A Review of Recent Advances in Electrically Driven Polymer-Based Flexible Actuators: Smart Materials, Structures, and Their Applications

Junseong Ahn, Jimin Gu, Jungrak Choi, Chankyu Han, Yongrok Jeong, Jaeho Park, Seokjoo Cho, Yong Suk Oh, Jun Ho Jeong, Morteza Amjadi, Inkyu Park*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Polymer-based flexible actuators have recently attracted significant attention owing to their great potentials in soft robotics, wearables, haptics, and medical devices. In particular, electrically driven polymer-based flexible actuators are considered as some of the most practical actuators because they can be driven by a simple electrical power source. Over the past decade, research on electrically driven soft actuators has greatly progressed, leading to the development of various functional materials and bioinspired structures. This article comprehensively reviews recent advances in electrically driven soft actuators and compares their actuation performance based on working principles, materials, and structures. Several strategies, including combining smart materials and composite structures, which are proposed to overcome some of the drawbacks of electrically driven soft actuators, are also discussed. Finally, potential applications of electrically driven soft actuators in soft robotics are summarized and an outlook is presented.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2200041
JournalAdvanced Materials Technologies
Early online date19 Jun 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Jun 2022

Keywords

  • dielectric elastomers
  • electrically driven soft actuators
  • electroactive hydrogels
  • electrothermal actuators
  • ionic polymer–metal composites
  • shape memory polymers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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