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US Patent Issued to Humphrey Products on Sept. 10 for "Actuator and Valve Assembly" (Michigan Inventors)

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 10 -- United States Patent no. 8,528,597, issued on Sept. 10, was assigned to Humphrey Products Co. (Kalamazoo, Mich.).

"Actuator and valve assembly" was invented by Mark William Friedman (Portage, Mich.) and Robert Brian Knepple (Kalamazoo, Mich.).

According to the abstract* released by the U.

S. Patent & Trademark Office: "An actuator for selectively moving a part relative to another part includes a shape memory wire, which contracts when heated. One portion of the shape memory wire is fixed to a first body, and another portion of the shape memory wire is coupled to a second body, which is movable relative to the first body. When heated the shape memory wire contracts and moves the second body in a direction of travel from a first position relative to the first body toward a second position. …

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