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Magnetically actuated bio-inspired metamaterials

Objective

This project will deliver a new class of metamaterials whose functionality can be controlled by external magnetic fields. The materials consist of micromotors, comprising an anisotropically “hard” and “soft” ferromagnetic particle pair embedded in a polymer matrix, and promise wide-ranging technological applications. The project, involves 5 partners with expertise in experimental and theoretical physics, biological science and technology. Building upon a detailed analysis of the physical properties of the individual motors, and their dependency on their magnetic and material properties, the team will develop methods for incorporating the motors into elastic membranes (MEMs). We shall analyse the mechanical and optical properties of these constructs and the ways in which they can be modulated by the external magnetic fields. These novel properties will then be used to produce prototype devices:
• Pumps for fluids and tuneable filters for dissolved solutes, operating down to microscopic length scales and based on magnetically driven membrane deformation and changes in internal pore structure.
• Tuneable optical devices such as lenses and filters based on magnetic strain-induced changes in the optical and photonic properties of the constructs.
• Substrates for biotechnology, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. These devices will be based on our ability to apply to cells in culture the patterns of temporally and spatially varying strain fields to which they are exposed in vivo and which maintain their phenotype and metabolic activity.
The prototypes will find immediate applications in expanding areas of technology ranging from lab-on-a-chip systems to biomedical implants. They will also help the team to develop a thorough understanding of the novel emergent properties of the MEMs leading, in turn to many other applications.

Call for proposal

H2020-FETOPEN-2014-2015-RIA
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Coordinator

THE UNIVERSITY OF EXETER
Address
The Queen's Drive Northcote House
EX4 4QJ Exeter
United Kingdom
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 688 878,75

Participants (4)

THE CHANCELLOR, MASTERS AND SCHOLARS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 590 220
Address
Wellington Square University Offices
OX1 2JD Oxford
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
PLATFORM KINETICS LIMITED
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 524 780
Address
C/o Garbutt And Elliott, Arabesque House
YO32 9GW York
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
COMMISSARIAT A L ENERGIE ATOMIQUE ET AUX ENERGIES ALTERNATIVES
France
EU contribution
€ 603 128,75
Address
Rue Leblanc 25
75015 Paris 15
Activity type
Research Organisations
UNIVERSITAT DE BARCELONA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 571 875
Address
Gran Via De Les Corts Catalanes 585
08007 Barcelona
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments