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Dielectric elastomer pump for artificial organisms

Dielectric elastomer pump for artificial organisms
Dielectric elastomer pump for artificial organisms
This paper presents a bio-inspired, dielectric elastomer (DE) based tubular pumping unit, developed for eventual use as acomponent of an artificial digestive tract onboard a microbial fuel cell powered robot (EcoBot). The pump effects fluiddisplacement by direct actuation of the tube wall as opposed to excitation by an external body.The actuator consists of a DE tube moulded from silicone, held in a negative pressure chamber, which is used forprestraining the tube. The pump is coupled with custom designed polymeric check valves in order to rectify the fluidflow and assess the performance of the unit. The valves exhibited the necessary low opening pressures required for use with the actuator. The tube’s actuation characteristics were measured both with and without liquid in the system. Based on these data the optimal operating conditions for the pump are discussed. The pump and valve system has achieved flow rates in excess of 40µl/s. This radially contracting/expanding actuator element is the fundamental component of a peristaltic pump. This ‘soft pump’ concept is suitable for biomimetic robotic systems, or for the medical or food industries where hard contact with the delivered substrate may be undesirable. Future work will look at connecting multiple tubes in series in order to achieve peristalsis
Pump, tube, dielectric elastomer, peristalsis, low power
SPIE
Bowers, Amy E.
b788b213-1220-487c-b282-c6ca3329cd06
Rossiter, Jonathan M.
6535477c-eb61-4312-9cd6-ea174eef94a0
Walters, Peter J.
9ffe5342-4dc3-44a5-9dd2-f25f34d55877
Ieropoulos, Ioannis A.
6c580270-3e08-430a-9f49-7fbe869daf13
Bar-Cohen, Yoseph
Carpi, Federico
Bowers, Amy E.
b788b213-1220-487c-b282-c6ca3329cd06
Rossiter, Jonathan M.
6535477c-eb61-4312-9cd6-ea174eef94a0
Walters, Peter J.
9ffe5342-4dc3-44a5-9dd2-f25f34d55877
Ieropoulos, Ioannis A.
6c580270-3e08-430a-9f49-7fbe869daf13
Bar-Cohen, Yoseph
Carpi, Federico

Bowers, Amy E., Rossiter, Jonathan M., Walters, Peter J. and Ieropoulos, Ioannis A. (2011) Dielectric elastomer pump for artificial organisms. In, Bar-Cohen, Yoseph and Carpi, Federico (eds.) Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD) 2011. (Proceedings of SPIE, 7976) SPIE Smart Structures and Materials + Nondestructive Evaluation and<br/>Health Monitoring, 2011, San Diego, California, United States: SPIE (01/04/11 - 10/04/11) SPIE. (doi:10.1117/12.880440).

Record type: Book Section

Abstract

This paper presents a bio-inspired, dielectric elastomer (DE) based tubular pumping unit, developed for eventual use as acomponent of an artificial digestive tract onboard a microbial fuel cell powered robot (EcoBot). The pump effects fluiddisplacement by direct actuation of the tube wall as opposed to excitation by an external body.The actuator consists of a DE tube moulded from silicone, held in a negative pressure chamber, which is used forprestraining the tube. The pump is coupled with custom designed polymeric check valves in order to rectify the fluidflow and assess the performance of the unit. The valves exhibited the necessary low opening pressures required for use with the actuator. The tube’s actuation characteristics were measured both with and without liquid in the system. Based on these data the optimal operating conditions for the pump are discussed. The pump and valve system has achieved flow rates in excess of 40µl/s. This radially contracting/expanding actuator element is the fundamental component of a peristaltic pump. This ‘soft pump’ concept is suitable for biomimetic robotic systems, or for the medical or food industries where hard contact with the delivered substrate may be undesirable. Future work will look at connecting multiple tubes in series in order to achieve peristalsis

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More information

Published date: 28 March 2011
Venue - Dates: SPIE Smart Structures and Materials + Nondestructive Evaluation and<br/>Health Monitoring, 2011, San Diego, California, United States: SPIE, San Diego , San Diego, United States, 2011-04-01 - 2011-04-10
Keywords: Pump, tube, dielectric elastomer, peristalsis, low power

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 455104
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/455104
PURE UUID: d786f8ea-4c12-44ad-a566-833fe1df2ed6
ORCID for Ioannis A. Ieropoulos: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-9641-5504

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 09 Mar 2022 17:39
Last modified: 10 Mar 2022 02:58

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Contributors

Author: Amy E. Bowers
Author: Jonathan M. Rossiter
Author: Peter J. Walters
Editor: Yoseph Bar-Cohen
Editor: Federico Carpi

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