A quantitative demonstration of reversible stiffness upon appropriate light stimulus in a spiropyran-polymeric composite is presented. The polymeric films containing 3 wt. of the photochromic spiropyran were irradiated with alternating ultraviolet and visible light and the storage modulus was measured. A reversible change in modulus of about 7 was observed. The modulus change was attributed to an interaction of the polar merocyanine with the polymeric chains and/or to a variation of effective free volume induced by merocyanine aggregates formed in the polymer upon ultraviolet irradiation. The effect is fully reversed when the merocyanine isomers turn back to the spiropyran state after visible irradiation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)