Shearing of planar smectic C chevrons

Mottram, N.J. and Elston, S.J. (1999) Shearing of planar smectic C chevrons. European Physical Journal B, 12(2), pp. 277-284. (doi: 10.1007/s100510051005)

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.


We have theoretically investigated chevron formation in smectic C materials and the transformation of this chevron structure to a tilted layer structure as the cell is sheared. We find a series of transition temperatures at which the behaviour of the cell critically changes. As the cell is cooled from the smectic A phase past the first critical temperature there is a second order transition which forms two tilted layer states with lower energy than the smectic A bookshelf structure. Although these low energy tilted structures exist the bookshelf structure is the stable state for zero shear. However, upon further cooling this bookshelf structure becomes unstable to the formation of a chevron state. Now when the cell is sheared the chevron structure smoothly transforms into the tilted layer structure. As each further critical temperature is passed an additional multiple chevron solution is formed which although a high energy, unstable state may be observed transiently. For sufficiently low temperatures the transition from chevron to tilted layer becomes first order. This first order transition occurs as the chevron interface merges with the surface alignment region to form the tilted layer structure.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Mottram, Professor Nigel
Authors: Mottram, N.J., and Elston, S.J.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Mathematics and Statistics > Mathematics
Journal Name:European Physical Journal B
ISSN (Online):1434-6036

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record