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Proceedings Paper

Improving dry carbon nanotube actuators by chemical modifications, material hybridization, and proper engineering
Author(s): Maurizio Biso; Alberto Ansaldo; Davide Ricci
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Paper Abstract

Low voltage, dry electrochemical actuators can be prepared by using a gel made of carbon nanotubes and ionic liquid.1 Their performance can be significantly improved by combining physical and chemical modifications with a proper engineering. We demonstrated that multi walled carbon nanotubes can be effectively used for actuators preparation;2 we achieved interesting performance improvements by chemically cross linking carbon nanotubes using both aromatic and aliphatic diamines;3 we introduced a novel hybrid material, made by in-situ chemical polymerization of pyrrole on carbon nanotubes, that further boosts actuation by taking advantage of the peculiar properties of both materials in terms of maximum strain and conductivity;4 we investigated the influence of actuator thickness showing that the generated strain at high frequency is strongly enhanced when thickness is reduced. To overcome limitations set by bimorphs, we designed a novel actuator in which a metal spring, embedded in the solid electrolyte of a bimorph device, is used as a non-actuating counter plate resulting in a three electrode device capable of both linear and bending motion. Finally, we propose a way to model actuators performance in terms of purely material-dependent parameters instead of geometry-dependent ones.5

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 April 2013
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 8687, Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD) 2013, 86871W (9 April 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2008696
Show Author Affiliations
Maurizio Biso, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy)
Alberto Ansaldo, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy)
Davide Ricci, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8687:
Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD) 2013
Yoseph Bar-Cohen, Editor(s)

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