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Influence of the inhomogeneous surface pretilt on zig-zag defects

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4 Author(s)
Kralj, S. ; Faculty of Education, University of Maribor, Koroška 160, 2000 Maribor, Slovenia ; Pirs, J. ; Zumer, S. ; Petkovsek, R.

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The influence of the inhomogeneous surface pretilt (slope) on chevron structures and on zig-zag defects in a SmC liquid-crystal cell is studied. The experimentally observed effect of the confining substrate with controlled variation of the surface slope on the formation of zig-zag defects is qualitatively explained with the Landau–Ginzburg-type free-energy expanded in terms of the nematic director field and the smectic complex order parameter. Transitions in the C1 and C2 chevron structures are studied as functions of the surface pretilt angle θt. The threshold conditions are calculated. The width of the straight element of the domain wall (running parallel to the smectic layers) and the costs for its formation are estimated. © 1998 American Institute of Physics.  

Published in:

Journal of Applied Physics  (Volume:84 ,  Issue: 9 )