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Title: Multiple-robot drug delivery strategy through coordinated teams of microswimmers

Untethered robotic microswimmers are very promising to significantly improve various types of minimally invasive surgeries by offering high accuracy at extremely small scales. A prime example is drug delivery, for which a large number of microswimmers is required to deliver sufficient dosages to target sites. For this reason, the controllability of groups of microswimmers is essential. In this paper, we demonstrate simultaneous control of multiple geometrically similar but magnetically different microswimmers using a single global rotating magnetic field. By exploiting the differences in their magnetic properties, we triggered different swimming behaviors from the microswimmers by controlling the frequency and the strength of the global field, for example, one swim and the other does not while exposed to the same control input. Our results show that the balance between the applied magnetic torque and the hydrodynamic torque can be exploited for simultaneous control of two microswimmers to swim in opposite directions, with different velocities, and with similar velocities. This work will serve to establish important concepts for future developments of control systems to manipulate multiple magnetically actuated microswimmers and a step towards using swarms of microswimmers as viable workforces for complex operations.
Authors:
;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104 (United States)
  2. Department of Computer Science, Yonsei University, Seoul 120-749 (Korea, Republic of)
  3. Department of Electrical, Computer and Systems Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York 12180 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22310991
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Applied Physics Letters; Journal Volume: 105; Journal Issue: 8; Other Information: (c) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
75 CONDENSED MATTER PHYSICS, SUPERCONDUCTIVITY AND SUPERFLUIDITY; ACCURACY; BALANCES; CONTROL SYSTEMS; EXERCISE; MAGNETIC FIELDS; MAGNETIC PROPERTIES; MICROSTRUCTURE; TORQUE; VELOCITY