Wound roll dielectric elastomer actuators: Fabrication, analysis, and experiments

Arun Rajamani, Michael D. Grissom, Christopher D. Rahn, Qiming Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


Wound roll electroactive polymer actuators fabricated with dielectric elastomer (DE) materials provide high bandwidth actuation for robots, minipumps, loudspeakers, valves, and prosthetic devices. In this paper, we develop a DE wound roll actuator fabrication process that produces high strain (12%), reliable (3480 cycles at maximum strain), and stiff (144 N/m) actuators. An axisymmetric finite element model with electrostatic and radial bulk modulus nonlinearity predicts actuator displacement and stress. The maximum compressive radial stress occurs at the center of the innermost active layer. This layer also has the thinnest material, indicating the most likely failure point. The nonlinear model predicts actuator displacement in response to applied voltage and load, matching experiments to within 1 mm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)117-124
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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