Photo-induced bending in a light-activated polymer laminated composite

Xiaoming Mu, Nancy Sowan, Julia A. Tumbic, Christopher N. Bowman, Patrick T. Mather, H. Jerry Qi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Light activated polymers (LAPs) have attracted increasing attention since these materials change their shape and/or behavior in response to light exposure, which serves as an instant, remote and precisely controllable stimulus that enables non-contact control of the material shape and behavior through simple variation in light intensity, wavelength and spatially controlled exposure. These features distinguish LAPs from other active polymers triggered by other stimuli such as heat, electrical field or humidity. Previous examples have resulted in demonstrations in applications such as surface patterning, photo-induced shape memory behavior, and photo-origami. However, in many of these applications, an undesirable limitation has been the requirement to apply and maintain an external load during light irradiation. In this paper, a laminated structure is introduced to provide a pre-programmed stress field, which is then used for photo-induced deformation. This laminated structure is fabricated by bonding a stretched elastomer (NOA65) sheet between two LAP layers. Releasing the elastomer causes contraction and introduces a compressive stress in the LAPs, which are relaxed optically to trigger the desired deformation. A theoretical model is developed to quantitatively examine the laminated composite system, allowing exploration of the design space and optimum design of the laminate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2673-2682
Number of pages10
JournalSoft Matter
Issue number13
StatePublished - Apr 7 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Condensed Matter Physics


Dive into the research topics of 'Photo-induced bending in a light-activated polymer laminated composite'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this