An approach to fabricate gel actuator using nonionic polymer gels and dielectric liquid pattern was developed. The actuator could be operated in air using a dc electric field and exhibited a rotation-slide complex motion on the horizontal and a snail-like or sliding motion on the slope with controlled path. The average rotational speed and the average climbing speed of the gel could reach 0.35 rad/s and 3.8 mm/s, respectively. The driving force of the gel originated from the electrohydrodynamic flow of the dielectric solvent inside and outside the gel induced by the ion-dragging mechanism under the electric field.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The authors acknowledge The National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 50373049, 50425312, and 50521302) and Innovation Project of CAS for financial support.