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Modeling the electrical impedance response of ionic polymer transducers
Farinholt, Kevin M.
Leo, Donald J.
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An analytical study is presented that investigates the electrical impedance response of the ionic polymer transducer. Experimental studies have shown that the electromechanical response of these active materials is highly dependent upon internal parameters such as neutralizing counterion, diluent, electrode treatment, as well as environmental factors such as ambient temperature. Further examination has shown that these variations are introduced predominantly through the polymer's ability to convert voltage into charge migration. This relationship can easily be represented by the polymer's electrical impedance as measured across the outer electrodes of the transducer. In the first half of this study an analytical model is developed which predicts the time and frequency domain characteristics of the electrical response of the ionic polymer transducer. Transport equations serve as the basis for this model, from which a series of relationships are developed to describe internal potential, internal charge density, as well as surface current. In the second half of this study several analytical studies are presented to understand the impact that internal parameters have on the polymer's electrical response, while providing a conceptual validation of the model. In addition to the analytical studies several experimental comparisons are made to further validate the model by examining how well the model predicts changes in temperature, viscosity and pretention within the ionic polymer transducer. (c) 2008 American Institute of Physics.