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Polymers 2016, 8(11), 400; doi:10.3390/polym8110400

Fabrication of a Miniature Paper-Based Electroosmotic Actuator

1
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742, USA
2
Institute for Systems Research, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Leonid Ionov
Received: 25 September 2016 / Revised: 1 November 2016 / Accepted: 8 November 2016 / Published: 15 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymeric Soft Actuators)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2991 KB, uploaded 15 November 2016]   |  

Abstract

A voltage-controlled hydraulic actuator is presented that employs electroosmotic fluid flow (EOF) in paper microchannels within an elastomeric structure. The microfluidic device was fabricated using a new benchtop lamination process. Flexible embedded electrodes were formed from a conductive carbon-silicone composite. The pores in the layer of paper placed between the electrodes served as the microchannels for EOF, and the pumping fluid was propylene carbonate. A sealed fluid-filled chamber was formed by film-casting silicone to lay an actuating membrane over the pumping liquid. Hydraulic force generated by EOF caused the membrane to bulge by hundreds of micrometers within fractions of a second. Potential applications of these actuators include soft robots and biomedical devices. View Full-Text
Keywords: electrokinetic flow; compliant; additive manufacturing; biomimetic; artificial muscle; nastic; smart material; electro-active polymer device electrokinetic flow; compliant; additive manufacturing; biomimetic; artificial muscle; nastic; smart material; electro-active polymer device
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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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Sritharan, D.; Smela, E. Fabrication of a Miniature Paper-Based Electroosmotic Actuator. Polymers 2016, 8, 400.

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