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Microfabricated microengine with constant rotation rate

United States Patent

5,955,801
September 21, 1999
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Sandia National Laboratories - Visit the Intellectual Property Management and Licensing Website
A microengine uses two synchronized linear actuators as a power source and converts oscillatory motion from the actuators into constant rotational motion via direct linkage connection to an output gear or wheel. The microengine provides output in the form of a continuously rotating output gear that is capable of delivering drive torque at a constant rotation to a micromechanism. The output gear can have gear teeth on its outer perimeter for directly contacting a micromechanism requiring mechanical power. The gear is retained by a retaining means which allows said gear to rotate freely. The microengine is microfabricated of polysilicon on one wafer using surface micromachining batch fabrication.
Romero; Louis A. (Albuquerque, NM), Dickey; Fred M. (Albuquerque, NM)
Sandia Corporation (Albuquerque, NM)
08/ 982,098
December 1, 1997
This invention was made with Government support under Contract DE-AC04-94AL85000 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.