Self-Propelled Metal–Polymer Hybrid Micromachines with Bending and Rotational Motions

2017-06-05T00:00:00Z (GMT) by Yoshitaka Yoshizumi Hiroaki Suzuki
Two self-propelled micromachines were fabricated with gold/platinum micromotors that exhibit simple translational motion in a fuel solution. In each one, two micromotors were connected with a joint of polymer tube formed by stacking cationic poly­(allylamine hydrochloride) (PAH) and anionic poly­(acrylic acid) (PAA) using a layer-by-layer technique. A bent structure was created by making one longitudinal side of the joint more swellable with alkaline treatment. The joint containing fewer PAA/PAH bilayers was flexible and allowed a larger range of Brownian angular fluctuation. In the fuel solution, bending and stable rotation were observed for the micromotors tethered with soft and rigid angled joints, respectively. The radius and angular velocity of the rotation depended on the angle of the joint. Such tethered micromotors can be used to realize sophisticated micro/nanomachines for microscale surgery and drug delivery.