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A Novel Polymer Patterning Method based on Pattern Forming States of Liquid Crystals as Templates

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 March 2011

Shin-Woong Kang
Affiliation:
Liquid Crystal Institute and Department of Chemical Physics, Kent State University, Kent, OH 44242, U.S.A.
Samuel Sprunt
Affiliation:
Department of Physics, Kent State University, Kent, OH 44242, U.S.A.
Liang-Chy Chien
Affiliation:
Liquid Crystal Institute and Department of Chemical Physics, Kent State University, Kent, OH 44242, U.S.A.
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Abstract

We describe a new polymer patterning technique that produces controllable morphological and optical anisotropy in a polymer network. This technique is based on the use of pattern-forming states of nematic and cholesteric liquid crystals as templates for forming ordered polymer networks. One and two-dimensional optical patterns are induced by applying an electric field across a narrow gap of an electro-optical cell. These field-induced optical patterns are then stabilized by UV-induced polymerization of a typically 5 wt% reactive monomer in liquid crystal host. Depending on specific conditions (e.g., thickness to pitch ratio of a cholesteric, applied electric field, and wavelength of UV illumination), the polymer captures various degrees of the orientational order and spatial periodicity of the pattern-forming states of liquid crystals. The fidelity of the templating effect is explored using polarizing optical microscopy and SEM. We also describe the effect of UV wavelength on the network morphology and the morphological control over the”third” dimension (normal to the cell substrates).

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2002

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References

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