Are two azo groups better than one? Investigating the photoresponse of polymer-bisazobenzene complexes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Research units

  • University of Montreal
  • McGill University


Azobenzene chromophores are an ideal choice for material applications where functionality needs to be activated in a precise remote-controlled fashion. The azobenzene stimuli-response falls into two categories, either based on efficient trans-to-cis photoisomerization and a high cis yield enabling on–off type functions, or relying on a fast trans–cis–trans cycling creating motion in the material system. Herein, we show that using bisazochromophores instead of the more common monoazobenzene derivatives makes a difference in the performance of light-responsive azopolymers, more specifically in photo-orientation and all-optical surface patterning. Our findings point out that polymer-bisazobenzene complexes are an attractive alternative as high-performance photoreponsive materials and that although their properties are highly sensitive to the extent of conjugation in the system, they can be designed into relatively transparent films with high performance for all-optical patterning.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5089–5096
JournalChemistry of Materials
Publication statusPublished - 18 Aug 2014
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

ID: 18936578