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Electrochromism is the phenomenon displayed by some chemical species of reversibly changing color when a burst of charge is applied.

One good example of an electrochromic material is polyaniline which can be formed either by the electrochemical or chemical oxidation of aniline. If an electrode is immersed in hydrochloric acid which contains a small concentration of aniline, then a film of polyaniline can be grown on the electrode. Depending on the redox state, polyaniline can either be pale yellow or dark green/black. Other electrochromic materials that have found technological application include the viologens and polyoxotungstates. Other electrochromic materials include tungsten oxide (WO3), which is the main chemical used in the production of electrochromic windows or smart windows.

As the color change is persistent and energy need only be applied to effect a change, electrochromic materials are used to control the amount of light and heat allowed to pass through windows ("smart windows"), and has also been applied in the automobile industry to automatically tint rear-view mirrors in various lighting conditions. Viologen is used in conjunction with titanium dioxide (TiO2) in the creation of small digital displays. It is hoped that these will replace LCDs as the viologen (which is typically dark blue) has a high contrast to the bright color of the titanium white, therefore providing a high visibility of the display.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Electrochromism". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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