Untethered rotational system with a stacked dielectric elastomer actuator

Ayato Minaminosono, Hiroki Shigemune, Taichi Murakami, Shingo Maeda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


An untethered system can realize wide-area activities of soft robots. Herein we develop an untethered DEA wheel (UD-wheel) with a dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA). DEA is a soft actuator driven by electrostatic force. This UD-wheel is a new rotating device that integrates an untethered system and stacked DEAs. The untethered system consists of a small battery and a small high-voltage circuit. All the components are assembled seamlessly. Because the circuit can control four DEAs, the active time that the circuit continues to control the DEAs with a small battery is estimated. The estimated time matches the experimental result. We evaluated the output torque and back-drivability achieved by stacked DEAs installed in a UD-wheel. We also built a theoretical model for an in-depth evaluation. The stacking DEAs method provides a better back-drivability than the reducer method. This study suggests that our untethered rotational system may provide novel functions in soft robotics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number065007
JournalSmart Materials and Structures
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Jun


  • dielectric elastomer actuator
  • soft robot
  • stacked artificial muscle
  • untethered rotational system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Signal Processing
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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