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Soft actuators with screen-printed curvature sensors

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the IEEE Sensors 2017 Conference
Place of PublicationGlasgow
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventIEEE Sensors: Proceedings -
Duration: 1 Jan 1900 → …


ConferenceIEEE Sensors: Proceedings
Period1/01/00 → …


Castable elastomers have been used to fabricate soft fluidic actuators and the technique scales well from prototyping to mass manufacturing. However, similarly scalable techniques for integrating strain or curvature sensors into such devices are still lacking. In this paper, screen-printed silver conductors are shown to serve as curvature sensors for soft fluidic actuators. The sensors are realized in a single printing step onto elastomer substrates. Resistance measurement allows estimating the curvature of soft actuators, limited by the hysteresis of the sensors. These sensors can detect if the motion of an actuator has been blocked, clearing the path towards simple-to-fabricate soft robots that react to their surroundings.

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