Assistant Professor Seok Kim and graduate students Zining Yang and Jun Kyu Park have developed a design construct inspired in part by the surface of butterflies and snakes, where flexible skins are fully covered by rigid, discrete scales.
Their work, "Magnetically Responsive Elastomer-Silicon Hybrid Surfaces for Fluid and Light Manipulation," was recently featured on the cover of Small.
Their new surface design features rigid scales assembled into soft, ferromagnetic micropillars on a flexible substrate in a predesigned manner by transfer printing-based deterministic assembly. The nanostructured silicon scales on the magnetically responsive elastomer micropillar array enables fluid and light manipulation.
The functional properties of the surface are dictated by the scales' patterns, while the micropillar array is magnetically actuated with large-range, instantaneous, and reversible deformation.
Kim and his researchers were able to design, characterize, and analyze a wide range of functions, such as tunable wetting, droplet manipulation, tunable optical transmission, and structural coloration, by incorporating a wide range of scales--bare silicon, black silicon, and photonic crystal scales--in both in-plane and out-of-plane configurations.
Magnetically response materials like soft elastomers loaded with magnetic particles, are desirable for their real-time manipulation of fluid, light, solid particles, and living cells - thanks to their instantaneous structural tenability under a magnetic field. However, due to the fabrication process, most existing surfaces of this kind are limited in their functional ability.
Compared with common responsive surface with simple design (the magnetic micropillar array), the surface developed in our work not only has enhanced performance in directional liquid spreading and optical transmission tuning, but also enables novel functions such as droplet manipulation and dynamic structural coloration," said Yang, PhD candidate and first author of the study.
Their results suggest a versatile platform for both fluid and light manipulations at both the micro and macroscale. Potential applications can be found in digital microfluidics, biomedical devices, virtual blinds, camouflage surfaces, and micromirror arrays. Further work could also result in more biomimetic functionalities such as robotic locomotion, swimming, self-cleaning, and solid object manipulation. Their design could also be integrated with active devices such as solar cells, light emitting diodes, and lasers as scales to form novel flexible optoelectronics.
Kim is a leading scientist in advanced transfer printing and transfer printing-based microassembly.
Julia Stackler | EurekAlert!
Atomic structure of ultrasound material not what anyone expected
21.02.2018 | North Carolina State University
Hidden talents: Converting heat into electricity with pencil and paper
20.02.2018 | Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie
Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...
For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.
In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...
Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale
Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...
For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.
But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...
Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.
The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...
15.02.2018 | Event News
13.02.2018 | Event News
12.02.2018 | Event News
22.02.2018 | Life Sciences
22.02.2018 | Information Technology
22.02.2018 | Health and Medicine