A team of South Korean researchers has developed a technology for a soft actuator which moves and accordingly changes its color like an actual body of an organism.

The research team of Seoul National University said that unlike conventional actuators that are heavy and rigid, the soft actuator is made of soft materials such as paper and plastic sheet.

The core technology for the actuator is that it uses two different types of macromolecule films whose coefficient of thermal expansion changes as its physical direction changes.

On top of this, a temperature-sensitive dye has been applied, allowing immediate color changes with the movement.

Biomimetic flower blooms and changes colors.
Biomimetic flower blooms and changes colors in S. Korea on Aug. 11 (AP/Screenshot)

The team added that the newly-developed technology will be applied to various soft robots such as camouflage robots, and those for artistic purposes. This means that the new technology will advance the development of a chameleon-like robot with a soft and tender body.

Categories: Science Science News