Using Explosions to Power a Soft Robot
Shepherd, Robert F.
Stokes, Adam A.
Snyder, Phillip W.
Mazzeo, Aaron D.
Morin, Stephen A.
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CitationShepherd, Robert F., Adam A. Stokes, Jacob Freake, Jabulani Barber, Phillip W. Snyder, Aaron D. Mazzeo, Ludovico Cademartiri, Stephen A. Morin, and George M. Whitesides. 2013. “Using Explosions to Power a Soft Robot.” Angewandte Chemie 125 (10) (March 4): 2964–2968.
AbstractThis manuscript describes the use of explosions to power a soft robot—one composed solely of organic elastomers (e.g., silicones). The robot has three pneumatic actuators (pneu-nets) in a tripedal configuration. Explosion of a stoichiometric mixture of methane and oxygen within the microchannels making up the actuators produced hot gas that rapidly inflated the pneu-nets, and caused the robot to launch itself vertically from a flat surface (e.g., to jump). A soft flap embedded in the pneu-net acted as the valve of a passive exhaust system, and allowed multiple sequential actuations. The flame and temperature increase from the explosions are short-lived, and do not noticeably damage the robots over dozens of actuation cycles.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:12388526
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