Europhys. Lett.
Volume 75, Number 3, August 2006
Page(s) 489 - 495
Section Condensed matter: electronic structure, electrical, magnetic, and optical properties
Published online 28 June 2006
Europhys. Lett., 75 (3), pp. 489-495 (2006)
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i2005-10602-4

Statics and dynamics of two-dimensional vortex liquid crystals

C. Reichhardt and C. J. Olson Reichhardt

Theoretical Division and Center for Nonlinear Studies, Los Alamos National Laboratory Los Alamos, NM 87545, USA

received 28 November 2005; accepted in final form 7 June 2006
published online 28 June 2006

With numerical simulations we examine static and dynamic properties of two-dimensional vortices with anisotropic interactions. We find evidence for a smectic-A phase in the absence of pinning. Quenched disorder can induce a smectic-type state even at T=0. When an external drive is applied, a variety of novel anisotropic dynamical flow states with distinct voltage signatures occur, including elastic depinning in the hard direction and plastic depinning in the easy direction. We compare our work to recent experiments on two-dimensional colloids with anisotropic interactions. We also discuss the implications of the anisotropic transport for other systems which exhibit depinning phenomena, such as stripes and electron liquid crystals.

74.25.Qt - Vortex lattices, flux pinning, flux creep.

© EDP Sciences 2006