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Humidity responsive actuation of bioinspired hygromorph biocomposites (HBC) for adaptive structures

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-45
Number of pages10
JournalComposites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing
Early online date11 Oct 2018
DateAccepted/In press - 10 Oct 2018
DateE-pub ahead of print - 11 Oct 2018
DatePublished (current) - Jan 2019


Hygromorph biocomposites (HBC) possess moisture-induced actuation from bioinspired designs. The present work describes a large experimental and comprehensive database of the hygro-mechanical and bending actuation properties of flax/maleic anhydride grafted polypropylene (MAPP) HBC composites over a large range of moisture variation (10–90% RH) and water immersion. HBCs exhibit a promising responsiveness and reactivity over the whole relative humidity range (10–90% RH), with acceleration and increase of the actuation observed as soon as a 30% RH value is reached. The experimental data are compared to analogous results from an analytical model based on a modified Timoshenko theory, and a finite element model based on the use of classical laminate theory (CLT). We discuss the effects of the hygroscopic properties (β coefficient) and the design parameters (length/width and thickness ratios) of the composites on the actuation performance.

    Research areas

  • Biocomposite, Smart materials, Moisture, Mechanical properties

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    Rights statement: This is the author accepted manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via Elsevier at . Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.

    Accepted author manuscript, 1.2 MB, PDF document

    Licence: CC BY-NC-ND


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