Accommodating Thickness in Origami-Based Deployable Arrays


Describes the design of a flasher composed of thick panels and membrane hinges for deployable solar arrays and related applications.

A Mathematica file that accompanies the article is attached.

The purpose of this work is to develop approaches to accommodate thickness in origami- based deployable arrays with a high ratio of deployed-to-stowed diameter. The origami flasher model serves as a basis for demonstrating the approach. A thickness- accommodating mathematical model is developed to describe the flasher. Practical modi- fications are presented for the creation of physical models and two options are proposed: allowing the panels to fold along their diagonals or applying a membrane backing with specified widths at fold-lines. The mathematical model and hardware modifications are employed to create several physical models. The results are general and apply to a range of applications. An example is provided by the application that motivated the work: a deployable solar array for space applications. The model is demonstrated in hardware as a 1/20th scale prototype with a ratio of deployed-to-stowed diameter of 9.2 (or 1.25 m deployed outer diameter to 0.136 m stowed outer diameter). [DOI: 10.1115/1.4025372]
Zirbel, Shannon A., Robert J. Lang, Mark W. Thomson, Deborah A. Sigel, Phillip E. Walkemeyer, Brian P. Trease, Spencer P. Magleby, and Larry L. Howell. "Accommodating thickness in origami-based deployable arrays." Journal of Mechanical Design 135, no. 11 (2013): 111005.