Macroscopic Hierarchical Surface Patterning of Porphyrin Trimers via Self-Assembly and Dewetting

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Science  01 Dec 2006:
Vol. 314, Issue 5804, pp. 1433-1436
DOI: 10.1126/science.1133004

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The use of bottom-up approaches to construct patterned surfaces for technological applications is appealing, but to date is applicable to only relatively small areas (∼10 square micrometers). We constructed highly periodic patterns at macroscopic length scales, in the range of square millimeters, by combining self-assembly of disk-like porphyrin dyes with physical dewetting phenomena. The patterns consisted of equidistant 5-nanometer-wide lines spaced 0.5 to 1 micrometers apart, forming single porphyrin stacks containing millions of molecules, and were formed spontaneously upon drop-casting a solution of the molecules onto a mica surface. On glass, thicker lines are formed, which can be used to align liquid crystals in large domains of square millimeter size.

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