Dalton, Larry R. Department of Chemistry, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.
- A brief history of electro-optic polymers
- Theory-inspired design
- Diels-Alder chemistry for control of material glass transition temperature
- Additional Readings
Optoelectronics encompasses electro-optic, light-emitting device (LED), photovoltaic (PV), and photorefractive (PR) phenomena. These are quite different phenomena. For polymer materials, each of these derives from the presence of conjugated (interacting) pi orbitals. Of the two types of electron orbitals existing in organic materials, pi orbitals concentrate electron density above and below the plane of the nuclei, while sigma orbitals concentrate electron density between nuclei. Thus, pi electrons are less tightly bound by coulombic (charge) interaction with nuclei than are sigma electrons. While LED, PV, and PR phenomena depend on the absorption/emission of light and the generation and migration of charge (electrons and holes), electro-optic activity does not. Also, the applications of each of these phenomena are quite different; that is, photovoltaics are used for renewable energy, light-emitting devices for displays, photorefractives for real-time holography, and electro-optics for telecommunications, computing, and sensing.
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