Generalized Actuator Concept for the Study of the Efficiency of Energetic Systems

[+] Author and Article Information
B. Seth

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, Mass. 01609

W. C. Flowers

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Mass. 02139

J. Dyn. Sys., Meas., Control 112(2), 233-238 (Jun 01, 1990) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2896130 History: Received June 01, 1987; Revised January 01, 1989; Online March 17, 2008


Energy efficiency is an important consideration for the success of many portable as well as other energetic systems. One way to improve the efficiency of an engineering system is through regeneration. A regenerative actuator returns some of the otherwise dissipated energy required for passive operation. A regenerative actuator can plow back part of energy normally lost in the passive operation of the actuator into useful energy. The amount of regenerated energy will depend on the dissipation characteristics of the actuator and the regenerative potential of the process itself. In order to analyze regeneration a bond graph model of a generalized regenerative actuator is developed. The regenerative potential is analyzed in the power phase plane trajectory. By superimposing such a trajectory with the dissipation characteristics of the actuator, a framework is developed to study the feasibility of regeneration. A possible way of optimizing the regenerated energy is also considered in some depth.

Copyright © 1990 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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