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Dielectric shape dispersion and biaxial transitions in nematic liquid crystals

Sonnet, A.M. and Virga, E.G. and Durand, G.E. (2003) Dielectric shape dispersion and biaxial transitions in nematic liquid crystals. Physical Review E: Statistical Physics, Plasmas, Fluids, and Related Interdisciplinary Topics, 67 (6). ISSN 1063-651X

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Using two order tensors, we propose a mean-field model to describe the uniaxial and biaxial phases of nematogenic molecules presenting a shape dispersion of their biaxial dielectric susceptibility. We recover the classical isotropic-uniaxial-biaxial sequence of phases. The phase diagram exhibits a tricritical point, a feature that cannot be retraced in the other mean-field models established for molecules without shape dispersion.