Liquid Crystals: Optical Properties and Basic Devices

Authored by: Sven T. Lagerwall , Per G. Rudquist , David S. Hermann

Encyclopedia of Optical and Photonic Engineering

Print publication date:  September  2015
Online publication date:  September  2015

Print ISBN: 9781439850978
eBook ISBN: 9781351247184
Adobe ISBN:

10.1081/E-EOE2-120009601

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Abstract

Liquid crystals (LCs) are liquid or liquid-like states that are anisotropic. Therefore, they have less symmetry than ordinary liquids, but higher symmetry than crystals. The anisotropy makes them optically birefringent like most crystals. This entry relates the structural properties of the organic molecules that are the building blocks to the optical and the electro-optic properties of the different LC phases. The exceptional elastic properties of LCs are also described.

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