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Effects of weak anchoring on C1 and C2 chevron structures

Diaz, A. and McKay, Geoffrey and Mottram, Nigel (2005) Effects of weak anchoring on C1 and C2 chevron structures. Molecular Crystals and Liquid Crystals, 438. pp. 1581-1589. ISSN 1542-1406

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We present a theoretical study of the effect of weak anchoring on the transition between C1 and C2 chevron structures in smectic C liquid crystals. We employ a continuum theory which allows for variable cone, azimuthal and layer tilt angles. Equilibrium profiles for the director cone and azimuthal angles in the C1 and C2 states are calculated from the standard Euler-Lagrange minimisation of the total energy of the system. By comparing the total energies of the C1 and C2 states we can determine the globally stable chevron profile and calculate the critical temperature for the C1-C2 transition, which depends on anchoring strength and pretilt angle variations.