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Proceedings Paper

Protein-based microhydraulic transport for controllable actuation
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Paper Abstract

Plants have the ability to develop large mechanical force from chemical energy available with bio-fuels. The energy released by the cleavage of a terminal phosphate ion during the hydrolysis of a bio- fuel assists the transport of ions and fluids in cellular homeostasis. Materials that develop pressure and hence strain similar to the response of plants to an external stimuli are classified as nastic materials. Calculations for controlled actuation of an active material inspired by biological transport mechanism demonstrated the feasibility of developing such a material with actuation energy densities on the order of 100 kJ/m3. The mathematical model for a simplified proof of concept actuator referred to as micro hydraulic actuator uses ion transporters extracted from plants reconstituted on a synthetic bilayer lipid membrane (BLM). Thermodynamic model of the concept actuator predicted the ability to develop 5 percent normalized deformation in thickness of the micro- hydraulic actuator. Controlled fluid transport through AtSUT4 (Proton-sucrose co-transporter from Arabidopsis thaliana) reconstituted on a 1-Palmitoyl-2-Oleoyl-sn-Glycero-3-[Phospho-L- Serine] (Sodium Salt) (POPS), 1-Palmitoyl-2-Oleoyl-sn-Glycero-3- Phosphoethanolamine (POPE) BLM on a porous lead silicate glass plate (50μm with 61μm pitch) was driven by proton gradient. Bulk fluid flux of 1.2 μl/min was observed for each microliter of AtSUT4 transporter suspension (16.6 mg/ml in pH7.0 medium) reconstituted on the BLM. The flux rate is observed to be dependent on the concentration of sucrose present in pH4 buffer. Flux rate of 10 μl/min is observed for 5 mM sucrose in the first 10 minutes. The observed flux scales linearly with BLM area and the amount of proteins reconstituted on the lipid membrane. This article details the next step in the development of the micro hydraulic actuator - fluid transport driven by exergonic Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) hydrolysis reaction in the presence of ATP-phosphohydrolase (red beet ATP-ase) enzyme in the reconstituted bilayer.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 March 2006
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 6168, Smart Structures and Materials 2006: Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD), 61681S (22 March 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.657946
Show Author Affiliations
Vishnu Baba Sundaresan, Virginia Tech (United States)
Donald J. Leo, Virginia Tech (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6168:
Smart Structures and Materials 2006: Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD)
Yoseph Bar-Cohen, Editor(s)

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