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Proceedings Paper

A multi-segment soft actuator for biomedical applications based on IPMCs
Author(s): Dongxu Zhao; Yanjie Wang; Jiayu Liu; Meng Luo; Dichen Li; Hualing Chen
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Paper Abstract

With rapid progress of biomedical devices towards miniaturization, flexibility, multifunction and low cost, the restrictions of traditional mechanical structures become particularly apparent, while soft materials become research focus in broad fields. As one of the most attractive soft materials, Ionic Polymer-Metal Composite (IPMC) is widely used as artificial muscles and actuators, with the advantages of low driving-voltage, high efficiency of electromechanical transduction and functional stabilization. In this paper, a new intuitive control method was presented to achieve the omnidirectional bending movements and was applied on a representative actuation structure of a multi-degree-offreedom soft actuator composed of two segments bar-shaped IPMC with a square cross section. Firstly, the bar-shaped IPMCs were fabricated by the solution casting method, reducing plating, autocatalytic plating method and cut into shapes successively. The connectors of the multi-segment IPMC actuator were fabricated by 3D printing. Then, a new control method was introduced to realize the intuitive mapping relationship between the actuator and the joystick manipulator. The control circuit was designed and tested. Finally, the multi-degree-of-freedom actuator of 2 segments bar-shaped IPMCs was implemented and omnidirectional bending movements were achieved, which could be a promising actuator for biomedical applications, such as endoscope, catheterism, laparoscopy and the surgical resection of tumors.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 April 2015
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 9430, Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD) 2015, 94302Z (1 April 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2175869
Show Author Affiliations
Dongxu Zhao, Xi'an Jiaotong Univ. (China)
Yanjie Wang, Xi'an Jiaotong Univ. (China)
Jiayu Liu, Xi'an Jiaotong Univ. (China)
Meng Luo, Xi'an Jiaotong Univ. (China)
Dichen Li, Xi'an Jiaotong Univ. (China)
Hualing Chen, Xi'an Jiaotong Univ. (China)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9430:
Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD) 2015
Yoseph Bar-Cohen, Editor(s)

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