Light-induced shape morphing of thin films


Shape transformation of thin two-dimensional sheets into three-dimensional structures using light is of great interest for remotely controlled fabrication, surface modulation, and actuation. Over the last few decades, significant efforts have been made to develop material systems incorporating photochemical or photothermal elements to drive deformation in response to illumination. However, the full extent of the interplay between chemistry, optics, and mechanics in these materials is poorly understood. In this review, we introduce principles of shape morphing in these systems by considering the underlying physics of photoinduced stresses and how these have been used in recent literature. In addition, we provide a critical overview of the important design characteristics of both photochemical and photothermal system and offer our view on the open opportunities and challenges in this rapidly growing field

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