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Sample records for biaxial nematic liquid

  1. Lattice model for biaxial and uniaxial nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sauerwein, Ricardo A.; de Oliveira, Mário J.

    2016-05-01

    We use a lattice gas model to describe the phase transitions in nematic liquid crystals. The phase diagram displays, in addition to the isotropic phase, the two uniaxial nematics, the rod-like and discotic nematics, and the biaxial nematic. Each site of the lattice has a constituent unit that takes only six orientations and is understood as being a parallelepiped brick with the three axes distinct. The possible orientations of a brick are those in which its axes are parallel to the axes of a Cartesian reference frame. The analysis of the model is performed by the use of a mean-field approximation and a Landau expansion of the free energy.

  2. Lattice model for biaxial and uniaxial nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Sauerwein, Ricardo A; de Oliveira, Mário J

    2016-05-21

    We use a lattice gas model to describe the phase transitions in nematic liquid crystals. The phase diagram displays, in addition to the isotropic phase, the two uniaxial nematics, the rod-like and discotic nematics, and the biaxial nematic. Each site of the lattice has a constituent unit that takes only six orientations and is understood as being a parallelepiped brick with the three axes distinct. The possible orientations of a brick are those in which its axes are parallel to the axes of a Cartesian reference frame. The analysis of the model is performed by the use of a mean-field approximation and a Landau expansion of the free energy. PMID:27208971

  3. Twisted quasiperiodic textures of biaxial nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Golo, V L; Kats, E I; Sevenyuk, A A; Sinitsyn, D O

    2013-10-01

    Textures (i.e., smooth space nonuniform distributions of the order parameter) in biaxial nematics turned out to be much more complex and interesting than expected. Scanning the literature we find only a very few publications on this topic. Thus, the immediate motivation of the present paper is to develop a systematic procedure to study, classify, and visualize possible textures in biaxial nematics. Based on the elastic energy of a biaxial nematic (written in the most simple form that involves the least number of phenomenological parameters) we derive and solve numerically the Lagrange equations of the first kind. It allows one to visualize the solutions and offers a deep insight into their geometrical and topological features. Performing Fourier analysis we find some particular textures possessing two or more characteristic space periods (we term such solutions quasiperiodic ones because the periods are not necessarily commensurate). The problem is not only of intellectual interest but also of relevance to optical characteristics of the liquid-crystalline textures. PMID:24229198

  4. Novel biaxial nematic phases of side-chain liquid crystalline polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsuyama, Akihiko

    2012-12-01

    We present a mean field theory to describe biaxial nematic phases of side-chain liquid crystalline polymers, in which rigid side-chains (mesogens) and rigid-backbone chains favor mutually perpendicular orientations. Taking into account both excluded volume and attractive interactions between rigid rods, novel biaxial nematic phases are theoretically predicted. We calculate uniaxial and biaxial orientational order parameters as a function of temperature and the length of backbone chains. We find a first-order biaxial-biaxial phase transition and a first (or second)-order uniaxial-biaxial one, depending on the length of mesogens and backbone chains.

  5. Instability of a Biaxial Nematic Liquid Crystal Formed by Homeotropic Anchoring on Surface Grooves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Zhi-Dong; Xuan, Li

    2011-10-01

    A method used to treat the elastic distortion of a uniaxial nematic liquid crystal induced by homogeneous anchoring on the surface grooves is generalized to biaxial nematic liquid crystals under the homeotropic anchoring condition. Employing some approximations for the elastic constants, we obtain an additional term in the elastic energy per unit area which depends on the angle between the minor director at infinity and the direction of the grooves, with a period of π/2. This leads to instability on the surface grooves so that two states with crossed minor directors are energetically indistinguishable. Our theoretical study explains why the homeotropic alignment method developed for uniaxial liquid crystals loses efficacy for biaxial nematics.

  6. Molecular model of biaxial ordering in nematic liquid crystals composed of flat molecules with four mesogenic groups

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gorkunov, M. V.; Osipov, M. A.; Kocot, A.; Vij, J. K.

    2010-06-01

    Relative stability of uniaxial and biaxial nematic phases is analyzed in a model nematic liquid crystal composed of flat molecules of C2h symmetry with four mesogenic groups rigidly linked to the same center. The generalized effective quadrupole mean-field potential is proposed and its constants are evaluated numerically for the pair intermolecular potential based on Gay-Berne interaction between mesogenic groups. The dependencies of the constants on molecular shape parameters are systematically analyzed. Order parameters of the uniaxial and biaxial nematic phases are evaluated by direct minimization of the free energy at different temperatures. The corresponding phase diagrams are obtained enabling one to study the effects of molecular model parameters on the stability regions of uniaxial and biaxial phases. The results are used to clarify the nature of experimentally observed biaxial ordering in nematic liquid crystals composed of tetrapode molecules with the same symmetry.

  7. Molecular model of biaxial ordering in nematic liquid crystals composed of flat molecules with four mesogenic groups.

    PubMed

    Gorkunov, M V; Osipov, M A; Kocot, A; Vij, J K

    2010-06-01

    Relative stability of uniaxial and biaxial nematic phases is analyzed in a model nematic liquid crystal composed of flat molecules of C2h symmetry with four mesogenic groups rigidly linked to the same center. The generalized effective quadrupole mean-field potential is proposed and its constants are evaluated numerically for the pair intermolecular potential based on Gay-Berne interaction between mesogenic groups. The dependencies of the constants on molecular shape parameters are systematically analyzed. Order parameters of the uniaxial and biaxial nematic phases are evaluated by direct minimization of the free energy at different temperatures. The corresponding phase diagrams are obtained enabling one to study the effects of molecular model parameters on the stability regions of uniaxial and biaxial phases. The results are used to clarify the nature of experimentally observed biaxial ordering in nematic liquid crystals composed of tetrapode molecules with the same symmetry. PMID:20866427

  8. Singular values, nematic disclinations, and emergent biaxiality.

    PubMed

    Čopar, Simon; Dennis, Mark R; Kamien, Randall D; Žumer, Slobodan

    2013-05-01

    Both uniaxial and biaxial nematic liquid crystals are defined by orientational ordering of their building blocks. While uniaxial nematics only orient the long molecular axis, biaxial order implies local order along three axes. As the natural degree of biaxiality and the associated frame that can be extracted from the tensorial description of the nematic order vanishes in the uniaxial phase, we extend the nematic director to a full biaxial frame by making use of a singular value decomposition of the gradient of the director field instead. The degrees of freedom are unveiled in the form of quasidefects and the similarities and differences between the uniaxial and biaxial phase are analyzed by applying the algebraic rules of the quaternion group to the uniaxial phase. PMID:23767474

  9. FAST TRACK COMMUNICATION: Ferroelectricity in low-symmetry biaxial nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osipov, Mikhail A.; Gorkunov, Maxim V.

    2010-09-01

    Order parameters and phenomenological theory for both high- and low-symmetry biaxial nematic phases are presented and it is predicted that the chiral low-symmetry biaxial phase must be ferroelectric. This conclusion is based on general symmetry arguments and on the results of the Landau-de Gennes theory. The microscopic mechanism of the ferroelectric ordering in this chiral biaxial phase is illustrated using a simple molecular model based on dispersion interactions between biaxial molecules of low symmetry. Similar to the chiral smectic C* phase, the ferroelectricity in the chiral biaxial nematic phase is improper, i.e., polarization is not a primary order parameter and is not determined by dipolar interactions. Ferroelectric ordering in biaxial nematics may be found, in principle, in materials composed of chiral analogues of the tetrapod molecules which are known to exhibit biaxial phases.

  10. Role of Molecular Structure on X-ray Diffraction in Thermotropic Uniaxial and Biaxial Nematic Liquid Crystal Phases

    SciTech Connect

    Acharya, Bharat R.; Kang, Shin-Woong; Prasad, Veena; Kumar, Satyendra

    2009-08-27

    X-ray diffraction is one of the most definitive methods to determine the structure of condensed matter phases, and it has been applied to unequivocally infer the structures of conventional calamitic and lyotropic liquid crystals. With the advent of bent-core and tetrapodic mesogens and the discovery of the biaxial nematic phase in them, the experimental results require more careful interpretation and analysis. Here, we present ab-initio calculations of X-ray diffraction patterns in the isotropic, uniaxial nematic, and biaxial nematic phases of bent-core mesogens. A simple Meier-Saupe-like molecular distribution function is employed to describe both aligned and unaligned mesophases. The distribution function is decomposed into two, polar and azimuthal, distribution functions to calculate the effect of the evolution of uniaxial and biaxial nematic orientational order. The calculations provide satisfactory semiquantitative interpretations of experimental results. The calculations presented here should provide a pathway to more refined and quantitative analysis of X-ray diffraction data from the biaxial nematic phase.

  11. Domain walls and anchoring transitions mimicking nematic biaxiality in the oxadiazole bent-core liquid crystal C7.

    PubMed

    Kim, Young-Ki; Cukrov, Greta; Xiang, Jie; Shin, Sung-Tae; Lavrentovich, Oleg D

    2015-05-28

    We investigate the origin of "secondary disclinations" that were recently described as new evidence of a biaxial nematic phase in an oxadiazole bent-core thermotropic liquid crystal C7. Using an assortment of optical techniques such as polarizing optical microscopy, LC PolScope, and fluorescence confocal polarizing microscopy, we demonstrate that the secondary disclinations represent non-singular domain walls formed in a uniaxial nematic phase during the surface anchoring transition, in which surface orientation of the director changes from tangential (parallel to the bounding plates) to tilted. Each domain wall separates two regions with the director tilted in opposite azimuthal directions. At the centre of the wall, the director remains parallel to the bounding plates. The domain walls can be easily removed by applying a moderate electric field. The anchoring transition is explained by the balance of (a) the intrinsic perpendicular surface anchoring produced by the polyimide aligning layer and (b) tangential alignment caused by ionic impurities forming electric double layers. The model is supported by the fact that the temperature of the tangentially tilted anchoring transition decreases as the cell thickness increases and as the concentration of ionic species (added salt) increases. We also demonstrate that the surface alignment is strongly affected by thermal degradation of the samples. This study shows that C7 exhibits only a uniaxial nematic phase and demonstrates yet another mechanism (formation of "secondary disclinations") by which a uniaxial nematic phase can mimic a biaxial nematic behaviour. PMID:25820380

  12. Anomalous behavior in the crossover between the negative and positive biaxial nematic mesophases in a lyotropic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Akpinar, Erol; Reis, Dennys; Figueiredo Neto, Antonio M

    2014-05-19

    A novel quaternary lyotropic liquid-crystalline mixture of dodecyltrimethylammonium bromide (DDTMABr)/sodium bromide/1-dodecanol/water, presenting the biaxial nematic phase (NB ) in addition to two uniaxial discotic (ND) and calamitic (NC) nematic ones, was synthesized. The partial phase diagram of this new mixture was constructed as a function of the DDTMABr molar-fraction concentration. The phase transitions from uniaxial to biaxial nematic phases were studied by means of the temperature dependence of the optical birefringence. In a particular region of the phase diagram, anomalous behavior was observed in the crossover from N-B to N+b: the contrast of the conoscopic fringes, which allows the birefringence measurements, almost vanishes, and the sample loses its alignment. This behavior, which was not observed before in lyotropics, was interpreted as a decrease in the mean diamagnetic susceptibility anisotropy (Δχ) of the sample, which was related to the shape anisotropy of the micelles. Small-angle X-ray scattering measurements were performed to evaluate the micellar shape anisotropy; these revealed that this mixture presented a smaller shape anisotropy than those of other lyotropic micellar systems presenting the NB phase. PMID:24692308

  13. Reexamination of the mean-field phase diagram of biaxial nematic liquid crystals: Insights from Monte Carlo studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamala Latha, B.; Jose, Regina; Murthy, K. P. N.; Sastry, V. S. S.

    2015-07-01

    Investigations of the phase diagram of biaxial liquid-crystal systems through analyses of general Hamiltonian models within the simplifications of mean-field theory (MFT), as well as by computer simulations based on microscopic models, are directed toward an appreciation of the role of the underlying molecular-level interactions to facilitate its spontaneous condensation into a nematic phase with biaxial symmetry. Continuing experimental challenges in realizing such a system unambiguously, despite encouraging predictions from MFT, for example, are requiring more versatile simulational methodologies capable of providing insights into possible hindering barriers within the system, typically gleaned through its free-energy dependences on relevant observables as the system is driven through the transitions. The recent paper from this group [Kamala Latha et al., Phys. Rev. E 89, 050501(R) (2014), 10.1103/PhysRevE.89.050501], summarizing the outcome of detailed Monte Carlo simulations carried out employing an entropic sampling technique, suggested a qualitative modification of the MFT phase diagram as the Hamiltonian is asymptotically driven toward the so-called partly repulsive regions. It was argued that the degree of (cross) coupling between the uniaxial and biaxial tensor components of neighboring molecules plays a crucial role in facilitating a ready condensation of the biaxial phase, suggesting that this could be a plausible factor in explaining the experimental difficulties. In this paper, we elaborate this point further, providing additional evidence from curious variations of free-energy profiles with respect to the relevant orientational order parameters, at different temperatures bracketing the phase transitions.

  14. Electric field induced biaxiality and the electro-optic effect in a bent-core nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagaraj, Mamatha; Panarin, Y. P.; Manna, U.; Vij, J. K.; Keith, C.; Tschierske, C.

    2010-01-01

    We report the observation of a biaxial nematic phase in a bent-core molecular system using polarizing microscopy, electro-optics, and dielectric spectroscopy, where we find that the biaxiality exists on a microscopic scale. An application of electric field induces a macroscopic biaxiality and in consequence gives rise to electro-optic switching. This electro-optic effect shows significant potential in applications for displays due to its fast high-contrast response. The observed electro-optic switching is explained in terms of the interaction of the ferroelectric clusters with the electric field.

  15. Twist viscosities and flow alignment of biaxial nematic liquid crystal phases of a soft ellipsoid-string fluid studied by molecular dynamics simulation.

    PubMed

    Sarman, Sten; Laaksonen, Aatto

    2012-09-14

    We have calculated the twist viscosity and the alignment angle between the director and the stream lines in shear flow of a liquid crystal model system, which forms biaxial nematic liquid crystals, as functions of the density, from the Green-Kubo relations by equilibrium molecular dynamics simulation and by a nonequilibrium molecular dynamics algorithm, where a torque conjugate to the director angular velocity is applied to rotate the director. The model system consists of a soft ellipsoid-string fluid where the ellipsoids interact according a repulsive version of the Gay-Berne potential. Four different length-to-width-to-breadth ratios have been studied. On compression, this system forms discotic or calamitic uniaxial nematic phases depending on the dimensions of the molecules, and on further compression a biaxial nematic phase is formed. In the uniaxial nematic phase there is one twist viscosity and one alignment angle. In the biaxial nematic phase there are three twist viscosities and three alignment angles corresponding to the rotation around the various directors and the different alignments of the directors relative to the stream lines, respectively. It is found that the smallest twist viscosity arises by rotation around the director formed by the long axes, the second smallest one arises by rotation around the director formed by the normals of the broadsides, and the largest one by rotation around the remaining director. The first twist viscosity is rather independent of the density whereas the last two ones increase strongly with density. One finds that there is one stable director alignment relative to the streamlines, namely where the director formed by the long axes is almost parallel to the stream lines and where the director formed by the normals of the broadsides is almost parallel to the shear plane. The relative magnitudes of the components of the twist viscosities span a fairly wide interval so this model should be useful for parameterisation

  16. Macroscopic biaxiality and electric-field-induced rotation of the minor director in the nematic phase of a bent-core liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagaraj, Mamatha; Merkel, K.; Vij, J. K.; Kocot, A.

    2010-09-01

    Biaxiality in the nematic phase has been investigated for the bent-core liquid-crystal para-heptylbenzoate diester, using polarised IR spectroscopy. Anisotropic fluctuations of the nematic director are discussed in terms of the self-assembly of the chiral conformers. The ordering of the minor director for the homeotropicaly aligned sample is found to depend on the rubbing of the substrates of the cell and the amplitude of in-plane electric field. On increasing the in-plane electric field, the rotation of the minor director in the plane of the substrate is observed with an angle of approximately 45°, where initially the minor director is shown to lie along the rubbing direction. It is also shown that on the average the long axis of the molecules is normal to the substrate with surface treatment, with and without rubbing. The electric in-plane field combined with rubbing is shown to induce biaxial order in the nematic phase of a material with negative dielectic anisotropy for the first time.

  17. Density Functional Theory of Model Systems with the Biaxial Nematic Phase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grzybowski, Piotr

    2009-07-01

    Present work is a theoretical study on the stability of the thermotropic biaxial nematic liquid crystal phase in model systems. Its main aim is to present the phase diagrams of spatially uniform liquid mesophases and to identify the molecular parameters that influence the stability of the biaxial nematic. The diagrams are obtained by means of the Local Density Functional Theory in low density approximation, and the relation between the molecular parameters of the models and macroscopic properties of the system close to the transition point are obtained by means of bifurcation analysis. We consider three model systems; the so-called L=2 model (the lowest coupling model of the orientational part of pair potential), the biaxial Gay-Berne interaction, and the bent-core system. For the second one, we also briefly investigate the temperature dependence of elastic constants in rod-like regime and in the vicinity of the Landau point and comment on the smectic phases. In every case we take into account rigid molecules. We find that the Landau points acquired from the square root rule for hard biaxial ellipsoids retain its significance, and provide qualitatively correct estimations of Landau points positions for Gay-Berne biaxial ellipsoids. In case of the bent-core model molecules build from uniaxial and biaxial Gay-Berne ellipsoids we find that the dipole-dipole interaction and degree of arms biaxiality change the stability of the biaxial nematic phase.

  18. Molecular reorientation of a nematic liquid crystal by thermal expansion

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Young-Ki; Senyuk, Bohdan; Lavrentovich, Oleg D.

    2012-01-01

    A unique feature of nematic liquid crystals is orientational order of molecules that can be controlled by electromagnetic fields, surface modifications and pressure gradients. Here we demonstrate a new effect in which the orientation of nematic liquid crystal molecules is altered by thermal expansion. Thermal expansion (or contraction) causes the nematic liquid crystal to flow; the flow imposes a realigning torque on the nematic liquid crystal molecules and the optic axis. The optical and mechanical responses activated by a simple temperature change can be used in sensing, photonics, microfluidic, optofluidic and lab-on-a-chip applications as they do not require externally imposed gradients of temperature, pressure, surface realignment, nor electromagnetic fields. The effect has important ramifications for the current search of the biaxial nematic phase as the optical features of thermally induced structural changes in the uniaxial nematic liquid crystal mimic the features expected of the biaxial nematic liquid crystal. PMID:23072803

  19. The elusive thermotropic biaxial nematic phase in rigid bent-core molecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acharya, Bharat R.; Primak, Andrew; Dingemans, Theo J.; Samulski, Edward T.; Kumar, Satyendra

    2003-08-01

    The biaxial nematic liquid crystalline phase was predicted several decades ago. Several vigorous attempts to find it in various systems resulted in mis-identifications. The results of X-ray diffraction and optical texture studies of the phases exhibited by rigid bent-core molecules derived from 2,5-bis-(p-hydroxyphenyl)-1,3,4-oxadiazole reveal that the biaxial nematic phase is formed by three compounds of this type. X-ray diffraction studies reveal that the nematic phase of these compounds has the achiral symmetry D2h, in which the overall long axes of the molecules are oriented parallel to each other to define the major axis of the biaxial phase. The apex of the bent-cores de- fines the minor axis of this phase along which the planes containing the bent-cores of neighboring molecules are oriented parallel to each other.

  20. Biaxial Nematic Phase in Model Bent-Core Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grzybowski, Piotr; Longa, Lech

    2011-07-01

    We determine the bifurcation phase diagrams with isotropic (I), uniaxial (NU) and biaxial (NB) nematic phases for model bent-core mesogens using Onsager-type theory. The molecules comprise two or three Gay-Berne interacting ellipsoids of uniaxial and biaxial shape and a transverse central dipole. The Landau point is found to turn into an I-NB line for the three-center model with a large dipole moment. For the biaxial ellipsoids, a line of Landau points is observed even in the absence of the dipoles.

  1. Biaxial nematic phase in model bent-core systems.

    PubMed

    Grzybowski, Piotr; Longa, Lech

    2011-07-01

    We determine the bifurcation phase diagrams with isotropic (I), uniaxial (N(U)) and biaxial (N(B)) nematic phases for model bent-core mesogens using Onsager-type theory. The molecules comprise two or three Gay-Berne interacting ellipsoids of uniaxial and biaxial shape and a transverse central dipole. The Landau point is found to turn into an I-N(B) line for the three-center model with a large dipole moment. For the biaxial ellipsoids, a line of Landau points is observed even in the absence of the dipoles. PMID:21797641

  2. Field response and switching times in biaxial nematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berardi, Roberto; Muccioli, Luca; Zannoni, Claudio

    2008-01-01

    We study by means of virtual molecular dynamics computer experiments the response of a bulk biaxial nematic to an applied external field and, in particular, the relative speed of reorientation of the principal director axis and of the secondary one, typical of these new materials, upon a π /2 field switch. We perform the simulations setting up and integrating the equations of motion for biaxial Gay-Berne particles using quaternions and a suitable time reversible symplectic integrator. We find that switching of the secondary axis is up to an order of magnitude faster than that of the principal axis, and that under fields above a certain strength a reorganization of local domains, temporarily disrupting the nematic and biaxial ordering, rather than a collective concerted reorientation occurs.

  3. Field response and switching times in biaxial nematics.

    PubMed

    Berardi, Roberto; Muccioli, Luca; Zannoni, Claudio

    2008-01-14

    We study by means of virtual molecular dynamics computer experiments the response of a bulk biaxial nematic to an applied external field and, in particular, the relative speed of reorientation of the principal director axis and of the secondary one, typical of these new materials, upon a pi2 field switch. We perform the simulations setting up and integrating the equations of motion for biaxial Gay-Berne particles using quaternions and a suitable time reversible symplectic integrator. We find that switching of the secondary axis is up to an order of magnitude faster than that of the principal axis, and that under fields above a certain strength a reorganization of local domains, temporarily disrupting the nematic and biaxial ordering, rather than a collective concerted reorientation occurs. PMID:18205473

  4. Nematic liquid crystal bridges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doss, Susannah; Ellis, Perry; Vallamkondu, Jayalakshmi; Danemiller, Edward; Vernon, Mark; Fernandez-Nieves, Alberto

    We study the effects of confining a nematic liquid crystal between two parallel glass plates with homeotropic boundary conditions for the director at all bounding surfaces. We find that the free surface of the nematic bridge is a surface of constant mean curvature. In addition, by changing the distance between the plates and the contact angle with the glass plates, we transition between loops and hedgehogs that can be either radial or hyperbolic.

  5. Search for microscopic and macroscopic biaxiality in the cybotactic nematic phase of new oxadiazole bent-core mesogens.

    PubMed

    Kim, Young-Ki; Cukrov, Greta; Vita, Francesco; Scharrer, Eric; Samulski, Edward T; Francescangeli, Oriano; Lavrentovich, Oleg D

    2016-06-01

    The possibility of biaxial orientational order in nematic liquid crystals is a subject of intense current interest. We explore the tendencies toward local and global biaxial ordering in the recently synthesized trimethylated oxadiazole-based bent-core mesogens with a pronounced asymmetric (bow-type) shape of molecules. The combination of x-ray diffraction and optical studies suggests that the biaxial order is expressed differently at the short- and long-range scales. Locally, at the scale of a few molecules, x-ray-diffraction data demonstrate biaxial packing. However, above the mesoscopic scale, the global orientational order in all three compounds is uniaxial, as evidenced by uniform homeotropic alignment of the nematic phase which is optically tested over the entire temperature range and by the observations of topological defects induced by individual and aggregated colloidal spheres in the nematic bulk. PMID:27415328

  6. Search for microscopic and macroscopic biaxiality in the cybotactic nematic phase of new oxadiazole bent-core mesogens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Young-Ki; Cukrov, Greta; Vita, Francesco; Scharrer, Eric; Samulski, Edward T.; Francescangeli, Oriano; Lavrentovich, Oleg D.

    2016-06-01

    The possibility of biaxial orientational order in nematic liquid crystals is a subject of intense current interest. We explore the tendencies toward local and global biaxial ordering in the recently synthesized trimethylated oxadiazole-based bent-core mesogens with a pronounced asymmetric (bow-type) shape of molecules. The combination of x-ray diffraction and optical studies suggests that the biaxial order is expressed differently at the short- and long-range scales. Locally, at the scale of a few molecules, x-ray-diffraction data demonstrate biaxial packing. However, above the mesoscopic scale, the global orientational order in all three compounds is uniaxial, as evidenced by uniform homeotropic alignment of the nematic phase which is optically tested over the entire temperature range and by the observations of topological defects induced by individual and aggregated colloidal spheres in the nematic bulk.

  7. Kerr response of nematic liquids.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnston, A. R.

    1973-01-01

    Description of the results of recent observations of the Kerr effect in nematic liquid crystals in a temperature range just above their nematic-isotropic transition. These results indicate that the intermolecular ordering forces in a nematic substance can enhance the Kerr effect just above the nematic transition in their isotropic state. It is felt that existing theory provides a useful approximation for relating molecular size to response time.

  8. Mesogen polarity effects on biaxial nematics. Centrally located dipoles.

    PubMed

    Querciagrossa, Lara; Ricci, Matteo; Berardi, Roberto; Zannoni, Claudio

    2013-11-21

    We investigate the phase organisation of thermotropic biaxial Gay-Berne (GB) mesogens yielding a biaxial nematic (Nb) phase upon endowing them with a central point dipole. We study the effects of changing the strength and orientation of the dipole on the phase behaviour, and in particular we examine, using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, the possibility of improving the stability of the Nb phase. After mapping the boundaries of the Nb phase, we find that the strength of the embedded dipole is the parameter with the strongest influence on the mesogenic properties, while its orientation plays a minor role. For these central dipole systems, we find that the Nb phase organisation is stable only for mesogens with relatively weak dipole moments, while it disappears if electrostatic interactions become comparable in magnitude with dispersion interactions. PMID:24100468

  9. Thermotropic Uniaxial and Biaxial Nematic and Smectic Phases in Bent-Core Mesogens

    SciTech Connect

    Prasad, Venna; Kang, Shin-Woong; Suresh, K.A.; Joshi, Leela; Wang, Qingbing; Kumar, Satyendra

    2010-07-20

    Two azo substituted achiral bent-core mesogens have been synthesized. Optical polarizing microscopy and synchrotron X-ray scattering studies of both compounds reveal the existence of the thermotropic uniaxial and biaxial nematic and three smectic phases at different temperatures in these single component small molecule systems. The transition from the uniaxial to biaxial nematic phase is confirmed to be second order. The transitions from the biaxial nematic to the underlying smectic phase and between the smectic phases have barely discernible heat capacity signatures and thus are also second order.

  10. Elementary statistical models for nematic transitions in liquid-crystalline systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liarte, Danilo B.; Salinas, Silvio R.

    2014-03-01

    We introduce a simple Maier-Saupe-Zwanzig (MSZ) model to describe the well-known first-order nematic-isotropic transition in liquid-crystalline systems. We then use the MSZ model, with the addition of disorder degrees of freedom, to investigate the stability of a biaxial nematic phase in a mixture of rods and disks. There is a biaxial nematic structure if we consider a fixed distribution of rods and disks. For a thermalized distribution of shapes, however, this biaxial structure becomes thermodynamically unstable. We then resort to a formalism that accounts for two sets of relaxation times, and show that a small departure from complete thermalization is enough to recover a stable biaxial structure. As another application of the MSZ model, we report an investigation of some properties of nematic elastomers. We point out the possibility of continuous nematic transitions, and reproduce a characteristic stress-strain response, with a plateau that indicates a polydomain-monodomain transition.

  11. On the Elastic Energy Density of Constrained Q-Tensor Models for Biaxial Nematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mucci, Domenico; Nicolodi, Lorenzo

    2012-12-01

    Within the Landau-de Gennes theory, the order parameter describing a biaxial nematic liquid crystal assigns a symmetric traceless 3 × 3 matrix Q with three distinct eigenvalues to every point of the region Ω occupied by the system. In the constrained case of matrices Q with constant eigenvalues, the order parameter space is diffeomorphic to the eightfold quotient {{S}^3/{H}} of the 3-sphere {{S}^3}, where {{H}} is the quaternion group, and a configuration of a biaxial nematic liquid crystal is described by a map from Ω to {{S}^3/{H}}. We express the (simplest form of the) Landau-de Gennes elastic free-energy density as a density defined on maps {q: Ω to {S}^3}, whose functional dependence is restricted by the requirements that (1) it is well defined on the class of configuration maps from Ω to {{S}^3/{H}} (residual symmetry) and (2) it is independent of arbitrary superposed rigid rotations (frame indifference). As an application of this representation, we then discuss some properties of the corresponding energy functional, including coercivity, lower semicontinuity and strong density of smooth maps. Other invariance properties are also considered. In the discussion, we take advantage of the identification of {{S}^3} with the Lie group of unit quaternions {Sp(1) \\cong SU(2)} and of the relations between quaternions and rotations in {{R}^3} and {{R}^4}.

  12. Lattice Spin Simulations of Topological Defects in Biaxial Nematic Films with Homeotropic Surface Alignment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Preeti, Gouripeddi Sai; Zannoni, Claudio; Chiccoli, Cesare; Pasini, Paolo; Sastry, Vanka S. S.

    2013-05-01

    We present a detailed Monte Carlo study of the effects of biaxiality on the textures of nematic films with specific homeotropic boundary conditions. We have used the Straley generalized Hamiltonian for a wide range of biaxial parameters and the differences obtained in the polarized microscopy images are analyzed for the various cases.

  13. Statistical mechanics of the flexoelectric effect in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhakal, Subas; Selinger, Jonathan V.

    2009-03-01

    Flexoelectricity is the phenomenon in which polarization is induced by imposed deformations of the director field in nematic liquid crystals. Recent experiments [1,2] have found that the flexoelectric effect is three orders of magnitude greater for bent-core liquid crystals than for conventional rod-like liquid crystals. To understand this experimental result, we develop a lattice model for the statistical mechanics of the flexoelectric effect. We perform Monte Carlo simulations and mean-field calculations to find the behavior as a function of interaction parameters, temperature, and applied electric field. The resulting phase diagram has four phases: isotropic, uniaxial nematic, biaxial nematic, and polar. In the uniaxial and biaxial nematic phases, there is a large splay or bend flexoelectric effect, which diverges as the system approaches the nematic-polar transition. This model may explain the large bend flexoelectric coefficient observed in bent-core liquid crystals, which have a tendency toward polar order. [1] J. Harden, B. Mbanga, N. Eber, K. Fodor-Csorba, S. Sprunt, J. T. Gleeson, and A. Jakli, Phys. Rev. Lett. 97,157802 (2006). [2] J. Harden, R. Teeling, J. T. Gleeson, S. Sprunt, and A.Jakli, Phys. Rev. E 78, 031702 (2008).

  14. Boundary Stability of a Nematic Liquid Bridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barnes, William; Santangelo, Chris

    2014-03-01

    We consider a nematic liquid crystal droplet in air confined between two parallel plates with homeotropic boundary conditions. The boundary conditions at the nematic-plate and nematic-air interfaces induce either a hedgehog or planar ring disclination within the nematic bridge, depending on the plate separation and bridge radius. We study the stability of the liquid crystal-air boundary of a nearly cylindrical nematic bridge by minimizing the Frank elastic energy.

  15. Biaxial nematic phases in fluids of hard board-like particles.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Ratón, Y; Varga, S; Velasco, E

    2011-08-01

    We use density-functional theory, of the fundamental-measure type, to study the relative stability of the biaxial nematic phase, with respect to non-uniform phases such as smectic and columnar, in fluids made of hard board-like particles with sizes σ(1) > σ(2) > σ(3). A restricted-orientation (Zwanzig) approximation is adopted. Varying the ratio κ(1) = σ(1)/σ(2) while keeping κ(2) = σ(2)/σ(3), we predict phase diagrams for various values of κ(2) which include all the uniform phases: isotropic, uniaxial rod- and plate-like nematics, and biaxial nematic. In addition, spinodal instabilities of the uniform phases with respect to fluctuations of the smectic, columnar and plastic-solid types are obtained. In agreement with recent experiments, we find that the biaxial nematic phase begins to be stable for κ(2)≳ 2.5. Also, as predicted by previous theories and simulations on biaxial hard particles, we obtain a region of biaxiality centred at κ(1)≈κ(2) which widens as κ(2) increases. For κ(2)≳ 5 the region κ(2)≈κ(1) of the packing-fraction vs. κ(1) phase diagrams exhibits interesting topologies which change qualitatively with κ(2). We have found that an increasing biaxial shape anisotropy favours the formation of the biaxial nematic phase. Our study is the first to apply FMT theory to biaxial particles and, therefore, it goes beyond the second-order virial approximation. Our prediction that the phase diagram must be asymmetric in the neighbourhood of κ(1)≈κ(2) is a genuine result of the present approach, which is not accounted for by previous studies based on second-order theories. PMID:21701729

  16. Uniaxial-to-biaxial cholesteric and nematic phase transitions on a lyotropic alcohol-free mixture

    SciTech Connect

    de Sant'Ana, Z.A.; Figueiredo Neto, A.M. )

    1992-12-15

    Interferometric measurements of the chirality-induced biaxiality in the vicinity of the uniaxial-to-biaxial cholesteric transition of the lyotropic system potassium laurate, decylammonium chloride, H[sub 2]O, and brucine sulfate are reported. The mean-field approach to describe the cholesteric-to-cholesteric transition allows an estimate of the ratio between coefficients of the Landau expansion. The values of the bare correlation length, [xi][sub 0][similar to]1000 A, calculated are larger than in lyotropic systems with alcohol. The chirality-induced biaxiality measurements in the limit of zero elastic field ([ital q][sup 2]=0) and the birefringence measurements in the nematic phase confirm critical properties of the uniaxial-to-biaxial nematic transition. The critical exponents for the order parameter ([beta]) and the susceptibility ([gamma]) are in good agreement with the values calculated for the [ital XY] model.

  17. On the field-induced switching of molecular organization in a biaxial nematic cell and its relaxation.

    PubMed

    Ricci, Matteo; Berardi, Roberto; Zannoni, Claudio

    2015-08-28

    We investigate the switching of a biaxial nematic filling a flat cell with planar homogeneous anchoring using a coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulation. We have found that an aligning field applied across the film, and acting on specific molecular axes, can drive the reorientation of the secondary biaxial director up to one order of magnitude faster than that for the principal director. While the π/2 switching of the secondary director does not affect the alignment of the long molecular axes, the field-driven reorientation of the principal director proceeds via a concerted rotation of the long and transversal molecular axes. More importantly, while upon switching off a (relatively) weak or intermediate field, the biaxial nematic liquid crystal is always able to relax to the initial surface aligned director state; this is not the case when using fields above a certain threshold. In that case, while the secondary director always recovers the initial state, the principal one remains, occasionally, trapped in a nonuniform director state due to the formation of domain walls. PMID:26328865

  18. Core structure and dynamics of non-Abelian vortices in a biaxial nematic spinor Bose-Einstein condensate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borgh, Magnus O.; Ruostekoski, Janne

    2016-05-01

    We demonstrate that multiple interaction-dependent defect core structures as well as dynamics of non-Abelian vortices can be realized in the biaxial nematic (BN) phase of a spin-2 atomic Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC). An experimentally simple protocol may be used to break degeneracy with the uniaxial nematic phase. We show that a discrete spin-space symmetry in the core may be reflected in a breaking of its spatial symmetry. The discrete symmetry of the BN order parameter leads to non-commuting vortex charges. We numerically simulate reconnection of non-Abelian vortices, demonstrating formation of the obligatory rung vortex. In addition to atomic BECs, non-Abelian vortices are theorized in, e.g., liquid crystals and cosmic strings. Our results suggest the BN spin-2 BEC as a prime candidate for their realization. We acknowledge financial support from the EPSRC.

  19. Atomistic Simulations of a Thermotropic Biaxial Liquid Crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peláez, Jorge; Wilson, Mark R.

    2006-12-01

    We have performed molecular dynamics simulations of a 2,5-bis-(p-hydroxyphenyl)-1,3,4-oxadiazole mesogen (ODBP-Ph-C7) at a fully atomistic level for a range of temperatures within the region that has experimentally been assigned to a biaxial nematic phase. Analysis of the data shows that the simulated nematic phase is biaxial but that the degree of biaxiality is small. The simulations show also the formation of ferroelectric domains in the nematic where the molecular short axis is aligned with the oxadiazole dipoles parallel to each other. Removal of electrostatic interactions leads to destabilization of ferroelectric domains and destabilization of the biaxiality. An additional simulation shows the slow growth of a mesophase directly from the isotropic fluid over a period of approximately 50 ns. This is the first time this has been achieved within the framework of an all-atom model.

  20. Biaxial nematic phase stability and demixing behaviour in monolayers of rod-plate mixtures.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Ratón, Yuri; González-Pinto, Miguel; Velasco, Enrique

    2016-09-21

    We theoretically study the phase behaviour of monolayers of hard rod-plate mixtures using a fundamental-measure density functional in the restricted-orientation (Zwanzig) approximation. Particles can rotate in 3D but their centres of mass are constrained to be on a flat surface. In addition, we consider both species to be subject to an attractive potential proportional to the particle contact area on the surface and with adsorption strengths that depend on the species type. Particles have board-like shape, with sizes chosen using a symmetry criterion: same volume and same aspect ratio κ. Phase diagrams were calculated for κ = 10, 20 and 40 and different values of adsorption strengths. For small adsorption strengths the mixtures exhibit a second-order uniaxial nematic-biaxial nematic transition for molar fraction of rods 0 ≤x≲ 0.9. In the uniaxial nematic phase the particle axes of rods and plates are aligned perpendicular and parallel to the monolayer, respectively. At the transition, the orientational symmetry of the plate axes is broken, and they orient parallel to a director lying on the surface. For large and equal adsorption strengths the mixture demixes at low pressures into a uniaxial nematic phase, rich in plates, and a biaxial nematic phase, rich in rods. The demixing transition is located between two tricritical points. Also, at higher pressures and in the plate-rich part of the phase diagram, the system exhibits a strong first-order uniaxial nematic-biaxial nematic phase transition with a large density coexistence gap. When rod adsorption is considerably large while that of plates is small, the transition to the biaxial nematic phase is always of second order, and its region of stability in the phase diagram considerably widens. At very high pressures the mixture can effectively be identified as a two-dimensional mixture of squares and rectangles which again demixes above a certain critical point. We also studied the relative stability of uniform

  1. Simulation and visualization of topological defects in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Callan-Jones, A C; Pelcovits, Robert A; Slavin, V A; Zhang, S; Laidlaw, D H; Loriot, G B

    2006-12-01

    We present a method of visualizing topological defects arising in numerical simulations of liquid crystals. The method is based on scientific visualization techniques developed to visualize second-rank tensor fields, yielding information not only on the local structure of the field but also on the continuity of these structures. We show how these techniques can be used to first locate topological defects in fluid simulations of nematic liquid crystals where the locations are not known a priori and then study the properties of these defects including the core structure. We apply these techniques to simulation data obtained by previous authors who studied a rapid quench and subsequent equilibration of a Gay-Berne nematic. The quench produces a large number of disclination loops which we locate and track with the visualization methods. We show that the cores of the disclination lines have a biaxial region and the loops themselves are of a hybrid wedge-twist variety. PMID:17280078

  2. Simulation and visualization of topological defects in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callan-Jones, A. C.; Pelcovits, Robert A.; Slavin, V. A.; Zhang, S.; Laidlaw, D. H.; Loriot, G. B.

    2006-12-01

    We present a method of visualizing topological defects arising in numerical simulations of liquid crystals. The method is based on scientific visualization techniques developed to visualize second-rank tensor fields, yielding information not only on the local structure of the field but also on the continuity of these structures. We show how these techniques can be used to first locate topological defects in fluid simulations of nematic liquid crystals where the locations are not known a priori and then study the properties of these defects including the core structure. We apply these techniques to simulation data obtained by previous authors who studied a rapid quench and subsequent equilibration of a Gay-Berne nematic. The quench produces a large number of disclination loops which we locate and track with the visualization methods. We show that the cores of the disclination lines have a biaxial region and the loops themselves are of a hybrid wedge-twist variety.

  3. Biaxial order and a rotation of the minor director in the nematic phase of an organo-siloxane tetrapode by the electric field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merkel, K.; Nagaraj, M.; Kocot, A.; Kohlmeier, A.; Mehl, G. H.; Vij, J. K.

    2012-03-01

    Biaxiality in the nematic phase for a liquid crystalline tetrapode made up of organo-siloxanes mesogens is investigated using polarized infrared spectroscopy. An ordering of the minor director for the homeotropically aligned sample is found to depend on the amplitude of the in-plane electric field. On increasing the in-plane electric field, the minor director, lying initially along the rubbing direction, rotates to the direction of the applied field. The scalar order parameters of the second rank tensor are found to depend significantly on the strength of the electric field. A most significant increase is found in the nematic order parameter and in the parameter that characterizes the phase biaxiality.

  4. Electro-osmosis in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Tovkach, O M; Calderer, M Carme; Golovaty, Dmitry; Lavrentovich, Oleg; Walkington, Noel J

    2016-07-01

    We derive a mathematical model of a nematic electrolyte based on a variational formulation of nematodynamics. We verify the model by comparing its predictions to the results of the experiments on the substrate-controlled liquid-crystal-enabled electrokinetics. In the experiments, a nematic liquid crystal confined to a thin planar cell with surface-patterned anchoring conditions exhibits electro-osmotic flows along the "guiding rails" imposed by the spatially varying director. Extending our previous work, we consider a general setup which incorporates dielectric anisotropy of the liquid-crystalline matrix and the full set of nematic viscosities. PMID:27575193

  5. Electro-osmosis in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tovkach, O. M.; Calderer, M. Carme; Golovaty, Dmitry; Lavrentovich, Oleg; Walkington, Noel J.

    2016-07-01

    We derive a mathematical model of a nematic electrolyte based on a variational formulation of nematodynamics. We verify the model by comparing its predictions to the results of the experiments on the substrate-controlled liquid-crystal-enabled electrokinetics. In the experiments, a nematic liquid crystal confined to a thin planar cell with surface-patterned anchoring conditions exhibits electro-osmotic flows along the "guiding rails" imposed by the spatially varying director. Extending our previous work, we consider a general setup which incorporates dielectric anisotropy of the liquid-crystalline matrix and the full set of nematic viscosities.

  6. Macroscopic dynamics of polar nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Brand, Helmut R; Pleiner, Harald; Ziebert, Falko

    2006-08-01

    We present the macroscopic equations for polar nematic liquid crystals. We consider the case where one has both, the usual nematic director, n[over ] , characterizing quadrupolar order as well as the macroscopic polarization, P , representing polar order, but where their directions coincide and are rigidly coupled. In this case one has to choose P as the independent macroscopic variable. Such equations are expected to be relevant in connection with nematic phases with unusual properties found recently in compounds composed of banana-shaped molecules. Among the effects predicted, which are absent in conventional nematic liquid crystals showing only quadrupolar order, are pyro-electricity and its analogs for density and for concentration in mixtures as well as a flow alignment behavior, which is more complex than in usual low molecular weight nematics. We also discuss the formation of defect structures expected in such systems. PMID:17025458

  7. Carrier transport simulation in a model liquid crystalline system with the biaxial Gay-Berne potential.

    PubMed

    Goto, Masanao; Takezoe, Hideo; Ishikawa, Ken

    2010-02-01

    In this paper, we performed carrier transport simulation to understand the unusual temperature dependence of the carrier mobility observed in nematic liquid crystals. For this purpose, we made a model liquid crystalline system consisting of biaxial Gay-Berne particles, and then we simulated hopping transport between these particles. The hopping rate was formulated suitably for the biaxial Gay-Berne particles based on the investigation of the electronic overlaps between actual aromatic molecules. The carrier transport simulation was performed by master equation method on the model system prepared by N-P-T ensemble Monte Carlo simulation. We reproduced gradual mobility increase in the nematic phase as a result of the change in the short range molecular order. PMID:20136321

  8. Carrier transport simulation in a model liquid crystalline system with the biaxial Gay-Berne potential

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goto, Masanao; Takezoe, Hideo; Ishikawa, Ken

    2010-02-01

    In this paper, we performed carrier transport simulation to understand the unusual temperature dependence of the carrier mobility observed in nematic liquid crystals. For this purpose, we made a model liquid crystalline system consisting of biaxial Gay-Berne particles, and then we simulated hopping transport between these particles. The hopping rate was formulated suitably for the biaxial Gay-Berne particles based on the investigation of the electronic overlaps between actual aromatic molecules. The carrier transport simulation was performed by master equation method on the model system prepared by N-P-T ensemble Monte Carlo simulation. We reproduced gradual mobility increase in the nematic phase as a result of the change in the short range molecular order.

  9. Dynamics and rheology of biaxial liquid crystal polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sircar, Sarthok K.

    In this thesis we derive a hydrodynamical kinetic theory to study the orientational response of a mesoscopic system of nematic liquid crystals in the presence of an external flow field. Various problems have been attempted in this direction. First, we understand the steady-state behavior of uniaxial LCPs under an imposed elongational flow, electric and magnetic field respectively. We show that (1) the Smoluchowski equation can be cast into a generic form, (2) the external field is parallel to one of the eigenvectors of the second moment tensor, and (3) the steady state probability density function is of the Boltzmann type. In the next problem, we study the mono-domain dynamics of rigid rod and platelet suspensions in a linear flow and a steady magnetic field. The flows with a rotational component is mapped to simple shear with rate parameter subject to a transverse magnetic field with strength parameter and the irrotational flows are reduced into a triaxial extensional flow with two extensional rate parameters. For rotational flows, various in-plane and out-of-plane stable steady attractors emerge. For irrotational flows, the biaxial equilibria is characterized generically in terms of an explicit Boltzmann distribution, providing a natural generalization of the analytical results on pure nematic equilibria. Finally, we present the dynamics of a mesoscopic system of biaxial liquid crystal polymers in the presence of a homogenous shear flow. The Smoluchowski equation is derived in the rotating frame and solved using a specially formulated Wigner-Galerkin approximation in selected regions of the material parameter space and a range of accessible shear rates, to investigate the stable mesoscopic states and robust structures.

  10. Role of Molecular Structure on X-ray Diffraction in Uniaxial and Biaxial Phases of Thermotropic Liquid Crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Acharya, Bharat R.; Kang, Shin-Woong; Prasad, Veena; Kumar, Satyendra

    2009-04-29

    X-ray diffraction is one of the most definitive methods to determine the structure of condensed matter phases, and it has been applied to unequivocally infer the structures of conventional calamitic and lyotropic liquid crystals. With the advent of bent-core and tetrapodic mesogens and the discovery of the biaxial nematic phase in them, the experimental results require more careful interpretation and analysis. Here, we present ab-initio calculations of X-ray diffraction patterns in the isotropic, uniaxial nematic, and biaxial nematic phases of bent-core mesogens. A simple Meier-Saupe-like molecular distribution function is employed to describe both aligned and unaligned mesophases. The distribution function is decomposed into two, polar and azimuthal, distribution functions to calculate the effect of the evolution of uniaxial and biaxial nematic orientational order. The calculations provide satisfactory semiquantitative interpretations of experimental results. The calculations presented here should provide a pathway to more refined and quantitative analysis of X-ray diffraction data from the biaxial nematic phase.

  11. Simulation of electrically controlled nematic liquid crystal Rochon prism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buczkowska, M.; Derfel, G.

    2016-09-01

    Operation of an electrically controlled beam steering device based on Rochon prism made by use of nematic liquid crystal is modelled numerically. Deflection angles and angular distribution of light intensity in the deflected beam are calculated. Dynamics of the device is studied. Advantage of application of dual frequency nematic liquid crystal is demonstrated. Role of flexoelectric properties of the nematic is analyzed.

  12. Stochastic rotation dynamics for nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Kuang-Wu Mazza, Marco G.

    2015-04-28

    We introduce a new mesoscopic model for nematic liquid crystals (LCs). We extend the particle-based stochastic rotation dynamics method, which reproduces the Navier-Stokes equation, to anisotropic fluids by including a simplified Ericksen-Leslie formulation of nematodynamics. We verify the applicability of this hybrid model by studying the equilibrium isotropic-nematic phase transition and nonequilibrium problems, such as the dynamics of topological defects and the rheology of sheared LCs. Our simulation results show that this hybrid model captures many essential aspects of LC physics at the mesoscopic scale, while preserving microscopic thermal fluctuations.

  13. Electric heating effects in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yin, Y.; Shiyanovskii, S. V.; Lavrentovich, O. D.

    2006-07-01

    Electric heating effects in the nematic liquid crystal change the liquid crystal physical properties and dynamics. We propose a model to quantitatively describe the heating effects caused by dielectric dispersion and ionic conductivity in the nematic liquid crystals upon the application of an ac electric field. The temperature increase of the liquid crystal cell is related to the properties of the liquid crystal such as the imaginary part of the dielectric permittivity, thermal properties of the bounding plates, and the surrounding medium as well as frequency and amplitude of the electric field. To study the temperature dynamics experimentally, we use a small thermocouple inserted directly into the nematic bulk; we assure that the thermocouple does not alter the thermal behavior of the system by comparing the results to those obtained by a noncontact birefringent probing technique recently proposed by Wen and Wu [Appl. Phys. Lett. 86, 231104 (2005)]. We determine how the temperature dynamics and the stationary value of the temperature increase depend on the parameters of the materials and the applied field. We used different surrounding media, from extremely good heat conductors such as aluminum cooling device to extremely poor conductor, Styrofoam; these two provide two limiting cases as compared to typical conditions of nematic cell exploitation in a laboratory or in commercial devices. The experiments confirm the theoretical predictions, namely, that the temperature rise is controlled not only by the heat transfer coefficient of the surrounding medium (as in the previous model) but also by the thickness and the thermal conductivity coefficient of the bounding plates enclosing the nematic layer. The temperature increase strongly depends on the director orientation and can change nonmonotonously with the frequency of the applied field.

  14. Nanosecond electro-optics of a nematic liquid crystal with negative dielectric anisotropy.

    PubMed

    Borshch, Volodymyr; Shiyanovskii, Sergij V; Li, Bing-Xiang; Lavrentovich, Oleg D

    2014-12-01

    We study a nanosecond electro-optic response of a nematic liquid crystal in a geometry where an applied electric field E modifies the tensor order parameter but does not change the orientation of the optic axis (director N ̂). We use a nematic with negative dielectric anisotropy with the electric field applied perpendicularly to N ̂. The field changes the dielectric tensor at optical frequencies (optic tensor) due to the following mechanisms: (a) nanosecond creation of the biaxial orientational order, (b) uniaxial modification of the orientational order that occurs over time scales of tens of nanoseconds, and (c) the quenching of director fluctuations with a wide range of characteristic times up to milliseconds. We develop a model to describe the dynamics of all three mechanisms. We design the experimental conditions to selectively suppress the contributions from the quenching of director fluctuations (c) and from the biaxial order effect (a) and thus, separate the contributions of the three mechanisms in the electro-optic response. As a result, the experimental data can be well fitted with the model parameters. The analysis provides a rather detailed physical picture of how the liquid crystal responds to a strong electric field on a time scale of nanoseconds. The paper provides a useful guidance in the current search for the biaxial nematic phase. Namely, the temperature dependence of the biaxial susceptibility allows one to estimate the temperature of the potential uniaxial-to-biaxial phase transition. An analysis of the quenching of director fluctuations indicates that on a time scale of nanoseconds, the classic model with constant viscoelastic material parameters might reach its limit of validity. The effect of nanosecond electric modification of the order parameter can be used in applications in which one needs to achieve ultrafast (nanosecond) changes in optical characteristics, such as birefringence. PMID:25615116

  15. Free surface dynamics of nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cummings, Linda; Kondic, Lou; Lam, Michael; Lin, Te-Sheng

    2014-11-01

    Spreading thin films of nematic liquid crystal (NLC) are known to behave very differently to those of isotropic fluids. The polar interactions of the rod-like molecules with each other, and the interactions with the underlying substrate, can lead to intricate patterns and instabilities that are not yet fully understood. The physics of a system even as simple as a film of NLC spreading slowly over a surface (inclined or horizontal) are remarkably complex: the outcome depends strongly on the details of the NLC's behavior at both the substrate and the free surface (so-called ``anchoring'' effects). We will present a dynamic flow model that takes careful account of such nematic-substrate and nematic-free surface interactions. We will present model simulations for several different flow scenarios that indicate the variety of behavior that can emerge. Spreading over a horizontal substrate may exhibit a range of unstable behavior. Flow down an incline also exhibits intriguing instabilities: in addition to the usual transverse fingering, instabilities can be manifested behind the flowing front in a manner reminiscent of Newtonian flow down an inverted substrate. NSF DMS-1211713.

  16. Thermal diode made by nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melo, Djair; Fernandes, Ivna; Moraes, Fernando; Fumeron, Sébastien; Pereira, Erms

    2016-09-01

    This work investigates how a thermal diode can be designed from a nematic liquid crystal confined inside a cylindrical capillary. In the case of homeotropic anchoring, a defect structure called escaped radial disclination arises. The asymmetry of such structure causes thermal rectification rates up to 3.5% at room temperature, comparable to thermal diodes made from carbon nanotubes. Sensitivity of the system with respect to the heat power supply, the geometry of the capillary tube and the molecular anchoring angle is also discussed.

  17. Isotropization of nematic liquid crystals by TMDSC

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Wei; Dadmun, M.; Zhang, Ge; Boller, A.; Wunderlich, B. |

    1997-12-01

    Temperature-modulated differential scanning calorimetry (TMDSC) and traditional DSC are used to study the transition between the nematic liquid crystalline state and the isotropic liquid for two small molecules [4,4{prime}-azoxyanisole and N,N`-bis(4-n-octyloxybenzal)-1,4-phenylenediamine] and one macromolecule (4,4{prime}-dihydroxy-{alpha}-methylstilbene copolymerized with a 1:1 molar mixture of 1,7-dibromoheptane and 1,9-dibromononane). The DSC measurements with 4,4{prime}-azoxyanisole were used for temperature calibration with varying heating and cooling rates. Quasi-isothermal TMDSC with small temperature amplitude and standard TMDSC with underlying heating and cooling rates were utilized to analyze the breadth of the transitions. It could be verified that the isotropization transition of a nematic liquid crystal is, indeed, reversible for all three molecules. The nature of the transition changes, however, from relatively sharp, for small, rigid molecules, to about three kelvins wide for the small molecule with flexible ends, to as broad as 20 K for the macromolecule. It was also demonstrated that quantitative heats of fusion of sharp transitions can be extracted from TMDSC, but only from the time-domain heat-flow signal.

  18. Topological defects around a spherical nanoparticle in nematic liquid crystal: coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations.

    PubMed

    Ilnytskyi, Jaroslav M; Trokhymchuk, Andrij; Schoen, Martin

    2014-09-21

    We consider the applicability of coarse-grained molecular dynamics for the simulation of defects in a nematic liquid crystal around a colloidal particle. Two types of colloids are considered, a soft colloid resembling a liquid crystal dendrimer or a similar macromolecule. In addition, a decorated colloid is used which could represent a gold nanoparticle with mesogen-modified surface. For both models we consider homeotropic and tangential anchoring. Precise control of the easy axis on the colloid's surface enables us to focus on specific planar arrangements in the case of a decorated colloid. The nematic phase is modelled explicitly via soft spherocylinders interacting through a potential, suggested by Lintuvuori and Wilson [J. Chem. Phys. 128, 044906 (2008)]. Properties of the nematic phase are studied by computing the Frank elastic constants. In addition, estimates for the nematic-isotropic transition and the coherence length allow us to establish a relation between energy and length scales with respect to experimental systems. Both models exhibit similar defect topologies, namely, that of a Saturn ring and a boojum-type of defect for homeotropic and tangential surface anchoring, respectively. In the decorated colloid model we tune the anchoring strength through the density of the mesogenic shell on the surface. We also found the biaxial boojum defect for the special case of longitudinal planar anchoring. The study demonstrates the potential of coarse-grained simulation methods for studying defects in liquid crystals. PMID:25240368

  19. Particles and curvatures in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serra, Francesca; Luo, Yimin; Yang, Shu; Kamien, Randall D.; Stebe, Kathleen J.

    Elastic interactions in anisotropic fluids can be harnessed to direct particle interactions. A strategy to smoothly manipulate the director field in nematic liquid crystals is to vary the topography of the bounding surfaces. A rugged landscape with peaks and valleys create local deformations of the director field which can interact with particles in solution. We study this complex interaction in two different settings. The first consists of an array of shallow pores in a poly-dimethyl-siloxane (PDMS) membrane, whose curvature can be tuned either by swelling the PDMS membrane or by mechanical stretching. The second is a set of grooves with wavy walls, fabricated by photolithography, with various parameters of curvature and shapes. In this contexts we study how the motion of colloidal particles in nematic liquid crystals can be influenced by their interaction with the peaks and valleys of the bottom substrate or of the side walls. Particles with different associated topological defects (hedgehogs or Saturn rings) behave differently as they interact with the topographical features, favoring the docking on peaks or valleys. These experimental systems are also ideal to study the ``lock and key'' mechanism of particles in holes and to investigate a possible route for particle sorting.

  20. Simulated Textures of Toroidal Nematic Liquid Crystal Droplets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ellis, Perry; Fernandez-Nieves, Alberto

    2014-03-01

    Nematic liquid crystals under confinement by curved surfaces can produce complex hierarchical structures whose design principles and properties have yet to be unraveled. Here we focus on toroidal geometries and perform computer simulations of the nematic textures seen between crossed-polarizers. We find agreement with experiments using director fields that exhibit pronounced twist deformations with contributions from bend and splay.

  1. Light-scattering study of a polymer nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taratuta, Victor G.; Hurd, Alan J.; Meyer, Robert B.

    1985-07-01

    We study the relaxation of thermally excited orientation fluctuations in a polymer nematic liquid crystal using photon correlation spectroscopy. The material studied is poly-γ-benzyl glutamate at a concentration just above the isotropic to nematic transition point. The relaxation rates of elastic deformation modes exhibit large anisotropies. Quantitative measurements of ratios of Frank elastic constants and Leslie viscosities are described.

  2. Carbon Nanotube Liquid Crystals: Nematic Droplets and Coarsening Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behabtu, Natnael; Senyuk, Bohdan; Smalyukh, Ivan; Pasquali, Matteo

    2012-02-01

    On a fundamental basis, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) offer a new model molecule to explore the dynamics and phases of rigid rods and test theories. Their large aspect ratio (100 to 100,000) and persistence length (˜ 100 microns) allow exploring the physics of nematic phases with high Frank elastic constant. Moreover, understanding of CNT liquid crystals is key to their rational processing into ordered materials such as fibers. Here we report the formation of elongated nematic droplets of CNTs in chlorosulfonic acid. In nematic droplets, a continuous transition from a homogeneous to bipolar nematic director field is expected theoretically, as a function of droplet volume; yet, experimental determination of such transition has been elusive. We show that CNT nematic droplets display such transition. We study the coarsening dynamics of positive and negative nematic droplets and observe that two or more droplets merge by matching their nematic director. Merging scenarios that lead to defect formation are not observed. Negative tactoids (isotropic phase in liquid crystalline continuum) merge through attractive forces induced by the nematic director distortion with quadrupolar symmetry.

  3. Light diffraction by acoustically induced domains in nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Kapustina, O. A.

    2006-05-15

    The phenomenon of light diffraction by a system of linear domains formed in planar layers of nematic liquid crystals in an oscillating Couette flow, acoustically induced at sound frequencies, is investigated.

  4. Nematic liquid crystals for optical shutters: A concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Imus, R. E.

    1972-01-01

    Nonmechanical shutter utilizes nematic crystals to attenuate illumination, thus protecting light-sensitive devices such as vidicon or image orthicon tubes and phototubes. Opacity of liquid crystals is controlled by photosensor.

  5. Oriental transitions in nematic liquid crystals on grooved substrates

    SciTech Connect

    Krekhov, A.P.; Khasimullin, M.V.; Lebedev, Y.A.

    1995-12-31

    An expression for the surface energy of a nematic liquid crystal (NLC) on a fine-grooved substrate is obtained with the phenomenological approach. Temperature-induced orientational transitions in nematic liquid crystals are analyzed as functions of the surface-profile parameters. A planar{yields}tilted{yields}homeotropic alignment transition was observed near the clearing point of an MBBA layer sandwiched between two grooved glass substrates, with a microrelief obtained by oblique evaporation of silicon monoxide. 15 refs., 1 fig.

  6. Orientational fluctuation study in nematic liquid crystals by high speed micrograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoon, Beom-Jin; Park, Min Sang; Park, Jung O.; Srinivasarao, Mohan

    2009-03-01

    The orientational fluctuations in uniaxial and biaxial nematic liquid crystals were investigated with a polarized microscope and a high speed TV camera. Liquid crystals usually have fluctuations with respect to their director, even when the molecular axes tend to be aligned to each other. These fluctuations are sufficiently slow and large, have long wave length and increase with temperature. Herein, we describe our study on fluctuation dynamics by direct observations in real space, while it has been typically done by the photon scattering in reciprocal space. The twinkling of liquid crystals due to orientational fluctuations was observed with a high speed camera up to 500 frames/sec. The time correlation function of the intensity was computed via 2D spatial Fourier transform of each image and then the relaxation frequency was estimated from it. The elastic constant to the viscosity ratio was computed from the relaxation frequency. This approach provides facile route to analyze fluctuation dynamics in liquid crystals.

  7. Laser damage resistant nematic liquid crystal cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raszewski, Z.; Piecek, W.; Jaroszewicz, L.; Soms, L.; Marczak, J.; Nowinowski-Kruszelnicki, E.; Perkowski, P.; Kedzierski, J.; Miszczyk, E.; Olifierczuk, M.; Morawiak, P.; Mazur, R.

    2013-08-01

    There exists a problem in diagnostics of a dense plasma (so-called Thomson diagnostics). For this purpose, the plasma is illuminated by series of high energy laser pulses. Such pulses are generated by several independent lasers operating sequentially, and these pulses are to be directed along an exactly the same optical path. In this case, the energy of each separate pulse is as large as 3 J, so it is impossible to generate a burst of such pulses by a single laser. In this situation, several independent lasers have to be used. To form optical path with λ = 1.064 μm and absolute value of the energy of laser pulse through of 3 J, a special refractive index matched twisted Nematic Liquid Crystal Cell (NLCC) of type LCNP2 with switching on time τON smaller than 5 μs might be applied. High laser damage resistance of NLCC and short τON can be fulfilled by preparation of liquid crystal cells with Liquid Crystal Mixture (LCM), well tuned to twisted nematic electro-optical effect, and well tuned all optical interfaces (Air - Antireflection - Quartz Plate - Electrode - Blocking Film - Aligning Layer - LCM - Aligning Layer - Blocking Film - Electrode - Quartz Plate - Antireflection - Air). In such LCNP2 cell, the transmission is higher than 97% at λ = 1.064 μm, as it is presented by Gooch and Tarry [J. Phys. D: Appl. Phys. 8, 1575 (1975)]. The safe laser density energy is about 0.6 J/cm2 for a train of laser pulses (λ = 1.064 μm, pulse duration 10 ns FWHM, pulse repetition rate 100 pps, train duration 10 s), so the area of liquid crystal cell tolerating 3 J through it shall be as large as 5 cm2. Due to the presence of two blocking film layers between electrodes, LCNP2 can be driven by high voltages. Switching on time smaller than τON = 5 μs was obtained under 200 V switching voltage.

  8. On the anisotropic intermolecular potential of biaxial apolar solutes in nematic solvents: Monte Carlo predictions and experimental data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Celebre, Giorgio

    2001-11-01

    Recently, a new formulation has been proposed about a strictly short-range anisotropic potential acting on biaxial apolar particles dissolved in a uniaxial medium [Chem. Phys. Lett. 342, 375 (2001)], where the solute-solvent interactions are treated at a molecular level and the solute order parameters are calculated by making use of the Monte Carlo-Metropolis sampling scheme. In the present paper the cited model has been used for the study of 1,4-difluorobenzene, 1,4-dichlorobenzene, and 1,4-dibromobenzene molecules and the simulated order parameters have been compared with the 1H-NMR experimental data for the solutes in the nematic solvents ZLI1132 (a Merck commercial eutectic mixture of alkylcyclohexylcyanobenzenes and alkylcyclohexylcyanobiphenyl), EBBA [the N-(4-ethoxybenzylidene)-4'-n-butylaniline], and in the zero average electric field gradient nematic mixture 55 wt% ZLI1132+EBBA (the so-called "magic" mixture). The orientations predicted by the model match almost perfectly the experimental Saupe matrices of the molecules dissolved in the "magic" mixture: implications of this result are discussed in terms of nature of the interactions in the different nematic phases and reliability and effectiveness of the suggested intermolecular potential.

  9. Transmission characteristics of a twisted nematic liquid-crystal layer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grinberg, J.; Jacobson, A. D.

    1976-01-01

    An approximate analytical expression is calculated for the transmission of thin twisted nematic layers situated between a polarizer/analyzer pair. The approximation assumes that the twist angle of the nematic liquid crystal is smaller than the maximum retardation of the cell. The direction of the incident light is assumed to be parallel to the normal of the electrode. This configuration is analyzed for a general arrangement of polarizer and analyzer; the general result is evaluated for the case of the polarizer parallel and analyzer perpendicular to the liquid-crystal optical axis on the input and output electrodes, respectively. The results show that in the case of a thin twisted nematic layer the transmission depends on the thickness of the layer, on the birefringence of the liquid crystal, and on the wavelength of the light. This is a departure from the well-known independence of the transmission on these parameters for a thick twisted nematic layer.

  10. Monte Carlo investigation of critical properties of the Landau point of a biaxial liquid-crystal system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghoshal, Nababrata; Shabnam, Sabana; DasGupta, Sudeshna; Roy, Soumen Kumar

    2016-05-01

    Extensive Monte Carlo simulations are performed to investigate the critical properties of a special singular point usually known as the Landau point. The singular behavior is studied in the case when the order parameter is a tensor of rank 2. Such an order parameter is associated with a nematic-liquid-crystal phase. A three-dimensional lattice dispersion model that exhibits a direct biaxial nematic-to-isotropic phase transition at the Landau point is thus chosen for the present study. Finite-size scaling and cumulant methods are used to obtain precise values of the critical exponent ν =0.713 (4 ) , the ratio γ /ν =1.85 (1 ) , and the fourth-order critical Binder cumulant U*=0.6360 (1 ) . Estimated values of the exponents are in good agreement with renormalization-group predictions.

  11. Domain Structures in Nematic Liquid Crystals on a Polycarbonate Surface

    PubMed Central

    Parshin, Alexander M.; Gunyakov, Vladimir A.; Zyryanov, Victor Y.; Shabanov, Vasily F.

    2013-01-01

    Alignment of nematic liquid crystals on polycarbonate films obtained with the use of solvents with different solvations is studied. Domain structures occurring during the growth on the polymer surface against the background of the initial thread-like or schlieren texture are demonstrated. It is established by optical methods that the domains are stable formations visualizing the polymer surface structures. In nematic droplets, the temperature-induced transition from the domain structure with two extinction bands to the structure with four bands is observed. This transition is shown to be caused by reorientation of the nematic director in the liquid crystal volume from the planar alignment to the homeotropic state with the pronounced radial configuration of nematic molecules on the surface. The observed textures are compared with different combinations of the volume LC orientations and the radial distribution of the director field and the disclination lines at the polycarbonate surface. PMID:23965955

  12. Domain structures in nematic liquid crystals on a polycarbonate surface.

    PubMed

    Parshin, Alexander M; Gunyakov, Vladimir A; Zyryanov, Victor Y; Shabanov, Vasily F

    2013-01-01

    Alignment of nematic liquid crystals on polycarbonate films obtained with the use of solvents with different solvations is studied. Domain structures occurring during the growth on the polymer surface against the background of the initial thread-like or schlieren texture are demonstrated. It is established by optical methods that the domains are stable formations visualizing the polymer surface structures. In nematic droplets, the temperature-induced transition from the domain structure with two extinction bands to the structure with four bands is observed. This transition is shown to be caused by reorientation of the nematic director in the liquid crystal volume from the planar alignment to the homeotropic state with the pronounced radial configuration of nematic molecules on the surface. The observed textures are compared with different combinations of the volume LC orientations and the radial distribution of the director field and the disclination lines at the polycarbonate surface. PMID:23965955

  13. Nematic liquid crystals exhibiting high birefringence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thingujam, Kiranmala; Bhattacharjee, Ayon; Choudhury, Basana; Dabrowski, Roman

    2016-06-01

    Two fluorinated isothiocyanato nematic liquid crystalline compounds, 4'-butylcyclohexyl-3, 5-difluoro-4-isothiocyanatobiphenyl and 4'-pentylcyclohexyl-3, 5-difluoro-4-isothiocynatobiphenyl are studied in detail to obtain their different physical parameters. Optical polarizing microscopy, differential scanning calorimetry, density and dielectric studies have been carried out for the two samples. Both the samples were found to have high clearing temperature (>100 °C) and exhibit small enthalpy of transition. The two samples exhibit high optical birefringence (Δ n > 0.2). The values of order parameters for the two samples were obtained using different approaches, namely, Vuks', Neugebauer's, modified Vuks' and direct extrapolation method from birefringence data. Experimentally obtained values of order parameters have also been compared with theoretical Maier-Saupe values. The parallel and perpendicular components of dielectric permittivity values of the two compounds were also calculated and their anisotropy values were found to be small. The effect of temperature on the molecular dipole moment μ and the angle of inclination β of the dipole axis with the director have also been investigated in this work.

  14. Thin liquid crystal films on liquids in the nematic range of temperatures.

    PubMed

    Delabre, Ulysse; Richard, Céline; Sang, Yann Yip Cheung; Cazabat, Anne-Marie

    2010-08-17

    Hybrid nematic films deposited on liquid substrates reveal a complex behavior, which is not fully understood. Here, the behavior of the n-cyanobiphenyl series on water and glycerol has been studied in a wide temperature range, including the vicinity of the nematic-isotropic (NI) transition. Wettability, allowed film thicknesses, and line tension of nematic domains have been investigated. The study provides a coherent picture of hybrid nematic films, allowing us to account for lower thickness threshold, structure of the film edge, and line tension of domains in the whole nematic range of temperatures. PMID:20695580

  15. Positron lifetime measurements in chiral nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singh, Jag J.; Eftekhari, Abe; Parmar, Devendra S.

    1991-01-01

    Positron lifetimes in the isotropic phases of chiral nematic liquid crystal formulations and their mixtures up to the racemic level were measured. The lifetime spectra for all liquid crystal systems were analyzed into three components. Although the individual spectra in the left- and right-handed components are identical, their racemic mixtures exhibit much larger orthopositronium lifetimes; these larger lifetimes indicate the presence of larger microvoids. This result is consistent with the reportedly higher thermodynamic stability and color play range in the racemic mixtures of chiral nematic liquid crystals.

  16. The Nematic Phases of Bent-Core Liquid Crystals

    PubMed Central

    Gleeson, Helen F; Kaur, Sarabjot; Görtz, Verena; Belaissaoui, Abdel; Cowling, Stephen; Goodby, John W

    2014-01-01

    Over the last ten years, the nematic phases of liquid crystals formed from bent-core structures have provoked considerable research because of their remarkable properties. This Minireview summarises some recent measurements of the physical properties of these systems, as well as describing some new data. We concentrate on oxadiazole-based materials as exemplars of this class of nematogens, but also describe some other bent-core systems. The influence of molecular structure on the stability of the nematic phase is described, together with progress in reducing the nematic transition temperatures by modifications to the molecular structure. The physical properties of bent-core nematic materials have proven difficult to study, but patterns are emerging regarding their optical and dielectric properties. Recent breakthroughs in understanding the elastic and flexoelectric behaviour are summarised. Finally, some exemplars of unusual electric field behaviour are described. PMID:24700653

  17. Flexoelectric polarization studies in bent-core nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Sreenilayam, S P; Panarin, Yu P; Vij, J K; Torgova, S I; Lehmann, A; Tschierske, C

    2015-08-01

    The flexoelectric polarization (Pf) of four bent-core nematic liquid crystals (LCs) has been measured using the pyroelectric effect. Hybrid aligned nematic cells are fabricated for measuring the pyroelectric response over the entire range of the nematic phase. It is found that the magnitude of flexoelectric polarization Pf and the sum of the flexoelectric coefficients |e1+e3| for the bent-core LCs studied here are three to six times higher than for the calamitics. Pf is found to depend on the transverse dipole moment of LC molecules. However, |e1+e3| values are by no means giant as |e3| alone had been reported for a bent-core nematic system previously. The dependence of the sum of "splay and bend flexoelectric coefficients" is discussed in terms of the shape of the molecule and of the dipole moment directed normal to the molecular axis. PMID:26382418

  18. Dynamics of a disc in a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Antipova, Alena; Denniston, Colin

    2016-01-28

    We use lattice Boltzmann simulations to study the dynamics of a disc immersed in a nematic liquid crystal. In the absence of external torques, discs with homeotropic anchoring align with their surface normal parallel to the director of the nematic liquid crystal. In the presence of a weak magnetic field a ferromagnetic disc will rotate to equilibrate the elastic torque due to the distortion of the nematic director and the magnetic torque. When the magnetic field rotates the disc so that the angle θ between normal to the surface of the disc â and director of the liquid crystal n[combining circumflex] becomes greater than π/2, the disc flips around the axis perpendicular to the rotation axis so that â sweeps through π radians. An analysis of this behaviour was performed. In particular, we look at the impact of the disc thickness and edges on defect creation and the flipping transition. We also analyse the importance of backflow. PMID:26575160

  19. Colloidal spirals in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Senyuk, Bohdan; Pandey, Manoj B; Liu, Qingkun; Tasinkevych, Mykola; Smalyukh, Ivan I

    2015-12-01

    One of the central experimental efforts in nematic colloids research aims to explore how the interplay between the geometry of particles along with the accompanying nematic director deformations and defects around them can provide a means of guiding particle self-assembly and controlling the structure of particle-induced defects. In this work, we design, fabricate, and disperse low-symmetry colloidal particles with shapes of spirals, double spirals, and triple spirals in a nematic fluid. These spiral-shaped particles, which are controlled by varying their surface functionalization to provide tangential or perpendicular boundary conditions of the nematic molecular alignment, are found inducing director distortions and defect configurations with non-chiral or chiral symmetry. Colloidal particles also exhibit both stable and metastable multiple orientational states in the nematic host, with a large number of director configurations featuring both singular and solitonic nonsingular topological defects accompanying them, which can result in unusual forms of colloidal self-assembly. Our findings directly demonstrate how the symmetry of particle-generated director configurations can be further lowered, or not, as compared to the low point group symmetry of solid micro-inclusions, depending on the nature of induced defects while satisfying topological constraints. We show that achiral colloidal particles can cause chiral symmetry breaking of elastic distortions, which is driven by complex three-dimensional winding of induced topological line defects and solitons. PMID:26358649

  20. Bonded boojum-colloids in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Eskandari, Zahra; Silvestre, Nuno M; Telo da Gama, Margarida M

    2013-08-20

    We investigate bonded boojum-colloids in nematic liquid crystals, configurations where two colloids with planar degenerate anchoring are double-bonded through line defects connecting their surfaces. This bonded structure promotes the formation of linear chains aligned with the nematic director. We show that the bonded configuration is the global minimum in systems that favor twist deformations. In addition, we investigate the influence of confinement on the stability of bonded boojum-colloids. Although the unbonded colloid configuration, where the colloids bundle at oblique angles, is favored by confinement, the bonded configuration is again the global minimum for liquid crystals with sufficiently small twist elastic constants. PMID:23859624

  1. Simulation of weak anchoring effects on nematic liquid crystal hemispheres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillen, Sean; Somers, David A. T.; Munday, Jeremy N.

    The free energy of a nematic liquid crystal droplet depends on an interplay between elastic and surface interactions. When the two contributions are of similar magnitude, there exists a transition of the nematic structure of the droplet. Because the two contributions scale differently with length scales, this transition is visible as a function of the size of the droplet. We carry out numerical simulations to explore the use of this transition in measuring surface anchoring energies. This technique could help elucidate alignment forces on liquid crystals, such as those caused by rubbed surfaces, electric fields, or even the Casimir torque. Electrical and Computer Engineering.

  2. Dynamic arrest of nematic liquid-crystal colloid networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zou, Lu; Hwang, Jeoung-Yeon; Kim, Chanjoong

    2013-10-01

    We report interesting self-assembly structures of nematic liquid-crystal colloid (NLCC) networks, which are arrested during cooling from the isotropic temperature to room temperature. The NLCC is composed of sterically stabilized colloidal particles and a nematic liquid crystal (NLC) with nematic-isotropic transition temperature (TNI) that is much higher than those of previously studied 4-Cyano-4'-pentylbiphenyl and N-(4-Methoxybenzylidene)-4-butylaniline. We find that the structure of NLCCs depends on TNI, cooling rates, and boundary conditions, varying from cellular network to hierarchical fern structures in different length scales. Our time-lapse study shows that the transition from the cellular network to the fern structure directly corresponds to the transition from a spinodal demixing to a nucleation-and-growth mechanism.

  3. Dielectrophoretic manipulation of the mixture of isotropic and nematic liquid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Soo-Dong; Lee, Bomi; Kang, Shin-Woong; Song, Jang-Kun

    2015-08-01

    In various applications involving liquid crystals, the manipulation of the nanoscale molecular assembly and microscale director alignment is highly useful. Here we show that a nematic-isotropic mixture, a unique bi-liquid system, has potential for the fabrication of microstructures having an ordered phase within a disordered phase, or vice versa. The volume expansion and shrinkage, migration, splitting, mergence and elongation of one phase within the other are easily accomplished via thermal treatment and dielectrophoretic manipulation. This is particularly achievable when one phase is suspended in the middle. In that case, a highly biased ordered-phase preference of surfaces, that is, the nematic-philic nature of a polyimide layer and the nematic-phobic nature of a self-assembled monolayer of chlorosilane derivatives, is used. Further, by combining this approach with photopolymerization, the patterned microstructure is solidified as a patterned polymer film having both isotropic and anisotropic molecular arrangements simultaneously, or as a template with a morphological variation.

  4. Metric approach for sound propagation in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereira, E.; Fumeron, S.; Moraes, F.

    2013-02-01

    In the eikonal approach, we describe sound propagation near topological defects of nematic liquid crystals as geodesics of a non-Euclidian manifold endowed with an effective metric tensor. The relation between the acoustics of the medium and this geometrical description is given by Fermat's principle. We calculate the ray trajectories and propose a diffraction experiment to retrieve information about the elastic constants.

  5. A Liquid Crystalline Oligomer Exhibiting Nematic and Twist-Bend Nematic Mesophases.

    PubMed

    Mandle, Richard J; Goodby, John W

    2016-04-01

    The twist-bend nematic phase (NTB ) has been described as the structural link between the untilted uniaxial nematic phase (N) and the helical chiral nematic phase (N*). The NTB phase exhibits phenomena of fundamental importance to science, that is, 1) the spontaneous formation of a helical pitch on the nanometer scale in a fluid and 2) the spontaneous breaking of mirror symmetry, leading to the emergence of chiral domains in an achiral system. In this Communication, we present a study on T49 [bis(4-(9-(4-((4-cyanobenzoyl)oxy)phenyl)nonyl)phenyl) 4,4'-(nonane-1,9-diyl)dibenzoate], a liquid-crystalline oligomer exhibiting the twist-bend nematic phase, which has a molecular length that is of comparable dimensions to the sub-10 nm pitch determined for CB9CB, and provide new insights into the differentiation between the nano- and macro-science for self-assembling supermolecular systems. PMID:26777310

  6. Rayleigh Light Scattering from Nematic Liquid Crystals at Oblique Incidence.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    da, Xiao-Yi.

    Ryuichi Akiyama 1980 and his co-workers first showed the possibility that light scattering experiments on nematic liquid crystals could be carried out preferably by using oblique incidence rather than the conventional normal incidence. Miraldi, et al 1980 strongly recommended the application of oblique incidence, and gave a discussion in detail. The present work starts from an attempt to obtain the three Frank elastic constants and viscosity coefficients of nematic liquid crystals by Rayleigh light scattering. A suitable scattering geometry has been chosen; a systematic method of measuring these constants and coefficients has been developed by measuring the linewidths of the scattered light from a single sample at various incidence angles and fitting the measured linewidths with appropriate theoretical expressions. It is shown in the present work that the light scattering experiments on nematic liquid crystals at oblique incidence have many advantages over the same kind of experiments at normal incidence so far widely employed, and show a promising future. After a brief introduction to the general theory of the dynamic light scattering, nematic liquid crystals and light scattering from nematic liquid crystals in Chapters 1, 2, and 3, and a brief review of the measurements of elastic constants and viscosity coefficients of nematic liquid crystals by light scattering in Chapter 4, a straightforward method concerning the calculation of variations of the wave vectors upon scattering is developed in Chapter 5. This method assumes that a nematic liquid crystal behaves optically like a uniaxial crystal. In doing so, all we have to know is the ordinary and extraordinary refractive indices n(,o) and n(,e) of the sample under consideration. The linewidth and intensity distributions of the scattered light can then be determined by inserting the variations in wave vectors into appropriate equations for a known material for which the knowledge of the elastic constants as well

  7. Global defect topology in nematic liquid crystals

    PubMed Central

    Machon, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    We give the global homotopy classification of nematic textures for a general domain with weak anchoring boundary conditions and arbitrary defect set in terms of twisted cohomology, and give an explicit computation for the case of knotted and linked defects in R3, showing that the distinct homotopy classes have a 1–1 correspondence with the first homology group of the branched double cover, branched over the disclination loops. We show further that the subset of those classes corresponding to elements of order 2 in this group has representatives that are planar and characterize the obstruction for other classes in terms of merons. The planar textures are a feature of the global defect topology that is not reflected in any local characterization. Finally, we describe how the global classification relates to recent experiments on nematic droplets and how elements of order 4 relate to the presence of τ lines in cholesterics. PMID:27493576

  8. Hybrid graphene nematic liquid crystal light scattering device.

    PubMed

    Qasim, M M; Khan, A A; Kostanyan, A; Kidambi, P R; Cabrero-Vilatela, A; Braeuninger-Weimer, P; Gardiner, D J; Hofmann, S; Wilkinson, T D

    2015-09-01

    A hybrid graphene nematic liquid crystal (LC) light scattering device is presented. This device exploits the inherent poly-crystallinity of chemical vapour deposited (CVD) graphene films to induce directional anchoring and formation of LC multi-domains. This thereby enables efficient light scattering without the need for crossed polarisers or separate alignment layers/additives. The hybrid LC device exhibits switching thresholds at very low electric fields (< 1 V μm(-1)) and repeatable, hysteresis free characteristics. This exploitation of LC alignment effects on CVD graphene films enables a new generation of highly efficient nematic LC scattering displays as well as many other possible applications. PMID:26243047

  9. Propagating director bend fluctuations in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Humpert, Anja; Allen, Michael P

    2015-01-16

    We show, by molecular simulation, that for a range of standard, coarse-grained, nematic liquid crystal models, the director bend fluctuation is a propagating mode. This is in contrast to the generally accepted picture of nematic hydrodynamics, in which all the director modes (splay, twist, bend, and combinations thereof) are overdamped. By considering the various physical parameters that enter the equations of nematodynamics, we propose an explanation of this effect and conclude that propagating bend fluctuations may be observable in some experimental systems. PMID:25635566

  10. Anomalous light transmission by nematic liquid crystal cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konshina, E. A.; Fedorov, M. A.; Ivanova, N. L.; Amosova, L. P.

    2008-01-01

    Light transmission through nematic liquid crystal (NLC) cells with a planar alignment and various boundary conditions has been studied as a function of the bias voltage in the regimes of maximum transmittance and complete extinction. The phenomenon of anomalous light leakage in the regime of complete extinction has been observed in the NLC sells with alignment layers of amorphous hydrogenated carbon (a-C:H) and poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA), in which an anisotropy was induced by rubbing the electrode surface (for a-C:H) and the alignment layer (for PVA). The anomalous transmission is caused by the deformation of nematic molecules, which are situated near the surface, in the direction perpendicular to the direction of rubbing. The magnitude of anomalous transmission increases with the bias voltage. This behavior is explained by the anisotropy of the surface anchoring energy of nematic molecules at the interface.

  11. Dispersions of ellipsoidal particles in a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Tasinkevych, Mykola; Mondiot, Frédéric; Mondain-Monval, Olivier; Loudet, Jean-Christophe

    2014-03-28

    Colloidal particles dispersed in a partially ordered medium, such as a liquid crystal (LC) phase, disturb its alignment and are subject to elastic forces. These forces are long-ranged, anisotropic and tunable through temperature or external fields, making them a valuable asset to control colloidal assembly. The latter is very sensitive to the particle geometry since it alters the interactions between the colloids. We here present a detailed numerical analysis of the energetics of elongated objects, namely prolate ellipsoids, immersed in a nematic host. The results, complemented with qualitative experiments, reveal novel LC configurations with peculiar topological properties around the ellipsoids, depending on their aspect ratio and the boundary conditions imposed on the nematic order parameter. The latter also determine the preferred orientation of ellipsoids in the nematic field, because of elastic torques, as well as the morphology of particle aggregates. PMID:24651907

  12. Fluctuation Modes of a Twist-Bend Nematic Liquid Crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parsouzi, Z.; Shamid, S. M.; Borshch, V.; Challa, P. K.; Baldwin, A. R.; Tamba, M. G.; Welch, C.; Mehl, G. H.; Gleeson, J. T.; Jakli, A.; Lavrentovich, O. D.; Allender, D. W.; Selinger, J. V.; Sprunt, S.

    2016-04-01

    We report a dynamic light-scattering study of the fluctuation modes in a thermotropic liquid crystalline mixture of monomer and dimer compounds that exhibits the twist-bend nematic (NTB ) phase. The results reveal a spectrum of overdamped fluctuations that includes two nonhydrodynamic modes and one hydrodynamic mode in the NTB phase, and a single nonhydrodynamic mode plus two hydrodynamic modes (the usual nematic optic axis or director fluctuations) in the higher temperature, uniaxial nematic phase. The properties of these fluctuations and the conditions for their observation are comprehensively explained by a Landau-de Gennes expansion of the free-energy density in terms of heliconical director and helical polarization fields that characterize the NTB structure, with the latter serving as the primary order parameter. A "coarse-graining" approximation simplifies the theoretical analysis and enables us to demonstrate quantitative agreement between the calculated and experimentally determined temperature dependence of the mode relaxation rates.

  13. Structure of nematic liquid crystalline elastomers under uniaxial deformation

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang Fan; Heiney, Paul A.; Srinivasan, Amritha; Naciri, Jawad; Ratna, Banahalli

    2006-02-15

    We have used in situ x-ray diffraction and calorimetry to study liquid crystalline elastomers prepared using a one-step photopolymerization method. We used suspended weights to stretch free-standing crystalline elastomer films. With the mechanical stress parallel to the initial director, we observed a gradual nematic to isotropic transition with increasing temperature. The thermal evolution of the nematic order parameter on cooling, together with the observation of isotropic-nematic coexistence over a broad temperature range, suggests that the heterogeneity in the samples introduces a distribution of transition temperatures. With the mechanical stress perpendicular to the initial director, we observed both uniform director rotation and stripe formation, depending on the details of sample preparation.

  14. Dynamic-Mechanical Analysis of Monodomain Nematic Liquid Crystalline Elastomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hotta, Atsushi; Terentjev, Eugene

    2003-03-01

    Dynamic-mechanical analysis was performed in the glassy, nematic and isotropic states of several monodomain nematic liquid crystalline elastomers (LCE) which differ in their degrees of anisotropy and internal microstructure. It was found that the type of network crosslinker makes a significant difference in the equilibrium properties of these elastomers, in particular, in their effective anisotropy. In spite of these differences, the observed dynamic-mechanical behaviour was very similar. The fact that there is a consistently high and wide loss over the whole nematic region, where storage modulus G' behaves non-monotonically, is most likely an indicator of the fact that the dynamic-mechanical response is not linear. Master curves have been built between the glassy state and the nematic-isotropic phase transition, where the modulus reaches a low-level soft plateau. Above the nematic-isotropic transition temperature Tni, the modulus rises substantially, since internal relaxation is no longer able to reduce the elastic response - and further time-temperature superposition fails. The dynamics of these elastomers are dominated by power laws, which was confirmed by the successful procedure of the master curve inversion (time-frequency inversion) to describe the static stress relaxation. Interestingly, it was found that mechanical properties characterized by power laws (in time) of stress relaxation match very well with the dynamic properties, where power laws (in frequency) were also observed in the dynamic modulus in the appropriate range of temperatures. The work demonstrates the potential for the use of nematic liquid crystalline elastomers in many acoustic and vibration damping applications.

  15. Photorefractivity in polymer-stabilized nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Wiederrecht, G.P.; Wasielewski, M.R. |

    1998-07-01

    Polymer-stabilized liquid crystals, consisting of low concentrations of a polymeric electron acceptor, are shown to exhibit significantly enhanced photorefractive properties. The charge generation and transport properties of these composite systems are strongly modified from nematic liquid crystals doped with electron donors and acceptors. The new composites are produced by polymerizing a small quantity of a 1,4:5,8-naphthalenediimide electron acceptor functionalized with an acrylate group in an aligned nematic liquid crystal. Photopolymerization creates an anisotropic gel-like medium in which the liquid crystal is free to reorient in the presence of a space charge field, while maintaining charge trapping sites in the polymerized regions of the material. The presence of these trapping sites results in the observation of longer lived, higher resolution holographic gratings in the polymer-stabilized liquid crystals than observed in nematic liquid crystals alone. These gratings display Bragg regime diffraction. Asymmetric beam coupling, photo-conductivity, and four-wave mixing experiments are performed to characterize the photophysics of these novel materials.

  16. Photorefractivity in polymer-stabilized nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiederrecht, Gary P.; Wasielewski, Michael R.

    1998-10-01

    Polymer-stabilized liquid crystals, consisting of low concentrations of a polymeric electron acceptor, are shown to exhibit significantly enhanced photorefractive properties. The charge generation and transport properties of these composite systems are strongly modified from nematic liquid crystals doped with electron donors and acceptors. The new composites are produced by polymerizing a small quantity of a 1,4:5,8-naphthalenediimide electron acceptor functionalized with an acrylate group in an aligned nematic liquid crystal. Photopolymerization creates an anisotropic gel-like medium in which the liquid crystal is free to reorient in the presence of a space charge field, while maintaining charge trapping sites in the polymerized regions of the material. The presence of these trapping sites results in the observation of longer lived, higher resolution holographic gratings in the polymer-stabilized liquid crystals than observed in nematic liquid crystals alone. These gratings display Bragg regime diffraction. Asymmetric beam coupling, photo-conductivity, and four-wave mixing experiments are performed to characterize the photophysics of these novel materials.

  17. Photoalignment of a Nematic Liquid Crystal Fluid and Glassy-Nematic Oligofluorenes on Coumarin-Containing Polymer Films

    SciTech Connect

    Trajkovska, A.; Kim, C.; Marshall, K.L.; Mourey, T.H.; Chen, S.H.

    2007-03-19

    The orientations of both a nematic liquid crystal fluid and a series of monodisperse glassy-nematic oligofluorenes were investigated on photoalignment films comprising a polymethacrylate backbone with 7-benzoyloxycoumarin pendants. Both classes of liquid crystalline material were found to undergo a transition from a parallel to a perpindicular orientation with reference to the polarization axis of UV-irradiation at a sufficiently high extent of dimerization.

  18. Orientational dynamics of nematic liquid crystals under shear flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rienäcker, G.; Hess, S.

    The orientational dynamics of low molecular weight and polymeric nematic liquid crystals in a flow field is investigated, based on a nonlinear relaxation equation for the second rank alignment tensor. Various approximations are discussed: Assuming uniaxial alignment with a constant order parameter, the results of the Ericksen-Leslie theory are recovered. The detailed analysis to be presented here for plane Couette flow concerns (i) uniaxial alignment with a variable degree of order and (ii) the tensorial analysis involving the three symmetry-adapted components of the five components of the alignment tensor. The transitions between tumbling, wagging and aligning behavior observed in polymeric liquid crystals and described by the Doi theory of rod-like nematic polymers are recovered. Consequences for the rheological behavior are indicated.

  19. Optical Fluctuation of Texture in Nematic Liquid Crystal Droplets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Sung-Jo; Back, Sang-In; Lev, Bohdan; Kim, Jong-Hyun

    2016-07-01

    We report the observation of texture of a nematic liquid crystal droplet using a high-speed camera mounted on a polarizing optical microscope. The dark crossed texture obtained by the polarizing optical microscope of a nematic liquid crystal droplet has texture wobbles, which are related to the director field fluctuation excited by thermal energy. We confirm relaxation and oscillation modes. An exact solution of the director fluctuation modes with one-constant approximation and an external electric field is proposed. The theoretical predictions of the relaxation time match with our experimental results when varying the temperature, droplet size, and electric field. Relaxation time was insensitive to the temperature, increased with radius of droplet and slightly decreased with electric field. Several oscillation modes, which have no specific trend, were also found. The external electric field freezes the oscillation modes.

  20. Spinodal dewetting of a nematic liquid crystal film

    PubMed

    Braun; Yokoyama

    2000-08-01

    We discuss spinodal dewetting of a nematic film destabilized by Van der Waals forces, focusing on the case of non-antagonistic anchoring conditions. Using physical parameters pertinent to low-molecular-weight thermotropic liquid crystals, we predict a small damping effect. In the presence of an antagonistic applied magnetic field, the anchoring conditions become more significant, and can influence the shape and dynamics of the unstable modes. PMID:11088786

  1. Metric approach for sound propagation in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Pereira, E; Fumeron, S; Moraes, F

    2013-02-01

    In the eikonal approach, we describe sound propagation near topological defects of nematic liquid crystals as geodesics of a non-Euclidian manifold endowed with an effective metric tensor. The relation between the acoustics of the medium and this geometrical description is given by Fermat's principle. We calculate the ray trajectories and propose a diffraction experiment to retrieve information about the elastic constants. PMID:23496534

  2. Liquid crystal display modes in a nontilted bent-core biaxial smectic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagaraj, Mamatha; Panarin, Y. P.; Vij, J. K.; Keith, C.; Tschierske, C.

    2010-11-01

    Liquid crystal display (LCD) modes associated with the rotation of the secondary director in nontilted, biaxial smectic phase of an achiral bent-core compound are demonstrated. For LCDs, we find that at least four display modes are possible using SmAPA phase of the studied material, in which the minor directors in adjacent layers are aligned antiferroelectrically. The advantages of these modes include low driving field (1-2 V/μm), high contrast ratio 1000:1, relatively fast switching time of 0.5 ms and continuous gray scale. The molecular short axis or the polar axis in a negative dielectric, biaxial material is oriented by the in-plane electric field by a combination dielectric biaxiality and polarity at low electric fields and polarity at higher fields.

  3. Photoluminescence analysis of self induced planer alignment in azo dye dispersed nematic liquid crystal complex

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Rishi Sood, Srishti Raina, K. K.

    2014-04-24

    We have developed azo dye doped nematic liquid crystal complex for advanced photonic liquid crystal display technology aspects. Disperse orange azo dye self introduced planer alignment in the nematic liquid crystal without any surface anchoring treatment. Planer alignment was characterized by optical polarizing microscopy. The electro-optical switching response of dye disperse planer aligned nematic cell was investigated as a function of applied voltage with the help of photoluminescence spectrophotometer for the tuning of photoluminescence contrast.

  4. Thermal Characterization of Thermotropic Nematic Liquid-Crystalline Elastomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, David; Cardarelli, Matt; Sanchez-Ferrer, Antoni; Mbanga, Badel L.; Atherton, Timothy J.; Cebe, Peggy

    Nematic Liquid-Crystallline Elastomers (LCEs) are weakly crosslinked polymeric networks that exhibit rubber elasticity and liquid-crystalline orientational order due to the presence of mesogenic groups. Three end-on side-chain nematic LCEs were investigated using real-time synchrotron wide-angle X-ray scattering (WAXS), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and thermogravimetry (TG) to correlate thermal behavior with structural and chemical differences among them. The elastomers differed in crosslinking density and mesogen composition. Thermally reversible glass transition temperature, Tg, and nematic-to-isotropic transition temperature, Tni, were observed upon heating and cooling for all samples. By varying the heating rate, Tg0 and Tni0 were determined at zero heating rate. The temperature dependence of the orientational order parameter was determined from the anisotropic azimuthal angular distribution of the equatorial reflection seen during real-time WAXS experiments. Our results show that the choice of crosslinking unit, its shape, density, as well as the structure of co-monomers, all influence the temperature range over which the thermal transitions take place.

  5. Dielectrophoretic manipulation of the mixture of isotropic and nematic liquid.

    PubMed

    Kim, Soo-Dong; Lee, Bomi; Kang, Shin-Woong; Song, Jang-Kun

    2015-01-01

    In various applications involving liquid crystals, the manipulation of the nanoscale molecular assembly and microscale director alignment is highly useful. Here we show that a nematic-isotropic mixture, a unique bi-liquid system, has potential for the fabrication of microstructures having an ordered phase within a disordered phase, or vice versa. The volume expansion and shrinkage, migration, splitting, mergence and elongation of one phase within the other are easily accomplished via thermal treatment and dielectrophoretic manipulation. This is particularly achievable when one phase is suspended in the middle. In that case, a highly biased ordered-phase preference of surfaces, that is, the nematic-philic nature of a polyimide layer and the nematic-phobic nature of a self-assembled monolayer of chlorosilane derivatives, is used. Further, by combining this approach with photopolymerization, the patterned microstructure is solidified as a patterned polymer film having both isotropic and anisotropic molecular arrangements simultaneously, or as a template with a morphological variation. PMID:26242251

  6. Dynamics of an overdamped active nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Putzig, Elias; Baskaran, Aparna

    2015-03-01

    A continuum model for the dynamics of an overdamped (often termed ``dry'') active nematic liquid crystal will be presented here. This talk will focus on how such a model can be used to describe the formation and self-propulsion of defects which has been seen in active liquid crystals in experiments and simulations. We will start with a general model which shows phase-separations and structure formation near the critical density (for the isotropic-nematic phase transition), and show how this model can be extended to describe extensile active nematics which are deeper within the ordered phase. The spontaneous formation of defects occurs when the contribution of the extensile stresses, to the dynamics of the order parameter, gives rise to a bend instability. This leads to a steady state of defect formation and annihilation, and the self-propulsion of defects, as is seen in experiments and simulation. This work was supported through the NSF (NSF-DMR-1149266), Brandeis-MRSEC through the NSF (DMR-0820492), and the HPC cluster at Brandeis which provided computing time. EFP also acknowledges support through (NIH-5T32EB009419) and IGERT (DGE-1068620).

  7. Rheology of a Twist-bend Nematic Liquid Crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salili, Seyyed Muhammad; Kim, Chanjoong; Sprunt, Samuel; Gleeson, James; Parri, Owain; Jakli, Antal; Kim Lab Team; Merck Lab Team

    2015-03-01

    First detailed flow shear alignment studies and rheological measurements in the twist-bend nematic (Ntb) liquid crystalline phase of odd numbered flexible dimer molecules is presented. It is found that the Ntb phase is strongly shear-thinning. At shear stresses below 1 Pa the apparent viscosity of the Ntb phase is 1000 times larger than in the nematic phase. At stresses above 10 Pa the Ntb viscosity drops by two orders of magnitude and the material exhibits Newtonian fluid behavior. The results are consistent with the behavior of a system with pseudo-layer structure with layer spacing determined by the heliconical pitch. From the measurements of dynamic modulus we estimate the compression modulus of the pseudo-layers to be B ~ 2 kPa this value is discussed within the context of a simple theoretical model based upon a coarse-grained elastic free energy. www.jakligroup.com.

  8. Geometry of nematic liquid crystals under shearing flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simões, M.; Alves, F. S.; Palangana, A. J.

    2009-09-01

    In this work, an extended version of the Hess-Baalss conformal approach is used to propose a relation connecting the viscosity coefficients of the nematic liquid crystals. Starting from the well-known fact that, in its usual form, the conformal transformation leads to results which are not observed experimentally, it is shown that, when the director field of an ordered nematic phase under sheared motion is taken as a three-dimensional surface with torsion, the resulting theory describes the observed experimental data efficiently. Moreover, this model predicts that the five viscosity coefficients of the Leslie ah hoc model are not independent, but connected. A comparison of the deduced relationship with experimental data is performed and an excellent agreement is obtained.

  9. Isotropic and nematic liquid crystalline phases of adaptive rotaxanes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Hao; Sevick, Edith M.; Williams, David R. M.

    2016-03-01

    We describe the thermodynamics of a solution of rotaxanes which can change their length from a short state of length L to a long state of length qL in response to their surrounding environment. We call these rotaxanes "adaptive." We show that such a system can exhibit both isotropic and nematic liquid crystalline phases. The system shows several interesting kinds of behaviour. First we predict that the fraction of short-length rotaxanes increases linearly with concentration and is a maximum at the critical concentration that marks the isotropic to nematic transition. Second, the critical concentration shows a minimum at a certain value of q. Our model suggests that the effect of adaptive length changes is most dramatic at small q and where the long state is slightly favoured.

  10. Metastable nematic hedgehogs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosso, Riccardo; Virga, Epifanio G.

    1996-07-01

    For nematic liquid crystals, we study the local stability of a radial hedgehog against biaxial perturbations. Our analysis employs the Landau - de Gennes functional to describe the free energy stored in a ball, whose radius is a parameter of the model. We find that a radial hedgehog may be either unstable or metastable, depending on the values of the elastic constants. For unstable hedgehogs, we give an explicit expression for the radius of the ball within which the instability manifests itself: it can be interpreted as the size of the biaxial core of the defect; it is of the same order of magnitude as the radius of the disclination ring predicted by Penzenstadler and Trebin's model. The metastable hedgehogs predicted by our model are the major novelty of the paper. They tell us that we may also expect truly uniaxial point defects, whose core contains no biaxial structure.

  11. Topological transitions in unidirectional flow of nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cummings, Linda; Anderson, Thomas; Mema, Ensela; Kondic, Lou

    2015-11-01

    Recent experiments by Sengupta et al. (Phys. Rev. Lett. 2013) revealed interesting transitions that can occur in flow of nematic liquid crystal under carefully controlled conditions within a long microfluidic channel of rectangular cross-section, with homeotropic anchoring at the walls. At low flow rates the director field of the nematic adopts a configuration that is dominated by the surface anchoring, being nearly parallel to the channel height direction over most of the cross-section; but at high flow rates there is a transition to a flow-dominated state, where the director configuration at the channel centerline is aligned with the flow (perpendicular to the channel height direction). We analyze simple channel-flow solutions to the Leslie-Ericksen model for nematics. We demonstrate that two solutions exist, at all flow rates, but that there is a transition between the elastic free energies of these solutions: the anchoring-dominated solution has the lowest energy at low flow rates, and the flow-dominated solution has lowest energy at high flow rates. NSF DMS 1211713.

  12. Material Flows in an Active Nematic Liquid Crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Decamp, Stephen; Redner, Gabriel; Baskaran, Aparna; Hagan, Michael; Dogic, Zvonimir

    Active matter systems are composed of energy consuming constituent components which drive far-from-equilibrium dynamics. As such, active materials exhibit energetic states which would be unfavorable in passive, equilibrium materials. We study one such material; an active nematic liquid crystal which exists in a dynamical steady state where +/-1/2 defects are continuously generated and annihilated at a constant rate. The active nematic is composed of micron-sized microtubule filaments which are highly concentrated into a quasi-2D film that resides on an oil-water interface. Kinesin motor proteins drive inter-filament sliding which results in net extensile motion of the microtubule film. Notably, we find a mesophase in which motile +1/2 defects, acquire system-spanning orientational order. Currently, we are tracking material flows generated by the active stresses in the system to measure length scales at which energy is dissipated, and to measure the relation between internally generated flows and bend in the nematic field.

  13. Nematic quantum liquid crystals of bosons in frustrated lattices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Guanyu; Koch, Jens; Martin, Ivar

    2016-04-01

    The problem of interacting bosons in frustrated lattices is an intricate one due to the absence of a unique minimum in the single-particle dispersion where macroscopic number of bosons can condense. Here, we consider a family of tight-binding models with macroscopically degenerate lowest energy bands, separated from other bands by a gap. We predict the formation of exotic states that spontaneously break rotational symmetry at relatively low filling. These states belong to three nematic phases: Wigner crystal, supersolid, and superfluid. The Wigner crystal phase is established exactly at low filling. Supersolid and superfluid phases, at larger filling, are obtained by making use of a projection onto the flat band, construction of an appropriate Wannier basis, and subsequent mean-field treatment. The nematic superfluid that we predict is uniform in real space but has an anisotropic momentum distribution, providing a novel scenario for Bose condensation with an additional nematic order. Our findings open up a promising direction of studying microscopic quantum liquid crystalline phases of bosons.

  14. Fingered core structure of nematic boojums

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kralj, Samo; Rosso, Riccardo; Virga, Epifanio G.

    2008-09-01

    Using the Landau-de Gennes phenomenological approach, we study the fine biaxial core structure of a boojum residing on the surface of a nematic liquid crystal phase. The core is formed by a negatively uniaxial finger, surrounded by a shell with maximal biaxiality. The characteristic finger’s length and the shell’s width are comparable to the biaxial correlation length. The finger tip is melted for topological reasons. Upon decreasing the surface anchoring strength below a critical value, the finger gradually leaves the bulk and it is expelled through the surface.

  15. Flexoelectricity in an oxadiazole bent-core nematic liquid crystal

    SciTech Connect

    Kaur, S. Panov, V. P.; Gleeson, H. F.; Greco, C.; Ferrarini, A.; Görtz, V.; Goodby, J. W.

    2014-12-01

    We have determined experimentally the magnitude of the difference in the splay and bend flexoelectric coefficients, |e{sub 1} − e{sub 3}|, of an oxadiazole bent-core liquid crystal by measuring the critical voltage for the formation of flexodomains together with their wave number. The coefficient |e{sub 1} − e{sub 3}| is found to be a factor of 2–3 times higher than in most conventional calamitic nematic liquid crystals, varying from 8 pCm{sup −1} to 20 pCm{sup −1} across the ∼60 K—wide nematic regime. We have also calculated the individual flexoelectric coefficients e{sub 1} and e{sub 3}, with the dipolar and quadrupolar contributions of the bent-core liquid crystal by combining density functional theory calculations with a molecular field approach and atomistic modelling. Interestingly, the magnitude of the bend flexoelectric coefficient is found to be rather small, in contrast to common expectations for bent-core molecules. The calculations are in excellent agreement with the experimental values, offering an insight into how molecular parameters contribute to the flexoelectric coefficients and illustrating a huge potential for the prediction of flexoelectric behaviour in bent-core liquid crystals.

  16. Dispersion and Excluded Volume Interactions in Nematic Liquid Crystals.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poliks, Mark David

    1988-12-01

    The effectiveness of the potential of mean torque in accounting for solute orientation is explored. It is described by repulsive (excluded volume) and attractive forces (dispersion) and is tested using rigid, semi-flexible and flexible solutes dissolved in nematic phases. For rigid molecules (benzenes and anthracene) the attractive short range potential gave the best results. For anthracene the results indicated that the potential can discriminate between solute/solvent interactions. For wholly aliphatic solvents the excluded volume forces gave excellent agreement, as did the attractive forces for the aromatic solvents. For the semi-flexible molecule, biphenyl, quadrupole splittings were simulated using the internal torsion angle as a parameter. The values of this angle were predicted to vary systematically with temperature. Using crystallographic and idealized structural data as the starting points for the calculation, the structure of PAA in the nematic phase was estimated. Both the internal angle and the aromatic proton valence angles were determined. Flexible, "siamese-twin" liquid crystals having an internal per-deuterated spacer consisting of ten methylenes were studied. They differed only in the length of the aliphatic tails (5105, 101010). The quadrupole splittings of both twins dissolved in the nematic phase of BCH-S1131 were identical. Quantitative simulations of the splittings using standard RIS geometry and excluded volume forces were successful. In the bulk nematic phase the order parameter of 5105 was greater than 101010. The difference was interpreted as a dilution effect of the mesogenic cores by aliphatic tails. Simulations indicated the conformation of the spacer is highly extended. As parameterized the required strength of the mean field is a strong function of the molecular dimensions, suggesting that the current description still is incomplete.

  17. Programmable lattices of optical vortices in nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barboza, R.; Assanto, G.; Bortolozzo, U.; Clerc, M. G.; Residori, S.; Vidal-Henriquez, E.

    2015-09-01

    Using self-induced vortex-like defects in the nematic liquid crystal layer of a light valve with photo-sensible wall, we demonstrate the realization of programable optical vortices lattices with arbitrary configuration in space. On each lattice site, every matter vortex acts as a photonic spin-to-orbital momentum coupler and an array of circularly polarized input beams is converted into an output array of vortex beams with topological charges consistent with the vortex matter lattice. The vortex arrangements are explained the basis of light-induced matter defects and topological rules.

  18. Polarization converters based on axially symmetric twisted nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Ko, Shih-Wei; Ting, Chi-Lun; Fuh, Andy Y-G; Lin, Tsung-Hsien

    2010-02-15

    An axially symmetric twisted nematic liquid crystal (ASTNLC) device, based on axially symmetric photoalignment, was demonstrated. Such an ASTNLC device can convert axial (azimuthal) to azimuthal (axial) polarization. The optical properties of the ASTNLC device are analyzed and found to agree with simulation results. The ASTNLC device with a specific device can be adopted as an arbitrary axial symmetric polarization converter or waveplate for axially, azimuthally or vertically polarized light. A design for converting linear polarized light to axially symmetric circular polarized light is also demonstrated. PMID:20389369

  19. Numerical bifurcation study of electrohydrodynamic convection in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Tavener, S J; Mullin, T; Blake, G I; Cliffe, K A

    2001-01-01

    We present the results of a numerical investigation of the Ericksen-Leslie equations for the problem of electrohydrodynamic convection in a nematic liquid crystal. The combination of a finite element approach and numerical bifurcation techniques allows us to provide details of the basic flow and include the physically relevant effect of nonslip side walls. We are also able to include material properties as parameters and this permits us to draw comparisons with available experimental data. We then compare and contrast the bifurcation structure with that of Rayleigh-Bénard and Taylor-Couette flows and explore the role of symmetries by including a fringing electric field. PMID:11304279

  20. Surface-induced structures in nematic liquid crystal colloids.

    PubMed

    Chernyshuk, S B; Tovkach, O M; Lev, B I

    2014-08-01

    We predict theoretically the existence of a class of colloidal structures in nematic liquid crystal (NLC) cells, which are induced by surface patterns on the plates of the cell (like cells with UV-irradiated polyamide surfaces using micron sized masks in front of the cell). These bulk structures arise from nonuniform boundary conditions for the director distortions at the confining surfaces. In particular, we demonstrate that quadrupole spherical particles (like spheres with boojums or Saturn-ring director configurations) form a square lattice inside a planar NLC cell, which has checkerboard patterns on both its plates. PMID:25215675

  1. Surfactant-induced nematic wetting layer at a thermotropic liquid crystal/water interface.

    PubMed

    Bahr, Ch

    2006-03-01

    An ellipsometric study of the interface between a thermotropic liquid crystal and water near the nematic-isotropic phase transition of the liquid crystal is presented. At temperatures above the transition, a nematic wetting layer appears at the interface if the water phase contains a surfactant inducing a homeotropic alignment of the nematic phase. The detailed behavior is significantly influenced by the concentration of the surfactant. The results can be described by a Landau model of nematic wetting in which the surfactant concentration tunes the magnitude of an ordering interface potential. PMID:16605490

  2. Substrate-induced gliding in a nematic liquid crystal layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mema, E.; Kondic, L.; Cummings, L. J.

    2015-12-01

    We consider the interaction between nematic liquid crystals (NLCs) and polymer substrates. Such substrates can interact with NLCs, exhibiting a phenomenon known as director gliding: the preferred orientation of the NLC molecules at the interface changes on time scales that are slow relative to the elastic relaxation time scale of the NLC. We present two models for gliding, inspired by experiments that investigate the interaction between the NLC and a polymer substrate. These models, though simple, lead to nontrivial results, including loss of bistability under gliding. Perhaps surprisingly, we find that externally imposed switching between the steady states of a bistable system may reverse the effect of gliding, preventing loss of bistability if switching is sufficiently frequent. Our findings may be of relevance to a variety of technological applications involving liquid crystal devices, and particularly to a new generation of flexible liquid crystal displays that implement polymeric substrates.

  3. Substrate-induced gliding in a nematic liquid crystal layer.

    PubMed

    Mema, E; Kondic, L; Cummings, L J

    2015-12-01

    We consider the interaction between nematic liquid crystals (NLCs) and polymer substrates. Such substrates can interact with NLCs, exhibiting a phenomenon known as director gliding: the preferred orientation of the NLC molecules at the interface changes on time scales that are slow relative to the elastic relaxation time scale of the NLC. We present two models for gliding, inspired by experiments that investigate the interaction between the NLC and a polymer substrate. These models, though simple, lead to nontrivial results, including loss of bistability under gliding. Perhaps surprisingly, we find that externally imposed switching between the steady states of a bistable system may reverse the effect of gliding, preventing loss of bistability if switching is sufficiently frequent. Our findings may be of relevance to a variety of technological applications involving liquid crystal devices, and particularly to a new generation of flexible liquid crystal displays that implement polymeric substrates. PMID:26764717

  4. Simulation of coherent backscattering of light in nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Aksenova, E. V. Kokorin, D. I. Romanov, V. P.

    2012-08-15

    Multiple scattering of light by the fluctuations of the director in a nematic liquid crystal (NLC) aligned by a magnetic field is considered. A peak of coherent backscattering is calculated by numerical simulation. Since the indicatrix of single scattering for a liquid crystal (LC) is known exactly, the calculations are carried out without any simplifying assumptions on the parameters of the liquid crystal. Multiple scattering is simulated as a random walk of photons in the medium. A peak of coherent backscattering in such a medium is very narrow; therefore, the so-called semianalytical method is applied. The parameters of the backscattering peak obtained by numerical simulation are compared with the available experimental data and with the results of analytical approximations. It turns out that the experimental data are in good agreement with the results of simulation. The results of numerical simulation adequately describe the anisotropy and the width of the backscattering peak.

  5. The Viscoelastic Properties of Nematic Monodomains Containing Liquid Crystal Polymers.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gu, Dongfeng

    The work presented here investigates the viscoelastic properties of nematic materials containing liquid crystal polymers (LCP). We focus on how the elastic constants and the viscosity coefficients of the mixture systems are influenced by polymer architectures. In dynamic light scattering studies of the relaxation of the director orientation fluctuations for the splay, twist, and bend deformation modes, decrease of the relaxation rates was observed when LCPs were dissolved into low molar mass nematics (LMMN). For the side-chain LCPs, the slowing down in the bend mode is comparable to or larger than those of the splay and twist modes. For main-chain LCPs, the relative changes in the relaxation rates for the twist and splay modes are about one order of magnitude larger than that for the bend mode. The results of light scattering under an electric field show that the decrease in the twist relaxation rate is due to a large increase in the twist viscosity and a minor decrease in the twist elastic constant. These changes were found to increase with decrease of the spacer length, with increase of molecular weight, and with decrease of the backbone flexibility. In Freedericksz transition measurements, the splay and bend elastic constants and the dielectric anisotropies of the nematic mixtures were determined and the values are 5~15% lower than those of the pure solvent. From the analysis of the results of Freedericksz transition and light scattering experiments, a complete set of the elastic constants and viscosity coefficients corresponding to the three director deformation modes were obtained for the LCP mixtures. The changes in the viscosity coefficients due to addition of LCPs were analysed to estimate the anisotropic shapes of the polymer backbone via a hydrodynamic model. The results suggest that an oblate backbone configuration is maintained by the side-chain LCPs and a prolate chain configuration appears for the main-chain LCPs. The rheological behavior of a side

  6. Photoinduced extrinsic electrical conduction of nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dedov, O. V.; Krivoschekov, V. A.

    1996-05-01

    During recent years the interest in media with strong nonlinear response is growing. These media allow the user to observe different nonlinear optic effects using small intensities of light. It is well known that liquid crystals are rather promising media for this research. This paper is devoted to the experimental research of the photoinduced conduction of a mixture of a nematic liquid crystal and a dye. Dependence of the conduction on the intensity of light was studied for different concentrations of a dye added to the nematic crystal. Also the problem of the optimum type of a dye for observing the photorefractive nonlinearity using Ar+- ion laser was considered. We made the experiments using the following available laser dyes: rhodamine '6G,' rhodamine 'G,' rhodamine 'C' and two ocsasine-type dyes also. The mixture of the nematic crystal 5CB and a dye was placed in a cell of 100 micrometer width, with the plates filmed with the transparent electrodes of SnO2. The dc voltage on the order of magnitude 1 V was applied to decrease the influence of the cell capacity on the conduction measurements of the samples. We used the light of two wavelengths: lambda1 equals 488 nm, lambda2 equals 514.5 nm. The best dyes for these wavelengths were the rhodamine- type dyes. Taking the other two dyes we observed much smaller effect of influence of the laser radiation on conduction of the samples. Maybe the reason was that the pump wavelength of ocsasine dyes is too far way from the wavelength of the radiation used. So the optimum dye must have the wavelength of the pump near to the wavelength used. Using rhodamine 'C' we obtained the dependencies of the induced conduction on laser light intensity for three different concentrations of the dye.

  7. Dendritic Growth in Nematic Liquid Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Joshua; Garg, Shila

    2000-03-01

    The experimental study of the onset of electrohydrodynamic convection (EHC) through a dendritic growth is reported. If a magnetic Freedericksz-distorted liquid crystal of negative dielectric anisotropy is subjected to an electric field parallel to the magnetic field, EHC sets in through the nucleation of dendrites [1,2]. Measurements of tip speeds of the dendrites as a function of applied voltage at a fixed magnetic field are made. The goal is to explore the effect of the magnetic and electric fields on the dendritic growth. In addition, pattern dynamics is monitored once the final state of spatio-temporal chaos is reached by the system. [1] J. T. Gleeson, Nature 385, 511 (1997). [2] J. T. Gleeson, Physica A 239, 211 (1997). This research was supported by NSF grants DMR 9704579 and DMR 9619406.

  8. Interaction between two spherical particles in a nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fukuda, Jun-Ichi; Stark, Holger; Yoneya, Makoto; Yokoyama, Hiroshi

    2004-04-01

    We numerically investigate the interaction between two spherical particles in a nematic liquid crystal mediated by elastic distortions in the orientational order. We pay attention to the cases where two particles with equal radii R0 impose rigid normal anchoring on their surfaces and carry a pointlike topological defect referred to as a hyperbolic hedgehog. To describe the geometry of our system, we use bispherical coordinates, which prove useful in the implementation of boundary conditions at the particle surfaces and at infinity. We adopt the Landau de Gennes continuum theory in terms of a second-rank tensor order parameter Qij for the description of the orientational order of a nematic liquid crystal. We also utilize an adaptive mesh refinement scheme that has proven to be an efficient way of dealing with topological defects whose core size is much smaller than the particle size. When the two “dipoles,” composed of a particle and a hyperbolic hedgehog, are in parallel directions, the two-particle interaction potential is attractive for large interparticle distances D and proportional to D-3 as expected from the form of the dipole-dipole interaction, until the well-defined potential minimum at D≃2.46 R0 is reached. For the antiparallel configuration with no hedgehogs between the two particles, the interaction potential is repulsive and behaves as D-2 for D≲10 R0 , which is stronger than the dipole-dipole repulsion ( ˜ D-3 ) expected theoretically as an asymptotic behavior for large D .

  9. A Numerical Investigation on Configurational Distortions in Nematic Liquid Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pandolfi, Anna; Napoli, Gaetano

    2011-10-01

    When subjected to magnetic or electric fields, nematic liquid crystals confined between two parallel glass plates and initially uniformly oriented may undergo homogeneous one-dimensional spatial distortions (Fréedericksz and Zolina, Trans. Faraday Soc. 29:919, 1933) or periodic distortions (Lonberg and Meyer, Phys. Rev. Lett. 55(7):718-721, 1985; and Srajer et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 67(9):1102-1105, 1991). According to the experimental observations, periodic phases are stable configurations at intermediate intensity of the acting field, while homogeneous phases are stable at higher strengths. We present a fully nonlinear finite element approach able to describe homogeneous and periodic configurational phases in a cell of confined nematic liquid crystal with strong planar anchoring boundary conditions. Stationary configurations are obtained by setting to zero the first variation of the discretized total energy of the system. Unstable configurations are identified by evaluating the behavior of the solution under small numerical perturbations. Numerical calculations are able to describe the evolution of the configurational distortions as a function of the applied field and are able to capture the critical points between homogeneous and periodic phases. The proposed approach has been proved to be an excellent tool to predict the existence of unstable or metastable distortions, characterized by higher energy levels.

  10. Hysteresis upon light-induced hydrodynamic reorientation of the director of a nematic liquid crystal

    SciTech Connect

    Akopyan, R S; Alaverdyan, R B; Vardanyan, A S; Chilingaryan, Yu S

    2000-08-31

    Oscillations and hysteresis in the behaviour of the director of a nematic liquid crystal were observed upon its light-induced hydrodynamic reorientation caused by direct volume expansion. The light propagated through the liquid crystal placed between crossed polarisers provides the feedback. This light falls back on the liquid crystal and is absorbed by producing the volume expansion. A theory is suggested that describes the observed behaviour of the director of the nematic liquid crystal. (laser applications and other topics in quantum electronics)

  11. Electro-optic phenomena in nematic liquid crystals studied experimentally and by Monte-Carlo simulations

    SciTech Connect

    Komorowska, K.; Pawlik, G.; Mitus, A. C.; Miniewicz, A.

    2001-08-15

    In this article we compare results of experiments on light self-diffraction in nematic liquid crystal panels with corresponding results of the Monte-Carlo simulations of a two-dimensional nematic liquid crystal model in the presence of a spatially modulated electric field. In the simulations molecular interactions were described by the Lebwohl--Lasher Hamiltonian. The results obtained on the diffraction efficiency and spatial and temporal behavior of refractive index changes in nematic liquid crystal are satisfactorily reproduced by Monte-Carlo simulations. We discuss the complementarity of both methods in studying and designing systems for optical information processing using liquid crystals. {copyright} 2001 American Institute of Physics.

  12. Substrate induced gliding for a nematic liquid crystal layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mema, Ensela; Cummings, Linda; Kondic, Lou

    2015-03-01

    The interaction between nematic liquid crystals (NLC) and polymer substrates is of current industrial interest, due to a desire to manufacture a new generation of flexible Liquid Crystal Displays (LCDs) for use in portable electronic devices. Polymer substrates present challenges because they can interact with the NLC, exhibiting a phenomenon known as gliding: the preferred orientation of the NLC molecules at the interface changes over timescales of minutes to hours. We present two models for gliding, inspired by the physics and chemistry of the interaction between the NLC and polymer substrate. These models, though simple, lead to non-trivial results, including loss of bistability, a finding that may have implications for display devices. Supported by NSF Grant No. DMS-1211713.

  13. Disc-shaped colloids interacting in a nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antipova, Alena; Denniston, Colin

    2014-11-01

    We studied the behavior of pairs of disc-shaped colloidal particles in a nematic liquid crystal using Lattice Boltzmann algorithm. Without any external forces the position of the disc with respect to the liquid crystal director minimizes the free energy of the system and no distortion of the director field is observed. When the rotating magnetic field is present, the torque on the disc with homeotropic surface anchoring should change with analogy to electrostatic energy, which implies the disc continues turning following the field. However, when the disc reaches some critical position and the director field around it is highly distorted, the disc suddenly flips to minimize the free energy. Position and motion of pairs of such discs under similar conditions can be controlled by the angular velocity of magnetic field, it's magnitude and initial configuration of the system. As a result of analysis of discs' dynamics, a new way to control self-organization of disc particles was produced.

  14. Chiral power change upon photoisomerization in twisted nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simoncelli, Sabrina; Aramendía, Pedro F.

    2015-05-01

    In this work, we use the photoisomerization of azobenzenes, a phenanthrospirooxazine, and a fulgide in a twisted nematic liquid crystalline phase to change the chiral twisting power of the system. The changes are probed by the rotatory power of linearly polarized light. Time resolved and steady state experiments are carried out. The chiral change and the photoisomerization process have similar characteristic recovery times and activation energy, thus probing that the change is induced by the modification in the chemical composition of the photochromic dopant system. The amplitude of the light twisting power change correlates with the order change in the liquid crystal (LC) but not with the modification in the absorption characteristics of the system. This indicates that the driving force of the chiral change is the microscopic order modification in the LC phase that affects the helical pitch of the phase.

  15. Chiral power change upon photoisomerization in twisted nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Simoncelli, Sabrina; Aramendía, Pedro F

    2015-05-01

    In this work, we use the photoisomerization of azobenzenes, a phenanthrospirooxazine, and a fulgide in a twisted nematic liquid crystalline phase to change the chiral twisting power of the system. The changes are probed by the rotatory power of linearly polarized light. Time resolved and steady state experiments are carried out. The chiral change and the photoisomerization process have similar characteristic recovery times and activation energy, thus probing that the change is induced by the modification in the chemical composition of the photochromic dopant system. The amplitude of the light twisting power change correlates with the order change in the liquid crystal (LC) but not with the modification in the absorption characteristics of the system. This indicates that the driving force of the chiral change is the microscopic order modification in the LC phase that affects the helical pitch of the phase. PMID:25699698

  16. Mesogenic linear azobenzene polymer-stabilized nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Bagramyan, Arutyun; Thibault-Maheu, Olivier; Galstian, Tigran; Bessette, Andre; Zhao, Yue

    2011-03-15

    We describe the detailed study of a polymer stabilized liquid crystal compound, which was created by using a reactive (monofunctional) azobenzene mesogenic guest and a nematic liquid crystal host. The resonant interaction of light with the azobenzene segment of the guest and the mesogenic nature of the latter enable the optical alignment of host molecules and the permanent fixing of that orientation by means of UV polymerization of the guest. We use dynamic spectral, polarimetric, and scattering techniques to study the orientational ordering and interaction of the guest-host system. We show that the uniform UV polymerization of this compound results in a low scattering material system with dielectric and elastic properties that are relatively close to those of the host, while still providing the capacity for optical configuration of its morphology.

  17. Theory of the acoustic realignment of nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malanoski, A. P.; Greanya, V. A.; Weslowski, B. T.; Spector, M. S.; Selinger, J. V.; Shashidhar, R.

    2004-02-01

    When an ultrasonic wave is applied to a nematic liquid-crystal cell, the molecules change their orientation, leading to a change in the optical intensity transmitted through the cell. Modeling this acousto-optic effect involves three separate theoretical issues: (a) calculating the intensity of sound transmitted through the cell walls into the liquid crystal, (b) determining the consequent realignment of the liquid crystal, and (c) deriving the change in optical transmission through the cell. In this paper, we present a theory that addresses all three of these issues, and thereby reproduces the behavior seen in experiments. The theory shows how the performance depends not only on the liquid-crystal material properties, but also on the geometrical parameters of the system, such as the thickness of the glass walls, thickness of the liquid-crystal layer, angle of the ultrasonic wave, viewing angle, and boundary condition at the glass-liquid crystal interface. The theory predicts that the strong dependence on viewing angle still allows an optical image to be seen for realistic dimensions.

  18. Elastic constants and dynamics in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Humpert, Anja; Allen, Michael P.

    2015-09-01

    In this paper, we present molecular dynamics calculations of the Frank elastic constants, and associated time correlation functions, in nematic liquid crystals. We study two variants of the Gay-Berne potential, and use system sizes of half a million molecules, significantly larger than in previous studies of elastic behaviour. Equilibrium orientational fluctuations in reciprocal (k-) space were calculated, to determine the elastic constants by fitting at low |k|; our results indicate that small system size may be a source of inaccuracy in previous work. Furthermore, the dynamics of the Gay-Berne nematic were studied by calculating time correlation functions of components of the order tensor, together with associated components of the velocity field, for a set of wave vectors k. Confirming our earlier work, we found exponential decay for splay and twist correlations, and oscillatory exponential decay for the bend correlation. In this work, we confirm similar behaviour for the corresponding velocity components. In all cases, the decay rates, and oscillation frequencies, were found to be accurately proportional to k2 for small k, as predicted by the equations of nematodynamics. However, the observation of oscillatory bend fluctuations, and corresponding oscillatory shear flow decay, is in contradiction to the usual assumptions appearing in the literature, and in standard texts. We discuss the advantages and drawbacks of using large systems in these calculations.

  19. Liquid crystal gratings from nematic to blue phase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Yan-qing; Hu, Wei; Lin, Xiao-wen; Srivastava, Abhishek; Chigrinov, Vladimir G.

    2012-10-01

    Some of our recent progress on liquid crystal (LC) gratings, from nematic to blue phase, is reviewed in this invited talk. The first kind of grating is fabricated by periodically adjusting the LC directors to form alternate micro phase retarders and polarization rotators in a cell placed between crossed polarizers. The second one is demonstrated by means of photoalignment technique with alternate orthogonal homogeneously-aligned domains. To improve the response time of the gratings, several approaches are also proposed by using dual-frequency addressed nematic LC, ferroelectric LC and blue phase LC, which shows great performance including high transmittance, polarization independency and submillisecond response. At last, to obtain other controllable LC microstructures rather than simple 1D/2D gratings, we develop a micro-lithography system with a digital micro-mirror device as dynamic mask forms. It may instantly generate arbitrary micro-images on photoalignment layers and further guides the LC molecule orientations. Besides normal phase gratings, more complex patterns such as quasicrystal structures are demonstrated. Some new applications such as tunable multiport optical switching and vector beam generations are expected.

  20. Rheological properties of a reentrant nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Ananthaiah, J; Rajeswari, M; Sastry, V S S; Dabrowski, R; Dhara, Surajit

    2012-07-01

    We report experimental studies on small angle light scattering (SALS), and rheodielectric and electrorheological properties of a binary mixture of octyloxy cyanobiphenyl and hexyloxy cyanobiphenyl liquid crystals. The mixture exhibits nematic (N) to smectic-A (SmA) phase transitions, and then again to a reentrant nematic (N(R)) phase transition. Rapid shear thinning in the quenched samples in the low shear rate region in the N and SmA phases observed from SALS experiments is attributed to the realignment of the director within the domains. The domains are elongated along the shear direction at higher shear rates. The temperature variation of the effective viscosity and static dielectric constant reveals the changes in the director orientation across N-SmA-N(R) phase transitions. At a steady shear rate the effective viscosity increases with the electric field in all the phases and saturates at much higher fields. It also exhibits two anomalous peaks across N-SmA-N(R) phase transitions beyond a particular field. The shear modulus of the SmA phase in an intermediate field is significantly larger than that measured at both low and high fields. This enhanced viscoelasticity of the SmA phase is argued to originate from the increased dislocation density. PMID:23005440

  1. Rheological properties of a reentrant nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ananthaiah, J.; Rajeswari, M.; Sastry, V. S. S.; Dabrowski, R.; Dhara, Surajit

    2012-07-01

    We report experimental studies on small angle light scattering (SALS), and rheodielectric and electrorheological properties of a binary mixture of octyloxy cyanobiphenyl and hexyloxy cyanobiphenyl liquid crystals. The mixture exhibits nematic (N) to smectic-A (SmA) phase transitions, and then again to a reentrant nematic (NR) phase transition. Rapid shear thinning in the quenched samples in the low shear rate region in the N and SmA phases observed from SALS experiments is attributed to the realignment of the director within the domains. The domains are elongated along the shear direction at higher shear rates. The temperature variation of the effective viscosity and static dielectric constant reveals the changes in the director orientation across N-SmA-NR phase transitions. At a steady shear rate the effective viscosity increases with the electric field in all the phases and saturates at much higher fields. It also exhibits two anomalous peaks across N-SmA-NR phase transitions beyond a particular field. The shear modulus of the SmA phase in an intermediate field is significantly larger than that measured at both low and high fields. This enhanced viscoelasticity of the SmA phase is argued to originate from the increased dislocation density.

  2. Shear Alignment Behavior of Nematic Solutions Induced by Ultralong Side-Group Liquid Crystal Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kempe, M. D.; Kornfield, J. A.

    2003-03-01

    Addition of a low concentration of a very long (430 kg/mol) side group liquid crystal polymer is shown to produce dramatic changes in the flow characteristics of a calamitic nematic liquid crystal. This polymer causes a typical flow-aligning nematic liquid crystal to align near the velocity gradient direction rather than near the velocity direction, corresponding to having a tumbling parameter λ<-1, for concentrations greater than 7.5% polymer. Such flow-aligning behavior has not been reported previously in a calamitic nematic. The large molecular weight of the present polymer relative to those examined in the prior literature is responsible for these new phenomena.

  3. Fast switching from isotropic liquids to nematic liquid crystals: rotaxanes as smart fluids.

    PubMed

    He, Hao; Sevick, Edith M; Williams, David R M

    2015-11-28

    We examine a solution of rod-like piston-rotaxanes, which can switch their length by external excitation (for example optically) from a short state of length L to a long state of length qL. We show that this solution can exhibit a number of different behaviours. In particular it can rapidly switch from an isotropic to a nematic liquid crystalline state. There is a minimum ratio q* = 1.13 for which transitions from a pure isotropic state to a pure nematic state are possible. We present a phase-switching diagram, which gives the six possible behaviours for this system. It turns out that a large fraction of the phase switching diagram is occupied by the transition from a pure isotropic to a pure nematic state. PMID:26419821

  4. Chemically induced twist-bend nematic liquid crystals, liquid crystal dimers, and negative elastic constants.

    PubMed

    Adlem, K; Čopič, M; Luckhurst, G R; Mertelj, A; Parri, O; Richardson, R M; Snow, B D; Timimi, B A; Tuffin, R P; Wilkes, D

    2013-08-01

    Here we report the chemical induction of the twist-bend nematic phase in a nematic mixture of ether-linked liquid crystal dimers by the addition of a dimer with methylene links; all dimers have an odd number of groups in the spacer connecting the two mesogenic groups. The twist-bend phase has been identified from its optical texture and x-ray scattering pattern as well as NMR spectroscopy, which demonstrates the phase chirality. Theory predicts that the key macroscopic property required for the stability of this chiral phase formed from achiral molecules is for the bend elastic constant to tend to be negative; in addition the twist elastic constant should be smaller than half the splay elastic constant. To test these important aspects of the prediction we have measured the bend and splay elastic constants in the nematic phase preceding the twist-bend nematic using the classic Frederiks methodology and all three elastic constants employing the dynamic light scattering approach. Our results show that, unlike the splay, the bend elastic constant is small and decreases significantly as the transition to the induced twist-bend nematic phase is approached, but then exhibits unexpected behavior prior to the phase transition. PMID:24032852

  5. Nonlinear flow behaviors of nematic liquid crystals in complex geometries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Araki, Takeaki

    2013-02-01

    We study nematic liquid crystals flowing in a regular-shaped porous medium by means of lattice Boltzmann simulations. With strong anchoring, the director field cannot align uniformly and topological defects are stably formed with a large number of possible configurations. In a quiescent state, each configuration is arrested since the energy barriers between possible configurations are higher than the thermal energy. If the flow speed is slow enough, the defect pattern is not changed from the initial quiescent configuration. Above a critical flow speed, the defect pattern transforms to a new stable configuration. In a regular-shaped porous matrix, there remain regularly aligned disclination loops. This regular pattern is maintained even after the flow is stopped.

  6. Breakup of partially wetting nanoscale nematic liquid films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lam, Michael; Linda Cummings Collaboration; Lou Kondic Collaboration; Te-Sheng Lin Collaboration

    2015-11-01

    The breakup of nematic liquid crystals (NLCs) films with thicknesses less than a micrometer is studied. Particular attention is paid to the interplay between the bulk elasticity and the anchoring (boundary) conditions at the substrate and free surface. Within the framework of the long wave approximation, a fourth order nonlinear partial differential equation (PDE) is derived for the free surface height. Numerical simulations of a perturbed flat film show that, depending on the initial average thickness of the film, satellite droplets form and persist on time scales much longer than dewetting. Formulating the model in terms of an effective disjoining pressure (elastic response and van der Waals interaction), simulations further suggest that satellite droplets form when the initial average film thickness corresponds to a positive effective disjoining pressure. Our results may shed light on the so-called ''forbidden film thicknesses'' seen in experiments. Supported by NSF grant DMS-1211713.

  7. Phase diagrams of orientational transitions in absorbing nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Zolot’ko, A. S. Ochkin, V. N.; Smayev, M. P.; Shvetsov, S. A.

    2015-05-15

    A theory of orientational transitions in nematic liquid crystals (NLCs), which employs the expansion of optical torques acting on the NLC director with respect to the rotation angle, has been developed for NLCs with additives of conformationally active compounds under the action of optical and low-frequency electric and magnetic fields. Phase diagrams of NLCs are constructed as a function of the intensity and polarization of the light field, the strength of low-frequency electric field, and a parameter that characterizes the feedback between the rotation of the NLC director and optical torque. Conditions for the occurrence of first- and second-order transitions are determined. The proposed theory agrees with available experimental data.

  8. Control of the bias tilt angles in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yablonskii, S. V.; Nakayama, K.; Okazaki, S.; Ozaki, M.; Yoshino, K.; Palto, S. P.; Baranovich, M. Yu.; Michailov, A. S.

    1999-03-01

    The pretilt angle controlled by electric field was studied by the modulation ellipsometry technique. The easy direction of compensated nematic liquid crystals was controlled by surface flexoelectric torque created by the linear coupling of the director deformation and electric field. The weak anchoring energy necessary for the occurrence of flexoelectric distortion was produced by unidirectional rubbing of the clean indium-tin-oxide covered glasses with a cotton cloth. The pretilt angle was measured as a function of electric field. Long relaxation times of the optical response (hundreds of seconds) were observed. The rubbed thin polyvinyl alcohol and polyimide aligning layers were seen to promote strong anchoring energy (>0.5 erg/cm2) preventing any deviation of pretilt angle and, consequently, to suppress the optical response. The probable applications of the obtained results are discussed.

  9. Orientational defects near colloidal particles in a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Feng, James J; Zhou, Chixing

    2004-01-01

    We study the interaction between a surface-anchoring colloidal particle and a liquid-crystalline host, and in particular the formation of orientational defects near the particle. A mean-field theory based on the nonlocal Marrucci-Greco nematic potential is used to represent molecular interactions in an inhomogeneous orientational field. An evolution equation for the molecular configuration tensor is solved numerically whose steady state minimizes the total free energy of the system. With strong homeotropic anchoring on the particle surface, three types of solutions may appear depending on initial conditions and particle size: Saturn rings, satellite point defects, and polar rings. The Saturn ring remains stable on micrometer-sized particles, contrary to previous calculations but consistent with experiments. A phase diagram is constructed for the three regimes. Based on the free energy, the most stable state is the Saturn ring for smaller particles and the satellite defect for larger ones. PMID:14651897

  10. Dielectric Anisotropy of Gold Nanoparticle Colloids in Nematic Liquid Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Visco, Angelo; Foust, Jon; Mahmood, Rizwan

    We present electrical and optical studies of hexanethiol-treated gold nanoparticle (GNPs) colloids in 4-cyano-4 '-pentyl-biphenyl (5CB) liquid crystals. Preliminary data analysis suggests an unusual behavior of sudden drop and then rise in the dielectric anisotropy at a critical concentration of 0.0862% by wt. GNPs and a sudden rise and then drop in the nematic to isotropic transition temperature. Above the critical concentration the data level off to within the uncertainty of the experimental errors. This colloidal system will help us to understand the interaction and the effects of nanoparticles on the self-assembly of LC molecules and the manner in which these particles organize in LC. This study is important for further developments in nanotechnology, sharp and fast display panels, and within the medical field.

  11. Spatiotemporal complexity of electroconvection patterns in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krekhov, Alexei; Dressel, Bernd; Pesch, Werner; Delev, Vladimir; Batyrshin, Eduard

    2015-12-01

    We investigate a number of complex patterns driven by the electroconvection instability in a planarly aligned layer of a nematic liquid crystal. They are traced back to various secondary instabilities of the ideal roll patterns bifurcating at onset of convection, whereby the basic nematohydrodynamic equations are solved by common Galerkin expansion methods. Alternatively these equations are systematically approximated by a set of coupled amplitude equations. They describe slow modulations of the convection roll amplitudes, which are coupled to a flow field component with finite vorticity perpendicular to the layer and to a quasihomogeneous in-plane rotation of the director. It is demonstrated that the Galerkin stability diagram of the convection rolls is well reproduced by the corresponding one based on the amplitude equations. The main purpose of the paper is, however, to demonstrate that their direct numerical simulations match surprisingly well new experiments, which serves as a convincing test of our theoretical approach.

  12. The electrohydrodynamic instability in twisted nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hertrich, A.; Krekhov, A. P.; Scaldin, O. A.

    1994-02-01

    We present some experiments on electrohydrodynamic convection (EHC) in nematic liquid crystals with a planar, but twisted configuration (MBBA). The threshold voltage is shown to depend only weakly on the twist angle. A theoretical analysis of the onset behaviour agrees well with the experiments. More sensitive is a secondary transition to modulation structures, which are not easily observed in untwisted geometries. A rough estimate of the secondary instability based on the behaviour of the most rapidly growing modulation mode seems to account well for the observations. Additional theoretical investigations for materials with positive dielectric anisotropy concerning the competition between the Fréedericksz transition and EHC are included. We predict the existence of a crossover codimension-2 point, which could easily be tested by variation of the twist angle.

  13. Spatiotemporal complexity of electroconvection patterns in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Krekhov, Alexei; Dressel, Bernd; Pesch, Werner; Delev, Vladimir; Batyrshin, Eduard

    2015-12-01

    We investigate a number of complex patterns driven by the electroconvection instability in a planarly aligned layer of a nematic liquid crystal. They are traced back to various secondary instabilities of the ideal roll patterns bifurcating at onset of convection, whereby the basic nematohydrodynamic equations are solved by common Galerkin expansion methods. Alternatively these equations are systematically approximated by a set of coupled amplitude equations. They describe slow modulations of the convection roll amplitudes, which are coupled to a flow field component with finite vorticity perpendicular to the layer and to a quasihomogeneous in-plane rotation of the director. It is demonstrated that the Galerkin stability diagram of the convection rolls is well reproduced by the corresponding one based on the amplitude equations. The main purpose of the paper is, however, to demonstrate that their direct numerical simulations match surprisingly well new experiments, which serves as a convincing test of our theoretical approach. PMID:26764714

  14. Coherent backscattering of light in nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Aksenova, E. V. Kuz'min, V. L.; Romanov, V. P.

    2009-03-15

    Multiple light scattering by director fluctuations in nematic liquid crystals is considered. A uniform director orientation is assumed to be specified by an applied magnetic field. The coherent backscattering effect, which consists in the presence of a sharp light backscattering peak, is studied. The Bethe-Salpeter equation is used to calculate the multiple scattering intensity taking into account the contributions of ladder and cyclic diagrams. An analytical expression for the angular and polarization dependences of the coherent backscattering intensity is obtained in terms of the diffusion approximation. The calculation and experimental results are compared. The developed theory is shown to qualitatively describe the elliptical shape of the backscattering cone, to explain the absence of a coherent contribution for crossed polarizations, and to calculate the relative peak height.

  15. Phase diagram of the uniaxial and biaxial soft-core Gay-Berne model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berardi, Roberto; Lintuvuori, Juho S.; Wilson, Mark R.; Zannoni, Claudio

    2011-10-01

    Classical molecular dynamics simulations have been used to explore the phase diagrams for a family of attractive-repulsive soft-core Gay-Berne models [R. Berardi, C. Zannoni, J. S. Lintuvuori, and M. R. Wilson, J. Chem. Phys. 131, 174107 (2009)] and determine the effect of particle softness, i.e., of a moderately repulsive short-range interaction, on the order parameters and phase behaviour of model systems of uniaxial and biaxial ellipsoidal particles. We have found that isotropic, uniaxial, and biaxial nematic and smectic phases are obtained for the model. Extensive calculations of the nematic region of the phase diagram show that endowing mesogenic particles with such soft repulsive interactions affect the stability range of the nematic phases, and in the case of phase biaxiality it also shifts it to lower temperatures. For colloidal particles, stabilised by surface functionalisation, (e.g., with polymer chains), we suggest that it should be possible to tune liquid crystal behaviour to increase the range of stability of uniaxial and biaxial phases (by varying solvent quality). We calculate second virial coefficients and show that they are a useful means of characterising the change in effective softness for such systems. For thermotropic liquid crystals, the introduction of softness in the interactions between mesogens with overall biaxial shape (e.g., through appropriate conformational flexibility) could provide a pathway for the actual chemical synthesis of stable room-temperature biaxial nematics.

  16. Phase diagram of the uniaxial and biaxial soft-core Gay-Berne model.

    PubMed

    Berardi, Roberto; Lintuvuori, Juho S; Wilson, Mark R; Zannoni, Claudio

    2011-10-01

    Classical molecular dynamics simulations have been used to explore the phase diagrams for a family of attractive-repulsive soft-core Gay-Berne models [R. Berardi, C. Zannoni, J. S. Lintuvuori, and M. R. Wilson, J. Chem. Phys. 131, 174107 (2009)] and determine the effect of particle softness, i.e., of a moderately repulsive short-range interaction, on the order parameters and phase behaviour of model systems of uniaxial and biaxial ellipsoidal particles. We have found that isotropic, uniaxial, and biaxial nematic and smectic phases are obtained for the model. Extensive calculations of the nematic region of the phase diagram show that endowing mesogenic particles with such soft repulsive interactions affect the stability range of the nematic phases, and in the case of phase biaxiality it also shifts it to lower temperatures. For colloidal particles, stabilised by surface functionalisation, (e.g., with polymer chains), we suggest that it should be possible to tune liquid crystal behaviour to increase the range of stability of uniaxial and biaxial phases (by varying solvent quality). We calculate second virial coefficients and show that they are a useful means of characterising the change in effective softness for such systems. For thermotropic liquid crystals, the introduction of softness in the interactions between mesogens with overall biaxial shape (e.g., through appropriate conformational flexibility) could provide a pathway for the actual chemical synthesis of stable room-temperature biaxial nematics. PMID:21992294

  17. Biaxial order parameter in the homologous series of orthogonal bent-core smectic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sreenilayam, S.; Panarin, Y. P.; Vij, J. K.; Osipov, M.; Lehmann, A.; Tschierske, C.

    2013-07-01

    The fundamental parameter of the uniaxial liquid crystalline state that governs nearly all of its physical properties is the primary orientational order parameter (S) for the long axes of molecules with respect to the director. The biaxial liquid crystals (LCs) possess biaxial order parameters depending on the phase symmetry of the system. In this paper we show that in the first approximation a biaxial orthogonal smectic phase can be described by two primary order parameters: S for the long axes and C for the ordering of the short axes of molecules. The temperature dependencies of S and C are obtained by the Haller's extrapolation technique through measurements of the optical birefringence and biaxiality on a nontilted polar antiferroelectric (Sm-APA) phase of a homologous series of LCs built from the bent-core achiral molecules. For such a biaxial smectic phase both S and C, particularly the temperature dependency of the latter, are being experimentally determined. Results show that S in the orthogonal smectic phase composed of bent cores is higher than in Sm-A calamatic LCs and C is also significantly large.

  18. Electric field generation of Skyrmion-like structures in a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Cattaneo, Laura; Kos, Žiga; Savoini, Matteo; Kouwer, Paul; Rowan, Alan; Ravnik, Miha; Muševič, Igor; Rasing, Theo

    2016-01-21

    Skyrmions are particle-like topological objects that are increasingly drawing attention in condensed matter physics, where they are connected to inversion symmetry breaking and chirality. Here we report the generation of stable Skyrmion-like structures in a thin nematic liquid crystal film on chemically patterned patchy surfaces. Using the interplay of material elasticity and surface boundary conditions, we use a strong electric field to quench the nematic liquid crystal from a fully aligned phase to vortex-like nematic liquid crystal structures, centered on patterned patches, which carry two different sorts of topological defects. Numerical calculations reveal that these are Skyrmion-like structures, seeded from the surface boojum topological defects and swirling towards the second confining surface. These observations, supported by numerical methods, demonstrate the possibility to generate, manipulate and study Skyrmion-like objects in nematic liquid crystals on patterned surfaces. PMID:26549212

  19. Optical security devices using nonuniform schlieren texture of UV-curable nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Nakayama, Keizo; Ohtsubo, Junji

    2016-02-10

    We proposed and quantitatively evaluated an optical security device that provides nonuniform or random patterns of schlieren texture in nematic liquid crystal as unique identification information with a design by employing computer image processing and normalized cross correlation. Using the same photomask as the first author's university logo, the written patterns, which were composed of polymerized isotropic areas and polymerized nematic areas, were stable among different cells. Judging from the maximum correlation coefficient of 0.09, the patterns of the schlieren texture were unique in different cells. These results indicate that photocurable nematic liquid crystal materials have the potential to be applied to security devices for anticounterfeiting measures. PMID:26906368

  20. ESR studies of the slow tumbling of vanadyl spin probes in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eastman, M. P.; Bruno, G. V.; Lawson, J. O.

    1977-01-01

    ESR line shapes that are appropriate for slowly tumbling vanadyl spin probes in viscous nematic liquid crystals were calculated by the stochastic Liouville method. Because of the symmetry possessed by vanadyl, the analysis and interpretation of these line shapes was simplified considerably. Spectral line shapes agreed well with experimental spectra of VOAcAc in the nematic liquid crystal Phase V and BEPC. Deviations from Brownian rotational diffusion were noted. A slowly fluctuating torque analysis yielded good agreement with the experimental spectra.

  1. Dynamics of Order Reconstruction in a Nanoconfined Nematic Liquid Crystal with a Topological Defect

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Xuan; Zhang, Zhidong

    2013-01-01

    At the wall in a hybrid nematic cell with strong anchoring, the nematic director is parallel to one wall and perpendicular to the other. Within the Landau-de Gennes theory, we have investigated the dynamics of s = ±1/2 wedge disclinations in such a cell, using the two-dimensional finite-difference iterative method. Our results show that with the cell gap decreasing, the core of the defect explodes, and the biaxiality propagates inside the cell. At a critical value of dc* ≈ 9ξ (where ξ is the characteristic length for order-parameter changes), the exchange solution is stable, while the defect core solution becomes metastable. Comparing to the case with no initial disclination, the value at which the exchange solution becomes stable increases relatively. At a critical separation of dc ≈ 6ξ, the system undergoes a structural transition, and the defect core merges into a biaxial layer with large biaxiality. For weak anchoring boundary conditions, a similar structural transition takes place at a relative lower critical value. Because of the weakened frustration, the asymmetric boundary conditions repel the defect to the weak anchoring boundary and have a relatively lower critical value of da, where the shape of the defect deforms. Further, the response time between two very close cell gaps is about tens of microseconds, and the response becomes slower as the defect explodes. PMID:24351807

  2. Chirality Detection Using Nematic Liquid Crystal Droplets on Anisotropic Surfaces.

    PubMed

    Rudquist, Per; Dietrich, Clarissa F; Mark, Andrew G; Giesselmann, Frank

    2016-06-21

    Nematic liquid crystals (NLCs) form helical macroscopic structures through chiral induction when doped with chiral species. We describe a very simple, though highly sensitive method for determination of handedness and pitch of the induced twist in the case of very weak twisting powers of such chiral dopants. A tiny drop-typically less than 10 nL-of the chiral doped NLC is placed on a plate promoting a uniform planar surface anchoring of the liquid crystal director. At the curved NLC-air interface the anchoring is homeotropic and in the sessile droplets we get a locally twisted hybrid director structure with a disclination line extending across the droplet. The configuration of the disclination line (S-like or backwards S-like) reveals the sign of twisting power and extremely large pitch values in the range of 10 mm can easily be measured. We demonstrate the method using the standard NLC 4-cyano-4'-pentylbiphenyl (5CB), weakly doped with the chiral material 2-hydroxy-2-phenylacetic acid (mandelic acid). PMID:27244587

  3. Nematic liquid crystal interfaces for chemical and biological detection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Most, Darrin R.; VanTreeck, Heidi J.; Grinwald, Bart A.; Kupcho, Kurt A.; Sen, Avijit; Bonds, Michael D.; Anhalt, Karla; Israel, Barbara A.; Acharya, Bharat R.

    2011-03-01

    Nematic liquid crystals (NLCs) have traditionally been used in displays and other electro-optical applications where the orientation of NLC is manipulated by using an external electric field to display the information. In recent years, there have been significant advances in unconventional applications of NLCs in photonics, sensors, and diagnostics. In this paper, the application of NLCs for detection of vapor phase chemicals and biological entities is presented. When NLCs are in contact with another medium (solid, liquid or air) the delicate interplay between the properties of medium and NLCs determines the nature of the alignment assumed by NLCs at the interface. Interfaces functionalized with select chemical or biological entities promote alignment of NLCs in predetermined orientations (perpendicular or parallel to that interface) that are primarily dictated by local interactions at the interface. When these interfaces are exposed to target analytes, the interactions at the interfaces are perturbed and the NLC films undergo orientational transitions from perpendicular to parallel alignment, or vice versa. The orientational transition can be detected by viewing the film of NLCs between crossed polarizers (optical signal) or by measuring the differential capacitance associated with the change in alignment of NLCs (electrical signal). By engineering surfaces with different interfacial properties, sensors based on this principle have been demonstrated to selectively detect a wide variety of chemical and biological analytes that have relevance in industrial hygiene, environmental monitoring, homeland security, diagnostics, and biomedical applications.

  4. Generation of harmonics and supercontinuum in nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Nyushkov, B N; Trashkeev, S I; Klementyev, Vasilii M; Pivtsov, V S; Kobtsev, Sergey M

    2013-02-28

    Nonlinear optical properties of nematic liquid crystals (NLC) have been investigated. A technique for efficient laser frequency conversion in a microscopic NLC volume deposited on an optical fibre end face is experimentally demonstrated. An efficient design of a compact NLC-based IR frequency converter with a fibre input and achromatic collimator is proposed and implemented. Simultaneous generation of the second and third harmonics is obtained for the first time under pumping NLC by a 1.56-mm femtosecond fibre laser. The second-harmonic generation efficiency is measured to be about 1 %, while the efficiency of third-harmonic generation is several tenths of percent. A strong polarisation dependence of the third-harmonic generation efficiency is revealed. When pumping NLC by a cw laser, generation of spectral supercontinua (covering the visible and near-IR spectral ranges) is observed. The nonlinear effects revealed can be due to the light-induced change in the orientational order in liquid crystals, which breaks the initial symmetry and leads to formation of disclination structures. The NLC optical nonlinearity is believed to be of mixed orientationalelectronic nature as a whole. (laser optics 2012)

  5. Acoustooptic Effects of Nematic Liquid Crystals Induced by Elastic Wave Propagating in Glass Substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moritake, Hiroshi; Seike, Tadaaki; Toda, Kohji

    1999-05-01

    An elastic wave delay line with a glass plate as a propagation medium is investigated in relations to acoustooptic effects of nematic liquid crystals. A nematic liquid crystal cell is mounted on the central region of a glass plate for elastic wave propagation. The elastic wave propagating in the glass plate interacts with the liquid crystal in a wide frequency range. Two types of periodical domain structures are observed in the nematic liquid crystal cell under the existence of the elastic wave. One exists in both homeotropically and homogeneously aligned cells, and depends not on the kind of liquid crystal but on the carrier frequency of the elastic wave. The other is recognized only in homogeneously aligned cells and depends on the layer thickness and the kind of liquid crystal, but not on the carrier frequency of the elastic wave. Both periodical domain structures are induced by the elastic wave propagating in the glass plate.

  6. Influence of shear flow on the Fréedericksz transition in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Makarov, D V; Zakhlevnykh, A N

    2006-10-01

    Within the framework of Ericksen-Leslie continuum theory we analyze the influence of shear flow on the magnetic-field-induced Fréedericksz transition in nematic liquid crystal with rodlike molecules. We consider three basic orientational configurations of a nematic planar layer in the uniform magnetic field. Conditions of rigid director coupling on the boundaries of the layer and constant shear flow gradient inside the layer are used. We exhibit some flow aligning effects for nematic liquid crystals with various ratio of rotary viscosities and investigate how unequal elastic constants (elastic anisotropy) alter the magnetic Fréedericksz transition in sheared nematics. Our calculations predict that surface boundary effects in nematic films and magnetic field action lead to existence of stationary flow regimes in the so-called nonflow aligning nematics, otherwise, surface and magnetic forces extend the range of viscous coefficient values corresponding to the flow aligning regimes. We show that imposing of shear flow on the Fréedericksz transition leads to a threshold behavior or to a "smoothing" of the transition. It depends on the orientation of the nematic layer in magnetic field and magnitudes of rotary viscous coefficients. PMID:17155081

  7. Predicting photoisomerization profile of the highly polymerized nematic azobenzene liquid crystal network: First principle calculation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yun, J.; Li, C.; Chung, H.; Choi, J.; Cho, M.

    2015-05-01

    The cis profile of azobenzene is a key factor in predicting the photodeformation of the nematic azobenzene liquid crystal network (LCN). An ab initio based method for predicting the photoisomerization profile of azobenzene is developed by coupling the stimulated Raman adiabatic passage (STIRAP) method with non-linear Beers law, and compared with experimental data. Using this combined method, we calculate the photoisomerization profile of azobenzene with various light input conditions. We identify the cis profile of the nematic LCN structure evolves into a step-like decaying shape when the direction of polarized light is parallel to the nematic direction.

  8. Electron paramagnetic resonance studies of slowly tumbling vanadyl spin probes in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bruno, G. V.; Harrington, J. K.; Eastman, M. P.

    1978-01-01

    An analysis of EPR line shapes by the method of Polnaszek, Bruno, and Freed is made for slowly tumbling vanadyl spin probes in viscous nematic liquid crystals. The use of typical vanadyl complexes as spin probes for nematic liquid crystals is shown to simplify the theoretical analysis and the subsequent interpretation. Rotational correlation times tau and orientational ordering parameters S sub Z where slow tumbling effects are expected to be observed in vanadyl EPR spectra are indicated in a plot. Analysis of the inertial effects on the probe reorientation, which are induced by slowly fluctuating torque components of the local solvent structure, yield quantitative values for tau and S sub Z. The weakly ordered probe VOAA is in the slow tumbling region and displays these inertial effects throughout the nematic range of BEPC and Phase V. VOAA exhibits different reorientation behavior near the isotropic-nematic transition temperature than that displayed far below this transition temperature.

  9. Direct mapping of local director field of nematic liquid crystals at the nanoscale.

    PubMed

    Xia, Yu; Serra, Francesca; Kamien, Randall D; Stebe, Kathleen J; Yang, Shu

    2015-12-15

    Liquid crystals (LCs), owing to their anisotropy in molecular ordering, are of wide interest in both the display industry and soft matter as a route to more sophisticated optical objects, to direct phase separation, and to facilitate colloidal assemblies. However, it remains challenging to directly probe the molecular-scale organization of nonglassy nematic LC molecules without altering the LC directors. We design and synthesize a new type of nematic liquid crystal monomer (LCM) system with strong dipole-dipole interactions, resulting in a stable nematic phase and strong homeotropic anchoring on silica surfaces. Upon photopolymerization, the director field can be faithfully "locked," allowing for direct visualization of the LC director field and defect structures by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) in real space with 100-nm resolution. Using this technique, we study the nematic textures in more complex LC/colloidal systems and calculate the extrapolation length of the LCM. PMID:26621729

  10. Direct mapping of local director field of nematic liquid crystals at the nanoscale

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Yu; Serra, Francesca; Kamien, Randall D.; Stebe, Kathleen J.; Yang, Shu

    2015-01-01

    Liquid crystals (LCs), owing to their anisotropy in molecular ordering, are of wide interest in both the display industry and soft matter as a route to more sophisticated optical objects, to direct phase separation, and to facilitate colloidal assemblies. However, it remains challenging to directly probe the molecular-scale organization of nonglassy nematic LC molecules without altering the LC directors. We design and synthesize a new type of nematic liquid crystal monomer (LCM) system with strong dipole–dipole interactions, resulting in a stable nematic phase and strong homeotropic anchoring on silica surfaces. Upon photopolymerization, the director field can be faithfully “locked,” allowing for direct visualization of the LC director field and defect structures by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) in real space with 100-nm resolution. Using this technique, we study the nematic textures in more complex LC/colloidal systems and calculate the extrapolation length of the LCM. PMID:26621729

  11. Nematic Director Reorientation at Solid and Liquid Interfaces under Flow: SAXS Studies in a Microfluidic Device

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    In this work we investigate the interplay between flow and boundary condition effects on the orientation field of a thermotropic nematic liquid crystal under flow and confinement in a microfluidic device. Two types of experiments were performed using synchrotron small-angle X-ray-scattering (SAXS). In the first, a nematic liquid crystal flows through a square-channel cross section at varying flow rates, while the nematic director orientation projected onto the velocity/velocity gradient plane is measured using a 2D detector. At moderate-to-high flow rates, the nematic director is predominantly aligned in the flow direction, but with a small tilt angle of ∼±11° in the velocity gradient direction. The director tilt angle is constant throughout most of the channel width but switches sign when crossing the center of the channel, in agreement with the Ericksen–Leslie–Parodi (ELP) theory. At low flow rates, boundary conditions begin to dominate, and a flow profile resembling the escaped radial director configuration is observed, where the director is seen to vary more smoothly from the edges (with homeotropic alignment) to the center of the channel. In the second experiment, hydrodynamic focusing is employed to confine the nematic phase into a sheet of liquid sandwiched between two layers of Triton X-100 aqueous solutions. The average nematic director orientation shifts to some extent from the flow direction toward the liquid boundaries, although it remains unclear if one tilt angle is dominant through most of the nematic sheet (with abrupt jumps near the boundaries) or if the tilt angle varies smoothly between two extreme values (∼90 and 0°). The technique presented here could be applied to perform high-throughput measurements for assessing the influence of different surfactants on the orientation of nematic phases and may lead to further improvements in areas such as boundary lubrication and clarifying the nature of defect structures in LC displays. PMID

  12. Nematic director reorientation at solid and liquid interfaces under flow: SAXS studies in a microfluidic device.

    PubMed

    Silva, Bruno F B; Zepeda-Rosales, Miguel; Venkateswaran, Neeraja; Fletcher, Bretton J; Carter, Lester G; Matsui, Tsutomu; Weiss, Thomas M; Han, Jun; Li, Youli; Olsson, Ulf; Safinya, Cyrus R

    2015-04-14

    In this work we investigate the interplay between flow and boundary condition effects on the orientation field of a thermotropic nematic liquid crystal under flow and confinement in a microfluidic device. Two types of experiments were performed using synchrotron small-angle X-ray-scattering (SAXS). In the first, a nematic liquid crystal flows through a square-channel cross section at varying flow rates, while the nematic director orientation projected onto the velocity/velocity gradient plane is measured using a 2D detector. At moderate-to-high flow rates, the nematic director is predominantly aligned in the flow direction, but with a small tilt angle of ∼±11° in the velocity gradient direction. The director tilt angle is constant throughout most of the channel width but switches sign when crossing the center of the channel, in agreement with the Ericksen-Leslie-Parodi (ELP) theory. At low flow rates, boundary conditions begin to dominate, and a flow profile resembling the escaped radial director configuration is observed, where the director is seen to vary more smoothly from the edges (with homeotropic alignment) to the center of the channel. In the second experiment, hydrodynamic focusing is employed to confine the nematic phase into a sheet of liquid sandwiched between two layers of Triton X-100 aqueous solutions. The average nematic director orientation shifts to some extent from the flow direction toward the liquid boundaries, although it remains unclear if one tilt angle is dominant through most of the nematic sheet (with abrupt jumps near the boundaries) or if the tilt angle varies smoothly between two extreme values (∼90 and 0°). The technique presented here could be applied to perform high-throughput measurements for assessing the influence of different surfactants on the orientation of nematic phases and may lead to further improvements in areas such as boundary lubrication and clarifying the nature of defect structures in LC displays. PMID

  13. Electrically controllable Fresnel lens in 90° twisted nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Kuo, Chie-Tong; Li, Chien-Yu; Lin, Shih-Hung; Yeh, Hui-Chen

    2015-10-01

    This study presents a theoretical analysis and experimental demonstration of an electrically controllable Fresnel lens in a 90° twisted nematic liquid crystal cell. The cell gap was chosen to satisfy the Gooch-Tarry conditions, and therefore, the polarization rotation effect was valid regardless of the incident polarization direction. The polarization sensitivity of the diffraction efficiency of the 90° twisted nematic Fresnel lens was dependent on the applied voltage regime. Theoretical calculations effectively explain the experimental results. PMID:26480119

  14. Stability of the Melting Hedgehog in the Landau-de Gennes Theory of Nematic Liquid Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ignat, Radu; Nguyen, Luc; Slastikov, Valeriy; Zarnescu, Arghir

    2014-09-01

    We investigate stability properties of the radially symmetric solution corresponding to the vortex defect (the so called "melting hedgehog") in the framework of the Landau-de Gennes model of nematic liquid crystals. We prove local stability of the melting hedgehog under arbitrary Q-tensor valued perturbations in the temperature regime near the critical supercooling temperature. As a consequence of our method, we also rediscover the loss of stability of the vortex defect in the deep nematic regime.

  15. Stability of the Melting Hedgehog in the Landau-de Gennes Theory of Nematic Liquid Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ignat, Radu; Nguyen, Luc; Slastikov, Valeriy; Zarnescu, Arghir

    2015-02-01

    We investigate stability properties of the radially symmetric solution corresponding to the vortex defect (the so called "melting hedgehog") in the framework of the Landau-de Gennes model of nematic liquid crystals. We prove local stability of the melting hedgehog under arbitrary Q-tensor valued perturbations in the temperature regime near the critical supercooling temperature. As a consequence of our method, we also rediscover the loss of stability of the vortex defect in the deep nematic regime.

  16. Anomalous swimming behavior of bacteria in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sokolov, Andrey; Zhou, Shuang; Lavrentovich, Oleg; Aranson, Igor

    2015-03-01

    Flagellated bacteria stop swimming in isotropic media of viscosity higher than 0.06kgm-1s-1. However, Bacillus Subtilis slows down by only about 30% in a nematic chromonic liquid crystal (CLC, 14wt% DSCG in water), where the anisotropic viscosity can be as high as 6kgm-1s-1. The bacteria velocity (Vb) is linear with the flagella rotation frequency. The phase velocity of the flagella Vf ~ 2Vb in LC, as compared to Vf ~ 10Vb in water. The flow generated by the bacteria is localized along the bacterial body axis, decaying slowly over tens of micrometers along, but rapidly over a few micrometers across this axis. The concentrated flow grants the bacteria new ability to carry cargo particles in LC, ability not seen in their habitat isotropic media. We attribute these anomalous features to the anisotropy of viscosity of the CLC, namely, the viscosities of splay and twist is hundreds times higher than that of bend deformation, which provides extra boost of swimming efficiency and enables the bacteria swim at considerable speed in a viscous medium. Our findings can potentially lead to applications such as particle transportation in microfluidic devices. A.S and I.A are supported by the US DOE, Office of Science, BES, Materials Science and Engineering Division. S.Z. and O.D.L are supported by NSF DMR 1104850, DMS-1434185.

  17. Polarization converting textures of nematic liquid crystal in glass cavities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xiahui; Xu, Miao; Ren, Hongwen

    2014-01-01

    When a nematic liquid crystal (LC) is filled in a glass cavity, the LC molecules present azimuthal orientations in the cavity. If the surface of the cavity is coated with a homeotropic polyimide, then the LC molecules exhibit radial orientations. By treating the LC on one side of the cavity with homogeneous alignment, the former orientations change to a twisted-azimuthal texture, while the latter orientations change to a twisted-radial texture. Both textures are verified experimentally, and they can convert a linearly polarization light to an azimuthal and/or radial polarization light, depending on the polarization direction of the incident light. In contrast to previous approaches, various LC textures can be easily formed in a cavity, and the fabrication procedure is simple. Since the LC texture is confined in a cavity, an array pattern of the texture can be obtained, if the employed substrate has multiple cavities. A LC with twisted-azimuthal and/or twisted-radial textures in a cavity array has potential applications in phase modulation, polarization compensating, sharp focus, and material processing.

  18. Amplitude equations for the electrohydrodynamic instability in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaiser, M.; Pesch, W.

    1993-12-01

    We study the near-threshold behavior of electrohydrodynamic convection (EHC) in planarly aligned nematic liquid crystals in the (low-frequency) conduction regime. The investigations are based on a rigorous and systematic weakly nonlinear analysis of the standard hydrodynamic equations leading to a reduced description in terms of order-parameter equations. The typical experimental stability regimes in control parameter and wave-number space are identified for normal rolls near threshold. In particular, the decisive role of mean-flow effects in triggering the typical secondary zigzag instability leading to oblique rolls is emphasized. Subsequently, a set of coupled amplitude equations is derived directly from the basic equations that includes the mean-flow effects and higher-order gradient terms important at least in EHC. Simulations of the amplitude equations point to the possible existence of more than one attractor beyond the zigzag destabilization line, which might explain the sometimes conflicting experimental results. The scenario of ``weak turbulence'' (sometimes called ``defect turbulence'') is well accounted for by the theory.

  19. Pattern formation in electrohydrodynamic convection of a nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gheorghiu, Nadina

    2003-10-01

    The first part of this dissertation is a study of the selection mechanism for the dendritic growth pattern of electrohydrodynamic convection (EHC) in a nematic liquid crystal (NLC). The cell gap d, the magnetic field H, and the voltage V are systematically varied. The transition from the non-convective state to the convective state is first order-like, although in this case it occurs in a nonequilibrium one-phase system. In the layer plane, the two-fold dendritic pattern grows about the only anisotropy direction, perpendicular to the homogeneous director alignment. While for crystalline dendrites the tip radius of curvature rho and the growth speed v are sharply selected, these dendrites show partial selection. At fixed d, H, and V, rho or v for different dendrites varies each within a band. There is no systematic dependence of rho on V. Thus, these dendrites represent an entirely new selection problem for pattern formation. The non-convective state is anisotropic in the plane of the pattern within a (magnetic coherence) length xim of each substrate. The degree of anisotropy decays with xim/d and the selection becomes less sharp. In contrast to sharply interfaced solidification patterns, these dendrites are outlined by a diffuse boundary, which width w ˜ 2xim. While anisotropic surface tension stabilizes crystalline growth, the magnetic field stabilizes this dendritic growth. Finding where and what scale convection first starts is important for understanding pattern selection in EHC. In the second part of this dissertation, fluorescence confocal polarizing microscopy (FCPM) is employed to study normal dielectric rolls (NDRs) in a NLC. While polarizing microscopy gives a two-dimensional information of the integrated three-dimensional (3D) pattern of optical birefringence, FCPM can uniquely map 3D orientational patterns in LC. FCPM visualizes the intensity of polarized fluorescence light emitted by the dye molecules aligned by the LC molecules. The fluorescence

  20. Liquid relaxation: A new Parodi-like relation for nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Biscari, Paolo; DiCarlo, Antonio; Turzi, Stefano S.

    2016-05-01

    We put forward a hydrodynamic theory of nematic liquid crystals that includes both anisotropic elasticity and dynamic relaxation. Liquid remodeling is encompassed through a continuous update of the shear-stress free configuration. The low-frequency limit of the dynamical theory reproduces the classical Ericksen-Leslie theory, but it predicts two independent identities between the six Leslie viscosity coefficients. One replicates Parodi's relation, while the other—which involves five Leslie viscosities in a nonlinear way—is new. We discuss its significance, and we test its validity against evidence from physical experiments, independent theoretical predictions, and molecular-dynamics simulations.

  1. Maier-Saupe model for a mixture of uniaxial and biaxial molecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nascimento, E. S.; Henriques, E. F.; Vieira, A. P.; Salinas, S. R.

    2015-12-01

    We introduce shape variations in a liquid-crystalline system by considering an elementary Maier-Saupe lattice model for a mixture of uniaxial and biaxial molecules. Shape variables are treated in the annealed (thermalized) limit. We analyze the thermodynamic properties of this system in terms of temperature T , concentration c of intrinsically biaxial molecules, and a parameter Δ associated with the degree of biaxiality of the molecules. At the mean-field level, we use standard techniques of statistical mechanics to draw global phase diagrams, which are shown to display a rich structure, including uniaxial and biaxial nematic phases, a reentrant ordered region, and many distinct multicritical points. Also, we use the formalism to write an expansion of the free energy in order to make contact with the Landau-de Gennes theory of nematic phase transitions.

  2. Reversible switching of liquid crystal micro-particles in a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Imamura, Koki; Yoshida, Hiroyuki; Ozaki, Masanori

    2016-01-21

    Liquid crystal micro-particles are functional materials possessing optical and dielectric anisotropies originating from the arrangement of rod-like molecules within the particles. Although they can be switched by an electric field, particles dispersed in isotropic hosts usually cannot return to their original state, because there is no restoration force acting on the particles. Here, we describe reversible switching of liquid crystal micro-particles by dispersing them in a nematic liquid crystal host. We fabricate square micro-particles with unidirectional molecular alignment and investigate their static and dynamic electro-optic properties by applying an in-plane electric field. The behavior of the micro-particles is well-described by the theoretical model we construct, making this study potentially useful for the development of liquid crystal-liquid crystal particle composites with engineered properties. PMID:26514389

  3. Long Range Order of Motile Defects in Active Nematic Liquid Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Decamp, Stephen; Redner, Gabriel; Hagan, Michael; Dogic, Zvonimir

    2015-03-01

    Active 2D nematic liquid crystals exist in a dynamical steady state in which +1/2 and -1/2 defects are spontaneously generated and annihilated at a constant rate. Active stresses in the material are thought to destroy nematic order through the generation of these defects. We present an active nematic mesophase in which motile defects of charge +1/2 spontaneously acquire long range order. The system is composed of microtubule filaments and kinesin motor protein clusters which are confined to a flat, 2D oil-water interface. The addition of ATP results in microtubule bundles which exhibit kinesin-driven extensile motion. By tuning the density of the nematic material at the 2D interface, we can tune the order parameter of the +1/2 defect ordered mesophase. Additionally, the defect alignment persists over samples at the centimeter scale.

  4. Recent developments of analysis for hydrodynamic flow of nematic liquid crystals

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Fanghua; Wang, Changyou

    2014-01-01

    The study of hydrodynamics of liquid crystals leads to many fascinating mathematical problems, which has prompted various interesting works recently. This article reviews the static Oseen–Frank theory and surveys some recent progress on the existence, regularity, uniqueness and large time asymptotic of the hydrodynamic flow of nematic liquid crystals. We will also propose a few interesting questions for future investigations. PMID:25332384

  5. In situ laser-imprinted surface realignment of a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Mirri, Giorgio; Škarabot, Miha; Muševič, Igor

    2015-05-01

    We present a new method for the in-plane realignment of nematic liquid crystals in already fully assembled cells with uni-directionally rubbed polyimide as an aligning layer. We use nematic liquid crystals (NLCs) with a relatively high nematic-isotropic transition temperature and we focus the IR laser beam of the laser tweezers selectively onto one or the other of the inner interfaces. The heat generated by the IR absorption locally melts the liquid crystal and creates an isotropic island with well-defined molecular anchoring at the nematic-isotropic interface. By scanning the laser beam along a pre-defined line, the moving isotropic-nematic interface leaves behind a well oriented LC domain, with LC molecules aligned at 45° to the rubbing direction. If we in addition move the sample with respect to this scanning line, we would be able to selectively realign micro-domains of the liquid crystal with respect to the original alignment induced by the PI rubbing. The realignment can be performed independently on each LC-glass interface, thereby producing predefined domains with customized and controllable alignment within an otherwise uniformly aligned cell. PMID:25790268

  6. Straining soft colloids in aqueous nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mushenheim, Peter C.; Pendery, Joel S.; Weibel, Douglas B.; Spagnolie, Saverio E.; Abbott, Nicholas L.

    2016-05-01

    Liquid crystals (LCs), because of their long-range molecular ordering, are anisotropic, elastic fluids. Herein, we report that elastic stresses imparted by nematic LCs can dynamically shape soft colloids and tune their physical properties. Specifically, we use giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) as soft colloids and explore the interplay of mechanical strain when the GUVs are confined within aqueous chromonic LC phases. Accompanying thermal quenching from isotropic to LC phases, we observe the elasticity of the LC phases to transform initially spherical GUVs (diameters of 2–50 µm) into two distinct populations of GUVs with spindle-like shapes and aspect ratios as large as 10. Large GUVs are strained to a small extent (R/r < 1.54, where R and r are the major and minor radii, respectively), consistent with an LC elasticity-induced expansion of lipid membrane surface area of up to 3% and conservation of the internal GUV volume. Small GUVs, in contrast, form highly elongated spindles (1.54 < R/r < 10) that arise from an efflux of LCs from the GUVs during the shape transformation, consistent with LC-induced straining of the membrane leading to transient membrane pore formation. A thermodynamic analysis of both populations of GUVs reveals that the final shapes adopted by these soft colloids are dominated by a competition between the LC elasticity and an energy (˜0.01 mN/m) associated with the GUV–LC interface. Overall, these results provide insight into the coupling of strain in soft materials and suggest previously unidentified designs of LC-based responsive and reconfigurable materials.

  7. Straining soft colloids in aqueous nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Mushenheim, Peter C; Pendery, Joel S; Weibel, Douglas B; Spagnolie, Saverio E; Abbott, Nicholas L

    2016-05-17

    Liquid crystals (LCs), because of their long-range molecular ordering, are anisotropic, elastic fluids. Herein, we report that elastic stresses imparted by nematic LCs can dynamically shape soft colloids and tune their physical properties. Specifically, we use giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) as soft colloids and explore the interplay of mechanical strain when the GUVs are confined within aqueous chromonic LC phases. Accompanying thermal quenching from isotropic to LC phases, we observe the elasticity of the LC phases to transform initially spherical GUVs (diameters of 2-50 µm) into two distinct populations of GUVs with spindle-like shapes and aspect ratios as large as 10. Large GUVs are strained to a small extent (R/r < 1.54, where R and r are the major and minor radii, respectively), consistent with an LC elasticity-induced expansion of lipid membrane surface area of up to 3% and conservation of the internal GUV volume. Small GUVs, in contrast, form highly elongated spindles (1.54 < R/r < 10) that arise from an efflux of LCs from the GUVs during the shape transformation, consistent with LC-induced straining of the membrane leading to transient membrane pore formation. A thermodynamic analysis of both populations of GUVs reveals that the final shapes adopted by these soft colloids are dominated by a competition between the LC elasticity and an energy (∼0.01 mN/m) associated with the GUV-LC interface. Overall, these results provide insight into the coupling of strain in soft materials and suggest previously unidentified designs of LC-based responsive and reconfigurable materials. PMID:27140607

  8. Photorefractive Bragg gratings in nematic liquid crystals aligned by a magnetic field

    SciTech Connect

    Wiederrecht, G.P.; Wasielewski, M.R. |

    1999-06-01

    Photorefractive Bragg gratings are observed in low-molar-mass nematic liquid crystals doped with electron donor and acceptor molecules. This is accomplished by alignment of the nematic liquid crystals in a 0.3 T magnetic field, which produces thicker homeotropic aligned samples than traditional surfactant techniques. Grating fringe spacings as low as 3.7 {mu}m are achieved with 176-{mu}m-thick samples, producing grating {ital Q} values of 33. Up to this point, low molar mass nematic liquid crystals have exhibited photorefractive gratings with Q{le}1. Asymmetric two-beam coupling and photoconductivity experiments are performed to verify the photorefractive origin of the gratings. {copyright} {ital 1999 American Institute of Physics.}

  9. Colloidal interactions and self-assembly of plasmonic metal pyramids in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Sungoh; Smalyukh, Ivan

    Combining ordered structure of soft matter systems, such as liquid crystals, with the unique optical properties of metal nano- and micro-particles is a promising approach of designing and realizing mesostructured composites with pre-engineered properties. In this work, we disperse nanofabricated pyramid-shaped plasmonic particles in a nematic host fluid and demonstrate that the particles spontaneously align with respect to the uniform far-field liquid crystal director. This alignment is driven by minimization of the surface anchoring and bulk elastic free energies of the nematic host. Interestingly, multiple stable and metastable orientations of these particles can be controllably observed. Using laser tweezers and video microscopy, we explore inter-particle pair interaction forces as well as the ensuing colloidal self-assembly. We analyze this experimentally observed rich physical behavior of our soft matter composite by invoking electrostatic multipole analogy of elastic distortions induced by the particles in a nematic liquid crystal host and discuss potential practical uses.

  10. Surface alignment, anchoring transitions, optical properties, and topological defects in the nematic phase of thermotropic bent-core liquid crystal A131

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Senyuk, B.; Wonderly, H.; Mathews, M.; Li, Q.; Shiyanovskii, S. V.; Lavrentovich, O. D.

    2010-10-01

    We study optical, structural, and surface anchoring properties of thermotropic nematic bent-core material A131. The focus is on the features associated with orientational order as the material has been reported to exhibit not only the usual uniaxial nematic but also the biaxial nematic phase. We demonstrate that A131 experiences a surface anchoring transition from a perpendicular to tilted alignment when the temperature decreases. The features of the tilted state are consistent with surface-induced birefringence associated with smectic layering near the surface and a molecular tilt that changes along the normal to the substrates. The surface-induced birefringence is reduced to zero by a modest electric field that establishes a uniform uniaxial nematic state. Both refractive and absorptive optical properties of A131 are consistent with the uniaxial order. We found no evidence of the “polycrystalline” biaxial behavior in the cells placed in crossed electric and magnetic fields. We observe stable topological point defects (boojums and hedgehogs) and nonsingular “escaped” disclinations pertinent only to the uniaxial order. Finally, freely suspended films of A131 show uniaxial nematic and smectic textures; a decrease in the film thickness expands the temperature range of stability of smectic textures, supporting the idea of surface-induced smectic layering. Our conclusion is that A131 features only a uniaxial nematic phase and that the apparent biaxiality is caused by subtle surface effects rather than by the bulk biaxial phase.

  11. Dynamics and Instabilities of an overdamped active nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Putzig, Elias; Baskaran, Aparna

    Active nematics have been studied extensively in the context of suspensions of active particles, with a Stokes equation describing the flow of the surrounding fluid. Here we will present a continuum model of an overdamped (often termed 'dry') active nematic, where activity enters through self-induced flows. These flows represent the ability of the internal forces to convect, shear, or rotate the nematic order. The self-induced shear gives rise to an instability in the homogeneous ordered state which is analogous to that seen in active suspensions. The self-induced rotation gives rise to a new instability. A phase diagram from this model will be presented, and the phenomenology will be compared with what is seen in experimental and simulated active systems. We would like to acknowledge Grant support through NSF (NSF-DMR-1149266), (DMR-0820492), (NIH-5T32EB009419) and IGERT (DGE-1068620).

  12. Orientational optical nonlinearity induced by comb-shaped polymers in a nematic liquid crystal

    SciTech Connect

    Budagovsky, I. A.; Zolot'ko, A. S. Ochkin, V. N.; Smayev, M. P.; Bobrovsky, A. Yu.; Shibaev, V. P.; Barnik, M. I.

    2008-01-15

    The effect of optical orientation in nematic liquid crystals containing small additions of high-molecular compounds, i.e., comb-shaped polymers with light-absorbing azobenzene side fragments, was studied. The effects of light-induced reorientation of the director of nematic liquid crystals caused by light absorption of polymers and a low-molecular compound with a structure similar to side fragments of the polymers were compared in detail. An explanation was proposed for large values of the orientational nonlinearity induced by polymers.

  13. Photoinduced in-plane switching of a photochromic nematic liquid crystal

    SciTech Connect

    Komitov, L.; Yamamoto, J.; Yokoyama, H.

    2001-06-15

    Photoinduced fast in-plane switching of the optic axis of a photochromic nematic liquid crystal is found in a sandwich cell with substrates promoting a twofold degenerate anchoring. The switching process is governed by the modification of the anchoring conditions associated with the photoisomerization of the photochromic nematic liquid crystal. Photoinduced in-plane reorientation of the sample optic axis of about 80{degree} has been found. Together with the model of photoinduced in-plane switching, some implementations of this effect are briefly discussed. {copyright} 2001 American Institute of Physics.

  14. Control on the anomalous interactions of Airy beams in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Shen, Ming; Li, Wei; Lee, Ray-Kuang

    2016-04-18

    We reveal a controllable manipulation of anomalous interactions between Airy beams in nonlocal nematic liquid crystals numerically. With the help of an in-phase fundamental Gaussian beam, attraction between in-phase Airy beams can be suppressed or become a repulsive one to each other; whereas the attraction can be strengthened when the Gaussian beam is out-of-phase. In contrast to the repulsive interaction in local media, stationary bound states of breathing Airy soliton pairs are found in nematic liquid crystals. PMID:27137288

  15. Vitrified chiral-nematic liquid crystalline films for selective reflection and circular polarization

    SciTech Connect

    Katsis, D.; Chen, P.H.M.; Mastrangelo, J.C.; Chen, S.H.; Blanton, T.N.

    1999-06-01

    Nematic and left-handed chiral-nematic liquid crystals comprising methoxybiphenylbenzoate and (S)-(-)-1-phenylethylamine pendants to a cyclohexane core were synthesized and characterized. Although pristine samples were found to be polycrystalline, thermal quenching following heating to and annealing at elevated temperatures permitted the molecular orders characteristic of liquid crystalline mesomorphism to be frozen in the glassy state. Left at room temperature for 6 months, the vitrified liquid crystalline films showed no evidence of recrystallization. An orientational order parameter of 0.65 was determined with linear dichroism of a vitrified nematic film doped with Exalite 428 at a mole fraction of 0.0025. Birefringence dispersion of a blank vitrified nematic film was determined using a phase-difference method complemented by Abbe refractometry. A series of vitrified chiral-nematic films were prepared to demonstrate selective reflection and circular polarization with a spectral region tunable from blue to the infrared region by varying the chemical composition. The experimentally measured circular polarization spectra were found to agree with the Good-Karali theory in which all four system parameters were determined a priori: optical birefringence, average refractive index, selective reflection wavelength, and film thickness.

  16. Deuterium NMR investigations of field-induced director alignment in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Sugimura, Akihiko; Luckhurst, Geoffrey R

    2016-05-01

    There have been many investigations of the alignment of nematic liquid crystals by either a magnetic and/or an electric field. The basic features of the important hydrodynamic processes for low molar mass nematics have been characterized for the systems in their equilibrium and non-equilibrium states. These have been created using electric and magnetic fields to align the director and deuterium nuclear magnetic resonance ((2)H NMR) spectroscopy has been used to explore this alignment. Theoretical models based on continuum theory have been developed to complement the experiments and found to describe successfully the static and the dynamic phenomena observed. Such macroscopic behaviour has been investigated with (2)H NMR spectroscopy, in which an electric field in addition to the magnetic field of the spectrometer is used to rotate the director and produce a non-equilibrium state. This powerful technique has proved to be especially valuable for the investigation of nematic liquid crystals. Since the quadrupolar splitting for deuterons observed in the liquid crystal phase is determined by the angle between the director and the magnetic field, time-resolved and time-averaged (2)H NMR spectroscopies can be employed to investigate the dynamic director alignment process in a thin nematic film following the application or removal of an electric field. In this article, we describe some seminal studies to illustrate the field-induced static and dynamic director alignment for low molar mass nematics. PMID:27247284

  17. Anisotropic mechanical properties of a polymer nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taratuta, Victor G.; Lonberg, Franklin; Meyer, Robert B.

    1988-03-01

    A concentration dependence of elastic and viscous properties of nematic poly-γ-benzyl glutamate (PBG) was studied experimentally. The splay and bend constants are similar in magnitude, both linear in concentration. The twist constant is much smaller and constant. Viscosities exhibit large anisotropies. γ1 and ηc are roughly quadratic in concentration, ηa is linear, while ηb is constant. The data are self-consistently interpreted in terms of the theoretical models for nematics of semi flexible chains rather than those of rigid rods.

  18. Edge pinning and transformation of defect lines induced by faceted colloidal rings in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Senyuk, Bohdan; Liu, Qingkun; Yuan, Ye; Smalyukh, Ivan I.

    2016-06-01

    Nematic colloids exhibit a large diversity of topological defects and structures induced by colloidal particles in the orientationally ordered liquid crystal host fluids. These defects and field configurations define elastic interactions and medium-mediated self-assembly, as well as serve as model systems in exploiting the richness of interactions between topologies and geometries of colloidal surfaces, nematic fields, and topological singularities induced by particles in the nematic bulk and at nematic-colloidal interfaces. Here we demonstrate formation of quarter-strength surface-pinned disclinations, as well as a large variety of director field configurations with splitting and reconnections of singular defect lines, prompted by colloidal particles with sharp edges and size large enough to define strong boundary conditions. Using examples of faceted ring-shaped particles of genus g =1 , we explore transformation of defect lines as they migrate between locations in the bulk of the nematic host to edge-pinned locations at the surfaces of particles and vice versa, showing that this behavior is compliant with topological constraints defined by mathematical theorems. We discuss how transformation of bulk and surface defect lines induced by faceted colloids can enrich the diversity of elasticity-mediated colloidal interactions and how these findings may impinge on prospects of their controlled reconfigurable self-assembly in nematic hosts.

  19. Edge pinning and transformation of defect lines induced by faceted colloidal rings in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Senyuk, Bohdan; Liu, Qingkun; Yuan, Ye; Smalyukh, Ivan I

    2016-06-01

    Nematic colloids exhibit a large diversity of topological defects and structures induced by colloidal particles in the orientationally ordered liquid crystal host fluids. These defects and field configurations define elastic interactions and medium-mediated self-assembly, as well as serve as model systems in exploiting the richness of interactions between topologies and geometries of colloidal surfaces, nematic fields, and topological singularities induced by particles in the nematic bulk and at nematic-colloidal interfaces. Here we demonstrate formation of quarter-strength surface-pinned disclinations, as well as a large variety of director field configurations with splitting and reconnections of singular defect lines, prompted by colloidal particles with sharp edges and size large enough to define strong boundary conditions. Using examples of faceted ring-shaped particles of genus g=1, we explore transformation of defect lines as they migrate between locations in the bulk of the nematic host to edge-pinned locations at the surfaces of particles and vice versa, showing that this behavior is compliant with topological constraints defined by mathematical theorems. We discuss how transformation of bulk and surface defect lines induced by faceted colloids can enrich the diversity of elasticity-mediated colloidal interactions and how these findings may impinge on prospects of their controlled reconfigurable self-assembly in nematic hosts. PMID:27415331

  20. The inherent dynamics of isotropic- and nematic-phase liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frechette, Layne; Stratt, Richard M.

    2016-06-01

    The geodesic (shortest) pathways through the potential energy landscape of a liquid can be thought of as defining what its dynamics would be if thermal noise were removed, revealing what we have called the "inherent dynamics" of the liquid. We show how these inherent paths can be located for a model liquid crystal former, showing, in the process, how the molecular mechanisms of translation and reorientation compare in the isotropic and nematic phases of these systems. These mechanisms turn out to favor the preservation of local orientational order even under macroscopically isotropic conditions (a finding consistent with the experimental observation of pseudonematic domains in these cases), but disfavor the maintenance of macroscopic orientational order, even in the nematic phase. While the most efficient nematic pathways that maintain nematic order are indeed shorter than those that do not, it is apparently difficult for the system to locate these paths, suggesting that molecular motion in liquid-crystal formers is dynamically frustrated, and reinforcing the sense that there are strong analogies between liquid crystals and supercooled liquids.

  1. The inherent dynamics of isotropic- and nematic-phase liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Frechette, Layne; Stratt, Richard M

    2016-06-21

    The geodesic (shortest) pathways through the potential energy landscape of a liquid can be thought of as defining what its dynamics would be if thermal noise were removed, revealing what we have called the "inherent dynamics" of the liquid. We show how these inherent paths can be located for a model liquid crystal former, showing, in the process, how the molecular mechanisms of translation and reorientation compare in the isotropic and nematic phases of these systems. These mechanisms turn out to favor the preservation of local orientational order even under macroscopically isotropic conditions (a finding consistent with the experimental observation of pseudonematic domains in these cases), but disfavor the maintenance of macroscopic orientational order, even in the nematic phase. While the most efficient nematic pathways that maintain nematic order are indeed shorter than those that do not, it is apparently difficult for the system to locate these paths, suggesting that molecular motion in liquid-crystal formers is dynamically frustrated, and reinforcing the sense that there are strong analogies between liquid crystals and supercooled liquids. PMID:27334177

  2. Shape-controlled orientation and assembly of colloids with sharp edges in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Beller, Daniel A; Gharbi, Mohamed A; Liu, Iris B

    2015-02-14

    The assembly of colloids in nematic liquid crystals via topological defects has been extensively studied for spherical particles, and investigations of other colloid shapes have revealed a wide array of new assembly behaviors. We show, using Landau-de Gennes numerical modeling, that nematic defect configurations and colloidal assembly can be strongly influenced by fine details of colloid shape, in particular the presence of sharp edges. For cylinder, microbullet, and cube colloid geometries, we obtain the particles' equilibrium alignment directions and effective pair interaction potentials as a function of simple shape parameters. We find that defects pin at sharp edges, and that the colloid consequently orients at an oblique angle relative to the far-field nematic director that depends on the colloid's shape. This shape-dependent alignment, which we confirm in experimental measurements, raises the possibility of selecting self-assembly outcomes for colloids in liquid crystals by tuning particle geometry. PMID:25523158

  3. Seeing and Sculpting Nematic Liquid Crystal Textures with the Thom construction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Bryan; Alexander, Gareth

    2012-02-01

    Nematic liquid crystals are the foundation for modern display technology and also exhibit topological defects that can readily be seen under a microscope. Recently, experimentalists have been able to create and control several new families of interesting defect textures, including reconfigurably knotted defect lines around colloids (Ljubljana) and the ``toron,'' a pair of hedgehogs bound together with a ring of double-twist between them (CU Boulder). We apply the Thom construction from algebraic topology to visualize 3 dimensional molecular orientation fields as certain colored surfaces in the sample. These surfaces turn out to be a generalization to 3 dimensions of the dark brushes seen in Schlieren textures of two-dimensional samples of nematics. Manipulations of these surfaces correspond to deformations of the nematic orientation fields, giving a hands-on way to classify liquid crystal textures which is also easily computable from data and robust to noise.

  4. Chiral conglomerates observed for a binary mixture of a nematic liquid crystal trimer and 6OCB.

    PubMed

    Yoshizawa, Atsushi; Kato, Yusuke; Sasaki, Haruna; Takanishi, Yoichi; Yamamoto, Jun

    2015-12-01

    Dark conglomerates of domains with opposite handedness, which are designated as dark conglomerate phases (DC phases), have attracted much attention. After designing an achiral liquid crystal trimer, 4,4′-bis{7-[4-(5-octyloxypyrimidin-2-yl)phenyloxy]heptyloxy}biphenyl (1), which exhibits only a nematic phase, we prepared binary mixtures with some typical rod-like nematic liquid crystals, i.e., 4′-hexyloxy-4-cyanobiphenyl (6OCB), 2-(4-hexyloxyphenyl)-5-pentyloxypyrimidine (PPY), or 4-methyloxyphenyl 4-hexyloxycyclohexanecarboxylate (PCA), and investigated their phase transition behaviour. The binary mixtures containing 55–90 mol% of 6OCB were found to exhibit a nematic phase and a DC phase of chiral domains with opposite handedness. However, neither PPY nor PCA induced such a chiral conglomerate phase in the mixture with trimer 1. We discuss how core–core interactions contribute to produce such a chiral conglomerate phase. PMID:26395546

  5. Self-assembly via branching morphologies in nematic liquid-crystal nanocomposites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gurevich, Sebastian; Soule, Ezequiel; Rey, Alejandro; Reven, Linda; Provatas, Nikolas

    2014-08-01

    We demonstrate that the morphological diversity in liquid-crystal hybrid systems is much richer than previously anticipated. More importantly, we reveal the existence of a dual mechanism for self-assembly of nanoparticles via morphological instabilities at phase boundaries. Using numerical simulations, we study the growth of isolated nematic droplets in an isotropic liquid crystal (LC) doped with nanoparticles (NPs) and provide insight into the nature of microstructure evolution in LC hybrids. Our work expands the numerically accessible time and length scales in these systems, capturing morphologies which develop under the competition of nonequilibrium elastic interactions, diffusive instabilities mediated by NP transport, and the anisotropy of the nematic field. By mapping nematic morphologies, we also propose a methodology for estimating various important LC material parameters that are difficult to obtain experimentally.

  6. Possible enhancement of physical properties of nematic liquid crystals by doping of conducting polymer nanofibres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manda, R.; Dasari, V.; Sathyanarayana, P.; Rasna, M. V.; Paik, P.; Dhara, Surajit

    2013-09-01

    We report on the preparation and physical characterization of the colloidal suspension of conducting polyaniline (PANI) nanofibres and a nematic liquid crystal (5CB). The ac electrical conductivity anisotropy increases significantly and the rotational viscosity decreases with increasing wt. % of PANI nanofibres, while other physical properties such as birefringence, dielectric anisotropy, splay, and bend elastic constants are changed moderately. The high conductivity anisotropy of liquid crystal nano-composites is very useful for magnetically steered liquid crystal-nanofibre switch.

  7. Effects of temperature on the alignment and electrooptical responses of a nematic nanoscale liquid crystalline film.

    PubMed

    Lee, Lay Min; Kwon, Hye J; Nuzzo, Ralph G; Schweizer, Ken S

    2006-08-17

    The surface-induced alignment and electrooptical (EO) dynamics of a 50-nm-thick liquid crystalline (4-n-pentyl-4'-cyanobiphenyl; 5CB) film were studied at three temperatures: 25 and 33 degrees C (near the crystalline-nematic and nematic-isotropic transition temperatures, respectively) and 29 degrees C (a median temperature in the stability region of the nematic phase). The ZnSe surfaces that entrap the liquid crystal (LC) film have been polished unidirectionally to produce a grooved surface presenting nanometer-scale corrugations, a structure that induces a planar and homogeneous orientation in the nematic phase. The present work attempts to understand the influences of temperature on the surface-induced alignment and corresponding EO dynamics of the material. Step-scan time-resolved spectroscopy measurements were made to determine the rate constants for the electric-field-induced orientation and thermal relaxation of the 5CB film. The field-driven orientation rates vary sensitively with temperature across a range that spans the stability limits of the nematic phase; the relaxation rates, however, vary very little across this same temperature range. We propose that these differences in LC behavior arise as consequence of the interplay of the temperature dependence of the elastic constants, viscosity, and degree of orientational order of the LC medium. A simple theoretical model provides some understanding of these behaviors. PMID:16898726

  8. Tunable terahertz fishnet metamaterials based on thin nematic liquid crystal layers for fast switching

    PubMed Central

    Zografopoulos, Dimitrios C.; Beccherelli, Romeo

    2015-01-01

    The electrically tunable properties of liquid-crystal fishnet metamaterials are theoretically investigated in the terahertz spectrum. A nematic liquid crystal layer is introduced between two fishnet metallic structures, forming a voltage-controlled metamaterial cavity. Tuning of the nematic molecular orientation is shown to shift the magnetic resonance frequency of the metamaterial and its overall electromagnetic response. A shift higher than 150 GHz is predicted for common dielectric and liquid crystalline materials used in terahertz technology and for low applied voltage values. Owing to the few micron-thick liquid crystal cell, the response speed of the tunable metamaterial is calculated as orders of magnitude faster than in demonstrated liquid-crystal based non-resonant terahertz components. Such tunable metamaterial elements are proposed for the advanced control of electromagnetic wave propagation in terahertz applications. PMID:26272652

  9. Nematicons deflection through interaction with disclination lines in chiral nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Laudyn, Urszula A.; Karpierz, Miroslaw A.

    2013-11-25

    In this work, we study experimentally the interaction of spatial optical soliton in chiral nematic liquid crystals with disclination line created in a wedge shaped cell. We show that in most cases the self-confined beam preserves this interaction. We demonstrate that this interaction can be employed for efficient bending of the soliton trajectory, as a result of reflection and refraction.

  10. Surface charge and interactions of 20-nm nanocolloids in a nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryzhkova, A. V.; Škarabot, M.; Muševič, I.

    2015-04-01

    We studied real-time motion of individual 20-nm silica nanoparticles in a thin layer of a nematic liquid crystal using a dark-field optical videomicroscopy. By tracking the positions of individual nanoparticles we observed that particle pair interactions are not only mediated by strong thermal fluctuations of the nematic liquid crystal, but also with a repulsive force of electric origin. We determined the total electric charge of silanated silica particles in the nematic liquid crystal 5CB by observing the electric-force-driven drift. Surprisingly, the surface electric charge density depends on colloidal size and is ˜4.5 ×10-3C/m2 for 20-nm nanocolloids, and two orders of magnitude lower, i.e., ˜2.3 ×10-5C/m2 , for 1 -μ m colloids. We conclude that electrostatic repulsion between like-charged particles prevents the formation of permanent colloidal assemblies of nanometer size. We also observed strong attraction of 20-nm silica nanoparticles to confining polyimide surfaces and larger clusters, which gradually results in complete expulsion of nanoparticles from the nematic liquid crystal to the surfaces of the confining cell.

  11. A new method for solid surface topographical studies using nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baber, N.; Strugalski, Z.

    1984-03-01

    A new simple method has been developed to investigate the topography of a wide range of solid surfaces using nematic liquid crystals. Polarizing microscopy is employed. The usefulness of the method for detecting weak mechanical effects has been demonstrated. An application in criminology is foreseen.

  12. Surface charge and interactions of 20-nm nanocolloids in a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Ryzhkova, A V; Škarabot, M; Muševič, I

    2015-04-01

    We studied real-time motion of individual 20-nm silica nanoparticles in a thin layer of a nematic liquid crystal using a dark-field optical videomicroscopy. By tracking the positions of individual nanoparticles we observed that particle pair interactions are not only mediated by strong thermal fluctuations of the nematic liquid crystal, but also with a repulsive force of electric origin. We determined the total electric charge of silanated silica particles in the nematic liquid crystal 5CB by observing the electric-force-driven drift. Surprisingly, the surface electric charge density depends on colloidal size and is ∼4.5×10(-3)C/m(2) for 20-nm nanocolloids, and two orders of magnitude lower, i.e., ∼2.3×10(-5)C/m(2), for 1-μm colloids. We conclude that electrostatic repulsion between like-charged particles prevents the formation of permanent colloidal assemblies of nanometer size. We also observed strong attraction of 20-nm silica nanoparticles to confining polyimide surfaces and larger clusters, which gradually results in complete expulsion of nanoparticles from the nematic liquid crystal to the surfaces of the confining cell. PMID:25974514

  13. Periodic saddle-splay Freedericksz transition in nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Kralj, S; Rosso, R; Virga, E G

    2005-05-01

    By use of a local stability criterion recently introduced, we predict the existence of a periodic saddle-splay Freedericksz (PSSF) transition that adds to the existing class of classical Freedericksz transitions driven in a nematic cell by an external field. Occurrence of the PSSF transition requires a saddle-splay elastic constant with a large enough magnitude and different anchoring strengths at the plates confining the nematic cell. Otherwise, either the PSSF transition does not occur at all, or it requires a field higher than that associated with the classical aperiodic splay Freedericksz (ASF) transition, in which case it is not observable. Here, we determine the threshold field for which the PSSF precedes the ASF transition, as well as the structure of the destabilizing mode. PMID:15864725

  14. Nematic liquid-crystal alignment on stripe-patterned substrates.

    PubMed

    Anquetil-Deck, C; Cleaver, D J

    2010-09-01

    Here, we use molecular simulation to consider the behavior of a thin nematic film confined between two identical nanopatterned substrates. Using patterns involving alternating stripes of homeotropic-favoring and homogeneous-favoring substrates, we investigate the influence of the relative stripe width and the film thickness. From this, we show that the polar anchoring angle can be varied continuously from planar to homeotropic by appropriate tuning of these parameters. For very thin films with equal stripe widths, we observe orientational bridging, the surface patterning being written in domains which traverse the nematic film. This dual-bridging-domain arrangement breaks down with increase in film thickness, however, being replaced by a single tilted monodomain. Strong azimuthal anchoring in the plane of the stripe boundaries is observed for all systems. PMID:21230093

  15. Anisotropic Stokes drag and dynamic lift on spheres sedimenting in a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Rovner, Joel B; Reich, Daniel H; Leheny, Robert L

    2013-02-19

    The motion of silica spheres with homeotropic anchoring sedimenting within nematic liquid crystal 4-cyano-4'-pentylbiphenyl (5CB) has been studied at low Ericksen number. The magnitude of the spheres' velocity depends on the angle θ between the far-field nematic director and the gravitational force, indicating an anisotropic Stokes drag. When the director is oriented at an oblique angle to the gravitational force, the velocity also acquires a component normal to the force, demonstrating the existence of a lift force generated by the fluid. The magnitude and direction of the velocity as functions of θ quantitatively obey theoretically predicted forms. PMID:23379634

  16. Highly efficient lasing at difference frequencies in a nematic liquid crystal

    SciTech Connect

    Trashkeev, S I; Klementyev, V M; Pozdnyakov, G A

    2008-04-30

    Highly efficient lasing at difference frequencies is obtained in a nematic liquid crystal excited by several visible lines from a cw argon laser with a total power of 0.08-1.5 W. The maximum conversion efficiency was {approx}1% and the quadratic susceptibility was {approx}2x10{sup -6} m V{sup -1}. The field of application of the approximate mechanism of quadratic nonlinearity and frequency conversion considered in the paper requires specification. The nonlinear conversion of radiation in a nematic crystal has specific features compared to lasing at difference frequencies in solid crystals. (nonlinear optical phenomena)

  17. Temperature-tunable lasing in negative dielectric chiral nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Ri-Na; Wu, Jie; Wu, Xiao-Jiao; Dai, Qin

    2015-05-01

    In this work, negative dielectric nematic liquid crystal SLC12V620-400, chiral dopant S811, and laser dye DCM are used to prepare dye-doped chiral nematic liquid crystal laser sample. In order to investigate temperature-tunable lasing in negative dielectric chiral nematic liquid crystal, we measure the transmission and lasing spectrum of this sample. The photonic band gap (PBG) is observed to red shift with its width reducing from 71.2 nm to 40.2 nm, and its short-wavelength band edge moves 55.3 nm while the long-wavelength band edge only moves 24.9 nm. The wavelength of output laser is found to red shift from 614.4 nm at 20 °C to 662.8 nm at 67 °C, which is very different from the previous experimental phenomena. The refractive indices, parallel and perpendicular to the director in chiral nematic liquid crystal have different dependencies on temperature. The experiment shows that the pitch of this chiral nematic liquid crystal increases with the increase of temperature. The decrease in the PBG width, different shifts of band edges, and the red shift of laser wavelength are the results of refractive indices change and pitch thermal elongation. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 61378042), the Outstanding Young Scholars Growth Plans of Colleges and Universities in Liaoning Province, China (Grant No. LJQ2013022), the Science and Technology Research of Liaoning Province, China (Grant No. L2010465), the Open Funds of Liaoning Province Key Laboratory of Laser and Optical Information of Shenyang Ligong University, China.

  18. Regular and chaotic states in a local map description of sheared nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Kamil, S M; Sinha, Sudeshna; Menon, Gautam I

    2008-07-01

    We propose and study a local map capable of describing the full variety of dynamical states, ranging from regular to chaotic, obtained when a nematic liquid crystal is subjected to a steady shear flow. The map is formulated in terms of a quaternion parametrization of rotations of the local frame described by the axes of the nematic director, subdirector, and the joint normal to these, with two additional scalars describing the strength of ordering. Our model yields kayaking, wagging, tumbling, aligned, and coexistence states, accommodated in a phase diagram which closely resembles phase diagrams obtained using representations of the dynamics which are based on ordinary differential equations. We also study the behavior of the map under periodic perturbations of the shear rate. Such a map can serve as a building block for the construction of lattice models of the complex spatiotemporal states predicted for sheared nematics. PMID:18763972

  19. Healing of Defects at the Interface of Nematic Liquid Crystals and Structured Langmuir-Blodgett Monolayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petit-Garrido, Núria; Trivedi, Rahul P.; Ignés-Mullol, Jordi; Claret, Josep; Lapointe, Clayton; Sagués, Francesc; Smalyukh, Ivan I.

    2011-10-01

    We use Langmuir-Blodgett molecular monolayers and nematic liquid crystals as model two- and three-dimensional orientationally ordered systems to study the stability and healing of topological defects at their contact interfaces. Integer-strength defects at the monolayer induce disclinations of similar strength in the nematic that, however, do not propagate deep into the bulk, but rather form single- or double-split arch-shaped loops pinned to the interface. This behavior is qualitatively independent of the far-field director orientation and involves either half-integer singular or twist-escaped unity-strength nonsingular nematic disclinations. These two defect configurations can be selected by varying sample preparation given their comparable free energy, consistently with direct probing by use of laser tweezers.

  20. Anisotropic Stokes Drag and Dynamic Lift on Cylindrical Colloids in a Nematic Liquid Crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rovner, Joel; Lapointe, Clayton; Reich, Daniel; Leheny, Robert

    2011-03-01

    Unlike isotropic fluids, nematic liquid crystals exhibit a complex assortment of hydrodynamic properties that can strongly depend on the director field and local boundary conditions set by inclusions. To understand further these characteristics, measurements were taken of the Stokes drag on magnetic nanowires suspended in nematic 4-cyano-4'-pentylbiphenyl (5CB). Effective drag viscosities for wires moving perpendicular and parallel to the nematic director were measured and were found to differ by factors of approximately 0.88 to 2.4, depending on the wire orientation and surface anchoring. Additionally, a lift force was observed when wires were forced at an oblique angle to the director resulting in motion divergent from the line of force. The lift was greater for wires with homeotropic anchoring and smaller for wires with longitudinal anchoring, suggesting that the lift force can act as a mechanism for sorting colloidal particles according to their surface chemistry.

  1. Crystallization upon thermal annealing of a glass-forming liquid crystal in the nematic regime

    SciTech Connect

    Mastrangelo, J.C. |; Blanton, T.N.; Chen, S.H. |

    1995-04-24

    As an example of a novel class of glass-forming liquid crystals, compound (I) was synthesized and characterized to possess a nematic mesophase between {ital T}{sub {ital g}} and {ital T}{sub {ital c}} as the pristine crystal was heated beyond its {ital T}{sub {ital m}} followed by quenching to below room temperature. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and x-ray diffraction techniques were employed to investigate its morphological stability. It was found that the nematic mesophase persists upon annealing for a period of up to 22 h without the appearance of new phases. However, after annealing in the nematic regime over a longer period of time, thermally activated phase transformations were observed, resulting in a new crystalline phase plus the pristine crystalline phase based on DSC thermal transition data and x-ray diffraction patterns.

  2. Director orientation of nematic liquid crystal using orientated nanofibers obtained by electrospinning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toan, Duong Quoc; Ozaki, Ryotaro; Moritake, Hiroshi

    2014-01-01

    Nanofibers with diameters less than 1000 nm assembled by electrospinning and with a large surface area per unit mass have been attracting considerable attention and are expected to affect the orientation of liquid crystals (LCs). Firstly, to determine the orientated nanofibers on an indium-tin-oxide (ITO) glass surface, the spectral analysis technique of using fast Fourier transform is applied. Optical observation is performed to confirm the orientation of LC molecules in a twisted nematic LC cell. Finally, optical measurement of an LC cell is carried out to estimate the threshold voltage of the LC in two types of twisted nematic LC cell: one with rubbed polyimide and the other with orientated nanofibers as the alignment layer. A twisted nematic LC is oriented in the cell using orientated nanofibers as the alignment layer and the threshold voltage of this cell agrees with that of the conventional polyimide rubbed cell.

  3. Thermal and optical study of semiconducting CNTs-doped nematic liquid crystalline material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vimal, T.; Singh, D. P.; Gupta, S. K.; Pandey, S.; Agrahari, K.; Manohar, R.

    2016-06-01

    We report the thermal and spectroscopic analysis of the carbon nanotubes (CNTs)-doped nematic liquid crystal (NLC) material. The CNTs have been oriented in the p-ethoxybenzylidene p-butylaniline NLC. The thermal study of the CNTs doped nematic mixtures shows a significant decrease in the isotropic to nematic phase transition temperature. However higher doping concentration of CNTs has led to the further increase in transition temperature. The UV-Visible spectroscopy has been attempted on the CNTs/NLC mixtures at room temperature. The investigated NLC present one absorption band corresponding to π-π* electronic transition. A red shift of λmax with the increasing concentration of CNTs in the mixture has been observed. The band gap of NLC has been found to decrease after the doping of CNTs. The absorbance was measured for the UV light, polarized parallel and perpendicular to the LC director in the planar aligned cell.

  4. Dynamics of ordered colloidal particle monolayers at nematic liquid crystal interfaces.

    PubMed

    Wei, Wei-Shao; Gharbi, Mohamed Amine; Lohr, Matthew A; Still, Tim; Gratale, Matthew D; Lubensky, T C; Stebe, Kathleen J; Yodh, A G

    2016-05-25

    We prepare two-dimensional crystalline packings of colloidal particles on surfaces of the nematic liquid crystal (NLC) 5CB, and we investigate the diffusion and vibrational phonon modes of these particles using video microscopy. Short-time particle diffusion at the air-NLC interface is well described by a Stokes-Einstein model with viscosity similar to that of 5CB. Crystal phonon modes, measured by particle displacement covariance techniques, are demonstrated to depend on the elastic constants of 5CB through interparticle forces produced by LC defects that extend from the interface into the underlying bulk material. The displacement correlations permit characterization of transverse and longitudinal sound velocities of the crystal packings, as well as the particle interactions produced by the LC defects. All behaviors are studied in the nematic phase as a function of increasing temperature up to the nematic-isotropic transition. PMID:27109759

  5. Wrinkling of a thin film on a nematic liquid-crystal elastomer.

    PubMed

    Soni, Harsh; Pelcovits, Robert A; Powers, Thomas R

    2016-07-01

    Wrinkles commonly develop in a thin film deposited on a soft elastomer substrate when the film is subject to compression. Motivated by recent experiments [Agrawal et al., Soft Matter 8, 7138 (2012)]1744-683X10.1039/c2sm25734c that show how wrinkle morphology can be controlled by using a nematic elastomer substrate, we develop the theory of small-amplitude wrinkles of an isotropic film atop a nematic elastomer. The directors of the nematic elastomer are initially uniform. For uniaxial compression of the film along the direction perpendicular to the elastomer directors, the system behaves as a compressed film on an isotropic substrate. When the uniaxial compression is along the direction of nematic order, we find that the soft elasticity characteristic of liquid-crystal elastomers leads to a critical stress for wrinkling which is very small compared to the case of an isotropic substrate. We also determine the wavelength of the wrinkles at the critical stress and show how the critical stress and wavelength depend on substrate depth and the anisotropy of the polymer chains in the nematic elastomer. PMID:27575192

  6. Wrinkling of a thin film on a nematic liquid-crystal elastomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soni, Harsh; Pelcovits, Robert A.; Powers, Thomas R.

    2016-07-01

    Wrinkles commonly develop in a thin film deposited on a soft elastomer substrate when the film is subject to compression. Motivated by recent experiments [Agrawal et al., Soft Matter 8, 7138 (2012)], 10.1039/c2sm25734c that show how wrinkle morphology can be controlled by using a nematic elastomer substrate, we develop the theory of small-amplitude wrinkles of an isotropic film atop a nematic elastomer. The directors of the nematic elastomer are initially uniform. For uniaxial compression of the film along the direction perpendicular to the elastomer directors, the system behaves as a compressed film on an isotropic substrate. When the uniaxial compression is along the direction of nematic order, we find that the soft elasticity characteristic of liquid-crystal elastomers leads to a critical stress for wrinkling which is very small compared to the case of an isotropic substrate. We also determine the wavelength of the wrinkles at the critical stress and show how the critical stress and wavelength depend on substrate depth and the anisotropy of the polymer chains in the nematic elastomer.

  7. Nanoparticle doping in nematic liquid crystals: distinction between surface and bulk effects by numerical simulations.

    PubMed

    Urbanski, Martin; Mirzaei, Javad; Hegmann, Torsten; Kitzerow, Heinz-S

    2014-05-19

    Doping nematic liquid crystals with small amounts of nanoparticles can significantly alter the electro-optic response of the nematic host. Some of these effects result from nanoparticles influencing the liquid crystal/substrate interface, while other effects are caused by nanoparticles in the bulk. So far, little attention has been paid to the influence of surface interactions on the determination of bulk properties. In the present study, these effects are investigated experimentally and confirmed by numerical simulations. The splay-type Fréedericksz-transition of the nematic liquid crystal 5CB doped with CdSe quantum dots is investigated, as these dispersions are known from earlier studies to affect the initial alignment layers. In comparison, dispersions of chemically and thermally stable silanized gold nanoparticles in the apolar nematic host FELIX-2900-03 are analyzed, which are expected to be bulk-active only. A data fitting routine is presented which allows a distinction between bulk and surface effects of nanoparticle doping. For the quantum dots, an increase of pretilt angle proportional to the doping concentration is found, as well as a slight decrease of the anchoring energy of molecules at the confining substrates. The silanized gold particles show no influence on the boundary conditions up to doping concentrations of 2.5 % (w). For higher concentrations an increase of pretilt angle is reported. PMID:24482304

  8. Nematic quantum phase transition of composite Fermi liquids in half-filled Landau levels and their geometric response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    You, Yizhi; Cho, Gil Young; Fradkin, Eduardo

    2016-05-01

    We present a theory of the isotropic-nematic quantum phase transition in the composite Fermi liquid arising in half-filled Landau levels. We show that the quantum phase transition between the isotropic and the nematic phase is triggered by an attractive quadrupolar interaction between electrons, as in the case of conventional Fermi liquids. We derive the theory of the nematic state and of the phase transition. This theory is based on the flux attachment procedure, which maps an electron liquid in half-filled Landau levels into the composite Fermi liquid close to a nematic transition. We show that the local fluctuations of the nematic order parameters act as an effective dynamical metric interplaying with the underlying Chern-Simons gauge fields associated with the flux attachment. Both the fluctuations of the Chern-Simons gauge field and the nematic order parameter can destroy the composite fermion quasiparticles and drive the system into a non-Fermi liquid state. The effective-field theory for the isotropic-nematic phase transition is shown to have z =3 dynamical exponent due to the Landau damping of the dense Fermi system. We show that there is a Berry-phase-type term that governs the effective dynamics of the nematic order parameter fluctuations, which can be interpreted as a nonuniversal "Hall viscosity" of the dynamical metric. We also show that the effective-field theory of this compressible fluid has a Wen-Zee-type term. Both terms originate from the time-reversal breaking fluctuation of the Chern-Simons gauge fields. We present a perturbative (one-loop) computation of the Hall viscosity and also show that this term is also obtained by a Ward identity. We show that the topological excitation of the nematic fluid, the disclination, carries an electric charge. We show that a resonance observed in radio-frequency conductivity experiments can be interpreted as a Goldstone nematic mode gapped by lattice effects.

  9. Nematic polymer liquid-crystal wave plate for high-power lasers at 1054 nm

    SciTech Connect

    Kreuzer, F. ); Korenic, E.M.; Jacobs, S.D.; Houghton, J.K.; Schmid, A. )

    1994-04-01

    A nematic polymer liquid crystal is used to construct wave plates for use at 1054 nm. Three methods of wave-plate construction are discussed: double substrate with fiber spacers in homogeneous distribution, double substrate with fiber spacers in annular distribution, and single substrate. The polymer liquid crystal shows high laser-damage resistance, making it particularly useful for high-peak-power laser applications. Alignment techniques and measurement of birefringence for the highly viscous polymer are described.

  10. Switching and intrinsic position bistability of soliton beams in chiral nematic liquid crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Beeckman, Jeroen; Madani, Abbas; Vanbrabant, Pieter J. M.; Henneaux, Pierre; Gorza, Simon-Pierre; Haelterman, Marc

    2011-03-15

    We study theoretically and experimentally the propagation of light beams in chiral nematic liquid crystals. Despite the rather complex refractive index distribution of these crystals, their reorientational nonlinearity can compensate for diffraction, leading to robust solitonlike beams propagating along helical trajectories. We demonstrate that, due to a symmetry-breaking instability of the liquid crystal structure, these beams undergo abrupt switching and bistability, features that are of potential interest for applications to all-optical signal processing.

  11. Unusual temperature dependence of elastic constants of an ambient-temperature discotic nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Venkata Sai, D; Mirri, G; Kouwer, P H J; Sahoo, R; Musevic, I; Dhara, Surajit

    2016-03-01

    We report the first experimental studies on the temperature dependence of viscoelastic properties of a room temperature discotic nematic liquid crystal. The splay elastic constant is greater than the bend elastic constant and both show unusual temperature and order parameter dependence. The rotational viscosity is remarkably larger than conventional calamitic liquid crystals. We provide a simple physical explanation based on the columnar short-range order to account for the the unusual temperature dependence of the elastic constants. PMID:26883494

  12. Driving voltage properties sensitive to microscale liquid crystal orientation pattern in twisted nematic liquid crystal cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Honma, Michinori; Takahashi, Koki; Yamaguchi, Rumiko; Nose, Toshiaki

    2016-04-01

    We investigated the micropattern-sensitive driving voltage properties of twisted nematic liquid crystal (LC) cells and found that the threshold voltage for inducing the Fréedericksz transition strongly depends on the micropatterned LC molecular orientation state. We discuss the effects of various cell parameters such as the period of the micropattern Λ, the LC layer thickness d, and the twist angle Φ on the threshold voltage. By a computer simulation of the LC molecular orientation, we found that the threshold voltage V th varies in response to the deformation factor Δ (= d 2/Λ2 + Φ2/π2) of the spatially distributed LC molecular orientation. We confirm that V\\text{th}2 is proportional to 1 - Δ from both theoretical and experimental standpoints.

  13. Optical response from dual-frequency hybrid-aligned nematic liquid crystal cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konshina, E. A.; Vakulin, D. A.; Ivanova, N. L.; Gavrish, E. O.; Vasil'ev, V. N.

    2012-05-01

    Dual-frequency hybrid-aligned nematic liquid crystal cells and the influence of the parameters of a control electric field on their optical response are studied. It is found that the harmonic oscillations of the optical transmission in such cells are observed in the interval between low frequency-to-high frequency voltage switchings unlike in conventional twisted nematic cells. A V-shaped bistable optical response is obtained by successively applying sinusoidal electric fields with frequencies of 1 and 30 kHz to a twisted nematic cell. For a liquid crystal layer 8 μm thick and an applied voltage of 50 V, the response time is 10 ms. In a hybrid-aligned twisted-nematic cell with a large initial tilt angle of the director (about 70°), the V-shaped optical response is observed when the inclined homeotropic state is switched to the twisted state by applying a 30-kHz field. The initial structure of the layer recovers as a result of natural elastic relaxation, and the response time increases roughly fourfold.

  14. Random lasing in dye doped nematic liquid crystals: the role of confinement geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strangi, G.; Ferjani, S.; Barna, V.; De Luca, A.; Versace, C.; Scaramuzza, N.; Bartolino, R.

    2007-05-01

    The first experimental evidence of random laser action in a partially ordered, dye doped nematic liquid crystal with long-range dielectric tensor fluctuations is reported. Above a given pump power the fluorescence curve collapses and discrete sharp peaks emerge above the residual spontaneous emission spectrum. The spectral linewidth of these emission peaks is narrow banded, typically around 0.5nm. The unexpected surviving of interference effects in recurrent multiple scattering of the emitted photons provide the required optical feedback for lasing in nematic liquid crystalline materials. Light waves coherent backscattering in orientationally ordered nematics manifests a weak localization, strongly supporting the diffusive laser action phenomenon in the presence of a gain medium. Unlike distributed feedback mirror-less laser, this system can be considered as a cavity-less microlaser where the disorder unexpectedly plays the most important role, behaving as randomly distributed feedback laser. The far field spatial distribution of the emission intensity shows a huge number of bright tiny spots spatially overlapped and the intensity of each pulse strongly fluctuates in time and space. Here, we report the main characteristics of this novel systems for various confinement geometries and under different conditions. A brief presentation of boundary-less systems such as free standing and freely suspended dye doped nematic films and droplets is also introduced, revealing unique emission features because of the complete absence of confining borders.

  15. Electrically Tunable Critically Coupled Terahertz Metamaterial Absorber Based on Nematic Liquid Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isić, Goran; Vasić, Borislav; Zografopoulos, Dimitrios C.; Beccherelli, Romeo; Gajić, Radoš

    2015-06-01

    Liquid-crystal devices are a promising cheap alternative for terahertz light modulation, albeit they suffer from problems associated with thick cells. Here we describe a few-micron-thick polarization-independent nematic liquid-crystal metamaterial device displaying terahertz reflectance modulation depths above 23 dB, millisecond response times, low operating voltages, and a spectral tuning of more than 15%. The dramatic performance improvement is based on invoking critical coupling with external fields, which rests on a suitable choice of resonator geometry. We analyze the coupling mechanism to conclude that perfect absorption can be reached with a wide range of parameters and liquid-crystal materials. The proposed device performance, microscopic details, and the nematic molecule switching dynamics are evaluated with the use of a rigorous tensorial formulation of the Landau-de Gennes theory and shown to be robust to small parameter deviations.

  16. Surface-assisted unidirectional orientation of ZnO nanorods hybridized with nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Kubo, Shoichi; Taguchi, Rei; Hadano, Shingo; Narita, Mamiko; Watanabe, Osamu; Iyoda, Tomokazu; Nakagawa, Masaru

    2014-01-22

    Inorganic semiconductor nanorods are regarded as the primary components of optical and electrical nanoscale devices. In this paper, we demonstrate the unidirectional alignment of monolayered and dispersed ZnO nanorods on a rubbed polyimide alignment layer, which was achieved by a conventional liquid crystal alignment technique. The outermost surfaces of the ZnO nanorods (average diameter 7 nm; length 50 nm) were modified by polymerization initiator moieties, and nematic liquid crystalline (LC) methacrylate polymers were grown by atom transfer radical polymerization. By regulating the densities of the polymerization initiator moieties, we successfully hybridized LC-polymer-grafted ZnO nanorods and small nematic LC molecules. The LC-polymer-modified ZnO nanorods were hierarchically aligned on the substrate via cooperative molecular interactions among the liquid crystal mesogens, which induced molecular orientation on the rubbed polyimide alignment layer. PMID:24299205

  17. Electron paramagnetic resonance studies of slowly tumbling vanadyl spin probes in nematic liquid crystals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bruno, G. V.; Harrington, J. K.; Eastman, M. P.

    1978-01-01

    The purposes of this vanadyl spin probe study are threefold: (1) to establish when the breakdown of motionally narrowed formulas occurs; (2) to analyze the experimental vanadyl EPR line shapes by the stochastic Lioville method as developed by Polnaszek et al. (1973) for slow tumbling in an anisotropic liquid; and (3) to compare the vanadyl probe study results with those of Polnaszek and Freed (1975). Spectral EPR line shapes are simulated for experimental spectra of vanadyl acetylacetonate (VOAA) in nematic liquid crystal butyl p-(p-ethoxyphenoxycarbonyl) phenyl carbonate (BEPC) and Phase V of EM laboratories. It is shown that the use of typical vanadyl complexes as spin probes for nematic liquid crystals simplifies the theoretical analysis and the subsequent interpretation. Guidelines for the breakdown of motionally narrowed formulas are established. Both the slow tumbling aspects and the effects of non-Brownian rotation should be resolved in order to extract quantitative information about molecular ordering and rotational mobility.

  18. Multiple alignment modes for nematic liquid crystals doped with alkylthiol-capped gold nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Qi, Hao; Hegmann, Torsten

    2009-08-01

    The ability of alkylthiol capped gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) to tune, alter, and reverse the alignment of nematic liquid crystals (LCs) has been investigated in detail. Adjusting the concentration of the suspended Au NPs in the nematic LC host, optimizing the sample preparation protocol, or providing different sample substrates (untreated glass slides, rubbed polyimide-coated LC test cell, or ITO-coated glass slides) results in several LC alignment scenarios (modes) including vertical alignment, planar alignment, and a thermally controlled alignment switch between these two alignment modes. The latter thermal switch between planar and homeotropic alignment was observed particularly for lower concentrations (i.e., around 1 to 2 wt %) of suspended NPs in the size regime of 1.5-2 nm and was found to be concentration-dependent and thermally reversible. Different scenarios are discussed that could explain these induced alignment modes. In one scenario, the NP-induced alignment is related to the temperature-dependent change of the order parameter, S, of the nematic phase (ordering in the bulk). In the second scenario, a change of the ordering of the nematic molecules around the NPs that reside at the interfaces is described. We also started to test spin coating as an alternative way of preparing nematic thin films with well-separated Au NPs on the substrate and found this to be a possible method for manufacturing of future NP-doped LC devices, as this method produced evenly distributed NPs on glass substrates. Together the presented findings continue to pave the way for LC display-related applications of Au NP-doped nematic LCs and provide insights for N-LC sensor applications. PMID:20355789

  19. Analytical description of 2D magnetic Freedericksz transition in a rectangular cell of a nematic liquid crystal.

    PubMed

    Burylov, S V; Zakhlevnykh, A N

    2016-06-01

    We study the Freedericksz transition induced by a magnetic field in a rectangular cell filled with a nematic liquid crystal. In the initial state the director of the nematic liquid crystal is uniformly aligned in the cross section plane of the cell with rigid anchoring of the director at cell walls: planar on the top and bottom walls, and homeotropic on the left and right ones. The magnetic field is directed perpendicular to the cell cross section plane. We consider two-dimensional (2D) orientational deformations of the nematic liquid crystal in the rectangular cell and determine the critical value of the Freedericksz transition field above which these orientational deformations occur. The 2D expression for the director alignment profile above the threshold of Freedericksz transition is analytically found and the profile shapes as functions of cell sizes, values of the Frank elastic constants of the nematic liquid crystal and the magnetic field are studied. PMID:27349554

  20. Surface alignment, anchoring transitions, optical properties, and topological defects in the thermotropic nematic phase of organo-siloxane tetrapodes.

    PubMed

    Kim, Young-Ki; Senyuk, Bohdan; Shin, Sung-Tae; Kohlmeier, Alexandra; Mehl, Georg H; Lavrentovich, Oleg D

    2014-01-21

    We perform optical, surface anchoring, and textural studies of an organo-siloxane "tetrapode" material in the broad temperature range of the nematic phase. The optical, structural, and topological features are compatible with the uniaxial nematic order rather than with the biaxial nematic order, in the entire nematic temperature range -25 °C < T < 46 °C studied. For homeotropic alignment, the material experiences surface anchoring transition, but the director can be realigned into an optically uniaxial texture by applying a sufficiently strong electric field. The topological features of textures in cylindrical capillaries, in spherical droplets and around colloidal inclusions are consistent with the uniaxial character of the long-range nematic order. In particular, we observe isolated surface point defects - boojums and bulk point defects - hedgehogs that can exist only in the uniaxial nematic liquid crystal. PMID:24651889

  1. Twist-bend nematic liquid crystals in high magnetic fields.

    PubMed

    Challa, P K; Borshch, V; Parri, O; Imrie, C T; Sprunt, S N; Gleeson, J T; Lavrentovich, O D; Jákli, A

    2014-06-01

    We present magneto-optic measurements on two materials that form the recently discovered twist-bend nematic (N_{tb}) phase. This intriguing state of matter represents a fluid phase that is orientationally anisotropic in three directions and also exhibits translational order with periodicity several times larger than the molecular size. N_{tb} materials may also spontaneously form a visible, macroscopic stripe texture. We show that the optical stripe texture can be persistently inhibited by a magnetic field, and a 25T external magnetic field depresses the N-N_{tb} phase transition temperature by almost 1{∘}C. We propose a quantitative mechanism to account for this shift and suggest a Helfrich-Hurault-type mechanism for the optical stripe formation. PMID:25019707

  2. Light-scattering measurement of the nematic correlation length in a liquid crystal with quenched disorder

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellini, Tommaso; Clark, Noel A.; Degiorgio, Vittorio; Mantegazza, Francesco; Natale, Giorgio

    1998-03-01

    We have studied a composite system formed by a nematic thermotropic liquid crystal in which small silica particles have been dispersed. The colloids are aggregated and exert a randomizing effect on the nematic structure. The distorted pattern of the optical axis gives rise to a strong optical turbidity τ. We have measured τ as a function of the silica concentration Φ and of the temperature T in both the isotropic and nematic phase. We have found that, at fixed T, τ has a maximum as a function of Φ, and that, upon changing Φ, the whole shape of τ(T) drastically transforms. We have devised a model to describe the scattering of light from a distorted uniaxial system. The model has been developed both in the Born approximation and in the anomalous diffraction approximation, the two regimes which cover the broad range of experimental conditions. The family of τ(T) curves experimentally obtained at different Φ's is remarkably well described by the theoretical model, using as the only fitting parameter the correlation length ζ. We have found that, upon decreasing Φ, the nematic correlation length diverges as a power law of Φ. We compare the exponent of the power law with the prediction of the Imry-Ma theory of phase behavior in disordered systems, and we discuss the connection between ζ and the fractal correlation length of the silica aggregates.

  3. Elastic and hydrodynamic torques on a colloidal disk within a nematic liquid crystal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rovner, Joel B.; Borgnia, Dan S.; Reich, Daniel H.; Leheny, Robert L.

    2012-10-01

    The orientationally dependent elastic energy and hydrodynamic behavior of colloidal disks with homeotropic surface anchoring suspended in the nematic liquid crystal 4-cyano-4'-pentylbiphenyl (5CB) have been investigated. In the absence of external torques, the disks align with the normal of the disk face â parallel to the nematic director n̂. When a magnetic field is applied, the disks rotate â by an angle θ so that the magnetic torque and the elastic torque caused by distortion of the nematic director field are balanced. Over a broad range of angles, the elastic torque increases linearly with θ in quantitative agreement with a theoretical prediction based on an electrostatic analogy. When the disks are rotated to angles θ>(π)/(2), the resulting large elastic distortion makes the disk orientation unstable, and the director undergoes a topological transition in which θπ-θ. In the transition, a defect loop is shed from the disk surface, and the disks spin so that â sweeps through π radians as the loop collapses back onto the disk. Additional measurements of the angular relaxation of disks to θ=0 following removal of the external torque show a quasi-exponential time dependence from which an effective drag viscosity for the nematic can be extracted. The scaling of the angular time dependence with disk radius and observations of disks rotating about â indicate that the disk motion affects the director field at surprisingly modest Ericksen numbers.

  4. Effects of added silica nanoparticles on the nematic liquid crystal phase formation in beidellite suspensions.

    PubMed

    Landman, Jasper; Paineau, Erwan; Davidson, Patrick; Bihannic, Isabelle; Michot, Laurent J; Philippe, Adrian-Marie; Petukhov, Andrei V; Lekkerkerker, Henk N W

    2014-05-01

    In this article, we present a study of the liquid crystal phase behavior of mixed suspensions of the natural smectite clay mineral beidellite and nonadsorbing colloidal silica particles. While virtually all smectite clays dispersed in water form gels at very low concentrations, beidellite displays a first order isotropic-nematic phase transition before gel formation (J. Phys. Chem. B, 2009, 113, 15858-15869). The addition of silica nanospheres shifts the concentrations of the coexisting isotropic and nematic phases to slightly higher values while at the same time markedly accelerating the phase separation process. Furthermore, beidellite suspensions at volume fractions above the isotropic-nematic phase separation, trapped in a kinetically arrested gel state, liquefy on the addition of silica nanospheres and proceed to isotropic-nematic phase separation. Using small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), we probe the structural changes caused by the addition of the silica nanospheres, and we relate the modification of the phase transition kinetics to the change of the rheological properties. PMID:24758198

  5. Orientation of nematic liquid crystal in open glass microstructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azarinia, H.; Beeckman, J.; Neyts, K.; Schacht, E.; Gironès, J.; James, R.; Fernandez, F. A.

    2009-09-01

    Liquid crystal materials can have bulk reorientation due to surface interaction and are therefore of interest for biosensing applications. We present a setup, with holes etched in a substrate, filled with liquid crystal and covered by a sample fluid. The influence of the depth of the microcavities and the type of liquid on the liquid crystal orientation is investigated by experiments and simulations.

  6. Microsecond-range optical shutter for unpolarized light with chiral nematic liquid crystal

    SciTech Connect

    Mohammadimasoudi, Mohammad Neyts, Kristiaan; Beeckman, Jeroen; Shin, Jungsoon; Lee, Keechang

    2015-04-15

    A fast electro-optic shutter is fabricated and demonstrated. The device works independently of the polarization state of the incoming light beam. Modulation between 3% transmission and 60% transmission is obtained within a wavelength range of 50 nm with a response time of 20 μs. The device consists of two partly polymerized chiral nematic liquid crystal layers separated by a half wave plate. The transmission modulation is due to a 50 nm wavelength shift of the photonic band gap of the chiral liquid crystal realized by applying an electric field over a mixture of photo-polymerized LC and non-reactive nematic LC containing a chiral dopant. The shutter features high reflectivity in the photonic band gap. We investigate the influence of the amplitude of the applied voltage on the width and the depth of the reflection band.

  7. Photo-stimulated phase and anchoring transitions of chiral azo-dye doped nematic liquid crystals.

    PubMed

    Kundu, Sudarshan; Kang, Shin-Woong

    2013-12-16

    We report concurring phase and anchoring transitions of chiral azo-dye doped nematic liquid crystals. The transitions are induced by photo-stimulation and stable against light and thermal treatments. Photochromic trans- to cis-isomerization of azo-dye induces an augmented dipole moment and strong dipole-dipole interaction of the cis-isomers, resulting in the formation of nano-sized dye-aggregates. Consequent phase separation of the aggregates of a chiral azo-dye induces phase transition from a chiral to nonchiral nematic phase. In addition, the deposition of dye-aggregates at the surfaces brings about anchoring transition of LC molecules. The stability and irreversibility of the transition, together with no need of pretreatments for LC alignment, provide fascinating opportunity for liquid crystal device applications. PMID:24514707

  8. Self-organization processes and topological defects in nanolayers in a nematic liquid crystal

    SciTech Connect

    Chuvyrov, A. N.; Girfanova, F. M. Mal'tsev, I. S.

    2008-05-15

    Atomic force microscopy is used to study the self-organization processes that occur during the formation of topological defects in nanomolecular layers in a nematic liquid crystal with the homeotropic orientation of its molecules with respect to the substrate. In this case, a smectic monolayer with a thickness of one molecule length (about 2.2 nm) forms on the substrate, and a nanomolecular layer of a nematic liquid crystal forms above this monolayer. In such virtually two-dimensional layers, numerous different nanoclusters, namely, hut structures, pyramids, raft structures with symmetry C{sub nm} (where n = 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, ?, {infinity}), cones, and nanopools, form [1]. They have a regular shape close to the geometry of solid crystals. Modulated linear structures and topological point defects appear spontaneously in the nanopools and raft structures.

  9. Simplified Scheme for Deterministic Synthesis of Chiral-Nematic Glassy Liquid Crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Wallace, J.U.; Chen, S.H.

    2006-07-13

    Potentially useful for the fabrication of nonabsorbing polarizers, optical notch filters and reflectors, and polarized light sources, chiral-nematic glassy liquid crystals can be synthesized by a statistical or deterministic approach. A deterministic approach is characterized by the relative ease of product separation and purification and hence is more amenable to process scale-up. Prompted to minimize the effort involving protection adn deprotection of functional groups, the present work has demonstrated the feasibility of reducing the number of synthesis steps from a previous synthesis scheme. The new methodology is widely applicable to the synthesis of a variety of right- and left-handed chiral-nematic glassy liquid crystals with desired phase transition temperatures.

  10. Unusual temperature dependence of the splay elastic constant of a rodlike nematic liquid crystal doped with a highly kinked bent-core molecule

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ji-Hoon; Yoon, Tae-Hoon; Choi, E.-Joon

    2013-12-01

    We report an unusual temperature dependence of the elastic constants of a rodlike nematic liquid crystal (RLC) mixed with a highly kinked bent-core liquid crystal (BLC). On cooling through the nematic phase, the splay elastic constant (K11) of the RLC-BLC mixture increased below the nematic-isotropic phase transition temperature, but started to decrease midway through the nematic phase. The decrease of K11 was more prominent with a greater concentration of BLC. On the other hand, the bend elastic constant (K33) of the RLC-BLC mixture monotonically increased through the nematic phase with decreasing temperature.