Abstract

We present a novel type of photorefractive polymer-dispersed liquid crystal (PDLC) that contains a polymer, low-molecular liquid crystals (LC's), and a photoconductive sensitizer. Photorefractivity is demonstrated by two-beam-coupling experiments with an external dc field. This material shows highly sensitive photorefractivity, and a purely refractive-index grating Δn3.0×10-3 is generated by irradiation of interference light λ=632.8 nm. The grating in the photorefractive PDLC's shows strong anisotropy, and the dynamics depends strongly on the composition. In the case of a 40:60 weight ratio of polymer:LC's, the photorefractive PDLC's present a stable memory effect.

© 1997 Optical Society of America

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