Programmable and Self-Healable Liquid Crystal Elastomer Actuators Based on Halogen Bonding

Hongshuang Guo*, Chen Liang, Tero Petri Ruoko, Henning Meteling, Bo Peng, Hao Zeng, Arri Priimagi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
48 Downloads (Pure)


Shape-changing polymeric materials have gained significant attention in the field of bioinspired soft robotics. However, challenges remain in versatilizing the shape-morphing process to suit different tasks and environments, and in designing systems that combine reversible actuation and self-healing ability. Here, we report halogen-bonded liquid crystal elastomers (LCEs) that can be arbitrarily shape-programmed and that self-heal under mild thermal or photothermal stimulation. We incorporate halogen-bond-donating diiodotetrafluorobenzene molecules as dynamic supramolecular crosslinks into the LCEs and show that these relatively weak crosslinks are pertinent for their mechanical programming and self-healing. Utilizing the halogen-bonded LCEs, we demonstrate proof-of-concept soft robotic motions such as crawling and rolling with programmed velocities. Our results showcase halogen bonding as a promising, yet unexplored tool for the preparation of smart supramolecular constructs for the development of advanced soft actuators.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere202309402
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number43
Early online date2023
Publication statusPublished - 23 Oct 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Halogen Bond
  • Liquid Crystal Elastomer
  • Programmable
  • Self-Healing
  • Soft Actuator


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