Ionic-polymer based actuators have the advantages of low voltage and power requirements, being easily processable, flexibility, soft action and bio-mimetic activation, which are of considerable interests for applications in biomedical micro-devices and soft robotics. In this chapter, we firstly review the development of ionic polymer actuator and reveal the universal architecture and mechanism of ionic polymer actuators. We then introduce two kinds of typical polymer actuators: ionic polymer-metal composites (IPMC) and bucky gel actuator (BGA), including their basic principle, fabrication process and typical applications. The aim of this chapter is to give some perspectives on IPMC and BGA and provide a way and case in using this actuator for real applications.
Part of the book: Actuators