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MEAM Seminar: “Multi-Stable Morphing Structures”
November 5 at 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Variable geometry “morphing” structures can achieve different geometric configurations through overall deformation, but usually many actuators are required for shape control. In this talk we consider a particular type of morphing structure that is able to switch configuration with only a few actuators. It is based on the concept of embedding by design local energy minima in the configuration space of the structure. A general bar and plate structure connected by frictionless hinges can be made locally stable in a set of chosen target configurations by attaching extensional and rotational springs to the structure. The unstressed lengths and angles of the springs, as well as their stiffnesses, are the design parameters. We present a general theory to formulate the required equilibrium and stability conditions. Solutions of these equations provide specific values of the spring properties that correspond to local energy minima in all of the target configurations. Applications to reconfigurable antennas are also presented.
Joyce and Kenta Kresa Professor of Aerospace and Civil Engineering, Division of Engineering and Applied Science, California Institute of Technology
Sergio Pellegrino received the Laurea degree in civil engineering from the University of Naples, Italy in 1982, and the Ph.D. degree in structural mechanics from the University of Cambridge, U.K. in 1986. He served on the faculty of the University of Cambridge from 1985 to 2007 and he is currently the Joyce and Kent Kresa Professor of Aerospace and Civil Engineering and a Co-Director of the Space Solar Power Project at the California Institute of Technology, and a Jet Propulsion Laboratory Senior Research Scientist. His research focuses on the mechanics of lightweight structures. With his students and collaborators, he is currently working on novel concepts for future space telescopes, spacecraft antennas, and space-based solar power systems. Dr Pellegrino is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, a Fellow of AIAA and a Chartered Structural Engineer. He is President of the International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures (IASS) and has been the founding chair of the AIAA Spacecraft Structures Technical Committee.