Large-Area Electric-Field-Induced Colloidal Single Crystals for Photonic Applications


  • We acknowledge useful discussions with Alexander Moroz and Benito Groh, Jacob Hoogenboom for synthesizing the silica spheres, Dirk Vossen for his help in obtaining the SEM images and C. J. Wisman for help with the electronics. This work is part of the research program of the “Stichting voor Fundamenteel Onderzoek der Materie (FOM)”, which is financially supported by the “Nederlandse organisatie voor Wetenschappelijke Onderzoek (NWO)”. Supporting Information is available online from Wiley Interscience or from the authors.


A technique to grow millimeter-scale (3 mm × 0.5 mm) electric-field-induced colloidal single crystals and a polymerization process that immobilizes them, allowing drying and reversal of the refractive-index contrast, is presented. The Figure shows a 2D diffraction pattern under white-light illumination from a crystal; the hexagonal symmetry pattern is characteristic of a close-packed lattice.