Macroporous smart gel based on pH-sensitive polyacrylic polymer for the development of large size artificial muscle with linear contraction - LAAS - Laboratoire d'Analyse et d'Architecture des Systèmes Access content directly
Journal Articles Soft Matter Year : 2021

Macroporous smart gel based on pH-sensitive polyacrylic polymer for the development of large size artificial muscle with linear contraction

Abstract

The physics of soft matter can contribute to the revolution in robotics and medical prostheses. These two fields requires the development of artificial muscles with behavior close to the biological muscle. Today, the artificial muscles rely mostly on active materials, which can deform reversibly. Nevertheless transport kinetic is the major limit for all of these materials. These actuators are only made of thin layer of active material and using large thickness dramatically reduces the actuation time. In this article, we demonstrate that porous material reduces the limit of transport and enables to use large volume of active material. We synthesis a new active material: a macroporous gel, which is based on polyacrylic acid. This gel show very large swelling when we increase the pH and the macroporosity dramatically reduces the swelling time of centimetric samples from one day to 100 s. We characterize the mechanical properties and the swelling kinetics of this new materials. This material is well adapted for soft robotic because of its large swelling ratio (300%) and its capacity to apply a pressure of 150 mbar when swelling. We demonstrate finally that this material can be used into a McKibben muscle producing linear contraction, which is particularly adapted for robotics. The muscle contracts by 9% of its initial length within 100 s—which corresponds to the gel swelling time.
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Dates and versions

hal-03347477 , version 1 (17-09-2021)

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Vincent Mansard. Macroporous smart gel based on pH-sensitive polyacrylic polymer for the development of large size artificial muscle with linear contraction. Soft Matter, 2021, 17 (42), pp.9644-9652. ⟨10.1039/D1SM01078F⟩. ⟨hal-03347477⟩
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