Wireless Powered Dielectric Elastomer Actuator

Lai Chen, Takuya Sasatani, Keung Or, Satoshi Nishikawa, Yoshihiro Kawahara, Ryuma Niiyama, Yasuo Kuniyoshi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The need for cable connection with soft robotic systems suppresses the benefits granted by their softness and flexibility. Such systems can be untethered by equipping batteries or by relying on non-electrical actuation mechanisms. However, these approaches cannot simultaneously support long-term and intelligent operations. This research examines a proposed wireless soft actuator based on wireless power transfer (WPT) and dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA) technology, thereby realizing soft robomore diversified application and long-term locomotion. A compact conical DEA fabrication process is presented with 6 mm periodic linear output and design of a lightweight WPT receiver that weighs only 13 g integrated with a driver circuit. Evaluation results show that this system remotely powers the DEA and the intelligent peripheral circuits for system control. Furthermore, our design seamlessly bridges the WPT system, power-efficient in low-voltage output conditions, and the DEA, which requires high-voltage input (kV) for deformation, by leveraging high-voltage boost-converters. Experimentally obtained results demonstrate untethered DEA operation at 170 mm from the transmitter. Also, we demonstrated applying this DEA as a wireless pump.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9484851
Pages (from-to)7278-7284
Number of pages7
JournalIEEE Robotics and Automation Letters
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Control and Optimization
  • Artificial Intelligence


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