2. Mechanics and Design of Soft Robotics
Soft robotics has recently attracted growing research interest due to its active and safe interaction with the environment and humans. Unlike conventional rigid robots constructed from rigid links, the body of soft robots is mainly composed of extremely soft materials, similar to the soft-bodied animals in nature, which can undergo large deformation under external actuation including pneumatic or hydraulic pressure, temperature, light, and electrical or magnetic field. Our group’s recent research focuses on mechanics guided design of modular actuators for integrating in multifunctional soft robotics including grippers and high-efficiency locomotion including climbing, swimming, and jumping.
- “Switchable adhesion actuator for amphibious climbing soft robot”, Y. Tang, Q. Zhang, G. Lin, and J. Yin, Soft Robotics, 5(5), 592-600 (2018)
- “Design of multifunctional soft doming actuator for soft machines“, Y. Tang and J. Yin, Adv. Mater. Technol. 3(7), 1800069 (2018)
3. Mechanics and Functionality of Extreme Buckling-driven Delamination
Despite extensive studies on wrinkling of soft materials, there are limited studies on mechanics and functionality of spontaneous extreme buckling driven periodic delamination. Compared to wrinkling, one of the great advantages of extremely buckling driven delamination is their extraordinary high aspect ratio of buckles. The large surface roughness and high local curvature at both peak and valleys of extremely delaminated buckles could potentially enable extreme surface topographies related properties such as adhesion, wetting, friction, and optics, as well as augment the extreme stretchability in stretchable optical and electronic devices. The new and extreme buckle-delaminated pattern including creasing, period-doubling, non-sinusoidal buckles will enrich the mechanics problems to be explored.
- “Spontaneous buckling-driven delamination of thin films on soft substrates under large compression“, Q. Zhang and J. Yin, J. Mech. Phys. Solids, 118, 40-57 (2018)
- “Spontaneous periodic delamination of thin films to form crack-free metal and silicon ribbons with high stretchability”, Q. Zhang, Y. Tang, M. Hajfathalian, C. Chen, K. T. Turner, D. A. Dikin, G. Lin and J. Yin, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 9, 44938-44947 (2017)
4. Small Wrinkle, Big Application — Small is Big
Wrinkles are ubiquitous in our lives, from the wavy undulations of our skin, to the folds of hanging curtains, to wrinkled raisins. In the recent ten years, wrinkling has been pursued as a versatile means of generating surface micro/nano-patterns and of harnessing surface topography for a wide range of controllable and tunable applications, including wetting, adhesion, fluid/aerodynamic drag, biofouling, and photonics etc.