dr. Ramses Martinez: Unconventional Methods in Polymer Science for the Fabrication of Nanoelectronics, Microfluidic Devices and Robotics
|do 01-05-2014 11:00 - 12:00
Innovation is the application of better solutions that meet new requirements, unarticulated needs, or existing needs of the market or society. This talk will describe how the use of the principles of Polymer Science and Engineering in unconventional ways made it possible to overcome technological limitations and to bring solutions to society in the following areas:
Nanofabrication . I will describe unconventional techniques like Local Electrochemical Nanolithography and Evaporation Assisted Nanomolding. These techniques proved to be very effective in fabricating nanoelectronic devices and micro-endoscopes for in vivo applications and image-guided therapy.
Microfluidics . I propose the use of chemically modified paper as an alternative to generate pressure-driven, open-channel microfluidic systems with lateral dimensions of 45‑280 microns carved in paper using a craft-cutting tool.
Robotics . Typical “hard” robotic structures—structures based on multiple flexible joints connected by stiff links—are often heavy, and their control is complicated and expensive. Here I will describe the development of “soft” robots based on composites of elastomers with embedded fiber structures (e.g., fabric) that are flexible, but not extensible. On pneumatic inflation, these robotic actuators move anisotropically, based on the motions accessible by their composite structures. They are inexpensive, simple to fabricate, lightweight, and easy to actuate.