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nanotechnology at the University of Southampton A new method for fabricating polymer opals could lead to new applications that could benefit from their color changing properties.

The iridescent stretchable films are made from polymer opals. The polymer opals are a type of photonic crystal consisting of a 3D lattice of plastic spheres. Each plastic sphere is a few hundred nanometers across, "glued" together with a flexible polymer material.

The lattice structure reflects light in such a way as to produce a color that depends upon the angle of reflection.

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