Microrobots for Micrometer-Size Objects in Aqueous Media: Potential Tools for Single-Cell Manipulation

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Science  30 Jun 2000:
Vol. 288, Issue 5475, pp. 2335-2338
DOI: 10.1126/science.288.5475.2335

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Conducting polymers are excellent materials for actuators that are operated in aqueous media. Microactuators based on polypyrrole-gold bilayers enable large movement of structures attached to these actuators and are of particular interest for the manipulation of biological objects, such as single cells. A fabrication method for creating individually addressable and controllable polypyrrole-gold microactuators was developed. With these individually controlled microactuators, a micrometer-size manipulator, or microrobotic arm, was fabricated. This microrobotic arm can pick up, lift, move, and place micrometer-size objects within an area of about 250 micrometers by 100 micrometers, making the microrobot an excellent tool for single-cell manipulation.

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