Smart windows and many other applications require synchronous or alternating facile electric switching of transmitted light intensity in visible and near infrared spectral ranges, but most electrochromic devices suffer from slow, nonuniform switching, high power consumption and limited options for designing spectral characteristics. Here we develop a guest-host mesostructured composite with rod-like dye molecules and plasmonic nanorods spontaneously aligned either parallel or orthogonally to the director of the liquid crystal host. This composite material enables fast, low-voltage electric switching of electromagnetic radiation in visible and infrared ranges, which can be customized depending on the needs of applications, like climate-dependent optimal solar gain control in smart windows.
Sheetah, Ghadah H; Liu, Qingkun; Senyuk, Bohdan; Fleury, Blaise; and Smalyukh, Ivan I, "Electric switching of visible and infrared transmission using liquid crystals co-doped with plasmonic gold nanorods and dichroic dyes." (2018). Physics Faculty Contributions. 127.