Programmable assembly of particles on a Chladni plate

Artur Kopitca, Kourosh Latifi, Quan Zhou*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
85 Downloads (Pure)


In nature, simple building units can be assembled into complex shapes through long-term time-varying external stimuli that are often spatially nonlinear. In contrast, most artificial methods of externally directed assembly rely on field- or template-based energy minimization. However, methods directing the assembly process by controlling time-varying external stimuli instead of attaining the lowest-energy state remain largely unexplored. In this study, we introduce a method that applies time-varying and spatially nonlinear vibration fields to assemble particles into a desired two-dimensional shape. Our assembly method predicts, controls, and monitors the vibration-induced particle motion to iteratively minimize the difference between the desired shape and the actual particle distribution. We applied our method to a centrally actuated vibrating plate, also known as a Chladni plate, and assembled up to a hundred submillimeter particles into complex recognizable shapes. The method allows programmable formation of shapes beyond the intrinsic limits of periodic patterning of the plate.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7716
Number of pages8
JournalScience Advances
Issue number39
Publication statusPublished - 22 Sept 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


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