Skip to Main Content
Your organization might have access to this article on the publisher's site. To check, click on this link:http://dx.doi.org/+10.1063/1.3327820
We describe a setup suitable for simultaneously measuring optical and electrical properties of a liquid crystal mesophase upon temperature variation, and the difference in the order parameters between the bulk and the interface with the substrate. It integrates high-resolution polarized light optical microscopy, temperature regulation, and electrical measurements in a controlled atmosphere with a software kernel that controls the instruments and synchronizes the data streams. A user-friendly interface allows us to program multistep experiments controlling all the instruments and data acquisition by a specifically designed scheduler. We tested our system on a thin film of alkoxy-substituted phthalocyanines deposited on a test pattern with interdigitated electrodes. We studied the optical and electrical behavior in the proximity of the bulk phase transition to isotropic liquid, identifying a few ordered monolayers anchored to the substrate above the transition temperature.