Development of three-chamber micro pneumatic wobble motor





Pneumatic wobble motor is a new stepping motor, which realizes high torque and high resolution. The motor has advantages of existing pneumatic actuators, which are simple structure and lightweight.

In this study, pneumatic wobble motor is miniaturized to 6 mm by applying fine processing technology. Besides the number of pneumatic chambers are decreased from 6 to 3.



Driving principle and structure


Figure 1 shows the driving principle of wobble motor. Cylinder B is rolling on the inside of Cylinder A. Then the rotation center of Cylinder B is fixed on central axis. The motor, which has speed reduction function, drives on this principle. In the motor, Cylinder A is wobble ring, Cylinder B is rotor.


Fig.1 Driving principle of wobble motor


Figure 2 shows the structure of wobble motor. The motor consists of the following.

(1)    Wobble generator made of silicone rubber

(2)    Wobble ring with internal gear

(3)    Rotor with external gear


Fig.2 Structure of wobble motor



Fig.3 Wobble generator               Fig.4 Wobble ring and rotor


Rotor has an external gear, wobble ring has an internal gear (Fig.4). Wobble generator has three pneumatic chambers (Fig.3). Because the inner surface of wobble generator attaches on the outer surface of wobble ring, wobble ring does not rotate on its axis. When high pneumatic pressure is applied to the chambers of wobble generator sequentially, the orbital motion of wobble ring generates the rotation of rotor with gears engaged. Because the teeth number of rotor is one fewer than that of wobble ring, rotor rotates by tooth while wobble ring orbits a time.



Design of mechanism


The three-chamber micro pneumatic wobble motor is 6 mm in diameter, 5.6 mm in length, 0.46 g in weight. The output shaft is 1 mm in diameter. The teeth number of wobble ring is 36, and rotor 35. The module is 0.067, and the pressure angle is 60 deg. The tooth profile is designed based on involute.



Fig.5 Wobble motor    Fig.6 Wobble motor mechanism removing the cover     Fig.7 All parts of wobble motor




Evaluation experiment


This experiment is performed under the condition that output shaft is given rotational load directly. Applied 0.4MPa, the motor realizes maximum speed of 57rpm, ratcheting torque of 0.6 mNm, reduction ratio of 1/35, and resolution of 210step/rev. The calculation torque is less than 1.15 mNm. Figure 8 shows the relation between pneumatic pressure and torque of experiment and calculation at 10rpm.


Fig.8 Relation between pneumatic pressure and torque at 10rpm





The 6 three-chamber micro pneumatic wobble motor is developed by applying fine processing technology and fine modeling of rubber. The characters of this motor are listed below.


(1)    Compact size, lightweight, and simple structure

(2)    High torque

(3)    Stepping rotation of high resolution

(4)    Overload protection by ratcheting


Table 1 shows the comparison of a pneumatic wobble motor with an electromagnetic motor of same diameter. The table shows that the wobble motor can configure shorter assembly than existing electromagnetic motors.


Table 1 Comparison of a pneumatic wobble motor

with an electromagnetic motor



Reference list

 [1] Koichi SUZUMORIKohei HORI, A Study of Pneumatic Wobble Motors,

 Transactions of Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers, 64-662-C, pp236-241, 1998-6

[2] Kiyohide OKAMOTOKoichi SUZUMORITakefumi KANDAYoshiaki YAMADA,

Development of three-chamber micro pneumatic wobble motor,

The 6th. Machine Design and Tribology Division Meeting in JSME, No.06-6, pp295-297, 2006-5