Lattice-contraction triggered synchronous electrochromic actuator

Kerui Li, Yuanlong Shao, Hongping Yan, Zhi Lu, Kent J. Griffith, Jinhui Yan, Gang Wang, Hongwei Fan, Jingyu Lu, Wei Huang, Bin Bao, Xuelong Liu, Chengyi Hou, Qinghong Zhang, Yaogang Li, Junsheng Yu, Hongzhi Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Materials with synchronous capabilities of color change and actuation have prospects for application in biomimetic dual-stealth camouflage and artificial intelligence. However, color/shape dual-responsive devices involve stimuli that are difficult to control such as gas, light or magnetism, and the devices show poor coordination. Here, a flexible composite film with electrochromic/actuating (238° bending angle) dual-responsive phenomena, excellent reversibility, high synchronization, and fast response speed (< 5 s) utilizes a single active component, W18O49 nanowires. From in situ synchrotron X-ray diffraction, first principles calculations/numerical simulations, and a series of control experiments, the actuating mechanism for macroscopic deformation is elucidated as pseudocapacitance-based reversible lattice contraction/recovery of W18O49 nanowires (i.e. nanostructure change at the atomic level) during lithium ion intercalation/de-intercalation. In addition, we demonstrate the W18O49 nanowires in a solid-state ionic polymer-metal composite actuator that operates stably in air with a significant pseudocapacitive actuation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number4798
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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