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R&D: Impact of Terminal Group on Azobenzene Liquid Crystal Dimers for Photo-responsive Optical Storage Devices

Results revealed that almost all members of dimeric materials are mesomorphic exhibit either nematic or both smectic A and nematic phases.

Journal of Molecular Liquids has published an article written by B.S. Ranjitha, D. Sandhya Kumari, Department of Chemistry, Bangalore University, Jnana Bharathi Campus, Bengaluru 560056, India, Apoorva Shetty, Department of Chemistry, CHRIST (Deemed to be University), Hosur Road, Bengaluru 560029, India, and Centre for Advanced Research and Development (CARD), CHRIST (Deemed to be University), Hosur Road, Bengaluru 560029, India, G. Shanker, Department of Chemistry, Bangalore University, Jnana Bharathi Campus, Bengaluru 560056, India, Mohamed Alaasar, Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, Cairo University, 12613 Giza, Egypt, Rami Pashameah, Department of of Chemistry, Faculty of Applied Science, Umm Al-Qura University, Makkah 24230, Saudi Arabia, and Gurumurthy Hegde, Centre for Advanced Research and Development (CARD), CHRIST (Deemed to be University), Hosur Road, Bengaluru 560029, India.

Abstract: Three new series of photo responsive dimers bearing different terminal functional groups (-CN, -COOEt, -OMe) and variable aliphatic spacers have been synthesized and investigated in detail. The molecular structures of the new materials were proved using different spectroscopic techniques and their liquid crystal self-assembly was characterized using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), polarized light microscope (POM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). Moreover, their photo switching behaviour was investigated in details in solution. The results revealed that, almost all members of the dimeric materials are mesomorphic exhibit either nematic or both smectic A and nematic phases. Under UV illumination the materials show interesting photo-switching properties, reaching a photo-stationary state in 40 s and a thermal back-relaxation time of approximately 35 h in solution. Finally, a fabricated device authenticates the potential of the reported materials for optical storage devices.

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