am100244x_si_001.pdf (310.01 kB)

A Facile Template-Free Approach to Magnetodriven, Multifunctional Artificial Cilia

Download (310.01 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 25.08.2010, 00:00 by Jaakko V. I. Timonen, Christoffer Johans, Kyösti Kontturi, Andreas Walther, Olli Ikkala, Robin H. A. Ras
Flexible and magnetic artificial cilia were grown on various substrates by a facile bottom-up approach based on template-free magnetic assembly. The magnetic cilia formed spontaneously from a suspension of micrometer-sized ferromagnetic particles and elastomeric polymer in a liquid solvent when dried in an external magnetic field. The cilia mimics were mechanically stable even in the absence of an external magnetic field and a solvent due to the polymer, which acted as “glue” holding the particles together and connecting the cilia to the substrate. The length of the magnetic cilia was in the millimeter range, that is, two to three orders of magnitude times the length of typical biological cilia. The aspect ratio reached values over 100 and was tunable with the magnetic field gradient and the size of the ferromagnetic particles. The cilia mimics responded to an external magnetic field by reversibly bending along the field. The bending actuation was sufficiently powerful to allow two functions: to translate macroscopic nonmagnetic objects placed over the cilia mimics and to mix liquids of even high viscosity. The mechanical properties of the magnetic cilia could be easily tuned by changing the impregnating polymer. The particularly simple template-free construction and fixation on various surfaces suggest applications as an externally controllable surface.