PAMPS Gel Artificial Muscles
Ionic polymeric gels are three-dimensional networks of cross-linked macromolecular polyelectrolytes that swell or shrink in aqueous solutions upon addition of alkali or acids, respectively. Reversible dilation and contraction of the order of more than 800% have been observed in our laboratory for polyacrylonitrile (PAN) gel fibers. Furthermore, it has been experimentally observed that swelling and shrinking of ionic gels can be induced electrically. Thus, direct computer control of large expansions and contractions of ionic polymeric gels by means of a voltage controller is possible.