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. 2018 Oct 15;118(Pt B):2098-2107.
doi: 10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2018.07.066. Epub 2018 Jul 17.

Influence of Carrageenan Molecular Structures on Electromechanical Behaviours of poly(3-hexylthiophene)/carrageenan Conductive Hydrogels

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Influence of Carrageenan Molecular Structures on Electromechanical Behaviours of poly(3-hexylthiophene)/carrageenan Conductive Hydrogels

Nudchanart Tanusorn et al. Int J Biol Macromol. .

Abstract

The κ, ι, and λ carrageenans were fabricated by solution casting as soft and electrically responsive actuators. The poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) was added as a dispersed phase to improve the electrical and electromechanical properties of the pristine carrageenan hydrogels. The electromechanical properties of the carrageenan hydrogels were investigated under the effects of electric field strength, carrageenan type namely κ, ι, and λ, operating temperature, and P3HT concentration. The electromechanical responses of the pristine carrageenans increased with increasing sulfated groups present; the λ-carragenan hydrogel provided the highest storage modulus sensitivity of 4.0 under applied electric field strength of 800 V/mm. With increasing temperature, the double-helical structure of the κ-carrageenan hydrogel changed into a random coil leading to the increase in the storage modulus response. On the other hand, the P3HT/κ-carrageenan hydrogel blend at 0.10%v/v P3HT provided the high storage modulus sensitivity of 2.20 at the electric field strength of 800 V/mm. The higher dielectrophoretic forces were due to the additional P3HT electronic polarization, but lower deflections relative to those of the pristine κ-carrageenan hydrogel. Both κ- and λ-carrageenans with the double helical structures are shown here as possible candidates to be fabricated as electroactive hydrogels for actuator or biomedical applications.

Keywords: Carrageenan; Electromechanical properties; Hydrogel; Poly(3-hexylthiophene).

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