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Soft Matter and Biological Physics

Eur. Phys. J. E 5, 317-328

Growth and shapes of a cubic lyotropic liquid crystal

P. Pieranski, L. Sittler, P. Sotta and M. Imperor-Clerc

Laboratoire de Physique des Solides, Université Paris-Sud, Bât. 510, 91405 Orsay Cedex, France


(Received 22 November 2000)

Monocrystals of the cubic lyotropic liquid crystal phase V1 are studied in droplets of the mixture $\rm C_{12}EO_{6}/water$ surrounded by water vapor of controlled pressure p. Shapes of monocrystals are found to depend on the conditions of growth from the lamellar phase and on the nature of the substrate. After the growth, when the lamellar phase is exhausted and crystals are in equilibrium with water vapors, their shapes are shown to depend on the pressure p. Thermodynamic aspects of these phenomena are discussed.

64.70.Md - Phase transitions in liquid crystals.
82.65.Dp - Thermodynamics of surfaces and interfaces.

© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica, Springer-Verlag 2001