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Azophenol-Based Liquid−crystalline Elastomers for Light-Driven Actuators

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journal contribution
posted on 06.05.2011, 00:00 by Jaume Garcia-Amorós, Alexandra Piñol, Heino Finkelmann, Dolores Velasco
Para-substituted azophenols exhibit a fast thermal cis-to-trans isomerization rate in ethanol, which can be transferred to the solid state by obtaining liquid−crystalline elastomeric systems. The absence of protic solvent is compensated by the establishment of hydrogen bonding between azophenol monomers that are close to each other. Opto-mechanical experiments reveal that azophenol-containing liquid single-crystal elastomers are valuable materials for light-controlled actuators exhibiting relaxation times of 1 s at room temperature.