Bending kinetics of a photo-actuating nematic elastomer cantilever

N. Torras, K. E. Zinoviev, J. E. Marshall, E. M. Terentjev, J. Esteve

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    41 Citations (Scopus)


    Liquid crystal elastomers (LCE) containing embedded carbon nanotubes (CNTs) contract when exposed to light, due to LC disordering induced by the ability of CNTs to absorb light and convert it into thermal energy. A cantilever made of LCE-CNTs exposed to light demonstrates dynamic bending due to inhomogeneous strain distribution caused by exponential heat generation across the cantilever width. Analysis of bending dynamics helps to extract parameters that are important for designing actuators based on these materials. In this work, we have carried out direct measurements of temperature evolution inside the cantilever and related its kinetics to the applied irradiation power. © 2011 American Institute of Physics.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number254102
    JournalApplied physics letters
    Publication statusPublished - 19 Dec 2011


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