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Photomobile Polymer Materials: Towards Light-Driven Plastic Motors


  • We thank Dr. J. Kuroki, Prof. Dr. T. Shinshi and Prof. Dr. A. Shimokohbe for useful advice on rotation systems.


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Can light drive a motor? Azobenzene-containing liquid-crystalline elastomers (LCEs) and their composite materials have the potential to show three-dimensional movement by light irradiation. With the LCE laminated films, a first light-driven plastic motor has been developed, which can convert light energy directly into a continuous rotation without the aid of batteries, electric wires, or gears.