A widely applied method to form liquid crystal networks (LCNs) is photo‐initiated polymerization of monomers that possess a LC phase. The variety in LC phases of the LC monomers provides diversity in molecular order, all self‐organizing and being preserved by photopolymerization. This chapter first explains the principles of shape deformation in LC networks using the most straightforward case of a thermal actuator. Using the thermal actuator as an example, effects of various alignments such as twisted nematic (TN), splay, and cholesteric order are shown. Next, the chapter demonstrates that LCN actuators can be made to respond to light as trigger. It further deals with an example of miniaturization of actuators for a microfluidic application, where actuators are structured using inkjet printing. For the purpose of inkjet printed cilia, two different azo dyes are used: A3MA and DR1A, a methacrylate and an acrylate, respectively, capable of copolymerizing with the other monomers in the mentioned system.
|Title of host publication||Responsive polymer surfaces|
|Subtitle of host publication||dynamics in surface topography|
|Editors||Danqing Liu, D.J. Broer|
|Place of Publication||Weinheim|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|