Volume 39, Number 3, July I 1997
|Page(s)||257 - 262|
|Section||Classical areas of phenomenology|
|Published online||01 September 2002|
Electroconvection in smectic C liquid-crystal films visualized by optical anisotropy
Universität-GH Paderborn, Institut für physikalische Chemie,
D-33095 Paderborn, Germany
2 Max-Planck-Institut für Polymerforschung - D-55021 Mainz, Germany
3 Universität Leipzig, Fakultät der Physik und Geowissenschaften, Linnéstr. 5, D-04103 Leipzig, Germany
Accepted: 23 June 1997
Electrohydrodynamic convection due to the Carr-Helfrich (CH) effect has been extensively investigated in nematics. It has been predicted also for freely suspended smectic C and films. On the other hand, in smectic A films another type of electroconvection (vortex flow) has been described (Morris S. W., De Bruyn J. R. and May A., Phys. Rev. Lett. 65 (1990) 2378) but is not sufficiently understood by theory so far. We report experiments on freestanding smectic C films in lateral AC electric fields. A convective instability bifurcating continuously from the homogeneous ground state is found. Evidently the mechanism of the instability is of a similar type as in . The director field in the convection vortices is directly visualized in the optical texture.
PACS: 47.20.-k – Hydrodynamic stability / 61.30.-v – Liquid crystals
© EDP Sciences, 1997
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