Dr. John West | Chemistry & Biochemistry | Kent State University

"Multi-Component Responsive Fibers"

This research builds on our established strengths in multi-component polymer/liquid crystal systems (first in electrically responsive films and more recently in responsive fibers). We pioneered the development of fibers consisting of a low molecular weight liquid crystal core surrounded by a polymer sheath using phase separation and electrospinning. Most recently we have used airbrush and jet blowing techniques to form these multicomponent fibers. We are investigating the mechanism of formation and the properties of the results fibers.

The fibers are ideally suited for a variety of applications. Because they incorporate the exquisitely sensitive response of liquid crystal to external stimuli they can be used as sensors. The fiber morphology provides an intimate interface between the environment and the liquid crystals. Finally, the inherent flexibility and drapability of the fibers make them ideally suited for wearable devices.

Images of responsive liquid crystal fibers

Images of responsive liquid crystal fibers

Related Articles
  1. Y Guan, L Zhang, D Wang, JL West, S Fu, Preparation of thermochromic liquid crystal microcapsules for intelligent functional fiber, Materials & Design, 147, 28-34, 2018.
  2. J Wang, A Jákli, JL West, Liquid crystal/polymer fiber mats as sensitive chemical sensors, Journal of Molecular Liquids, 267, pp490-495, 2018.
  3. Y Guan, L Zhang, M Li, JL West, S Fu, Preparation of temperature-response fibers with cholesteric liquid crystal dispersion, Colloids and Surfaces A: Physicochemical and Engineering Aspects, 546, pp212-220, 2018.
  4. M Sheng, L Zhang, D Wang, M Li, L Li, JL West, S Fu, 2. Fabrication of dye-doped liquid crystal microcapsules for electro-stimulated responsive smart textiles, Dyes and Pigments, 158, 1-11, 2018.
  5. E. A. Buyuktanir, M. W. Frey, J. L. West, Self-assembled, optically responsive nematic liquid crystal/polymer core-shell fibers: Formation and characterization, Polymer 51(21), p. 4823-4830, 2010.
  6. E. A. Buyuktanir, J. L. West, M. W. Frey, Optically responsive liquid crystal microfibers for display and nondisplay applications, Proc. SPIE 7955, p. 79550P, 2011. doi:10.1117/12.880076