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Memory effects in liquid crystal elastomers

Legge, C.H., Davis, F.J. and Mitchell, G.R. (1991) Memory effects in liquid crystal elastomers. Journal de Physique II, 1 (10). pp. 1253-1261. ISSN 1155-4312

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1051/jp2:1991131


Free-standing monodomain liquid crystal elastomer samples are shown to have a complete memory of the orientational configuration at the time of cross-linking. This memory is demonstrated through samples in which the parent polymer system is first aligned in a magnetic field prior to cross-linking. These films show reversible nematic-isotropic phase transitions and x-ray scattering patterns characteristic of nematic phases. The liquid crystal elastomer films exhibit a remarkable memory effect, in that the sample may be held at temperatures well above the nematic-isotropic transition for extended periods ( > 2 weeks), but on cooling into the liquid crystal phase region, both the original director alignment and the degree of preferred orientation are recovered. It is demonstrated that these novel memory effects are equilibrium in nature. The origins of this phenomena in terms of coupling between the mesogenic side-chains and the polymer network are discussed.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Interdisciplinary centres and themes > Chemical Analysis Facility (CAF) > Electron Microscopy Laboratory (CAF)
ID Code:26820
Publisher:Les Editions de Physique

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