Strain Response from Polypyrrole Actuators under Load



The strain generated by an actuator material when subjected to an external force is a key performance parameter. However, very little is known about the performance of polymer actuator materials when subjected to external loads. Increasing external loads were applied to polypyrrole films and the actuator response was found to decrease linearly. Analysis of the effects of the applied load on actuator strain showed that the rate of strain decrease with increasing load depended upon the difference in the Young’s modulus of the polymer in the doped and undoped states. A simple analytical model shows good agreement with the experimental data.