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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:Colorado State University
  • Garret M Miyake
  • (303) 492-6533
Award Date:11/24/2017
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 285,966
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 285,966
  • FY 2016=$285,966
Start Date:07/01/2017
End Date:06/30/2019
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.041
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:Photonic Crystals via 3D Printing of Block Co-polymers
Federal Award ID Number:1803644
DUNS ID:785979618
Parent DUNS ID:948905492
Program:Materials Eng. & Processing
Program Officer:
  • Mary M. Toney
  • (703) 292-7008

Awardee Location

Street:601 S Howes St
City:Fort Collins
County:Fort Collins
Awardee Cong. District:02

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:Colorado State University
Street:601 S. Howes Street
City:Fort Collins
County:Fort Collins
Cong. District:02

Abstract at Time of Award

Photonic crystals are periodic nanostructured materials that reflect specific wavelengths of light allowing for control and manipulation of light. Structural colors that can be found in nature include opals, peacocks and butterflies, for example. Artificial photonic crystals are used as light guides or reflectors and possess the potential to enable high speed optical computing. To date, the fabrication of photonic crystals is expensive or limited in geometric shape. The ability to three dimensionally (3D) print photonic crystal materials will enable the production of complex objects capable of controlling the flow of light via an economical and versatile platform and will accelerate their deployment for a variety of applications. This award supports fundamental research in the synthesis of block copolymers that assemble to photonic crystals through 3D printing. The Broader Impacts of this work will establish the technology to 3D print photonic crystals and enable application such as sustainable structural color, solar energy harvesting, and urban heat island mitigation. This work will serve to educate next-generation scientists in STEM across several disciplines, including engineering, materials and polymer science, and 3D printing, through exposure to these topics in laboratory and classroom environments. The assembly of block copolymers to photonic crystals is economically attractive due to bottom-up self-assembly and the potential to use commodity plastics. However, the assembly to nanostructured materials with domain sizes large enough to give rise to photonic bandgaps in the visible spectrum is challenging. In large part, this challenge arises from the fundamental property of polymer chain entanglement, which introduces an energy barrier to self-assembly. The research team will focus on designing block copolymers that reduce this energy barrier and have enhanced capability for assembly on the timescale of 3D printing. The fundamental knowledge gained through these studies will be applied toward 3D printing optical light guides.

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