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Light-Responsive Nanofibrous Motor with Simultaneously Precise Locomotion and Reversible Deformation

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posted on 15.02.2021, 06:11 authored by Pingping Feng, Xiaolong Du, Juan Guo, Ke Wang, Botao Song
Light-powered micromotors have drawn enormous attention because of their potential applications in cargo delivery, environmental monitoring, and noninvasive surgery. However, the existing micromotors still suffer from some challenges, including slow speed, poor controllability, single locomotion mode, and no deformation during movement. Herein, we employ a combined electrospinning with brushing of Chinese ink to simply fabricate a light-responsive gradient-structured poly­(vinyl alcohol)/carbon (PVA/carbon) composite motor. Because of the surface deposition and ultrahigh loading amount of carbon nanoparticles (ca. 43%), the motor exhibits rapid (39 mm/s), direction-controlled, and multimodal locomotion (vertical movement, horizontal motion, rotation) under light irradiation. Simultaneously, gradient alignment structure of the PVA nanofibrous matrix endows the motor with controllable and reversible deformation during locomotion. We finally demonstrate the potential applications of the motors in leakage monitoring, object salvage, smart access, and intelligent assembly. The present work will inspire the design of novel photosensitive motors for applications in various fields, such as microrobots, environmental monitoring, and biomedicine.