The phase transition between chiral nematic and smectic A* liquid crystals

Patricia Bauman, M. Carme Calderer, Chun Liu, Daniel Phillips

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

31 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In this paper we study the Landau-de Gennes free energy used to describe the transition between chiral nematic and smectic A liquid crystal phases. We consider the phenomenology of the transition and discuss the behavior of the material constants. Within the present mathematical framework, the physically observed growth behavior of the twist and bend Frank constants, K2 and K3 respectively, plays a major role in determining the transition regime. We show existence of minimizers in a large class of admissible fields. Then, under the hypothesis that K2 and K3 are large, we establish estimates for the transition regime separating the two phases. The work emphasizes the interplay between two competing effects: the layer formation of the smectic A phase and the twist tendency of the chiral nematic phase. Our discussion also illustrates the analogies as well as the discrepancies in modeling and behavior between smectic A* liquid crystals and superconducting materials described by the Ginzburg-Landau theory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-186
Number of pages26
JournalArchive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis
Volume165
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2002

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Liquid Crystal
Liquid crystals
Phase Transition
Phase transitions
Twist
Superconducting materials
Free energy
Ginzburg-Landau Theory
Phenomenology
Minimizer
Discrepancy
Analogy
Free Energy
Modeling
Estimate

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Analysis
  • Mathematics (miscellaneous)
  • Mechanical Engineering

Cite this

Bauman, Patricia ; Calderer, M. Carme ; Liu, Chun ; Phillips, Daniel. / The phase transition between chiral nematic and smectic A* liquid crystals. In: Archive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis. 2002 ; Vol. 165, No. 2. pp. 161-186.
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The phase transition between chiral nematic and smectic A* liquid crystals. / Bauman, Patricia; Calderer, M. Carme; Liu, Chun; Phillips, Daniel.

In: Archive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis, Vol. 165, No. 2, 01.11.2002, p. 161-186.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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