External-Field-Induced Tricritical Point in a Fluctuation-Driven Nematic–Smectic-ATransition

Mukhopadhyay, Ranjan and Yethiraj, Anand and Bechhoefer, John (1999) External-Field-Induced Tricritical Point in a Fluctuation-Driven Nematic–Smectic-ATransition. Physical Review Letters, 83 (23). pp. 4796-4799. ISSN 1079-7114

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We study theoretically the effect of an external field on the nematic–smectic-A transition close to the tricritical point, where fluctuation effects govern the qualitative behavior of the transition. An external field suppresses nematic-director fluctuations by making them massive. For a fluctuation-driven firstorder transition, we show that an external field can drive the transition second order. In an appropriate liquid-crystal system, we predict the required magnetic field to be of order 10 T. The equivalent electric field is of order 1 V�mm.

Item Type: Article
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/8065
Item ID: 8065
Department(s): Science, Faculty of > Physics and Physical Oceanography
Date: 6 December 1999
Date Type: Publication
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