Control of a novel flexible finger using electro-conjugate fluid with built-in angle sensor

Kento Mori, Akihiro Yamaguchi, Kenjiro Takemura, Shinichi Yokota, Kazuya Edamura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


An electro-conjugate fluid (ECF) is a kind of functional fluid, which produces a powerful flow when subjected to high DC voltage. It is known that a strong ECF flow is generated under non-uniform electric field, for example, the field with a pair of needle and ring electrodes. The ECF flow could be used as a micro fluid pressure source (an ECF pump) for actuators including an artificial muscle and a flexible finger. However, previous studies on ECF soft actuators only focused on confirmation of the driving principle. This means, an improvement of performance of ECF pumps and a control scheme for ECF soft actuators have yet to be studied in detail. Hence, this study improves the performance of the ECF pump, and proposes a novel control system for an ECF flexible finger. The ECF pump developed in this study, 200.3 mm3, generates maximum pressure of 92.6 kPa and maximum flow rate of 103.0 ml/min. The flexible finger (Ø 5 mm ×30mm), driven by the ECF pump, bends 150° with a rise time of 1 s. In addition, we construct a master-slave system using the ECF flexible finger and confirm its performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-83
Number of pages9
JournalSensors and Actuators, A: Physical
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Aug


  • Electro-conjugate fluid
  • Flexible finger
  • Soft actuator

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Instrumentation
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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