Inhibiting electro-thermal breakdown of acrylic dielectric elastomer actuators by dielectric gel coating
Date of Issue2016-01-05
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Electrical breakdown of dielectricelastomer actuators (DEA) is very localized; a spark and a pinhole (puncture) in dielectric ends up with short-circuit. This letter shows that prevention of electrothermal breakdown helps defer failure of DEAs even with conductive-grease electrodes.Dielectricgel encapsulation or coating (Dow Corning 3-4170) helps protect acrylic elastomer (VHB 4905), making it thermally more stable and delaying its thermal oxidation (burn) from 218 °C to 300 °C. Dielectric-gel-coated acrylic DEAs can withstand higher local leak-induced heating and thus achieve higher dielectric strengths than non-coated DEAs do.
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Applied Physics Letters
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