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Polymer‐Stabilized Micropixelated Liquid Crystals with Tunable Optical Properties Fabricated by Double Templating

Polymer‐Stabilized Micropixelated Liquid Crystals with Tunable Optical Properties Fabricated by... Self‐organized nano‐ and microstructures of soft materials are attracting considerable attention because most of them are stimuli‐responsive due to their soft nature. In this regard, topological defects in liquid crystals (LCs) are promising not only for self‐assembling colloids and molecules but also for electro‐optical applications such as optical vortex generation. However, there are currently few bottom‐up methods for patterning a large number of defects periodically over a large area. It would be highly desirable to develop more effective techniques for high‐throughput and low‐cost fabrication. Here, a micropixelated LC structure consisting of a square array of topological defects is stabilized by photopolymerization. A polymer network is formed on the structure of a self‐organized template of a nematic liquid crystal (NLC), and this in turn imprints other nonpolymerizable NLC molecules, which maintains their responses to electric field and temperature. Photocuring of specific local regions is used to create a designable template for the reproducible self‐organization of defects. Moreover, a highly diluted polymer network (≈0.1 wt% monomer) exhibits instant on–off switching of the patterns. Beyond the mere stabilization of patterns, these results demonstrate that the incorporation of self‐organized NLC patterns offers some unique and unconventional applications for anisotropic polymer networks. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Advanced Materials Wiley

Polymer‐Stabilized Micropixelated Liquid Crystals with Tunable Optical Properties Fabricated by Double Templating

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References (43)

Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
© 2017 WILEY‐VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
ISSN
0935-9648
eISSN
1521-4095
DOI
10.1002/adma.201703054
pmid
28758707
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Self‐organized nano‐ and microstructures of soft materials are attracting considerable attention because most of them are stimuli‐responsive due to their soft nature. In this regard, topological defects in liquid crystals (LCs) are promising not only for self‐assembling colloids and molecules but also for electro‐optical applications such as optical vortex generation. However, there are currently few bottom‐up methods for patterning a large number of defects periodically over a large area. It would be highly desirable to develop more effective techniques for high‐throughput and low‐cost fabrication. Here, a micropixelated LC structure consisting of a square array of topological defects is stabilized by photopolymerization. A polymer network is formed on the structure of a self‐organized template of a nematic liquid crystal (NLC), and this in turn imprints other nonpolymerizable NLC molecules, which maintains their responses to electric field and temperature. Photocuring of specific local regions is used to create a designable template for the reproducible self‐organization of defects. Moreover, a highly diluted polymer network (≈0.1 wt% monomer) exhibits instant on–off switching of the patterns. Beyond the mere stabilization of patterns, these results demonstrate that the incorporation of self‐organized NLC patterns offers some unique and unconventional applications for anisotropic polymer networks.

Journal

Advanced MaterialsWiley

Published: Oct 1, 2017

Keywords: ; ; ;

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