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Proceedings Paper

Light-driven polymer actuators for propulsion and light control
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Paper Abstract

New light-driven actuators based on films of polymer polyvinylidene fluoride are described. The actuators employ the photomechanical bending of the polymer film caused by low power (10 mW and less) laser radiation. The photomechanical effect combines various physical mechanisms, such as anisotropic thermal expansion, converse piezoelectric mechanism along with photovoltaic and pyroelectric ones, while the mechanism of thermal expansion is dominant for slow motion. Mechanical vibrations of the strips of the photomechanical polymer were observed with periodic pulsed laser excitation. The resonance frequency is inversely proportional to the square of the length of the strip, in full agreement with the theory. Resonance frequency measurements were used to determine the modulus of elasticity of the films, which was close to 3.0×109 Pa. Two possible applications were discussed: optical fiber switch and adaptive mirror propelled by the proposed actuators. The actuators have a potential of being used as the components of future light-driven micro/nano systems.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 October 2006
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 6374, Optomechatronic Actuators, Manipulation, and Systems Control, 637402 (19 October 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.684337
Show Author Affiliations
LaQuieta Huey, Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical Univ. (United States)
Sergey S. Sarkisov, SSS Optical Technologies, LLC (United States)
Michael J. Curley, Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical Univ. (United States)
Grigory Adamovsky, NASA Glenn Research Ctr. (United States)
Jai-Ching Wang, Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6374:
Optomechatronic Actuators, Manipulation, and Systems Control
Farrokh Janabi-Sharifi; Yukitoshi Otani, Editor(s)

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