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Compliant Bistable Dielectric Elastomer Actuators for Binary Mechatronic Systems

[+] Author Affiliations
Jean-Sébastien Plante, Steven Dubowsky

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

Matthew Santer, Sergio Pellegrino

University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK

Paper No. DETC2005-85576, pp. 121-126; 6 pages
  • ASME 2005 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 7: 29th Mechanisms and Robotics Conference, Parts A and B
  • Long Beach, California, USA, September 24–28, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4744-6 | eISBN: 0-7918-3766-1
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


In this paper, a new all-polymer actuation approach for binary mechatronic systems is demonstrated. The technology consists of using Dielectric Elastomer actuators in a binary fashion by coupling them with a properly designed compliant structure. Here, a bistable actuator based around the “flip-flop” concept is implemented in which two antagonistic actuators switch a compliant truss between two stable positions. This prototype shows promising performance with output forces ranging from 1 to 3.5 N and displacements of 30% of the actuator dimension.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME
Topics: Elastomers , Actuators



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