Monday, April 12, 2010

US Patent 7692361 - Nanoparticle composite actuator

Microactuators are important components to numerous applications such as inkjet printheads, optical switches, and medical implants. This patent from Hitachi teaches a new type of microactuator using organic material having embedded carbon nanoparticles which operates based on thermal expansion. Claim 1 reads:

1. An actuator comprising:

a molding product of a material comprising a mixture of fine conductive particles and a polymer material, the material expanding or contracting by electric supply; and

at least two electrodes for electric supply disposed on both side portions of the molding product which expands or contracts.