Field-Control of the Surface Electroclinic Effect in Chiral Smectic-A Liquid Crystals
Joseph E. Maclennan
,Daniel J. Dyer
,David M. Walba
,Noel A. Clark
Department of Physics, and Ferroelectric Liquid Crystal Materials Research Center, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309, U.S.A.
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and Ferroelectric Liquid Crystal Materials Research Center, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309, U.S.A.
The surface electroclinic effect, which causes an azimuthal
deviation of the layer normal from the surface rubbing direction
in cells of chiral smectic A liquid crystals, can be eliminated
(and even reversed) by applying an electric field during cooling
from the isotropic phase. The observed dependence on field
strength confirms the notion that the surface electroclinic tilt
results from an effective surface electric field and suggests a
general method for controlling the azimuthal layer alignment of
chiral smectic cells.