Development of an Electrostatic Levitator for Containerless Processing

  1. Prof. J. V. Wood3,
  2. Prof. Dr. L. Schultz4 and
  3. Prof. Dr. D. M. Herlach5
  1. Tilo Meister1,
  2. Georg Lohoefer1 and
  3. Heinz Unbehauen2

Published Online: 25 APR 2006

DOI: 10.1002/3527607277.ch22

Materials Development and Processing - Bulk Amorphous Materials, Undercooling and Powder Metallurgy, Volume 8

Materials Development and Processing - Bulk Amorphous Materials, Undercooling and Powder Metallurgy, Volume 8

How to Cite

Meister, T., Lohoefer, G. and Unbehauen, H. (2000) Development of an Electrostatic Levitator for Containerless Processing, in Materials Development and Processing - Bulk Amorphous Materials, Undercooling and Powder Metallurgy, Volume 8 (eds J. V. Wood, L. Schultz and D. M. Herlach), Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim, FRG. doi: 10.1002/3527607277.ch22

Editor Information

  1. 3

    University of Nottingham, Division of Materials, Nottingham NG7 2RD, United Kingdom

  2. 4

    Institut für Festkorper- und Werkstofforschung Dresden e.V., Postfach 270016, 01171 Dresden, Germany

  3. 5

    Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V., Linder Hohe, 51170 Köln, Germany

Author Information

  1. 1

    DLR - Institute of Space Simulation, D-51170 Koeln, Germany

  2. 2

    Ruhr-University Bochum - Control Engineering Laboratory, D-44780 Bochum, Germany

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 25 APR 2006
  2. Published Print: 27 JUN 2000

Book Series:

  1. EUROMAT 99

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9783527301935

Online ISBN: 9783527607273

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Keywords:

  • electrostatic levitation facility;
  • construction;
  • application of an observer based control

Summary

The construction of an electrostatic levitation facility and the application of an observer based control are described. In contrast to electromagnetic or acoustic positioning, electrostatic levitation has some advantages: Various materials including metals, semiconductors and even insulators can be processed in containerless state. Heating and positioning is completely decoupled so that there are no restrictions in the range of sample temperature by the levitation mechanism. The employment of a feedback control system allows quiescent positioning of the sample. Finally, the whole sample is visible for non-contact diagnostic instruments.

The problem of possible unstable positioning during the heating process is intended to be solved by using an adaptive controller that is permanently adjusted to the changing behavior of the system. The idea is to estimate the charge of the sample and to use it as a switching variable for the adaptive controller.