High Photorefractive Gain in Nematic Liquid Crystals Doped with Electron Donor and Acceptor Molecules

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Science  15 Dec 1995:
Vol. 270, Issue 5243, pp. 1794-1797
DOI: 10.1126/science.270.5243.1794


Liquid crystalline composite materials have been prepared that are strongly photorefractive. Nematic liquid crystals were doped with both electron donor and electron acceptor molecules that undergo facile, photoinduced, electron transfer reactions to yield mobile ions. A photorefractive gain ratio of 1.88 was observed. This gain ratio was achieved with low applied electric fields (0.4 kilovolts per centimeter) requiring only a 1.5-volt battery and low light intensities (100 milliwatts per square centimeter) in samples 37 to 88 micrometers thick that showed no loss in gain over a 6-month period.