Monopropellant Powered Actuation

Energetic deficiencies in current power supply and actuation technology limit significantly the utility of human-scale self-powered robots.  Such deficiencies have motivated the development of alternative actuators that have the potential to deliver improved energetic characteristics relative to battery-powered servomotors. The Center for Intelligent Mechatronics has developed several embodiments of liquid-monopropellant-powered actuators, which have been demonstrated to provide significantly improved power density (relative to battery-powered electric-motor-actuated approaches, and also improved energy density. Specifically, recent publications have demonstrated an order of magnitude improvement (relative to battery/motor systems), based on an energetic figure of merit which combines the actuation system power and energy densities.