Appealing Materials − Chromogenic Polymers
Chromogenic materials change color and transparency reacting to temperature, voltage, pressure or light. They can also be specifically controlled by external stimuli.
In the research department »Chromogenic Polymers« at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP enabling plastics to change color is one of our main subjects. Our focus is on thermochromic polymers. We develop hydrogels, thermoplastics (foils), thermosets and additives which change their color and/or transparency at a change of temperature. The application potential of these materials lies among others in solar technique, engineering, automotive, and information technique.
We cover every step of the value chain:
concept > dye development > chromogenic composite > protection technology > extrusion / polymer melt > chromogenic product
Variable − Overview of Chromogenic Polymers
In recent years, interest in functional polymers that change their visual appearance depending on an external stimulus has grown steadily. Accordingly, these chromogenic polymers are classified as thermochromic (stimulus: temperature), photochromic (stimulus: light), electrochromic (stimulus: electric voltage), mechanochromic (stimulus: pressure), ionochromic (stimulus: ion concentration), and biochromic (stimulus: biochemical reaction). Due to their functional properties, which open up new innovative fields of application, it is to be expected that the demand for chromogenic polymers will increase in the future.