Design of photothermal triggered bilayer morphing composites

Julio A. Aguilar-Tadeo, Shida Lyu, Constantinos Soutis, Jonny J. Blaker, Matthieu Gresil

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperOther


This study presents finite element method (FEM) modelling of a bilayered shape-morphing composite, triggered by photo-thermal stimulus. The bilayer consists of an upper-layer of reduced graphene oxide (rGO) reinforced chitosan-methacrylamide (rGO-chitosanMA) and a lower-layer of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). The FEM model is experimentally validated and exploited in two case studies that predict shape-morphing for various thickness ratios of upper- to lower-layer. Case one is a parametric study of a bilayer with constant thickness, where the upper-layer thickness is varying from 1 to 99% of the total thickness. In case 2 the upper-layer thickness varies from 1 to 20 µm increasing by 1 µm, while the lower ply thickness varies from 50 to 100 µm increasing by 2 µm. The results describe the shape-morphing trend of the bilayered composite when the upper- to lower-layer thickness ratio changes, and demonstrate a method of designing composite bilayers with triggered and predictable morphing response with potential applications in soft robotics and artificial muscles.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication22nd International Conference on Composite Materials, ICCM 2019
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference on Composite Materials 2019 - Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 11 Aug 201916 Aug 2019
Conference number: 22nd (Proceedings)


ConferenceInternational Conference on Composite Materials 2019
Abbreviated titleICCM 2019
Internet address


  • Bilayer
  • FEM
  • Morphing
  • Photothermal
  • Reduced Graphene Oxide

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