Mechanical Engineering Faculty Research

Title

A Low-voltage Droplet Microgripper for Micro-object Manipulation

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2009

Abstract

We present a low-voltage microgripper utilizing a liquid droplet to pick up and release micro-objects. Lifting force is generated by a liquid bridge formed between the gripper surface and an object. Electrowetting was used to dynamically change the capillary lifting forces and enable easy object release. The driving voltage was applied to a pair of coplanar interdigitated electrodes, eliminating the need for an electrode on top of the droplet and thus significantly facilitating object manipulation. A barium strontium titanate insulation layer was used to lower the driving voltage. Experiments indicated that the lifting forces can be as high as 213 µN at a driving voltage of 28 V. Experiments also demonstrated a low-voltage, low power consumption soft microgripper by picking up and releasing micro glass beads.

Publication Title

Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering

Volume

19

Issue

7

First Page

075005