Photothermal effects and applications of polydimethylsiloxane membranes with carbon nanoparticles Article uri icon


  • The advent of nanotechnology has triggered novel developments and applications for polymer-based membranes with embedded or coated nanoparticles. As an example, interaction of laser radiation with metallic and carbon nanoparticles has shown to provide optically triggered responses in otherwise transparent media. Incorporation of these materials inside polymers has led to generation of plasmonic and photothermal effects through the enhanced optical absorption of these polymer composites. In this work, we focus on the photothermal effects produced in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) membranes with embedded carbon nanoparticles via light absorption. Relevant physical parameters of these composites, such as nanoparticle concentration, density, geometry and dimensions, are used to analyze the photothermal features of the membranes. In particular, we analyze the heat generation and conduction in the membranes, showing that different effects can be achieved and controlled depending on the physical and thermal properties of the composite material. Several novel applications of these light responsive membranes are also demonstrated, including low-power laser-assisted micro-patterning and optomechanical deformation. Furthermore, we show that these polymer-nanoparticle composites can also be used as coatings in photonic and microfluidic applications, thereby offering an attractive platform for developing light-activated photonic and optofluidic devices. © 2016 by the authors.

publication date

  • 2016-01-01