Publication Details

Tyagi, M., Spinks, G. M. & Jager, E. J.H. (2020). Fully 3D printed soft microactuators for soft microrobotics. Smart Materials and Structures, 29 (8),


© 2020 IOP Publishing Ltd. The feasibility of additive manufacturing actuating microstructures and microdevices with small dimension is presented. Using a custom-built extrusion 3D printer and CAD model of the device structure, bilayer microactuators driven by hydrogels are fabricated down to a size of 300 × 1000 μm2, with a minimum thickness of 30 μm. To explore the limitations of the 3D printing process, microactuators with a width of 300 μm and lengths ranging from 1000 to 5000 μm are manufactured and thereafter operated to demonstrate the feasibility of the process. Similarly, microrobotic devices consisting of a passive rigid body and flexible moving parts are 3D printed to illustrate the ease and versatility of the additive manufacturing technique to fabricate soft microgrippers or micromanipulators.



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