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Proceedings Paper

The need for speed
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Paper Abstract

Development of dielectric elastomer actuators has been mainly targeted towards achieving giant static strain with little attention paid to their response speed, which can, depending on materials used, be as long as tens of seconds. However, most of the practical applications require actuators capable of changing shape quickly, therefore a careful choice of materials and technologies for the dielectric and electrodes must be made. Test oscillating actuators, made with a range of silicone membranes with different hardness were tested, and the compliant electrodes were made with different technologies: carbon powder, carbon grease, conductive rubber and metal ion implantation. The transient response of the actuators to a step input was measured with a high speed camera at 5000 frames per seconds for the different combinations of membrane material and electrodes. The results show that the dynamic response of the actuators is extremely dependent on the membrane material, as expected, but also on the compliant electrodes, whose impact cannot be neglected.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 April 2012
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 8340, Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD) 2012, 834004 (3 April 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.914623
Show Author Affiliations
Samuel Rosset, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (Switzerland)
Pit Gebbers, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (Switzerland)
Zürcher Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften (Switzerland)
Benjamin M. O'Brien, The Univ. of Auckland (New Zealand)
Herbert R. Shea, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (Switzerland)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8340:
Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD) 2012
Yoseph Bar-Cohen, Editor(s)

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