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Poster Award for Florian Hartmann at the BioEl 2018

for his contribution on biodegradable elastomers

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In his poster, Florian presents a group of biodegradable elastomers that are used as a plattform for transient electronics and degradable robots.


Introducing methods for instant strong bonding between hydrogels and antagonistic materials – from soft to hard – allows us to demonstrate elastic, yet tough biomimetic devices and machines with a high level of complexity. Tough hydrogels strongly attach, within seconds, to plastics, elastomers, leather, bone, and metals reaching unprecedented interfacial toughness exceeding 2000 J/m². Our approach is applicable in rapid prototyping and in delicate environments inaccessible for extended curing and cross-linking. The combination of ionic hydrogels with antagonistic materials such as elastomers, polymers, and metals allows to create soft electronics and hybrid machines. We demonstrate stretchable batteries for self-powered soft devices, adaptive lenses, and autonomous electronic skin for triggered drug delivery. We further introduce a new family of biodegradable hydrogels that are reversibly stretchable, are able to self-heal and are resistant to dehydration. Soft machines and robots – built from hydrogels with tuned mechanical properties–are designed to be operated in ambient conditions and degrade after use. Besides progressing stand-alone soft machines, our advances in the synthesis of biodegradable hydrogels bring bionic soft robots a step closer to nature.