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One-volt-driven superfast polymer actuators based on single-ion conductors

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

The key challenges in the advancement of actuator technologies related to artificial muscles include fast-response time, low operation voltages and durability. Although several researchers have tackled these challenges over the last few decades, no breakthrough has been made. Here we describe a platform for the development of soft actuators that moves a few millimetres under 1 V in air, with a superfast response time of tens of milliseconds. An essential component of this actuator is the single-ion-conducting polymers that contain well-defined ionic domains through the introduction of zwitterions; this achieved an exceptionally high dielectric constant of 76 and a 300-fold enhancement in ionic conductivity. Moreover, the actuator demonstrated long-term durability, with negligible changes in the actuator stroke over 20,000 cycles in air. Owing to its low-power consumption (only 4 mW), we believe that this actuator could pave the way for cutting-edge biomimetic technologies in the future.

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Low-power and high-performance actuators.(a) Strain-frequency dependency of the actuators based on PVdF(HFP) and Nafion containing ZImS and Im/TFSI, measured with alternating square-wave voltages of ±3 V. Photographs in the inset were taken at −3 V and 0.5 Hz to directly compare the actuation performance of the actuator to that of actuators based on conventional polymers. (b) Strain-power consumption dependency of the actuator, compared with other types of soft actuators reported thus far, which clearly represents the impact of our results on the structure of widely studied actuators fabricated with polymeric materials.
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f4: Low-power and high-performance actuators.(a) Strain-frequency dependency of the actuators based on PVdF(HFP) and Nafion containing ZImS and Im/TFSI, measured with alternating square-wave voltages of ±3 V. Photographs in the inset were taken at −3 V and 0.5 Hz to directly compare the actuation performance of the actuator to that of actuators based on conventional polymers. (b) Strain-power consumption dependency of the actuator, compared with other types of soft actuators reported thus far, which clearly represents the impact of our results on the structure of widely studied actuators fabricated with polymeric materials.

Mentions: The performance of actuator corresponds to several times larger bending strain and over 100 times faster response time, compared with the actuators based on conventional PVdF(HFP) random copolymer (Kynar Flex 2801) and the state-of-the-art perfluoroacid ionomer, Nafion (Dupont) under the same conditions, as shown in Fig. 4a. This is remarkable as the PVdF(HFP) and Nafion have been the most widely employed polymers for ionic polymer actuators. Such difference becomes more evident by reducing operation voltage, where the Nafion actuators displayed negligible bending motion with strain of ∼0.1% and slow response time over 10 s at ±1 V (detailed data are given in Supplementary Fig. 6). The bending strain could be slightly improved by adding ZImS; however, the addition of zwitterions was not found to reduce response time for both actuators based on PVdF(HFP) and Nafion.


One-volt-driven superfast polymer actuators based on single-ion conductors
Low-power and high-performance actuators.(a) Strain-frequency dependency of the actuators based on PVdF(HFP) and Nafion containing ZImS and Im/TFSI, measured with alternating square-wave voltages of ±3 V. Photographs in the inset were taken at −3 V and 0.5 Hz to directly compare the actuation performance of the actuator to that of actuators based on conventional polymers. (b) Strain-power consumption dependency of the actuator, compared with other types of soft actuators reported thus far, which clearly represents the impact of our results on the structure of widely studied actuators fabricated with polymeric materials.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5120218&req=5

f4: Low-power and high-performance actuators.(a) Strain-frequency dependency of the actuators based on PVdF(HFP) and Nafion containing ZImS and Im/TFSI, measured with alternating square-wave voltages of ±3 V. Photographs in the inset were taken at −3 V and 0.5 Hz to directly compare the actuation performance of the actuator to that of actuators based on conventional polymers. (b) Strain-power consumption dependency of the actuator, compared with other types of soft actuators reported thus far, which clearly represents the impact of our results on the structure of widely studied actuators fabricated with polymeric materials.
Mentions: The performance of actuator corresponds to several times larger bending strain and over 100 times faster response time, compared with the actuators based on conventional PVdF(HFP) random copolymer (Kynar Flex 2801) and the state-of-the-art perfluoroacid ionomer, Nafion (Dupont) under the same conditions, as shown in Fig. 4a. This is remarkable as the PVdF(HFP) and Nafion have been the most widely employed polymers for ionic polymer actuators. Such difference becomes more evident by reducing operation voltage, where the Nafion actuators displayed negligible bending motion with strain of ∼0.1% and slow response time over 10 s at ±1 V (detailed data are given in Supplementary Fig. 6). The bending strain could be slightly improved by adding ZImS; however, the addition of zwitterions was not found to reduce response time for both actuators based on PVdF(HFP) and Nafion.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

The key challenges in the advancement of actuator technologies related to artificial muscles include fast-response time, low operation voltages and durability. Although several researchers have tackled these challenges over the last few decades, no breakthrough has been made. Here we describe a platform for the development of soft actuators that moves a few millimetres under 1 V in air, with a superfast response time of tens of milliseconds. An essential component of this actuator is the single-ion-conducting polymers that contain well-defined ionic domains through the introduction of zwitterions; this achieved an exceptionally high dielectric constant of 76 and a 300-fold enhancement in ionic conductivity. Moreover, the actuator demonstrated long-term durability, with negligible changes in the actuator stroke over 20,000 cycles in air. Owing to its low-power consumption (only 4 mW), we believe that this actuator could pave the way for cutting-edge biomimetic technologies in the future.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus