Surfactant-based lyotropic liquid crystal gels – the interplay between anisotropic order and gel formation
Surfactant-based lyotropic liquid crystal gels (LLCGs) are soft materials which combine the anisotropic order of a surfactant-based lyotropic liquid crystal with the mechanical stability of a gel. The most prominent example of a “natural“ LLCG is the biological cell. This review summarizes potential applications of surfactant-based LLCGs and the different strategies via which these materials can be obtained. The main focus, however, is on gelation with low molecular weight gelators (LMWG), which form self-assembled fibrillar networks (SAFiN). We will discuss whether or not the resulting surfactant-based LLCGs are orthogonal self-assembled systems, i.e. systems where the two coexisting structures (lyotropic liquid crystal and SAFiN) form independently.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Journal of Materials Chemistry C Recent Review Articles