Ferroelectrics Coupled with Unidirectional Rotation in Liquid Crystals

Jianyun Wu, Takashi Takeda, Norihisa Hoshino, Tomoyuki Akutagawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Collective unidirectional motion in a molecular assembly is essential for realizing artificial molecular motors. Studies on the chemical design of dynamic units in the closest-packing structure are ongoing. Plastic and liquid crystal states are candidates for the design of unidirectional molecular motion. In addition, a detection technique for the unidirectional motion is required. Here, we examined the physical property of a chiral N,N′,N″-tri-(R)-3,7-dimethyloctyl-1,3,5-tricarboxamide (R-3BC) and its enantiomer, S-3BC, to form one-dimensional (1D) chiral N-H···O═ hydrogen-bonding columns in a discotic hexagonal columnar (Colh) mesophase. The application of an electric field along the 1D column resulted in dipole inversion and ferroelectricity in the polarization-electric field (P-E) curve. In the P-E hysteresis curve of R-3BC, the coercive electric field (Et) for polar switching in the ferroelectric memory was 15 times smaller than that of the racemic equimolar mixture, (R-3BC)0.5(S-3BC)0.5. The unidirectional rotation of the chiral polar N-H···O═ hydrogen bonds in the 1D column drastically reduced the dipole inversion energy, whereas energy dispersion by random rotation was effectively suppressed. The unidirectional rotation was coupled with ferroelectricity to fabricate a low-energy-consumption organic device.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3864-3871
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Mar 3


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