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Silk based muscle fibres

Using overwound fibres and piezoelectric effect
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Recently, a simple muscle fibre has been made from fishing line. It is wound much like the rubber band in a toy plane, where the twist takes on a second twist. Heating the result contracts the length. Apparently it is rather a strong effect. There are many advantages of this approach: cost being one. However, the efficiency is not so good, as the fibre needs to be heated. There is no fibre, so far, that satisfies all requirements for weight, strength, efficiency, control, cost etc.

So I was thinking about what could be tried, and was trying to find a hard material that was piezoelectric, but in fibre form was flexible enough to be wound like the fishing line, much like fiber optic cable is made from glass. I didn't find anything along those lines, but I found that silk is a soft material that is piezoelectric.

So the idea is to use silk and arrange conductive layers on the outside that make an electric field that hopefully cause a multiplied piezoelectric effect.

I think that piezoelectric movement is more efficient than that from thermal expansion, but I don't have any proof of that.

Ling, Mar 22 2015

There's a twist in this yarn... http://www.popularm...eal-thing-16514805/
[Ling, Mar 22 2015]

[link]






       [+] two pairs of heated, power-multiplying silk gloves please, one in black, one in white. Oh, and another equipped with a microprocessor, for a little help through fast piano passages, or text-messaging.
FlyingToaster, Mar 22 2015
  
      
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