Polymer, Vol.176, 51-59, 2019
Fabrication of highly efficient coatable polarizer from tolane-based smectic reactive mesogen
This work is aimed to fabricate ultra-thin coatable polarizers on a single substrate based on "host-guest" effect between highly ordered smectic reactive mesogen (RM) and dichroic dye. We designed and synthesized a new tolane-based RM with a highly ordered smectic A phase at room temperature. Polymerizable "host-guest" mixture was formulated from the host RM, dichroic dye and additives, then spin-coated on a single substrate having an alignment layer. Subsequent in-situ photopolymerization by UV irradiation successfully resulted in a coatable polarizer with good polarizing properties. The fabricated coatable polarizer showed a dichroic ratio (DR) of 16.4 and a degree of polarization (DOP) of 99.3% with the thickness of 4 mu m. The resulting coatable polarizer possessed a considerable solvent resistance , good thermal stability and robust mechanical properties. Moreover, we prepared a TN-mode LC cell by using the prepared coatable polarizers inside the cell (in-cell), in which the coatable polarizers acted as a polarizer and an alignment layer, simultaneously. The resulting TN cell with in-cell polarizers exhibited a decent electro-optical behavior. We believe that the coatable polarizer proposed in this study possesses practical application potential in ultra-thin LCDs or flexible OLEDs.