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Director dynamics in liquid-crystal physical gels

Verduzco, Rafael and Scruggs, Neal R. and Sprint, Samuel and Palffy-Muhoray, Peter and Kornfield, Julia A. (2007) Director dynamics in liquid-crystal physical gels. Soft Matter, 3 (8). pp. 993-1002. ISSN 1744-6848.

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Nematic liquid-crystal (LC) elastomers and gels have a rubbery polymer network coupled to the nematic director. While LC elastomers show a single, non-hydrodynamic relaxation mode, dynamic light-scattering studies of self-assembled liquid-crystal gels reveal orientational fluctuations that relax over a broad time scale. At short times, the relaxation dynamics exhibit hydrodynamic behavior. In contrast, the relaxation dynamics at long times are non-hydrodynamic, highly anisotropic, and increase in amplitude at small scattering angles. We argue that the slower dynamics arise from coupling between the director and the physically associated network, which prevents director orientational fluctuations from decaying completely at short times. At long enough times the network restructures, allowing the orientational fluctuations to fully decay. Director dynamics in the self-assembled gels are thus quite distinct from those observed in LC elastomers in two respects: they display soft orientational fluctuations at short times, and they exhibit at least two qualitatively distinct relaxation processes.

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Kornfield, Julia A.0000-0001-6746-8634
Additional Information:This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2007. Received 19th January 2007, Accepted 14th May 2007. First published on the web 30th May 2007.
Issue or Number:8
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:VERsm07
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:8799
Deposited By: Archive Administrator
Deposited On:18 Sep 2007
Last Modified:02 Oct 2019 23:54

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