Bent core liquid crystals

Bent-core liquid crystals, are anisotropic molecules in which the central rigid core of the molecule has a significant bend angle. There are 8 known B phases to date, although on-going research in this area is sure to reveal more. We have looked at switching in the B1 and B2 phases, revealing structural changes as a function of applied electric fields.This work may eventually lead to new, low energy materials for display devices or other optical modulators.

Electric field response of the B1 phase
Electric field response of the B1 phase

“Low Electric-Field Induced Switching in the B1 Bent-Core Liquid Crystal Phase”
J. Kirchhoff, K.M. Fergusson, M. Hird and L.S. Hirst, APPL. PHYS. LETT. 90, 161905 (2007)

“Modification of the electro-optical properties of the B1 liquid crystal phase using a rod-like liquid crystal dopant”
J. Kirchhoff and L.S. Hirst, PHYS. REV. E, 82, 031701 (2010). Link

A complete listing of the group’s publications can be found here.

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Soft Matter and biophysics at the University of California, Merced