American Chemical Society
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Discotic Liquid Crystals with Highly Ordered Columnar Hexagonal Structure for Ultraviolet Light-Sensitive Phototransistor Memory

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-01-20, 19:41 authored by Cheng-Han Ho, Yi-Sa Lin, Chih-Chien Hung, Yu-Cheng Chiu, Chi-Ching Kuo, Yan-Cheng Lin, Wen-Chang Chen
Organic phototransistors have been vigorously investigated for their superior charge-transport performance, photosensitivity, and compatibility with integrated circuits. Accordingly, liquid crystal molecules have been proven to be a high-performance organic electret, and discotic liquid crystal with a face-on orientation is able to show ultrafast photoresponse. Thus far, there is still no application of discotic liquid crystal as a charge-trapping electret in phototransistors. In this study, a series of discotic liquid crystalline molecules consisting of alkyl-triphenylene (Cx-TP, where x = 1, 6, 8, and 10) were designed and applied as an electret in the ultraviolet light-sensitive photomemory. The discotic liquid crystal with optimized side-chain length produced a homeotropically aligned nanoarray structure and endowed the best performance and photoresponse in phototransistor memory. Therefore, C6-TP- and C8-TP-based devices produced high memory ratios of approximately 103 and 104, respectively, which outperformed their analogues of C1-TP and C10-TP with a memory ratio of approximately 102. This achievement indicates the columnar hexagonal structure induced by the homeotropic alignment during liquid crystalline transition produces a huge impact on the photoresponse and device performance. The result of this study underlines the potential of discotic liquid crystals as a photoactive electret in phototransistor applications.