Modelling the development of shape-changing stimuli-responsive hydrogels for micromotors

  • Rahmat, Amin (University of Birmingham)
  • Safdari-Shadloo, Mostafa (INSA de Rouen)
  • Montenegro-Johnson, Tom (University of Birmingham)

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Shape-changing stimuli-responsive hydrogels change their topology and material properties under variations of external stimuli e.g., pH and temperature. This functionality promises a multitude of advanced applications such as smart motors in microfluidics. Here, we present a hybrid numerical model and develop these shape-changing stimuli-responsive hydrogels to design micromotors such as rockets and ribbons. The numerical model relies on the combination of the Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics method and Mass Spring Model for modelling hydrogels and their interactions with the surrounding fluidic environment. The proposed model is used to investigate the characteristics of such designs in microfluidic systems and their translation and dynamics in response to temperature variations via developing heterogeneous designs as shown in figure 1, which illustrates our preliminary results for heterogeneous beams with responsive sections which induce translational motion in fluid environment.