Smart Rubbers: Sensors, Actuators, Mechano-responsive rubbers
Rubber research in IPF, Dresden has been focused on the exploitation of different functional additives in rubber compounds to develop multifunctional elastomeric materials. Different kind of actuators, sensors starting from lower strain to higher strain sensors are now matter of interest. For example, recent development on coupling the dynamic mechanical properties of conducting rubber with electrical conductivities enables us to predict service life of rubber products like, seals, gaskets, load bearing pads etc. A long term and in depth knowledge of rubber chemistry and technology compelled us to develop novel type of rubbers which can be used in the fabrication of dielectric actuators establishing a benchmark of the performance of actuators. The evaluation of structure-property relationship is supported by in-house synthesis and compounding facilities of rubbers and other functional fillers and chemicals.