Autonomous motility of polymer films coupled to stimuli gradients
November 12-16, 2017
Adaptive soft materials exhibit a diverse set of behaviors including reconfiguration, actuation, and locomotion. These responses are typically optimized in isolation. Here, we explore the interrelation between these behaviors by developing a behavioral phase diagram for hygromorphic polymer films. We determine that the dynamic behaviors are a result of not only a response to, but also an interaction with a humidity gradient, which can be tuned via control of the environment and film characteristics, including size, permeability and coefficient of hygroscopic expansion to target a desired behavior such as multi-modal locomotion. Using the improved understanding of stimuli interactive materials gained from our study of monolithic polymer films, we demonstrate how robust composites can be designed to exhibit autonomous, environmentally-responsive behaviors, and how these concepts can be incorporated into origami structures to engineer the extent and sequence of motions.
Benjamin E. Treml, Ruel McKenzie, Phillip Buskohl, David Wang, Loon-Seng Tan, and Richard Vaia, "Autonomous motility of polymer films coupled to stimuli gradients" in "Composites at Lake Louise 2017", Eric Duoss, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, USA Waltraud M. Kriven, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA Eds, ECI Symposium Series, (2017). https://dc.engconfintl.org/composites_all_2017/27