Design of a 2 DOFs Mini Hollow Joint Actuated with SMA Wires

Luigi Manfredi (Lead / Corresponding author), Alfred Cuschieri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
141 Downloads (Pure)


Shape memory alloys (SMAs) are smart materials used in robotics because of its light weight and high force-to-weight ratio. The low energy efficiency, up to 5%, has limited their use for large actuators. However, they have shown advantages in the design of mini-robots because of the limited volume required for the actuation system. The present study reports the design and construction of a mini compliant joint (MCJ) with a 2 degrees of freedom (DOFs) intersecting axis. The MCJ
prototype has a 20 mm external diameter surrounding a cavity of 8 mm, weighs 2 g, is 20 mm high and can perform an angle rotation of 30◦ in less than 260 ms. It uses SMA NiTi wires in antagonistic configuration and springs to reduce the energy consumption and minimise heat production. The design methods and experimental results of the manufactured prototype are reported and discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2014
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 17 Oct 2018


  • 2 DOFs compliant joint
  • SMA wires in antagonistic configuration
  • robotics


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