Switching Transitions in Confined Liquid Crystals
Field induced switching transitions in dispersions of liquid crystal droplets are the basis for a wide range of electro-optic applications. They are studied analytically by an anisotropic version of the Maxwell Garnett approximation, balancing the electrostatic energy of the droplets with a strong anchoring elastic energy. As a result of the confined geometry, these transitions defer qualitatively from the Frederikse transition in homogeneous liquid crystal films, e. g. the threshold field does not depend on the thickness of the sample, the transition characteristics may be controlled by selecting the initial orientation distribution of the droplets and splitting of the transition occurs in some situations.
KeywordsLiquid Crystal Nematic Liquid Crystal Electrostatic Energy Threshold Field Polymer Disperse Liquid Crystal
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