Towards bioinspired microSystems
Florea, Larisa and Francis, Wayne and Dunne, Aishling and Tudor, Alexandru and Diamond, Dermot (2017) Towards bioinspired microSystems. In: General Conference and MC/WG Meeting of the COST Action MP1205 “Advances in Optofluidics: Integration of Optical Control and Photonics with Microfluidics”, 14-15 Sept 2016, Cetraro, Italy.
Full text available as:
The continuing interest in stimuli-responsive materials has yielded quite an expansive variety of smart materials that respond to a wide range of stimuli such as electrical current, pH and light, among others , and are opening up new concepts in so-called 4D-materials science, in which the 4th dimension is the ability to change materials characteristics over time in a controlled manner using external stimuli.
A subclass of this family is comprised of stimuli-responsive hydrogels that are three-dimensional, hydrophilic, polymer networks capable of large water intake. These characteristics make them a potential candidate for the fabrication of biocompatible systems, which can be used for tailored drug delivery and regenerative medicine within the body. Incorporation of responsive units in such polymeric networks allows for their use as micro-machines capable of doing mechanical work in response to the chosen stimulus. The application of smart materials offers tangible solutions in the field of actuators for microfluidic valves, artificial muscles and biomimetic robots [2-5].
Moreover, new capabilities such as motility, switchable selective uptake and release of molecular agents, sensing, signalling and seeking, will enable microstructures and micro-vehicles to manifest many of the features of biological entities.
In this talk I will explore several bioinspired microstructures and micro-vehicles including smart droplets and 3D stimuli-responsive microstructures, focusing in particular on the important role of light as a means to enable and control stimuli-responsive materials, and discuss how these might provide initial building blocks for creating futuristic microsystems.
Archive Staff Only: edit this record