Project end date: 01/24/07

BPN341: Plastic Energy Harvester

YiinKuen Fuh

This project aims to develop a plastic energy harvesting system by utilizing piezoelectric ceramics to scavenge energy from natural motions for self-powered sensor applications. Plastic molding processes will be employed to achieve a low cost and high reliability/repeatability manufacturing process. Several piezoelectric configurations such as uni-morphs(THUNDER?), bimorphs as well as multilayers will be explored with particular focus on power maximization and highly-reliable structures in order to survive harsh environment. The ultimate goal will be the development of low-cost,...

BPN339: Solid Propellant Micro-Thruster

Erika Parra

The objective of this research is to design, fabricate, and test a one-time deployment, high efficiency, milli- to sub-millimeter scale micro-thruster.

Project end date: 07/25/07

APP90: MEMS Electro-magnetic Valve-Process Development

Eri Takahashi

The objective of this research is to develop a valve with an actuator for fuel delivery system for a 1500mm3 Wankel engine that operates from 5000 to 35000 RPM. The engine is designed to operate with multi-fuel, such as Kerosene, Methanol, Gasoline and Diesel. This will require flow control over the mass flow rate range of 5 to 20 mg/sec. Integration into a Silicon engine end plate is desired for one particular engine application, but the project will deliver a series of prototypes that will be used for testing in other engine applications.

Project end date: 07/30...

BPN453: MEMS Power: Fuel Flexible Engine for Portable Power Generation

Andrew Cardes

The aim of this project is to develop a portable power generation system capable of utilizing several types of fuel. The system is based on the Wankel rotary engine, which will be optimized for true fuel flexibility through improvements in sealing and ignition. The Rotary Engine Power System, or REPS, is designed to be MEMS-enabled and will be used as a testbed for devices managing fuel delivery and mechanical characterization.

Project end date: 07/30/08

APP92: MEMS Fuel Flow Control Valve with a Magneto-Static Linear Actuator

Sang-Won Park

Development effort of an electronically controlled, reduced scale, magneto-static, metering fuel valve system, which consists of a magneto-static linear actuator and a ‘hole-in-the-wall’ valve, is ongoing. The magneto-static actuator is designed to accommodate approximate 5 mg/sec of fuel flow (220 W) by moving a linearly actuated armature in a planar micro-valve. A Step motion of the actuator accurately controls amount of fuel stream with the valve.

Project end date: 07/30/08

BPN426: Flat Micro Heat Pipes for Cooling Applications

Armon Mahajerin

The purpose of this project is to develop novel, flat (less than 1 mm thick) micro-machined heat pipe devices that may be implemented directly onto chips for cooling purposes. Using silicon to pattern and etch the microchannels for the heat pipe mechanism facilitates the integration of this technology by eliminating thermal mismatch between the chip and cooling device. The primary goal of using a heat pipe-based design versus the conventional heat sinks (usually fins) is to greatly improve the effective thermal conductivity of the cooling apparatus. This project currently is in the...

BPN497: MEMS Power: Design and Characterization of a MEMS Piezoelectric Bi-Chevron Actuator

Michael S. Sheppy

The long range goal of this research is to design and characterize a microscale piezoelectric bi-chevron actuator for application to advanced printing technology (supercritical carbon-dioxide valve, SCV). The bi-chevron actuator is made out of aluminum nitride (AlN), a piezoelectric material. The actuators will be designed to meet the force and displacement requirements of the SCV. Milestones for this project include computer modeling, static and dynamic testing, and characterization of displacement performance with respect to the residual stresses in the AlN film.