PCB Motors • PCB Actuators • Flexible Actuators • Paper Actuators
Challenge: Engineering an Efficient Tiny Flat Motor
Our goal is to integrate these motors into tiny robots! This research started in 2018 while trying to build a simpler and smaller flying drone.
Printing the motor's windings directly on a robot's main circuit board will simplify the assembly, reduce manufacturing costs, and offer more repeatability. The motor's windings are also coreless, which is ideal for high-speed applications and will be enclosed in a thin solid-state board, eliminating any dust or debris.
This has turned into a six-year research journey, and we are now super close to releasing this motor to the maker community! Stay tuned!Watch Playlist
Challenge: Develop a Flat Magnetic Surface for Magnet Control
The first prototype was made in 2018. This showed magnets jumping and sliding on circuit board's flat surface. As time progressed, we continued testing other applications for PCB actuators, including flipdot pixels, linear actuators, sensors, speakers, and ferrofluid PCB electromagnets.
There is a new upgrade in the pipeline for these actuators. Stay tuned!
Challenge: Using Magnetic fields to Actuate Flexible Circuits
The idea behind this project was to generate a small magnetic field using a planar coil printed on a flexible circuit. This generated a weak magnetic field that could interact with a stronger magnet, creating a flapping motion.
We are currently working on improving this tech even further, to cover more applications and make it easier to use.Watch Playlist
Challenge: Using Magnetic fields to Actuate Paper
The goal of this project was to try and bring life to paper origami folds, by creating organic movements with hidden actuators.
It started by using conductive ink, to draw a spiral coil on a standard piece of paper. By applying a voltage, this coil managed to create a weak magnetic field that could be attracted to or repelled from magnets.
There are several limitations to this idea, such as the single-layer constraint and the high conductive resistance of the ink.
A better alternative to this concept was using a CoilPad, which can be sticked to the paper, creating the same effect but more effectively.Watch Playlist