A New Class of Photoresponsive Surfactants
Author(s)Shang, Tiangang; Wang, Elizabeth A.; Smith, Kenneth A.; Hatton, T. Alan
Recently, surface tension has been shown to be important in emerging high technologies, such as in pumping and control of flow in microfluidic devices, in microchemical analysis of complex fluids, and in rapid DNA screening, etc. Advances in these new technologies will depend strongly on the availability of flexible methods for controlling surface tension. Photo-control using a photoresponsive surfactant is a potentially attractive route to accomplishing many of the tasks required in these processes. Photoresponsive surfactants typically incorporate an azobenzene group as the functional unit which experiences reversible trans-to-cis photoisomerization under different irradiation conditions. The photoisomerization usually causes a change in surface tension. Obviously, a large change in surface tension under different illumination conditions will be highly desirable in practical applications. However, the largest change in surface tension as reported in the literature is only 3 mN/m which is too small to generate any significant effect. In this presentation, we report a new class of photoresponsive surfactants which exhibit excellent performance in surface tension control. Under different illumination conditions, the change in surface tension can be as large as 11.0 mN/m. Experimental results are presented for two new photoresponsive surfactants. A discussion of experimental results follows.
Molecular Engineering of Biological and Chemical Systems (MEBCS);
azobenzene, nonionic, photoresponsive, surfactant, surface tension control