Dielectric elastomer fingers for versatile grasping and nimble pinching
Ahmed, Anansa S.
Date of Issue2017
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Boneless soft robotic fingers cannot apply concentrated forces to pinch a delicate object. This letter reports a three-dimensional design of dielectric elastomer fingers with higher flexural stiffness and close to 90° voltage-controllable bending for object gripping and pinching. It makes use of tension arch flexures to elevate a pre-stretched dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA) into a roof shape and thus magnifies the tension-induced moment, 40 times higher than a flat DEA does, to bend a stiff base frame. Such fingers make normally close-grippers to lift a payload 8–9 times their weight. They also make normally open grippers that pinch a highly deformable raw egg yolk.
Applied Physics Letters
© 2017 American Institute of Physics (AIP). This paper was published in Applied Physics Letters and is made available as an electronic reprint (preprint) with permission of American Institute of Physics (AIP). The published version is available at: [http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4983036]. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic or multiple reproduction, distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper is prohibited and is subject to penalties under law.