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Keywords:

  • photonic crystals;
  • polymers;
  • opals;
  • structural color;
  • optical scattering;
  • hyperspectral;
  • goniometry
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Hyperspectral goniometry reveals anisotropic scattering which dominates the visual appearance of self-assembled polymer opals. The technique allows reconstruction of the reciprocal-space of nanostructures, and indicates that chain defects formed during shear-ordering are responsible for the anisotropy in these samples. Enhanced scattering with improving order is shown to arise from increased effective refractive index contrast, while broadband background scatter is suppressed by absorptive dopants.