Giant Volume Change of Active Gels under Continuous Flow
BRANDEIS UNIV WALTHAM MA DEPT OF CHEMISTRY
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While living systems have developed highly efficient ways to convert chemical energy e.g., ATP hydrolysis to mechanical motion e.g., movement of muscle, it remains a challenge to build muscle-like biomimetic systems to generate mechanical force directly from chemical reactions. Here we show that a continuous flow of reactant solution leads to by far the largest volume change to date in autonomous active gels driven by the Belousov Zhabotinsky reaction. These results demonstrate that microfluidics offers a useful and facile experimental approach to optimize the conditions e.g., fabrication methods, counterions, flow rates, concentrations of reagents for chemomechanical transduction in active materials. This work thus provides much needed insights and methods for the development of chemomechanically active systems based on combining soft materials and microfluidic systems.
- Physical Chemistry
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