Electro-Active Polymer

Boon-Chai Ng (Engineering & Computer Science)

Evaluation of the electrical resistance and capacitance of a di-electric electro-active polymer

Dielectric Electro Active Polymers (DEAP) have the potential of converting mechanical energy into useful electrical energy.  This material consists of a silicone dielectric film material with a special corrugated surface and a very thin layer of metallic electrodes on both sides of the surface. As these materials allow large mechanical deformations with low operating forces, potential applications include using this material to convert the energy from the ocean waves, and wind.

A new test rig will be designed and built and a series of experiments will be carried out in order to investigate the material’s capacitance as well as the electrical resistance of the metallic electrodes as it undergoes a definite number of stress-relaxation cycles.

This work will examined the capacitance and the electrical resistance of this material (DEAP) to provide useful information in optimizing the electrical properties for specific applications, and to investigate how the electrical properties are affected by electrical and/or mechanical breakdown.

This research will also be researching into ways to harness the energy that can be harvest via the conversion of mechanical energy to electrical energy.

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