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Open AccessArticle

Optimized Soft Lithography Method for Polymer Cholesteric Liquid Crystal Flakes Fabrication

by Guanqing Zhou 1,3,†, Sunqian Liu 1,2,†, Wei Liu 1,2, Dong Yuan 1,2,* and Guofu Zhou 1,2
1
Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Optical Information Materials and Technology & Institute of Electronic Paper Displays, South China Academy of Advanced Optoelectronics, South China Normal University, Guangzhou 510006, China
2
SCNU-TUE Joint Lab of Device Integrated Responsive Materials (DIRM), National Center for International Research on Green Optoelectronics, South China Normal University, No 378, West Waihuan Road, Guangzhou Higher Education Mega Center, Guangzhou 510006, China
3
Department of Physics and Astronomy and Collaborative Innovation Center of IFSA (CICFSA), Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work and should be considered co-first authors.
Micromachines 2019, 10(7), 441; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi10070441
Received: 27 May 2019 / Revised: 18 June 2019 / Accepted: 25 June 2019 / Published: 1 July 2019
Polymer cholesteric liquid crystal (PCLC) flakes are gaining increasing interest for a wide variety of applications because of their unique optical properties and capabilities. Soft lithography is the most effective way to fabricate regularly shaped PCLC flakes. However, it is not easy to peel the flakes from the mold without breaking them. In order to peel the PCLC flakes from the patterned polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) mold in a convenient way, in this paper, a method of coating a layer of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) on a PDMS mold was proposed. The influence of the thickness of the PVA layer on the shape of the PCLC flakes and the release time from the PDMS mold were investigated. The results show that the presence of the PVA layer can speed up the release of the PCLC flakes and help maintain the shape effectively. Notably, the utilization of a PVA layer makes the PDMS mold recyclable. The influence of PCLC flake shape was also studied. This work will promote the development of switchable PCLC flake-based technologies. View Full-Text
Keywords: soft lithography; polymer cholesteric liquid crystal; flakes; polyvinyl alcohol layer; release time soft lithography; polymer cholesteric liquid crystal; flakes; polyvinyl alcohol layer; release time
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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhou, G.; Liu, S.; Liu, W.; Yuan, D.; Zhou, G. Optimized Soft Lithography Method for Polymer Cholesteric Liquid Crystal Flakes Fabrication. Micromachines 2019, 10, 441.

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