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Proceedings Paper

Liquid crystall elastomers as artificial muscles: role of side-chain-backbone coupling
Author(s): Banahalli R. Ratna; D. Laurence Thomsen III; Patrick Keller
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Paper Abstract

Ordered liquid crystal elastomer films exhibit anisotropic deformations on macroscopic length scales on changing the orientational order of the liquid crystal group by external stimuli such as temperature and electric field. We have developed laterally attached side-chain nematic elastomers with mechanical properties approaching stress, strain and time scale of skeletal muscle activation. The mechanical and structural characterization has led to the ability to improve desired physical properties such as backbone extension and coupling between the backbone and liquid crystal side chain. We have studied the effect of the coupling length on the change in the conformational entropy of the backbone and the viscoelastic behavior. In this paper we discuss the results of our stress relaxation tests.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 July 2001
PDF: 5 pages
Proc. SPIE 4329, Smart Structures and Materials 2001: Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices, (16 July 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.432651
Show Author Affiliations
Banahalli R. Ratna, Naval Research Lab. (United States)
D. Laurence Thomsen III, Naval Research Lab. and NASA Langley Research Ctr. (United States)
Patrick Keller, CNRS (France)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4329:
Smart Structures and Materials 2001: Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices
Yoseph Bar-Cohen, Editor(s)

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