Volume 47, Number 4, August II 1999
|Page(s)||442 - 448|
|Section||Condensed matter: structure, mechanical and thermal properties|
|Published online||01 September 2002|
Equilibrium textures in main-chain liquid crystalline polymers
Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0HE, UK
Accepted: 10 June 1999
We analyse the Schlieren textures formed by the nematic director in a thermotropic main-chain liquid crystalline polymer. After an initial coarsening, the textures reach a stable time-independent state which appears to be an equilibrium function of temperature and material parameters, with a characteristic length scale ξ of order . In particular, we study the evolution of this domain size when the temperature approaches the nematic-isotropic transition Tni. The texture size ξ increases towards Tni, but decreases reversibly when the temperature decreases back into the nematic phase. We discuss possible theoretical models that may explain such an equilibrium polydomain state of nematic director and the dependence of its size on the nematic order parameter.
PACS: 61.30.-v – Liquid crystals / 61.41.+e – Polymers, elastomers, and plastics / 61.30.Eb – Experimental determinations of smectic, nematic, cholesteric, and other structures
© EDP Sciences, 1999
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