The development of a multicolor mechanochromic polymer/silica composite is achieved by using two distinct types of mechanochromophores. The multicolor mechanochromism of the composite containing diarylbibenzofuranone in silica-rich domains and naphthopyran in the polymer-rich domain is observed. The obtained composite shows blue, green, and orange colors according to the intensity of applied mechanical stimuli, solvent addition, and lapse of time. This unique multicolor mechanochromic behavior is evaluated by solid-state UV-vis absorption spectroscopy, ab initio steered molecular dynamics simulations, and computed minimum energy paths on force-modified potential energy surfaces. The unique mechanochromism is attributed to the difference in properties, activated colors, and domain locations between the two mechanochromophores.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry