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17 April 2017 Development of novel textile and yarn actuators using plasticized PVC gel
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Soft actuators based on polymers are expected to be used for power sources to drive wearable robots which required in a wide range of fields such as medical, care and welfare, because they are light weight, flexible and quiet. Plasticized PVC gel which has a large deformation by applying a voltage and high driving stability in the atmosphere is considered as a suitable candidate material for development of soft actuator. Then, we proposed two kinds of novel flexible actuators constructed like yarn and textile by using plasticized PVC gel to develop soft actuator to realize a higher flexibility and low-voltage driving. In this study, we prepared prototypes of these actuators and clarify their characteristic. In addition, we considered the deformation model from its characteristics and geometric calculation. When a voltage was applied to their actuators, textile type actuator was contracted, while the twisted yarn type actuator was expanded. The deformation behavior of the proposed actuators could be found at a low voltage of 200V, the contraction strain of the textile actuator was about 27 %, and the expanding ratio of the yarn actuator was 0.4 %. Maximum contraction strain of textile actuator and expansion ratio of yarn actuator was 53% and 1.4% at 600 V, respectively. The calculation results from the proposed model were in roughly agreement with the experimental values. It indicated that deformation behavior of these actuators could estimate from models.
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A. Furuse and M. Hashimoto "Development of novel textile and yarn actuators using plasticized PVC gel", Proc. SPIE 10163, Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD) 2017, 1016327 (17 April 2017);

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