The authors describe the fabrication and applications of composite membranes with lithographically defined pieces of rigid UV-cured epoxy grafted inside a flexible polydimethylsiloxane membrane. The pattern of epoxy in the membrane defines its mode of deformation under pressure. They constructed and characterized two devices with the composite membranes. In one device, the grafted pieces of epoxy focus the pressure-induced membrane extension to a thin strip, and in the other device, the epoxy pattern generates in-plane rotation of the membrane under pressure. The proposed composite membranes can be used in pressure-driven actuators and adaptive optical devices.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The project was supported by the DARPA Center for Opto-Fluidic Integration, http://www.optofluidics.caltech.edu, and by NSF Grant No. OCE 04-28900.