Photoswitch based on bacteriorhodopsin Langmuir–Blodgett films



Langmuir–Blodgett (LB) films of bacteriorhodopsin (bR) without addition of lipids were deposited on indium tin oxide (ITO) conductive electrodes. A sandwich photocell with a juction structure of ITO/bR/electrolyte/ITO has been constructed in which the bR LB film was put into contact directly with an aqueous electrolyte immobilized in an agar gel. Under visible light irradiation a transient photocurrent due to a change in light intensity can be observedl showing the property of vision-imitative material. It can be used as a multiple optical switch, since it gives positive and negative transient photocurrnts during application and removal of light irradiation respectively and has a photoresponse repeatedly in the same direction when the light intensity increases or decreases stepwise. A photoalarm consisting of the bR photocell and an amplifier was set up by utilizing the switching function of the bR LB film.