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Sensors 2018, 18(9), 3126; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18093126

Fast and Stable Ionic Electroactive Polymer Actuators with PEDOT:PSS/(Graphene–Ag-Nanowires) Nanocomposite Electrodes

1
Department of Nanoscience and Engineering, Center for Nano Manufacturing, Inje University, Gimhae 50834, Korea
2
Department of Military Information Science, Gyeongju University, Gyeongju 38065, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 July 2018 / Revised: 23 August 2018 / Accepted: 14 September 2018 / Published: 16 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Graphene Based Sensors and Electronics)
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Abstract

Ionic electroactive polymer (IEAP) actuators that are driven by electrical stimuli have been widely investigated for use in practical applications. However, conventional electrodes in IEAP actuators have a serious drawback of poor durability under long-term actuation in open air, mainly because of leakage of the inner electrolyte and hydrated cations through surface cracks on the metallic electrodes. To overcome this problem, a top priority is developing new high-performance ionic polymer actuators with graphene electrodes that have superior mechanical, electrical conductivity, and electromechanical properties. However, the task is made difficultby issues such as the low electrical conductivity of graphene (G). The percolation network of silver nanowires (Ag-NWs) is believed to enhance the conductivity of graphene, while poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):polystyrene sulfonate (PEDOT:PSS), which exhibits excellent stability under ambient conditions, is expected to improve the actuation performance of IEAP actuators. In this study, we developed a very fast, stable, and durable IEAP actuator by employing electrodes made of a nanocomposite comprising PEDOT:PSS and graphene–Ag-NWs (P/(G–Ag)). The cost-effective P/(G–Ag) electrodes with high electrical conductivity displayed a smooth surface resulting from the PEDOT:PSS coating, which prevented oxidation of the surface upon exposure to air, and showedstrong bonding between the ionic polymer and the electrode surface. More interestingly, the proposed IEAP actuator based on the P/G–Ag electrode can be used in active biomedical devices, biomimetic robots, wearable electronics, and flexible soft electronics. View Full-Text
Keywords: ionic electroactive polymer actuators; graphene; silver nanowires; poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):polystyrene sulfonate; nanocomposite electrode ionic electroactive polymer actuators; graphene; silver nanowires; poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):polystyrene sulfonate; nanocomposite electrode
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Park, M.; Kim, J.; Song, H.; Kim, S.; Jeon, M. Fast and Stable Ionic Electroactive Polymer Actuators with PEDOT:PSS/(Graphene–Ag-Nanowires) Nanocomposite Electrodes. Sensors 2018, 18, 3126.

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