Azobenzene-containing polymers exhibit strong surface-relief features when irradiated with polarized light. Currently proposed theories do not explain all the observed features. Here we propose a theory based on elastic deformation of the polymer due to interaction between dipoles ordered through polarized light irradiation. The effects are due to the presence of a boundary layer. The observation of both wells and humps dependent on the architecture of the polymer can be explained with the present theory.
Gaididei, Y. B., Christiansen, P. L., & Ramanujam, P. S. (2002). Theory of photoinduced deformation of molecular films. Applied Physics B-Lasers and Optics, 74(2), 139-146. https://doi.org/10.1007/s003400100779