SUNConferences, COMA '13

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Polyurethane Micro-Gripper Utilizing Van-Der-Waals’ Forces in Micro-Assembly
Stephen Matope, Andre F Van der Merwe, Theuns Dirkse van Schalkwyk, Sebastian Read, Matthew J. Arderne, Michael Mueller

Last modified: 2013-08-21


Handling of micro-parts with dimensions of 10 mm x 10 mm and below is a common issue for electronics and sensor or actuator manufacturing. Particularly if the parts are very thin compared to the lateral dimensions, for example less than 0.3 mm for a 10 mm x 10 mm part, care has to be taken handling those parts. In case of piezoceramics, as used for sensors and actuators, common mechanical and vacuum grippers apply high local contact pressures inducing the risk of micro-fractures. Given this background, this paper provides a new approach for handling piezoceramic micro parts with one handling system and one gripper. This gripper is a polyurethane micro-gripper which is soft and only actuated by van-der-Waals’ forces. Unlike conventional micro-grippers, polyurethane micro-grippers do neither require power supply nor pressurized air.


Polyurethane gripper, van-der-Waals’ force, micro-assembly. 

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