Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Soft actuators of organized self-oscillating microgels

Soft Matter

Autonomously oscillating soft actuators have been successfully obtained by assembling pre-existing microgel particles. The amplitude of the actuator’s oscillation could be controlled by selecting the types of oscillations of constituent microelements, i.e., swelling–deswelling or cooperative  dispersing–flocculating motion of the microgels. The new actuators prepared by this fabrication process make the oscillating actuators suitable for practical use in microfluidic devices such as self-beating micropumps.

The Ru(bpy)3 monomer was chosen as a catalyst for the chemical oscillating reaction named the Belousov–Zhabotinsky (BZ) reaction, which generates rhythmical redox changes from the oxidized Ru(III) state to the reduced Ru(II) state and vice versa.

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