Dielectric Elastomers as Electromechanical Transducers

Fundamentals, Materials, Devices, Models and Applications of an Emerging Electroactive Polymer Technology

Edited by

  • Federico Carpi, University of Pisa, Interdepartmental Research Centre ''E. Piaggio'', Italy
  • Danilo De Rossi, University of Pisa, Interdepartmental Research Centre ''E. Piaggio'', Italy
  • Roy Kornbluh, Stanford Research Institute, Menlo Park, CA, USA
  • Ronald Pelrine, Stanford Research Institute, Menlo Park, CA, USA
  • Peter Sommer-Larsen

This book provides a comprehensive and updated insight into dielectric elastomers; one of the most promising classes of polymer-based smart materials and technologies. This technology can be used in a very broad range of applications, from robotics and automation to the biomedical field. The need for improved transducer performance has resulted in considerable efforts towards the development of devices relying on materials with intrinsic transduction properties. These materials, often termed as “smart” or “intelligent”, include improved piezoelectrics and magnetostrictive or shape-memory materials. Emerging electromechanical transduction technologies, based on so-called ElectroActive Polymers (EAP), have gained considerable attention. EAP offer the potential for performance exceeding other smart materials, while retaining the cost and versatility inherent to polymer materials. Within the EAP family, “dielectric elastomers”, are of particular interest as they show good overall performance, simplicity of structure and robustness. Dielectric elastomer transducers are rapidly emerging as high-performance “pseudo-muscular” actuators, useful for different kinds of tasks. Further, in addition to actuation, dielectric elastomers have also been shown to offer unique possibilities for improved generator and sensing devices. Dielectric elastomer transduction is enabling an enormous range of new applications that were precluded to any other EAP or smart-material technology until recently. This book provides a comprehensive and updated insight into dielectric elastomer transduction, covering all its fundamental aspects. The book deals with transduction principles, basic materials properties, design of efficient device architectures, material and device modelling, along with applications.
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Scientists, students, technicians, public institutions, research centers and private companies working with polymer actuators


Book information

  • Published: January 2008
  • Imprint: ELSEVIER
  • ISBN: 978-0-08-047488-5

Table of Contents

PrefaceIntroduction - History of dielectric elastomer actuatorsSection I - Fundamentals1. Electromechanical transduction effects in dielectric elastomers: actuation, sensing, stiffness modulation and electric energy generation (R. Pelrine and R. Kornbluh)2. Dielectric elastomers as high-performance electroactive polymers (J. Madden)Section II - Materials3. Physical and chemical properties of dielectric elastomers (A. Ladegaard Larsen and P. Sommer-Larsen)4. High-performance acrylic and silicone elastomers (R. Kornbluh and R. Pelrine)5. Interpenetrating polymer networks as high performance dielectric elastomers (S. Mok Ha, W. Yuan, Q. Pei, R. Pelrine and S. Stanford)6. Enhancing the dielectric permittivity of elastomers (F. Carpi, G. Gallone, F. Galantini and D. De Rossi)7. Compliant electrodes: solutions, materials and technologies (G. Kofod and P. Sommer-Larsen)Section III - Devices8. Fundamental configurations for dielectric elastomer actuators (R. Kornbluh)9. Multiple-degrees-of-freedom roll actuators (M.A. Rosenthal and Q. Pei)10. Actuators and sensors from dielectric elastomer with smart compliant electrodes (P. Sommer-Larsen and M. Benslimane)11. Multilayer stack contractile actuators (H.F. Schlaak, P. Lotz and M. Matysek)12. Contractile monolithic linear actuators (F. Carpi and D. De Rossi)13. Buckling actuators with integrated displacement sensor (F. Carpi, G. Fantoni, G. Frediani and D. De Rossi)14. Variable stiffness mode: devices and applications (R. Pelrine)15. Generator mode: devices and applications (R. Pelrine and H. Prahlad)Section IV - Models16. Finite-elasticity models of actuation (G. Kofod and P. Sommer-Larsen)17. Modeling of prestrained circular actuators (M. Wissler and E. Mazza)18. Modeling dielectric elastomer membranes (N. Goulborne, E. Mockensturm and M. Frecker)Section V - ApplicationsV.1 Biomedical, haptic and micro-scale applications19. A new frontier for orthotics and prosthetics – application of dielectric elastomer actuators to bionics (A. Mulgaonkar, R. Kornbluh and H. Herr)20. Portable force feedback device based on miniature rolled dielectric elastomer actuators (R. Zhang, P. Lochmatter, G. Kovacs, A. Kunz and F. Conti)21. Programmable surface deformation: thickness-mode dielectric elastomers and their applications (H. Prahlad) 22. Application to very small devices: microactuators, micro-optics, microfluidics and more (R. Kornbluh, R. Pelrine and J. Eckerle)23. A new Braille display system design using a polymer based soft actuator tactile display (J. Choon Koo, H. Ryeol Choi, Kw. Jung, Jae-do Nam, Y.K. Lee and S. Lee)V.2 Robotic and biorobotic applications24. Biomimetic robots (S. Stanford)25. Micro-annelid-like robot actuated by artificial muscles based on dielectric elastomers (H. Ryeol Choi, K. Jung, J. Choon Koo, Jae-do Nam and Y.K. Lee)26. Binary actuation (J-S. Plante and S. Dubowsky)27. Robotic arm (G. Kovacs, P. Lochmatter, M. Wissler, C. Iseli and L. Kessler)28. Stiffness control of biomimetic systems through recruitment of bundle elastomeric actuators (F. Lorussi, C. Caudai, S. Galatolo and D. De Rossi)V.3 Commercial applications29. Commercial actuators and issues (C. Duncheon)30. Dielectric elastomer loudspeakers (R.P. Heydt, R. Kornbluh, J. Eckerle and R. Pelrine)