Automated Manipulation of Microswarms Without Real-Time Image Feedback Using Magnetic Tweezers

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4 Scopus Citations
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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5712-5723
Journal / PublicationIEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics
Issue number6
Online published20 Jul 2022
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


Microswarms assembled by microparticles have shown promising prospects in targeted delivery. However, the automated manipulation of microswarms remains a considerable challenge due to the limitations of existing in vivo imaging technology. In this article, we design a magnetic tweezer system with a large workspace of 100 mm × 100 mm × 30 mm, which can assemble, transport, and disassemble microswarms efficiently. The magnetic tweezers generate rotating magnetic fields in the workspace, enabling magnetized microparticles to roll toward a specific point along spiral trajectories. The assembly process and mechanism of microswarms are analyzed. The developed system can assemble low-density magnetic microparticles to form a stable and compact microswarm at a predetermined position. Actuation of the magnetic tweezers allows precise navigation of the swarm without relying on real-time image feedback. The experimental results show that the flexible microswarm can achieve satisfactory motion performance and transmission efficiency. The microswarm can successfully move on a slope with an inclination angle of 40º and navigate analog channels. The overall delivery efficiency can reach 92%.

Research Area(s)

  • Automated manipulation, IEEE transactions, Magnetic resonance imaging, Magnetic susceptibility, magnetic tweezers, Mechatronics, Micromagnetics, microparticle, microswarm, Navigation, Real-time systems, MOTION CONTROL, SWARM, MICROROBOTS, GENERATION, SYSTEM