Pitch and Handedness of the Cholesteric Order in Films of a Chiral Alternating Fluorene Copolymer

C. Kulkarni, D. Di Nuzzo, E.W. Meijer, S.C.J. Meskers

Published: 28/12/2017


The molecular organization in thermally annealed films of poly(9,9-bis((S)-3,7-dimethyloctyl)-2,7-fluorene-alt-benzothiadiazole) is investigated using polarized light. Measurement of linear polarization in transmission and reflection as a function of layer thickness and orientation directly show a left handed cholesteric organization with a pitch length of 600 nm. Results are corroborated by measurements of circularly polarized reflection and generalized ellipsometry and are compared to calculations of the optical properties based on the Maugin-Oseen-DeVries model. For wavelengths near the lowest allowed optical transition, light with the same handedness as the cholesteric arrangement (left) is found to be reflected and transmitted with a probability higher than right circularly polarized light. The high transmission for left polarized light is interpreted as an optical manifestation of the Borrmann effect.

Full Access Link: Journal of Physical Chemistry B