Ras Labs Synthetic Muscle™
Ras Labs Synthetic Muscle™ is a class of electroactive polymer (EAP) based materials and actuators that contract and expand at low voltages (battery levels), attenuate force, and sense pressure (gentle touch to high impact) for robotic linkages and grippers, prosthetics, ear buds, and athletic/protective gear. These EAPs serve dual use as sensors, which can be tied in to automatic adjustment and touch biofeedback, and can determine the number of impacts (or steps) and severity of impact or pressure. An EMI® robotic gripper is retrofitted with EAP sensing pads for tactile feedback. Actuation can be performed underwater or on land with elastomeric coatings. These robust EAPs were tested for extreme temperature environments, including down to -270oC, high and low pressures, and were also tested for radiation resistance on the International Space Center (ISS) National Laboratory.