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4D fibrous materials: Characterising the deployment of paper architectures

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Article number095052
Number of pages13
JournalSmart Materials and Structures
Issue number9
Early online date24 Aug 2016
DateAccepted/In press - 28 Jul 2016
DateE-pub ahead of print - 24 Aug 2016
DatePublished (current) - Sep 2016


Deployment of folded paper architecture using a fluid medium as the morphing stimulus presents a simple and inexpensive methodology capable of self-actuation; where the underlying principles can be translated to develop smart fibrous materials capable of programmable actuations. In this study we characterise different paper architectures and their stimuli mechanisms for folded deployment; including the influence of porosity, moisture, surfactant concentration, temperature, and hornification. We observe that actuation time decreases with paper grammage; through the addition of surfactants, and when the temperature is increased at the fluid-vapour interface. There is a clear effect of hydration, water transport and the interaction of hydrogen bonds within the fibrous architecture which drives the deployment of the folded regions. The importance of fibre volume fraction and functional fillers in shape recovery was also observed, as well as the effect of a multilayer composite paper system. The design guidelines shown here will inform the development of synthetic fibrous actuators for repeated deployment.

    Research areas

  • 4D materials, composite morphing, origami, self-actuation

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

    Accepted author manuscript, 1 MB, PDF document


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