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Q-tensor model of twist-bend and splay nematic phases

Presented by: 
Martin Copic Univerza v Ljubljani, Jozef Stefan Institute
Date: 
Tuesday 14th May 2019 - 16:00 to 16:40
Venue: 
INI Seminar Room 1
Abstract: 
The twist-bend nematic phase is characterized by a conically twisting director and by a dramatic softening of the bend elastic constant. The instability towards bend can theoretically also induce a splay -bend phase with a bend-splay modulation along the director. Recently we found another modulated nematic phase  where the splay elastic constant tends to zero, resulting in a splay modulation perpendicular to the director. These phases can be modeled by a single Q-tensor free energy with a  term that breaks the degeneracy between the splay and bend elastic constant and with a flexoelectric coupling of the divergence of the Q-tensor with polarization. 

Martin Čopič and Alenka Mertelj - Insitute J. Stephan, Ljubljana, Slovenia
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University of Cambridge Research Councils UK
    Clay Mathematics Institute London Mathematical Society NM Rothschild and Sons