From the guest editors:
“This issue will focus on experimental, theoretical and computer simulation studies of soft, reconfigurable materials. A distinctive feature of these systems is their ability to sense and respond to external stimuli or changes in the environment by readjusting their morphology and/or functionality. Examples abound in biology since this adaptive behaviour is vital for survival. Consider, for the example, the ability of the octopus and cuttlefish to change their colour and texture in the presence of their predators, and thus camouflage their identity. In order to accomplish analogous adaptive behaviour, synthetic systems typically encompass a coupling between mechanical and chemical, electrical, optical or thermal behaviour. For instance, certain photo-responsive gels mechanically shrink or swell in the presence of light, and by exploiting this property, the gels can be driven to undergo controllable shape changes. Our goal is to highlight the new advances in designing and creating such reconfigurable materials. Advances in this area could lead to new multi-functional systems, which display one structure and function in one environment, but display another shape and function under different conditions. As a friend of ours likes to joke, an umbrella provides a prime example of this behaviour – in the absence of rain, it remains folded and could act as a walking stick; however, in the presence of rain, it becomes unfolded and keeps the user dry. We seek other remarkable examples of such useful adaptation.”
The deadline for receipt of manuscripts for this themed is 14 June 2013
Manuscripts can be submitted using the RSC’s online submissions service. Please clearly mark that the manuscript is submitted for the themed issue on ‘Reconfigurable soft matter’.
Please would you inform the editorial office by e-mail as soon as possible if you plan to submit to the issue and whether your contribution will be original research or a review-type article. We would like to have a list of authors who intend to contribute as soon as possible.