|Imbalance exists in all rotating machinery. Balancing is usually an expensive and laborious procedure and an automatic rotor balancing system would be beneficial for engine and power generation applications. Magnetostrictive and magnetic shape memory materials change shape depending on the magnetic field applied across them. It has been theoretically shown that it is possible to move small block of such material a significant distance within an appropriate slot using an inchworm mechanism.
The research required is to understand if this is physically possible and then to utilise this effect on a rotating structure to develop an automatic rotor balancing system. It is likely that a number of different inchworm motors will have to be used simultaneously. Finite element modelling, numerical simulation, micro and macro-scale dynamic testing will be necessary.