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Proceedings Paper

Light-triggered conducting properties of a random carbon nanotubes network in a photochromic polymer matrix
Author(s): R. Castagna; C. Sciascia; A. R. Srimath Kandada; M. Meneghetti; G. Lanzani; C. Bertarelli
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Paper Abstract

Photochromic materials reversibly change their colour due to a photochemical reaction that takes place when the material is irradiated with photons of suitable energy. This peculiar feature has been extensively exploited to develop smart sunglasses, filters and inks. With a proper molecular design it is possible to enable modulation not only of colour but also of other properties such as refractive index, dipole moment, nonlinear optical properties or conductivity by a photoswitching of the molecular structure. The approach herein developed consists in modifying, upon irradiation, the properties of a molecular component coupled with the photochromic molecule. In particular, the switching features of photochromic systems are matched with the intriguing peculiar properties of carbon nanotubes (CNTs). A photochromic polyester has been properly synthesised to be used as switching polymer matrix coupled with a network of CNTs. Irradiation of the polymer/CNTs blend results into a light-triggered conductance switching. The reversible electrocyclization of the polymer under UV-vis illumination results into a modification of the inter-tube charge mobility, and accordingly, of the overall resistance of the blend. Solution techniques allow us to obtain blended films with sheet resistance modulation larger than 150%, good thermal stability and fatigue resistance at room conditions, in an easier, faster and scalable way as respect to the single-molecule approach.ÿ

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 September 2011
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 8101, Carbon Nanotubes, Graphene, and Associated Devices IV, 81010C (19 September 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.893958
Show Author Affiliations
R. Castagna, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy)
Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
C. Sciascia, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy)
A. R. Srimath Kandada, Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
M. Meneghetti, Univ. degli Studi di Padova (Italy)
G. Lanzani, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy)
Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
C. Bertarelli, Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (Italy)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8101:
Carbon Nanotubes, Graphene, and Associated Devices IV
Didier Pribat; Young-Hee Lee; Manijeh Razeghi, Editor(s)

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