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With Artificial Muscle, Bayer strengthens its E/E offerings

Research on electro-activated polymers that began at Stanford University, and was further developed at a company called Artificial Muscle Inc., has now been acquired by Bayer MaterialScience. The acquisition of the company, its patents, and its patent applications is the latest purchase by the massive plastics and chemicals supplier to focus on plastic film's surface haptics and appearance.

MPW Staff

March 9, 2010

1 Min Read
With Artificial Muscle, Bayer strengthens its E/E offerings

Artificial Muscle Inc. (AMI; Sunnyvale, CA) has developed polymers for use in the development, design, and manufacture of actuators and sensing components. Electroactive polymers are plastics that can change shape—flexing, like a muscle—when an electric charge is applied to them. One potential application considered to have a big future is the use of these polymers in touch screens to give users of the screens tactile feedback, just like a conventional keyboard does. Smart phones, gaming controllers, and touch pads are all potential application fields for these materials. Typically the plastic film is fitted between two compliant electrodes. When a charge is applied, the electrodes attract each other, causing the film to expand its area as it contracts its thickness.

Bayer also is taking on all of AMI's employees. No details on the price of the acquisition were publicized.

In late 2008 Bayer announced it would work with Canadian firm Ultimate Holographic Reproductions Inc. (UHR) on joint development of high-quality, true-color holographic images on films. Then in mid-2009 the supplier signed a license agreement on polymeric organic light-emitting diodes (P-OLED) with Add-Vision, a Scotts Valley, CA-based company specializing in the development of flexible P-OLED display technology for low-resolution displays and specialty lighting applications. —[email protected]

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