Soft Materials and Systems II

A special issue of Polymers (ISSN 2073-4360). This special issue belongs to the section "Polymer Physics and Theory".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 January 2022) | Viewed by 5564

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
School of Optical and Electronic Information and Wuhan National Laboratory for Optoelectronics, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074, China
Interests: smart soft materials; flexible electronics; soft robots; soft metamaterials
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
Interests: mechanics of soft materials; soft machines; sustainability

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Welcome to this the second issue of “Soft Materials and Systems”. Due to the great interest in the first issue, the editorial board decided to reopen this Special Issue focused on the design, manufacturing and applications of soft materials. We are delighted to write the foreword for this second number, which once again affords us the opportunity to reflect on what is advancing in our field.

Soft materials, including gels, elastomers, biological tissues, colloids, and liquid metals, can generate large deformation in response to external stimuli such as force, heat, light, sound, electric field, magnetic field, ions, pH, and solutions. The deformation of soft materials or systems may give tunable and configurable novel properties and functions that will be critical to many important applications. The engineering of soft materials with functional elements, molecules, structures, processing, or manufacturing, offers unprecedented opportunities to existing technologies and industries, addressing the challenges from flexible electronics, soft robotics, medical devices, surgical procedures, and health care.

This Special Issue invites original papers and reviews reporting on recent progress in but not limited to the flowing areas:

  • Soft and nature-inspired materials with striking new properties and functions
  • Flexible electronics
  • Soft robotics
  • Metamaterials
  • Mechanics of interface between soft materials and hard materials
  • Additive manufacturing
  • Shape memory polymers
  • Compliant energy sources
  • Applications: wearable, body-attachable, or implantable materials and devices, medical devices, health care

Prof. Dr. Jianfeng Zang
Dr. Shaoting Lin
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Polymers is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • soft and nature-inspired materials
  • flexible electronics
  • soft robots
  • flexible sensors
  • large deformation mechanics
  • processing and manufacturing
  • wearable electronics
  • compliant energy sources
  • medical devices
  • health care

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

15 pages, 3927 KiB  
Article
The Shape Memory Properties and Actuation Performances of 4D Printing Poly (Ether-Ether-Ketone)
by Yuting Zhou, Luquan Ren, Jianfeng Zang and Zhihui Zhang
Polymers 2022, 14(18), 3800; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14183800 - 11 Sep 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2882
Abstract
Shape-memory polymers (SMPs) have gradually emerged in the mechanism and biomedical fields and facilitate the upgrading of industrial mechanisms and the breakthrough of technical bottlenecks. However, most of the SMPs are infeasible in harsh environments, such as aerospace, due to the low glass [...] Read more.
Shape-memory polymers (SMPs) have gradually emerged in the mechanism and biomedical fields and facilitate the upgrading of industrial mechanisms and the breakthrough of technical bottlenecks. However, most of the SMPs are infeasible in harsh environments, such as aerospace, due to the low glass transition temperature. There are still some works that remain in creating truly portable or non-contacting actuators that can match the performances and functions of traditional metal structures. Polyether-ether-ketone (PEEK) with a high glass transition temperature of 143 °C is endowed with outstanding high-temperature resistance and radiation-resistant properties and shape memory behavior. Thus, we explore the shape-memory properties and actuation performances of high-temperature PEEK in bending behaviors. The shape-recovery ratio, actuation speed and force under different programming conditions and structure parameters are summarized to complete the actuation capacities. Meanwhile, a metallic ball transported by shape-memory PEEK and deployed drag sail with thermo-responsive composite joints were shown to verify the potential in aerospace. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soft Materials and Systems II)
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14 pages, 6284 KiB  
Article
Humidity Effect on Dynamic Electromechanical Properties of Polyacrylic Dielectric Elastomer: An Experimental Study
by Yuchen Zuo, Yuxi Ding, Junshi Zhang, Mingliang Zhu, Lei Liu and Jianwen Zhao
Polymers 2021, 13(5), 784; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym13050784 - 4 Mar 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1861
Abstract
In this research, by utilizing the Very-High-Bond (VHB) 4905 elastomer, we carry out an experimental examination on the humidity effect on dynamic electromechanical performances of dielectric elastomers, including the dynamic response and viscoelastic creeping. Firstly, we experimentally analyze effects of the pre-stretch, peak [...] Read more.
In this research, by utilizing the Very-High-Bond (VHB) 4905 elastomer, we carry out an experimental examination on the humidity effect on dynamic electromechanical performances of dielectric elastomers, including the dynamic response and viscoelastic creeping. Firstly, we experimentally analyze effects of the pre-stretch, peak voltage, waveform and frequency of the dynamic response of VHB 4905 elastomer under several ambient humidities. In general, the amplitude of dynamic deformation gradually adds up with the increasing humidity. Besides, it is found that the amplitude affected by different parameters shows diverse sensitivity to humidity. Subsequently, effect of humidity on the viscoelastic creeping of VHB 4905 is explored. The results demonstrate that, subject to different ambient humidities, the viscoelastic creeping under Alternating Current (AC) voltage is similar to that under Direct Current (DC) voltage. Furthermore, the equilibrium position of dynamic viscoelastic creep enlarges gradually with the humidity, regardless of voltage waveforms. For the dielectric elastomer with a pre-stretch ratio of 3, when the humidity increases from 20% to 80%, the increase of average equilibrium position of dynamic viscoelastic creep is larger than 1599%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soft Materials and Systems II)
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