Amphoteric Polyvinyl Alcohol Hydrogel and Electrohydrodynamic Control Method for Artificial Muscles
Since Kuhn and Katchalsky et al.1 first demonstrated artificial muscle in 1950, various mechanochemical materials have been presented.2 From the view point of mechanical engineering, great hopes are set on these materials as a new actuator, especially in the fields of robotics and medical welfare instruments, and improvements in their performance are eagerly awaited. In such fields realization of light weight, soft touch and powerful actuators is an important subject. We expected that an amphoteric polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) hydrogel might have a potential high enough to realize the mechanical active performance of skeletal muscles.3 Because poly(vinyl alcohol) aqueous solution more than 5%w was found to become strong hydrogel by freezing and thawing by Nanbu in 1982.4- First of our purposes is to examine how much this material can become closer to muscle in the mechanical active properties. Second as a device we have to develope a control technique for mechanical power generation by mechanochemical materials. This paper consists of two sections, first for the improvement of material properties and second for the new method of electrohydrodynamic control.
KeywordsVinyl Alcohol Polyacrylic Acid Artificial Muscle Hydrogel Film Contraction Factor
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