Image Number 14 for United States Patent #6808053.
A torque transfer mechanism is provided for controlling the magnitude of a clutch engagement force exerted on a multi-plate clutch assembly that is operably disposed between a first rotary and a second rotary member. The torque transfer mechanism includes a clutch actuator assembly for generating and applying a clutch engagement force on the clutch assembly. The clutch actuator assembly includes an electric motor/brake unit, a torque/force conversion mechanism, and a force amplification mechanism. The motor/brake unit can be operated in either of a motor mode or a brake mode to cause bi-directional linear movement of an output member of the torque/force conversion mechanism. The thrust force generated by the torque/force conversion mechanism is increased by the force amplification mechanism with the resultant clutch engagement force applied to the clutch assembly. The dual mode feature of the electric motor/brake unit significantly reduces the power requirements.