Journal ArticleDOI

# Optical and x-ray evidence of the "de Vries" Sm-A*-Sm-C* transition in a non-layer-shrinkage ferroelectric liquid crystal with very weak interlayer tilt correlation.

11 Sep 2002-Physical Review E (American Physical Society)-Vol. 66, Iss: 3, pp 031703-031703

TL;DR: A non-layer-shrinkage fluorinated ferroelectric liquid crystal compound, 8422[2F3], has been characterized by means of optical, x-ray, and calorimetric methods and there is strong evidence that the second-order Sm-A*-Sm-C* transition is well described by the diffuse cone model of de Vries.

AbstractA non-layer-shrinkage fluorinated ferroelectric liquid crystal compound, 8422[2F3], has been characterized by means of optical, x-ray, and calorimetric methods. The orientational distribution within macroscopic volumes, determined through wide-angle x-ray scattering and birefringence measurements, was found to be identical in the $\mathrm{Sm}\ensuremath{-}{A}^{*}$ and helical $\mathrm{Sm}\ensuremath{-}{C}^{*}$ phases. Together with the absence of layer shrinkage, this constitutes strong evidence that the second-order $\mathrm{Sm}\ensuremath{-}{A}^{*}--\mathrm{Sm}\ensuremath{-}{C}^{*}$ transition in this material is well described by the diffuse cone model of de Vries. The absolute values of the layer spacing show that the molecules aggregate to antiparallel pairs. The molecular interaction across the layer boundaries will then occur only between fluorine atoms, leading to unusually weak interlayer tilt direction correlation. This explains the experimental observations of a very easily disturbed $\mathrm{Sm}\ensuremath{-}{C}^{*}$ helix and a peculiar surface-stabilized texture. Tilt angle and birefringence values as a function of field and temperature have been evaluated in the $\mathrm{Sm}\ensuremath{-}{A}^{*}$ and $\mathrm{Sm}\ensuremath{-}{C}^{*}$ phases and the results corroborate the conclusions from the x-ray investigations.

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