Mechanochromic polyurethane strain sensor

F. Cellini, S. Khapli, S. D. Peterson, M. Porfiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this Letter, we study the mechanical and optical response of a thermoplastic polyurethane blended with 0.5wt.s% of bis(benzoxazolyl)stilbene dye. The mechanochromic behavior of the material is characterized in a uniaxial stress-relaxation test by simultaneously acquiring the applied force, mechanical deformation, and fluorescence emission. To offer insight into the stress-strain response of the polymer-dye blend, we adapt a classical nonlinear constitutive behavior for elastomeric materials that accounts for stress-induced softening. We correlate the fluorescent response with the mechanical strain to demonstrate the possibility of accurate strain sensing for a broad range of deformations during both loading and unloading.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number061907
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number6
StatePublished - Aug 11 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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