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Phenomenology of photoinduced processes in the ionic sol-gel-based azobenzene materials

: Kulikovsky, L.; Kulikovska, O.; Goldenberg, L.M.; Stumpe, J.


ACS applied materials & interfaces 1 (2009), No.8, pp.1739-1746
ISSN: 1944-8244
ISSN: 0013-936X
ISSN: 1944-8252
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IAP ()

Very recently, supramolecular azobenzene-containing materials have been demonstrated to be effective for holographic inscription of surface relief gratings, High efficiency of grating formation in these materials is advantageously combined with easy material preparation because of the supramolecular principle of building blocs combination, availability of chemical components, and good film-Forming properties. The materials show great promise for wide optical applications. Here, one type of material formulation based on ionic complexes of poly(aminosiloxane) is experimentally investigated concerning the induction of birefringence, efficiency OF relief formation, and thermal stability of surface structures. Properties of the material were changed on the molecular level by varying the azobenzene content and on the macro level by varying chemical processing conditions. The results are discussed in terms of cross-linking and plasticizing effects caused by residual solvent and the low-molecular-weight azobenzene component. An improvement of both the efficiency of grating formation and their thermal stability by these means has been demonstrated. The results can be adapted to other azobenzene-containing materials, in addition, a drastic change OF films solubility has been observed upon irradiation.