Smart composite material system with sensor, actuator and processor functions - A model of holding and releasing a ball

Ryutaro Oishi, Hitoshi Yoshida, Hideki Nagai, Ya Xu, Byung Koog Jang

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


A composite material system has been constructed as an intelligent material or a smart material, which has three functions of sensor, actuator and processor. As an example to show functions of the composite material system, a model of holding and releasing an object, e.g. baseball, was constructed by using a carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) plate, two wires of Ti-Ni shape memory alloy (SMA), an optical sensor, a temperature sensor and a simple processor unit. Each SMA wire, which is 1 mm in a diameter and 120 mm in a length, has been memorized to be a semi-circle shape. Two SMA wires are sandwiched between a CFRP plate and an elastic rubber to form a shape of arch. These are combined with rubber glue to construct a composite material. A nichrome wire is rolled on each SMA wire in order to heat the SMA wire. The SMA heating provides a transformation of the composite material to be a closed shape of arch, and the composite material holds a baseball. After spontaneously cooling of the SMA wires, the composite material becomes to be an open shape of arch, and then the baseball is released. The composite material has a characteristic of reversible response with respect to temperature. A simple processor receives signals from the optical and temperature sensors and handles providing a current on the nichrome wires for SMA heating. The model can hold and release a baseball with consideration. Examples of the considerations are to recognize an existence of a baseball, to count the number of baseballs, to decide to hold a baseball, and so on. A calculation of the holding force for this model was performed, and that is consistent with the measurement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)326-333
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes
EventSmart Structures and Materials 2002: Smart Structures and Integrated Systems - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Mar 18 2002Mar 21 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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