Front Cover: Semiconductor nanorod layers aligned through mechanical rubbing (Phys. Status Solidi A 2/2012)



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Colloidal semiconductor nanorods exhibit size tunable polarized emission. A challenge for their utility in optical applications lies in developing means for their assembly and macroscopic alignment. A facile approach for large scaled lateral alignment of CdSe/CdS nanorods was developed, employing the known method of mechanical rubbing: see the Editor's Choice article by Yorai Amit et al. in this issue on pp. 235–242. The resulting samples exhibited polarized fluorescent emission with good contrast ratio and the polarized nature of the rubbed samples is seen (bottom right image). Fluorescence microscopy images (top right), along with the corresponding polarization contrast-ratio color map (top left), show the underlying pattern of the aligned layer caused by the rubbing process leading to a topography which resembles that of a plowed field. The interaction with the rubbing fibers turns an initially smooth surface into a parallel pattern of longitudinal lines leading to the stacking and reorientation of the nanorods resulting in a polarized emitting sample.