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Magnetic steering of liquid metal mobiles

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Gallium-based liquid metal has captivated exceptionally keen interest in recent years since it remains in the liquid phase at room temperature and thus conforms to the surrounding medium. Meanwhile, such morphing capability can be tuned via altering the oxide layer on the surface of the liquid metal, which further triggers enthusiasm for investigating its locomotion. In this study, we proposed a magnetic actuation scenario for steering liquid metal locomotion in an easily accessible and highly directed manner. The soft mobile composed of liquid metal performed satisfyingly in locomotion and assembly tasks in various circumstances (on a solid surface and in a water environment). Furthermore, promising applications as switches for logic circuits and carriers for cargo transfer, as well as motors for vessel cleaning were also demonstrated, revealing the versatility of such liquid metal mobiles.

Graphical abstract: Magnetic steering of liquid metal mobiles

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The article was received on 07 Jan 2018, accepted on 20 Feb 2018 and first published on 21 Feb 2018

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8SM00056E
Citation: Soft Matter, 2018, Advance Article
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    Magnetic steering of liquid metal mobiles

    H. Liu, M. Li, Y. Li, H. Yang, A. Li, T. J. Lu, F. Li and F. Xu, Soft Matter, 2018, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C8SM00056E

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