Block copolymers self-assemble into one-, two-, and three-dimensional periodic equilibrium structures, which can exhibit photonic bandgaps. This paper outlines a methodology for producing photonic crystals at optical length scales from block copolymers. Techniques for enhancing the intrinsic dielectric contrast between the block copolymer domains, as well as increasing the characteristic microdomain distances, and controlling defects are presented. To demonstrate the applicability of this methodology, a self-assembled one-dimensional periodic structure has been fabricated that reflects visible light. The wealth of structures into which block copolymers can assemble and the multiple degrees of freedom that can be built into these materials on the molecular level offer a large parameter space for tailoring new types of photonic crystals at optical length scales.
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