Flexible light valves using polymer-dispersed liquid crystals and TiO2/Ag/TiO2 multilayers

Chung Chin Chiou, Fan Hsi Hsu, Stefan Petrov, Vera Marinova*, Hristosko Dikov, Petko Vitanov, Dimitre Dimitrov, Ken-Yuh Hsu, Yi-Hsin Lin, Shiuan-Huei Lin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The era of flexible optoelectronics demands development of wearable and bendable structures, foldable touch screens, paper-like displays, and curved and flexible solid-state lighting devices. Here, we demonstrate the fabrication of highly flexible light valves using polymer-dispersed liquid crystal (PDLC) and TiO2/Ag/TiO2 transparent conductive films. TiO2/Ag/TiO2 multilayers were prepared by magnetron sputtering technique on polyethylene terephthalate (PET) substrates at room temperature. By keeping the equivalent TiO2 layers and varying the deposition time of the Ag layer, proper metal nanograins on TiO2 planar plane were formed, providing the best tradeoff between the transmittance, sheet resistance and bending ability. The results are validated by numerical simulations that suggest the best match between the deposition time and individual layer thickness. Based on the performed characteristics of TiO2/Ag/TiO2/PET structures, several flexible light valves are fabricated and characterized. The sheet resistance values of TiO2/Ag/TiO2/PET remain unchanged over 1000 bending cycles. The measured driving voltage and response time values open great potential of TiO2/Ag/TiO2/PET for integration into next-generation ITO-free flexible and stretchable devices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16911-16921
Number of pages11
JournalOptics Express
Issue number12
StatePublished - 10 Jun 2019


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