A contractile gel that stores light energy

20 enero 2015

Living systems have the ability to produce collective molecular motions that have an effect at the macroscale, such as a muscle that contracts via the concerted action of protein motors. In order to reproduce this phenomenon, scientists have made a polymer gel that is able to contract through the action of artificial molecular motors. When activated by light, these nanoscale motors twist the polymer chains in the gel, which as a result contracts by several centimeters. Another advantage is that the new material is able to store the light energy absorbed.