The efficiency of photomobile polymers (PMP) in the conversion of light into mechanical work plays a fundamental role in achieving cutting-edge innovation in the development of novel applications ranging from energy harvesting to sensor approaches. Because of their photochromic properties, azobenzene monomers have been shown to be an efficient material for the preparation of PMPs with appropriate photoresponsivity. Upon integration of the azobenzene molecules as moieties into a polymer, they act as an engine, allowing fast movements of up to 50 Hz. In this work we show a promising approach for integrating ZnO nanoparticles into a liquid crystalline polymer network. The addition of such nanoparticles allows the trapping of incoming light, which acts as diffusive points in the polymer matrix. We characterized the achieved nanocomposite material in terms of thermomechanical and optical properties and finally demonstrated that the doped PMP was better performing that the undoped PMP film.

Photo-responsivity improvement of photo-mobile polymers actuators based on a novel LCs/azobenzene copolymer and ZnO nanoparticles network

Villani F.;Loffredo F.;Borriello C.;Nenna G.;
2021

Abstract

The efficiency of photomobile polymers (PMP) in the conversion of light into mechanical work plays a fundamental role in achieving cutting-edge innovation in the development of novel applications ranging from energy harvesting to sensor approaches. Because of their photochromic properties, azobenzene monomers have been shown to be an efficient material for the preparation of PMPs with appropriate photoresponsivity. Upon integration of the azobenzene molecules as moieties into a polymer, they act as an engine, allowing fast movements of up to 50 Hz. In this work we show a promising approach for integrating ZnO nanoparticles into a liquid crystalline polymer network. The addition of such nanoparticles allows the trapping of incoming light, which acts as diffusive points in the polymer matrix. We characterized the achieved nanocomposite material in terms of thermomechanical and optical properties and finally demonstrated that the doped PMP was better performing that the undoped PMP film.
Actuators
Azobenzene monomers
Liquid crystals
Photo-mobile materials
Smart materials
ZnO nanoparticles
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12079/60092
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