Mechanical and electro-mechanical properties of EAP actuators with inkjet printed electrodes

Inga Põldsalu*, Urmas Johanson, Tarmo Tamm, Andres Punning, Francesco Greco, Anna Liisa Peikolainen, Rudolf Kiefer, Alvo Aabloo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Electrically conductive polymer (CP) based ionic electromechanically active polymer composites (IEAP-s) are attractive as bending and linear actuators in compliant and miniature devices due to low operating voltage. Ink-jet printing is a promising technology for fabrication of microscale CP-based IEAP-s with customized shapes and geometries. The current study investigates tailoring of the mechanical and electromechanical properties of the actuators by controlled growth of ink-jet printed poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)-poly(styrene sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) based electrodes on commercial poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVdF) membranes. In parallel with PEDOT:PSS, hybrid actuators with ink-jet printed PEDOT:PSS and activated carbon aerogel electrodes were investigated. Cumulative growth of electrodes with each deposited layer was achieved in the case of both electrode materials. The strain, blocking force and capacitance of the actuators were in linear correlation with the thickness of the electrodes. Simple method of control encourages implementation of ink-jet-printing technology for manufacturing of IEAP micro-actuators with desired mechanical and electromechanical properties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)122-127
Number of pages6
JournalSynthetic Metals
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018


  • Bending actuator
  • Blocking force
  • Conducting polymer
  • Inkjet printing
  • Ionic EAP

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science


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