Vol.9 No.3 2017
10/74

Research paper : Development of human-friendly polymeric actuators based on nano-carbon electrodes (Kinji Asaka)−123−Synthesiology - English edition Vol.9 No.3 (2017) AuthorKinji AsakaCompleted the master’s program at the Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University in March 1986 (Chemistry). Obtained doctor’s degree at Kyoto University in 1990. Faculty staff at the Institute for Chemical Research, Kyoto University from 1986 to 1993. Joined the Government Industrial Research Institute, Osaka, Agency of Industrial Science and Technology (currently, AIST) in 1993. Currently Group Leader, Hybrid Actuator Group, Inorganic Functional Materials Research Institute, AIST. Visiting Professor at Shinshu University and Wakayama University. Specialties are interfacial electrochemistry and development of polymeric actuators.voltage driven and operable in air. We did not intend it to be “used inside the body,” and I corrected the meaning of “human-friendly” as limited to “wearable on the human body.”3 Superiority of the developed actuatorComment (Hiroaki Tao)There is no quantitative description on the performances of the actuator developed in this paper, particularly in comparison with the conventional materials or the materials that serve as world benchmarks. I think this prevents communicating the superiority of your technology to the readers.Answer (Kinji Asaka)In Table 1, I added the comparison with the piezoelectric ceramics bimorph actuator that is widely used and commercially available. I also added an explanation of our actuator in the text.4 Process of improving the performanceQuestion (Hiroaki Tao)For improving the performance of the bucky gel actuator, you conducted various experiments and succeeded in developing useful materials and setting the guideline. Did you obtain these through experience of repeated trial-and-error, or did you set up a hypothesis that ion conductivity and molecular size are relevant, and then conduct experiments by selecting ionic liquids with different physical properties to prove your hypothesis?Answer (Kinji Asaka)For the optimal ionic liquids, we did a search by setting up a hypothesis based on the deformation model in Fig. 4. Specically, we looked at the size difference of cation and anion for the degree of displacement, and we looked at the ion conductivity for the displacement rate. I added this process of investigation to the text.5 Reason for improved performanceQuestion (Hiroaki Tao)Why does the performance improve dramatically when you add carbon black or carbon nanohorn?Answer (Kinji Asaka)The properties required of electrode nanocarbons are not simply mechanical properties of single elements such as conductivity, initiation stress, expansion/contraction ratio, specific surface area, or Young’s modulus, but the geometric factors such as dispersibility and aspect ratio become important as the properties of an assembly of elements. It is inferred that the improvement of actuator performance by the addition of carbon black or carbon nanohorn is due to the contribution of their geometric factors such as improved CNT dispersibility and increased density of the electrode structure, as well as their contribution to conductivity and capacitance. I added this inference to the text.Discussions with Reviewers1 OverallComment (Hiroaki Tao, AIST)This paper presents the realization of a soft actuator that is also called an artificial muscle, by using carbon nanotubes, ionic liquids, and other advanced materials. The background of development, the working principle, and points of materials development are described appropriately. As an example of practical use, the application to braille displays is considered, manufacturing and evaluation are done through corporate joint research, and future points of improvement are reviewed. The flow of the R&D from the development of new technology, product realization, and future prospects are explained, and I think this paper will be particularly useful to the researchers in the eld of materials development.2 Meaning of “human-friendly”Comment (Noboru Yumoto, AIST)I think the term “human-friendly” in the title seems to be rather broad. The required characteristics of an actuator differ according to use, and the restrictions of materials and other factors greatly change depending on whether it is used outside or inside the body. Therefore, I think it is necessary to clarify what use you have in mind for the actuator developed in this paper.Answer (Kinji Asaka)Compared to other actuators, the nanocarbon polymeric actuator described in this paper has characteristics of being low-

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