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Issue 16, 2013
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First example of a non-toxic thermochromic polymer material – based on a novel mechanism

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Abstract

Until now, all thermochromic materials have contained at least one toxic or carcinogenic component which is a major shortcoming for their application especially in medical or food technology products. This paper describes the development of the first non-toxic and non-carcinogenic thermochromic polymer material. The material consists of the biopolymer poly(lactic acid) (PLA), a natural dye of the anthocyanidine class, a gallate derivative and a fatty acid. The origin of the observed thermochromic effect is a conformational change of the polymer backbone which reversibly triggers the formation of polymer–dye complexes. Accordingly thermochromism represents an immanent property of the novel polymer material. The presented results establish a novel mechanism to realize the visualization of temperature changes in a way detectable by the human eye without any kind of auxiliary and provide a new approach for the development of thermochromic materials.

Graphical abstract: First example of a non-toxic thermochromic polymer material – based on a novel mechanism

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Publication details

The article was received on 15 Jan 2013, accepted on 20 Feb 2013 and first published on 21 Feb 2013


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C3TC30094C
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. C, 2013,1, 2811-2816
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    First example of a non-toxic thermochromic polymer material – based on a novel mechanism

    A. Seeboth, D. Lötzsch and R. Ruhmann, J. Mater. Chem. C, 2013, 1, 2811
    DOI: 10.1039/C3TC30094C

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