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Polymers 2017, 9(8), 358; doi:10.3390/polym9080358

Influence of Temperature on the Electromechanical Properties of Ionic Liquid-Doped Ionic Polymer-Metal Composite Actuators

1
Department of Aerospace Engineering, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
2
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
3
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
4
Ames Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy, Ames, IA 50011, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 July 2017 / Revised: 8 August 2017 / Accepted: 9 August 2017 / Published: 12 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electroactive Polymers and Gels)
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Abstract

Ionic polymer-metal composite (IPMC) actuators have considerable potential for a wide range of applications. Although IPMC actuators are widely studied for their electromechanical properties, most studies have been conducted at the ambient conditions. The electromechanical performance of IPMC actuators at higher temperature is still far from understood. In this study, the effect of temperature on the electromechanical behavior (the rate of deformation and curvature) and electrochemical behavior (current flow) of ionic liquid doped IPMC actuators are examined and reported. Both electromechanical and electrochemical studies were conducted in air at temperatures ranging from 25 °C to 90 °C. Electromechanically, the actuators showed lower cationic curvature with increasing temperature up to 70 °C and a slower rate of deformation with increasing temperature up to 50 °C. A faster rate of deformation was recorded at temperatures higher than 50 °C, with a maximum rate at 60 °C. The anionic response showed a lower rate of deformation and a higher anionic curvature with increasing temperatures up to 50 °C with an abrupt increase in the rate of deformation and decrease of curvature at 60 °C. In both cationic and anionic responses, actuators started to lose functionality and show unpredictable performance for temperatures greater than 60 °C, with considerable fluctuations at 70 °C. Electrochemically, the current flow across the actuators was increased gradually with increasing temperature up to 80 °C during the charging and discharging cycles. A sudden increase in current flow was recorded at 90 °C indicating a shorted circuit and actuator failure. View Full-Text
Keywords: ionic electroactive polymers; IPMC; temperature; soft actuators; electromechanical actuators; soft robotics ionic electroactive polymers; IPMC; temperature; soft actuators; electromechanical actuators; soft robotics
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Almomani, A.; Hong, W.; Hong, W.; Montazami, R. Influence of Temperature on the Electromechanical Properties of Ionic Liquid-Doped Ionic Polymer-Metal Composite Actuators. Polymers 2017, 9, 358.

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