AI News, Future robots need no motors

Future robots need no motors

A mechanical engineering team led by Professor Alfonso Ngan Hing-wan, Chair Professor in Materials Science and Engineering, and Kingboard Professor in Materials Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, the University of Hong Kong (HKU) published an article in Science Robotics on 30 May 2018 (EST) that introduces a novel actuating material -- nickel hydroxide-oxyhydroxide -- that can be powered by visible (Vis) light, electricity, and other stimuli.

However, very few light driven materials are available in the past, and their material and production costs are high, which hinder their development in actual applications such as artificial muscles for robotics and human assist device, and minimally invasive surgical and diagnostic tools.

The novel actuating material system -- nickel hydroxide-oxyhydroxide that can be actuated by Vis light at relatively low intensity to produce high stress and speed comparable to mammalian skeletal muscles has been developed in this research initiated by engineers in HKU.

Similarly, by utilizing a light blocker, a mini walking-bot in which only the 'front leg' bent and straighten alternatively and therefore moves under illumination was made so that it can walk towards the light source.

The intrinsic actuating properties of the materials obtained from our research show that by scaling up the fabrication, artificial muscles comparable to that of mammalian skeletal muscles can be achieved, and applying it in robotics, human assist device and medical devices are possible.

Light-stimulated actuators based on nickel hydroxide-oxyhydroxide

Light-induced actuators that are self-contained and compact can be used as artificial muscles for microrobotics because their actuation can be induced wirelessly, which reduces the complexity of the device or system.

By electroplating the actuating material on passive substrates, we have fabricated film actuators capable of undergoing reversible bending and curling with an intrinsic actuating stress of 5 to 65 megapascals at response rates in the order of tens to hundreds of degrees per second depending on the light intensity, which are comparable to mammalian skeletal muscles.

Team invents world's first nickel-hydroxide actuating material that can be triggered by both light and electricity

A mechanical engineering team led by Professor Alfonso Ngan Hing-wan, Chair Professor in Materials Science and Engineering, and Kingboard Professor in Materials Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, the University of Hong Kong (HKU) published an article in Science Robotics on 30 May 2018 (EST) that introduces a novel actuating material—nickel hydroxide-oxyhydroxide—that can be powered by visible light, electricity, and other stimuli.

The actuation can be instantaneously triggered by visible light to produce a fast deformation and exert a force equivalent to 3000 times its own weight.

Therefore, materials that can be actuated by wireless stimuli including a change in temperature, humidity, magnetic fields and light is one of the main research focus in recent years.

The novel actuating material system, nickel hydroxide-oxyhydroxide, that can be actuated by visible light at relatively low intensity to produce high stress and speed comparable to mammalian skeletal muscles has been developed in this research initiated by engineers in HKU.

When integrated into a well-designed structure, a 'mini arm' made by two hinges of actuating materials can easily lift an object 50 times of its weight (Figure 2).

Similarly, by utilizing a light blocker, the researchers made a mini walking bot in which only the front leg bends and straightens alternatively and therefore moves under illumination such that it can walk toward the light source (Figure 3).

The intrinsic actuating properties of the materials obtained from the research show that by scaling up the fabrication, artificial muscles comparable to those of mammalian skeletal muscles can be achieved.

From a scientific point of view, this nickel hydroxide-oxyhydroxide actuating material is the world's first material system that can be actuated directly by visible light and electricity without any additional fabrication procedures.

Engineers Invent New Actuating Material That Can Replace Motors in Future Robots

A team of mechanical engineers at the University of Hong Kong introduced a revolutionary actuating material that can be powered using visible light, electricity and other stimuli such as heat and humidity without any additional fabrication procedures.

The latest actuating material, however, can be used to develop micro- and biomimetic robots, artificial muscles and medical devices that can be operated wirelessly.

The engineers intentionally electroplated the material on selected areas of the substrate to serve as a hinge actuator to lift the objects by bending or curling in presence of light.

In another demonstration, the researchers made a mini walking robot with only front legs bending and straightening in presence of light, allowing it to move towards the light source.

The researchers also suggested that with the intrinsic actuating properties of this material, it is possible to develop artificial muscles comparable to mammalian skeletal muscles by scaling up the fabrication.

Hong Kong researchers discover Vis-light-powered new actuating material

HONG KONG, May 31 (Xinhua) -- A novel actuating material that can be powered by visible (Vis) light was discovered by researchers from the University of Hong Kong, which made the findings public on Thursday.

However, very few light driven materials were available in the past, and their material and production costs are high, which hindered their development in actual applications such as artificial muscles for robotics and human assist device, and minimally invasive surgical and diagnostic tools, the researchers said.

When integrated into a well-designed structure, a 'mini arm' made by two hinges of the new actuating materials can easily lift an object 50 times of its weight, which, together with some other experiment results, demonstrated that future applications in micro-robotics including rescue robots are possible.

Future Robots need No Motors

Researchers from the University of Hong Kong (HKU) have invented world's first nickel-hydroxide actuating material that can be triggered by both light and ...

Self-contained actuator assembly operating in ambient air at +/- 2V, 0.084 Hz

This video shows a compact, self-contained actuating unit (5mmx 1 mm) consisted of nickel hydroxide/oxyhydroxide actuators actuating in air, at potential scan ...