Simple fabrication, high power-to-weight and power-to-volume ratios, and the ability to operate in open air at low voltage make the ionic electroactive polymer actuators highly attractive for haptic applications. Whenever a direct tactile stimulation of the skin is involved, electrical and chemical insulation as well as a long-term stability of the actuator are required. Because of its inherent physicochemical properties such as high dielectric strength, resistance to solvents, and biological inactivity, Parylene C meets the requirements for making biocompatible actuators. We have studied the displacement and the generated force of Parylene-coated carbon nanotube actuators as well as the encapsulation quality. A 2 μm coating creates an effective electrical insulation of the actuators without altering the blocking force at frequencies from 50 mHz to 1 Hz. Moreover, the generated strain is preserved at higher frequencies (from 0.5 to 5 Hz). We employed a simple mechanical model to explain the relation between the key parameters-flexural stiffness, displacement, and force-for uncoated and coated actuators. In addition, we demonstrated that our Parylene-coated actuators are not damaged by rinsing in liquid media such as 2-propanol or water. In conclusion, our results indicate that Parylene C encapsulated actuators are safe to touch and can be used in contact with human skin and in biomedical applications in direct contact with tissues and physiological fluids.

Parylene-Coated Ionic Liquid-Carbon Nanotube Actuators for User-Safe Haptic Devices

Bubak, Grzegorz;Ceseracciu, Luca;Ansaldo, Alberto;Ricci, Davide
2015

Abstract

Simple fabrication, high power-to-weight and power-to-volume ratios, and the ability to operate in open air at low voltage make the ionic electroactive polymer actuators highly attractive for haptic applications. Whenever a direct tactile stimulation of the skin is involved, electrical and chemical insulation as well as a long-term stability of the actuator are required. Because of its inherent physicochemical properties such as high dielectric strength, resistance to solvents, and biological inactivity, Parylene C meets the requirements for making biocompatible actuators. We have studied the displacement and the generated force of Parylene-coated carbon nanotube actuators as well as the encapsulation quality. A 2 μm coating creates an effective electrical insulation of the actuators without altering the blocking force at frequencies from 50 mHz to 1 Hz. Moreover, the generated strain is preserved at higher frequencies (from 0.5 to 5 Hz). We employed a simple mechanical model to explain the relation between the key parameters-flexural stiffness, displacement, and force-for uncoated and coated actuators. In addition, we demonstrated that our Parylene-coated actuators are not damaged by rinsing in liquid media such as 2-propanol or water. In conclusion, our results indicate that Parylene C encapsulated actuators are safe to touch and can be used in contact with human skin and in biomedical applications in direct contact with tissues and physiological fluids.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11567/938515
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