Near-infrared light–responsive dynamic wrinkle patterns

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Science Advances  06 Apr 2018:
Vol. 4, no. 4, eaar5762
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aar5762


Dynamic micro/nanopatterns provide an effective approach for on-demand tuning of surface properties to realize a smart surface. We report a simple yet versatile strategy for the fabrication of near-infrared (NIR) light–responsive dynamic wrinkles by using a carbon nanotube (CNT)–containing poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) elastomer as the substrate for the bilayer systems, with various functional polymers serving as the top stiff layers. The high photon-to-thermal energy conversion of CNT leads to the NIR-controlled thermal expansion of the elastic CNT-PDMS substrate, resulting in dynamic regulation of the applied strain (ε) of the bilayer system by the NIR on/off cycle to obtain a reversible wrinkle pattern. The switchable surface topological structures can transfer between the wrinkled state and the wrinkle-free state within tens of seconds via NIR irradiation. As a proof-of-concept application, this type of NIR-driven dynamic wrinkle pattern was used in smart displays, dynamic gratings, and light control electronics.

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