Main content area

Janus Soft Actuators with On–Off Switchable Behaviors for Controllable Manipulation Driven by Oil

Song, Yun-yun, Liu, Yan, Jiang, Hao-bo, Xue, Jing-ze, Yu, Zhao-peng, Li, Shu-yi, Han, Zhi-wu, Ren, Lu-quan
ACS applied materials & interfaces 2019 v.11 no.14 pp. 13742-13751
actuators, cutting, ethanol, hydrophobicity, materials science, oils, robots
Soft actuators have tremendous applications in diverse fields. Facile preparation, rapid actuation, and versatile actions are always pursued when developing new types of soft actuators. In this paper, we present a facile method integrating laser etching and mechanical cutting to prepare Janus actuators driven by oil. A Janus film with superhydrophobic and hydrophobic sides was fabricated successfully. By cutting the functional layer at the desired positions, a number of quintessential oil-driven soft devices were demonstrated. Furthermore, Janus actuators with surfaces of different wettabilities exhibited different swelling behaviors, and different media manifested different surface extensions; thus, these actuators are promising candidates for soft actuators and also realized on–off switchability between an oil/water mixture and ethanol. This study offers novel insight into the design of soft actuators, and this insight may be helpful for developing an oil-driven soft actuator that can be operated like a human finger to manipulate any object and extending stimuli-responsive applications for soft robotics.