Fig. 3 | Nature Communications

Fig. 3

From: Optically-controlled long-term storage and release of thermal energy in phase-change materials

Fig. 3

Proposed mechanism and demonstration of the optical manipulation of composites. a Expected distribution and arrangement of azobenzene and phase-change materials (PCM) molecules at room temperature when dopants are uncharged and charged by ultraviolet (UV) illumination, at varied doping levels. b X-ray diffraction patterns of trans azobenzene dopant (trans-Azo), PCM, and the composites with 30 mol% charged (PCM + cis-Azo) and uncharged dopants (PCM + trans-Azo), obtained at room temperature. c Demonstration of reversible charging and discharging of PCM composite films (30 mol% doped), sandwiched between two glass slides. (i–iii) UV/thermally charged composite was cooled at 36 °C and illuminated with visible light selectively on the uncovered area (orange letters), while the rest of the film was covered by a black mask under the isothermal condition. Scale bar is 10 mm. (v–vii) Uncharged composite was heated, and only the uncovered area (yellow letters) was irradiated with UV for 1 h. Then, the sample was cooled at 36 °C. Scale bar is 10 mm. Optical microscopic images of a charged part (iv, liquid) and discharged part (viii, crystalline solid) of composite films. Scale bar is 100 µm

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