Professor Anne Ladegaard Skov. Photo: Christian Ove Carlsson

Anne Ladegaard Skov appointed professor

Wednesday 09 May 18
by Lonnie Moldt Jørgensen


Anne Ladegaard Skov
DTU Chemical Engineering
+45 45 25 28 25


Kim Dam-Johansen
Professor, Head of Department
DTU Chemical Engineering
+45 45 25 28 45

Head of the Danish Polymer Centre (DPC), Anne Ladegaard Skov, has been appointed professor in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering: Polymer Technology at DTU Chemical Engineering.

Anne Ladegaard Skov is one of the world's leading researchers in dielectric elastomers. This is a technology, which consists of an electrically insulating silicone film on which electrodes are placed on the surfaces. Throughout the years, Anne has researched in new and better silicone elastomers as well as smarter ways to apply them. The focus of her work has been on both chemical and physical/electrical aspects of silicone elastomers and how to produce these. The research is central to the department’s strategy for product development towards the industry. In her professorship, Anne Ladegaard Skov will mainly focus on dielectric elastomers for robots and sensors.

”In Anne, we have secured the future polymer-related activities of our department. She has already been responsible for important activities within this area and, in terms of teaching and education, she can cover the field of polymers as well as technical and chemical core subjects of importance for our teaching programme,” says Kim Dam-Johansen, Head of Department.

Robot caregivers for the elderly

Sci-fi is no longer just part of the world of fiction, but is in fact already a reality. Today, robots have become an integral part of our everyday lives, and the development within the health care section has been rapid. Many ideas on how robots can prevent some of the challenges faced by health care professionals have been proposed. For example, in connection with patient lifts. This is where the soft silicone elastomers enter the picture. The silicone elastomers are able to perform lifts in a far gentler manner than a human being is while also protecting the health professionals against the heavy lifts.

“Imagine a scenario where it is possible and also socially accepted to use robots to lift the sick and the elderly. The robot would be equipped with arms that possess human characteristics. For example, the ability to record pressure in order not to overload patients,” Anne says.

The research is only incipient. Fact is that the soft silicone elastomers still feel a bit rubbery, which means too much rub resistance to the slightly greasy surface of the skin. Therefore, it is key to make the silicone elastomers even softer.

Applicable technology in other industries

Anne Ladegaard Skov's research also opens up for other applications within the healthcare sector. This applies, for example, to active bandages that can help rehabilitate patients through a dielectric elastomeric compound that improves blood circulation in the legs by applying an alternating pressure. In addition, the research can be applied within the smartphone industry as they can be made in such a soft material that they do not break if dropped.

Inaugural lecture

Anne Ladegaard Skov will hold an Inaugural lecture on Friday 25 May 2018 at 14.00 at DTU building 303, auditorium 43. The lecture is entitled 'Pride and Prejudice in Electrical Fields: Dielectric Silicone Elastomers'.

The lecture is followed by a reception.

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