Issue 11, 2021

Elastomeric nematic colloids, colloidal crystals and microstructures with complex topology

Abstract

Control of physical behaviors of nematic colloids and colloidal crystals has been demonstrated by tuning particle shape, topology, chirality and surface charging. However, the capability of altering physical behaviors of such soft matter systems by changing particle shape and the ensuing responses to external stimuli has remained elusive. We fabricated genus-one nematic elastomeric colloidal ring-shaped particles and various microstructures using two-photon photopolymerization. Nematic ordering within both the nano-printed particle and the surrounding medium leads to anisotropic responses and actuation when heated. With the thermal control, elastomeric microstructures are capable of changing from genus-one to genus-zero surface topology. Using these particles as building blocks, we investigated elastomeric colloidal crystals immersed within a liquid crystal fluid, which exhibit crystallographic symmetry transformations. Our findings may lead to colloidal crystals responsive to a large variety of external stimuli, including electric fields and light. Pre-designed response of elastomeric nematic colloids, including changes of colloidal surface topology and lattice symmetry, are of interest for both fundamental research and applications.

Graphical abstract: Elastomeric nematic colloids, colloidal crystals and microstructures with complex topology

Supplementary files

Article information

Article type
Paper
Submitted
01 Dec 2020
Accepted
15 Jan 2021
First published
18 Jan 2021

Soft Matter, 2021,17, 3037-3046

Elastomeric nematic colloids, colloidal crystals and microstructures with complex topology

Y. Yuan, P. Keller and I. I. Smalyukh, Soft Matter, 2021, 17, 3037 DOI: 10.1039/D0SM02135K

To request permission to reproduce material from this article, please go to the Copyright Clearance Center request page.

If you are an author contributing to an RSC publication, you do not need to request permission provided correct acknowledgement is given.

If you are the author of this article, you do not need to request permission to reproduce figures and diagrams provided correct acknowledgement is given. If you want to reproduce the whole article in a third-party publication (excluding your thesis/dissertation for which permission is not required) please go to the Copyright Clearance Center request page.

Read more about how to correctly acknowledge RSC content.

Social activity

Spotlight

Advertisements