Flexible Electronics

Hard robotics thrived in an industrial setting thanks to sensory input that closes the feedback loop. The same concept can be used in a soft robotic context, however new sensors need to be developed that are compatible whit the large strains that are typically present when soft actuators are deforming. The soft robotics group is developing new strain sensors by incorporating conductive nanoparticles in a rubber matrix. As such, the mechanical properties of the rubber are maintained while conductive paths can be patterned. The video bellows shows the result of using two different conductive particles (Carbon black and CNT’s) in a PDMS matrix, when subject to uniaxial strain.