Title

Liquid metal motor

Publication Name

iScience

Abstract

Liquid metal has demonstrated an enormous potential for developing soft functional devices and machines. However, current liquid metal enabled machines suffer from several issues, such as the requirement of a liquid environment, generation of weak actuating forces, and insufficient maneuverability. To overcome these restrictions, here, a motor is developed based on the electrical actuation of liquid metal droplets without the need for conventional electromagnets. The approach is distinguished by (1) the encapsulation of electrolyte and multiple liquid metal droplets within an enclosed system, and (2) the creation of stable and continuous torque outside a liquid environment. In addition, a liquid metal electrical brush is introduced to operate the motor with low friction and low wear. The unique driving mechanism endows the motor with several advantages, including low friction, no sparking, low noise, versatile working environment, and being built from soft materials that could offer new opportunities for developing soft robotics.

Open Access Status

This publication may be available as open access

Volume

24

Issue

1

Article Number

101911

Funding Number

51828503

Funding Sponsor

National Natural Science Foundation of China

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Link to publisher version (DOI)

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2020.101911