CORE-FREE ROLLED ACTUATORS FOR BRAILLE DISPLAYS USING ELECTROSTRICTIVE P(VDF-TrFE-CFE) TERPOLYMER

Open Access
Author:
Levard, Thomas
Graduate Program:
Mechanical Engineering
Degree:
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
None
Committee Members:
  • Christopher Rahn, Thesis Advisor
  • Dr Qiming Zhang, Thesis Advisor
Keywords:
  • rolled actuator
  • ElectroActive Polymer
  • Braille display
Abstract:
Refreshable Braille displays require many, small diameter actuators to move the pins. The electrostrictive P(VDF-TrFE-CFE) terpolymer can provide the high strain and actuation force under modest electric fields that are required of this application. In this paper, we develop core-free tubular actuators and integrate them into a 3 × 2 Braille cell. The films are solution cast, stretched to 6 µm thick, electroded, laminated into a bilayer, rolled into a 2 mm diameter tube, bonded, and provided with top and bottom contacts. Experimental testing of 17 actuators demonstrates significant strains (up to 4%) and blocking forces (1 N) at moderate electric fields (100 MV/m). A novel Braille cell is designed and fabricated using six of these actuators.