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Rev Sci Instrum. 2014 Feb;85(2):025001. doi: 10.1063/1.4862470.

A novel tape spring hinge mechanism for quasi-static deployment of a satellite deployable using shape memory alloy.

Author information

  • 1Department of Mechanical Engineering, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), 305-701, 291 Daehak-ro, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon, South Korea.
  • 2Fuel Performance Testing Section, Korea Electric Power Corporation Nuclear Fuel (KEPCO NF), 305-353, 242, Daedeok-daero 989beon-gil, yuseong-gu, Daejeon, South Korea.
  • 3Satellite Structure Team, Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI), 305-806, 169-84 Gwahak-ro, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon, South Korea.


A tape spring hinge (TSH) is a typical flexible deployment device for a satellite and becomes frequently used due to its simplicity, lightweight, low cost, and high deployment reliability. However, the performance of a TSH is quite limited due to trade-offs among deployed stiffness, deployment torque, and latch-up shock despite its many advantages. In this study, a novel conceptual design that circumvents the trade-offs among functional requirements (FRs) is proposed. The trade-offs are obviated by a newly proposed shape memory alloy damper that converts the deployment behavior of a conventional TSH from unstable dynamic to stable quasi-static. This makes it possible to maximize the deployment stiffness and deployment torque of a conventional TSH, which are larger-the-better FR, without any increase in the latch-up shock. Therefore, in view of conceptual design, it is possible to design a highly improved TSH that has much higher deployed stiffness and deployment torque compared to a conventional TSH while minimizing latch-up shock and deployment unstableness. Detailed design was performed through response surface method and finite element analysis. Finally, a prototype was manufactured and tested in order to verify its performance (four point, deployment torque, and latch-up shock tests). The test results confirm the feasibility of the proposed TSH mechanism.

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