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Issue Date: 12-Feb-2013
Authors: Pagano, Francesco
Title: Smart Systems Based on Electroactive Polymers
Abstract: The purpose of this thesis is the development and analysis of smart systems based on electroactive polymers (EAPs). Thanks to their sensing and actuation capabilities, devices based on EAPs, like ionic polymer metal composites (IPMCs), realized by using a noble metal or ionic polymer polymer composites (IP2Cs), where a conducting polymer replaces the metal, pave the road to the development of new integrated devices , being the conditioning circuitry very simple, that could be of high interest in fields such as engineering, biomechanics, aerospace, and robotics. Furthermore, in the near future the entire system, included the conditioning circuitry, could be realized by using plastic based electronics, opening new possibilities for a post-silicon era. Characteristics like the large deformations obtained under the ef-fect of a low level applied voltage signal, the capability to transform a mechanical stimulus into a detectable electrical signal and the vibra-tional characteristics of a cantilever beam, have contributed to selecting the IPMC as candidates for the research carried out. The idea that drove this thesis is to proof the possibility to use EAPs to realize a smart systems that can both perform measurements in harsh environments while being energetically self-sufficient. This has prompted the design, the realization and the test of sen-sors, such as a seismic sensor and a viscometer, and of a device able to harvest energy from ambient vibrations. This work has allowed to assert that, although the technology used is still room for improvement, this idea is feasible.
Appears in Collections:Area 09 - Ingegneria industriale e dell'informazione

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