Using the full Raman depolarisation in the determination of the order parameters in liquid crystal systems
School of Physics and Astronomy, The University of Manchester, M13 9PL, Manchester, UK
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Accepted: 31 August 2007
Published online: 23 October 2007
The depolarisation ratio for the Raman-active phenyl stretching mode has been measured over the whole of the mesophase range, and the orientational order parameters deduced, in the uniaxial nematic liquid crystal octylcyanobiphenyl (8CB). Linearly polarised light was incident normally on a homogeneously aligned sample and a χ2 minimisation routine performed on the 360° depolarisation ratio profile. The order parameters 〈P 200〉 and 〈P 400〉 , together with the differential polarisability ratio, r , are used as fitting parameters and measured as a function of temperature. Interestingly, we show that the value for r , conventionally measured in the isotropic phase and assumed to remain constant, has a clear temperature dependence, ranging from -0.032±0.008 in the isotropic phase through to -0.245±0.015 at the nematic-to-smectic A phase transition. The measured order parameters 〈P 200〉 and 〈P 400〉 varied from 0.35- 0.55±0.02 and 0.180- 0.245±0.02 , respectively, across the 8 ° C wide nematic phase range. The values of both 〈P 200〉 and 〈P 400〉 are in excellent agreement with theory, but it is noteworthy that 〈P 400〉 shows a much better quantitative match than has been reported in previous work. Crucially the temperature dependence of r is shown to be a contributing factor in the low 〈P 400〉 values that have been conventionally reported from Raman scattering measurements. The potential for fitting the entire angular depolarisation ratio distribution in liquid crystalline systems that are described by more order parameters, specifically biaxial materials, is discussed.
PACS: 61.30.-v Liquid crystals – / 61.30.Gd Orientational order of liquid crystals; electric and magnetic field effects on order – / 78.30.-j Infrared and Raman spectra –
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag, 2007