Advance could enable remote control of soft robots

Tender materials, these types of as rubber or polymers that can endure drastic alterations to their shape, are promising for programs the place flexibility and shapeshifting skills are paramount.

For instance, these materials can be utilized to develop tender robots suited for specialized jobs, ranging from health care gadgets that could navigate close to inside the human body to robots for look for-and-rescue missions that can squeeze through compact openings.

But to electrical power a tender robot’s movement or transformations, researchers generally use actuators that need to have to be physically related to the robotic, which limitations its usefulness.

An utilized magnetic area (in blue) can lead to magnetized particles embedded in a tender material to rearrange by themselves into new patterns. By harnessing this phenomenon, researchers can fine-tune the tender material’s houses. Image credit history: Xin Zou, Grainer Institute for Engineering.

“These actuators are generally significantly bigger than the

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