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Shape memory alloy microactuation of tf-LIFEs: Preliminary results

: Bossi, S.; Menciassi, A.; Koch, K.P.; Hoffmann, K.-P.; Yoshida, K.; Dario, P.; Micera, S.


IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering BME 54 (2007), Nr.6, S.1115-1120
ISSN: 0018-9294
ISSN: 1558-2531
Fraunhofer IBMT ()

In this paper, a new approach aimed at improving the performance of intraneural longitudinal interfaces (tf-LIFEs) with the peripheral nervous system (PNS) is presented. Our goal is to develop a movable interface by embedding microactuators into the flexible tf-LIFEs structure. In this way, the optimal position of the electrical contacts can be searched inside the PNS and lost connections with neural cells could be replaced. For this purpose a thin film of shape memory alloy (tf-SMA) was selected. A multisegmented SMA was realized and embedded between two polyimide thin films in order to simulate the tf-LIFE structure. Thermal evaluation, fabrication procedure, the first characterization and preliminary experimental results of the new movable interface are described in the manuscript. A total controllable stroke of about 10 mu m was obtained for the presented prototype.