From insect scales to sensor design: Modelling the mechanochromic properties of bicontinuous cubic structures

Xia Wu, Duancheng Ma, Philip Eisenlohr, Dierk Raabe, Helge Otto Fabritius

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 2 Citations

Abstract

Many of the three-dimensional photonic crystals occurring in the scales of insects have bicontinuous cubic structures. Their optical properties have been studied extensively, however little is known about their mechanical properties and their optical response under deformation. We demonstrated a mechanochromic effect by deforming the scales of a weevil and calculated the elastic, optical and mechanochromic (assuming homogeneous deformation) properties of the three types of bicontinuous cubic structures occurring in nature: P-structure (primitive), G-structure (gyroid) and D-structure (diamond). The results show that all investigated properties of these three structure types strongly depend on their geometry, structural parameters such as volume fractions of the two constituting phases and the directions of the incident light or applied stress, respectively. Interestingly, the mechanochromic simulation results predict that these structures may show blue-shift or even red-shift under compression along certain directions. Our results provide design guidelines for mechanochromic sensing materials operating in the elastic regime, including parameters such as sensitivity and direction of spectral shift.

LanguageEnglish (US)
Article number045001
JournalBioinspiration and Biomimetics
Volume11
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 13 2016

Profile

Hemiptera
Sensors
Photonic crystals
Optics and Photonics
Weevils
Diamonds
Volume fraction
Diamond
Optical properties
Mechanical properties
Geometry
Guidelines
Light
Direction compound

Keywords

  • bicontinuous cubic structures
  • insects
  • mechanochromic material
  • photonic crystals

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)

Cite this

From insect scales to sensor design : Modelling the mechanochromic properties of bicontinuous cubic structures. / Wu, Xia; Ma, Duancheng; Eisenlohr, Philip; Raabe, Dierk; Fabritius, Helge Otto.

In: Bioinspiration and Biomimetics, Vol. 11, No. 4, 045001, 13.06.2016.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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