Journal of Engineering Mathematics

, Volume 80, Issue 1, pp 21–38 | Cite as

Towards an optimal model for a bistable nematic liquid crystal display device

  • L. J. Cummings
  • C. Cai
  • L. Kondic


Bistable liquid crystal displays offer the potential for considerable power savings compared with conventional (monostable) LCDs. The existence of two stable field-free states that are optically distinct means that contrast can be maintained in a display without an externally applied electric field. An applied field is required only to switch the device from one state to the other, as needed. In this paper we examine a theoretical model of a possible bistable device, originally proposed by Cummings and Richardson (Euro J Appl Math 17:435–463 2006), and explore means by which it may be optimized, in terms of optical contrast, manufacturing considerations, switching field strength, and switching times. The compromises inherent in these conflicting design criteria are discussed.


Bistability Liquid crystal display Nematic 



This work was supported by the NSF under Grants DMS-0908158 and DMS-1211713, and by KAUST under Award No. KUK-C1-013-04. The authors would like to acknowledge informative and useful discussions with P. Palffy-Muhoray and colleagues from the Liquid Crystals Institute, Kent State University; with P. D. Howell, A. Majumdar and colleagues at the Oxford Centre for Collaborative and Applied Mathematics; and helpful comments from anonymous referees.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mathematical Sciences and Center for Applied Mathematics and StatisticsNew Jersey Institute of TechnologyNewarkUSA

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