Nematic Liquid Crystal Disclination Lines Driven by A Photoaligned Defect Grid

PLUTO / PLUTO-2 Spatial Light Modulators
Materials Processing / Optical Fabrication Polarization Generation
Published on:
Authors: Inge Nys, Brecht Berteloot, Jeroen Beeckman, Kristiaan Neyts
Abstract:

Photoalignment for nematic liquid crystals makes it possible to design complex alignment patterns with point defects, that can act as anchoring points for disclination lines. This feature may be used to realize novel electro-optical devices with bistability or enhanced scattering and is promising for material applications such as stimuli-responsive actuators, active matter, and assembly of colloidal particles. However, the applicability is hampered by the limited understanding of the interaction between the defects in the photoalignment pattern and the disclination lines in the nematic liquid crystal. In this work disclination lines are studied that connect surface defects of strength 1/2 arranged in a periodic grid. The elastic tension is estimated in the disclination line and it is shown how the director configuration close to a +1/2 surface defect is influenced by the fact that the three elastic constants are different. A tilt is induced close to the surface that can be amplified and visualized by applying a voltage.

Restricted Access

Publication: Advanced Optical Materials
Issue/Year: Adv. Opt. Mat. Volume10, Issue 4, February 18, 2022 2101626
DOI: 10.1002/adom.202101626
Link: https://doi.org/10.1002/adom.202101626

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