The new material changes color due to stretching and pressure. Its authors were inspired by chameleons

Researchers take inspiration from chameleon devices and develop technology that can change color

material. Scientists have presented a flexible film that changes depending on stretch, pressure or humidity. They report their findings to ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces.

Experts simulated crystalchameleon skin nanostructures in a variety of color-changing materials, but these were generally difficult to manufacture. This time, they simulated the technology in cellulose nanocrystals, a renewable material that can self-assemble into a film with iridescent structural colors.

To increase the flexibility of cellulose nanocrystalsthe researchers added PEGDA polymer and used ultraviolet light to combine it with rod nanocrystals, creating films with bright, iridescent colors ranging from blue to red, depending on the amount of PEGDA. The films have become strong and flexible, stretching up to 39% of their original length. During stretching, the color of one film gradually changed from red to green, and then changed back when relaxed.

According to researchers, they first showedreversible structural color changes caused by stretching and relaxation that are visible to the naked eye. The film also changed color with changes in pressure and humidity. According to the researchers, the new "smart material" could find applications in encryption and anti-counterfeiting.

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