Tunable morphing of electroactive dielectric-elastomer balloons


SC4I/Digitization, Innovation, and Competitiveness of the Production System
Tunable morphing of electroactive dielectric-elastomer balloons
Monday 27th February 2023
Su, Y.; Riccobelli, D.; Chen, Y; Chen, W; Ciarletta, P
Download link:
Designing smart devices with tunable shapes has important applications in industrial manufacture. In this paper, we investigate the nonlinear deformation and the morphological transitions between buckling, necking, and snap-through instabilities of layered DE balloons in response to an applied radial voltage and an inner pressure. We propose a general mathematical theory of nonlinear electro-elasticity able to account for finite inhomogeneous strains provoked by the electro-mechanical coupling. We investigate the onsets of morphological transitions of the spherically symmetric balloons using the surface impedance matrix method. Moreover, we study the nonlinear evolution of the bifurcated branches through finite element numerical simulations. Our analysis demonstrates the possibility to design tunable DE spheres, where the onset of buckling and necking can be controlled by geometrical and mechanical properties of the passive elastic layers. Relevant applications include soft robotics and mechanical actuators.
This report, or a modified version of it, has been also submitted to, or published on
Proceedings of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences