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Liquid crystal defects, a critical overview

Monday 24th June 2013 - 09:45 to 10:30
Center for Mathematical Sciences
Defects in liquid crystals present an extremely vast set of situations, depending on the nature of the order parameter, elasticity properties, boundary conditions. One distinguishes : defects characteristic of liquid crystalline media with one or two discrete repeat distances (smectic and columnar phases) which can be investigated by pure geometric methods ; defects characteristic of a director order parameter, which employ the Volterra process (for one dimensional defects) and topological methods, those latter providing scope for defects of various dimensionalities ; finally continuous defects whose consideration is essential for a description of defect physical properties. These topics will be confronted with an historical point of view and possible future developments.
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Presentation Material: 
University of Cambridge Research Councils UK
    Clay Mathematics Institute London Mathematical Society NM Rothschild and Sons