Publications associated with Condensed Matter Theory

Electric-field-induced shape transition of nematic tactoids.

Physical review. E 96 (2017) 022706-

L Metselaar, I Dozov, K Antonova, E Belamie, P Davidson, JM Yeomans, A Doostmohammadi

The occurrence of new textures of liquid crystals is an important factor in tuning their optical and photonics properties. Here, we show, both experimentally and by numerical computation, that under an electric field chitin tactoids (i.e., nematic droplets) can stretch to aspect ratios of more than 15, leading to a transition from a spindlelike to a cigarlike shape. We argue that the large extensions occur because the elastic contribution to the free energy is dominated by the anchoring. We demonstrate that the elongation involves hydrodynamic flow and is reversible: the tactoids return to their original shapes upon removing the field.

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