This type of trigger can also be integrated directly in robotic devices as they are powered by high frequency electricity already. The next step for Liu and her team will be to load the pores with liquids like antibiotics, lubricant or alcohol.
"We hope to make big steps for that phase this summer. When that succeeds, re-loading will be the next phase, which will probably take three years to complete”, says Liu who estimates she will have a first model of a dressing by 2025.
"Developing a robot with an artificial skin will probably take much longer. This is because next to our own field of materials science, we also need engineers to help us build the robot."
As a parallel project, Liu tries to combine different triggers. "If we can combine UV light and radio waves, it would be possible to choose the best fitting stimulant on the go. For example, when exposed to sunlight the secretion takes place, but when sunlight is not accessible, we switch to radio waves."
University of Eindhoven - www.tue.nl/en/