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Magneto Rheological Fluid Technology

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.396.1 - 3.396.3



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Paper Authors

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John Marshall

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 0464 Magneto-Rheological Fluid Technology

John A. Marshall, PHD University of Southern Maine

Key Words: Rheology, fluid and mechanical power transmission, hydraulics.

Perquisite Knowledge: Elementary concepts of magnetism and flow.


To observe the unusual characteristics of magneto-rheological fluids. To understand how these fluids change from a liquid to a solid. To understand the potential power transmission advantages of these fluids.

Equipment and Supplies:

Two connected syringes containing magneto-rheological fluid and a strong magnet.


Magneto-rheological fluids change their flow characteristics when subjected to an electrical field. Response, which takes only milliseconds, is in the form of a progressive gelling that is proportional to field strength. With no field present, the fluid flows as freely as hydraulic oil (Korane, 1991).

Magneto-rheological fluids represent a technology that has the potential to widen the performance range of automated electromechanical and electrohydraulic equipment. Research and ongoing developments are refining this technology and experts predict an important future for these fluids.

Importance of Magneto-rheological Fluids:

Current automation capabilities are not advanced enough to build a robot that could play tennis. Even though cameras and computers could direct the robot towards a ball, robot's move in an awkward, lumbering fashion because conventional hydraulic valves cannot keep pace with the commands of the computerized controllers.

With magneto-rheological fluid technology, this type of response time is possible. This technology will allow devices that can operate instantly and without mechanical valves. Increased productivity and better product quality through more dependable and responsive automated equipment is just a small part of what this maturing technology can deliver.

Marshall, J. (1998, June), Magneto Rheological Fluid Technology Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/1-2--7269

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