Films subsumed with topological defects are transformed into complex, topographical surface features with light irradiation of azobenzene-functionalized liquid crystal polymer networks (azo-LCNs). Using a specially designed optical setup and photoalignment materials, azo-LCN films containing either singular or multiple defects with strengths ranging from |½| to as much as |10| are examined. The local order of an azo-LCN material for a given defect strength dictates a complex, mechanical response observed as topographical surface features.
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