A mechanical device that controls the flow of fluid in a micro-scopic channel.

Microvalves, which are composed of such components as actuators and diaphragms made of silicon, etc., control the flow in micro-scopic channels (narrower than several micrometers). For example, a gas flow control valve is composed of a stacked piezoelectric actuator and a diaphragm. To control high-viscosity liquids like blood, it is necessary to enlarge the channel and increase the stroke of the valve drive. A mechanism using a shape-memory-alloy coil and a bias spring has been developed experimentally for this purpose, as well as a mechanism that alters the channel by an electrostatic, magnetic, or piezoelectric actuator.


[Related Terms]
Diaphram structure, Piezoelectric actuator, Shape memory alloy actuator