Self-Folding Printable Elastic Electric Devices: Resistor, Capacitor, and Inductor

Shuhei Miyashita,Laura Meeker, Maurice Goldi, Yoshihiro Kawahara, and Daniela Rus

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA)
Hong Kong

This paper presents a methodology and validation of print-and-self-fold electric devices. For printing functional structures for robotic use, we realize electric circuitry based on metallic polyester film (MPF). By exploiting the unique material properties of MPF, we developed fundamental electric devices, namely a resistor, capacitor, and inductor. The developed polyvinyl chloride laminated MPF sheet shows reliable selffolding processes under a heat application, and it configures 3D electric devices. Due to the pre-resolved kinematic design, these devices feature elasticity, making them suitable as sensors and actuators in soft circuits. Here we testify to a self-assembled variable resistor and capacitive strain sensor. An actuation mechanism consisting of a folded contractible coil is also considered and shown. Finally, an RLC circuit obtained from the integration of all the developed devices is demonstrated, in which the coil based actuator is controlled by reading a variable capacitive strain sensor.