Corona patterns around inclusions in freely suspended smectic films
Institut für Experimentelle Physik, Otto-von-Guericke-Universität Magdeburg, Universitätsplatz 2, D-39106, Magdeburg, Germany
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Accepted: 10 December 2008
Published online: 26 January 2009
We discuss the structure and physical origin of corona patterns observed around solid or liquid spherical inclusions in freely suspended smectic films. Such patterns are observed when droplets or solid beads of micrometer size are sprayed onto the films. They are found in the smectic C phase and in the smectic A phase above such a smectic C phase, but disappear, for example, at the transition into a lower-temperature smectic B phase. We show that these structures are equivalent to splay domains found in the meniscus of freely suspended films, originating from surface-induced spontaneous splay.
PACS: 47.57.-s Complex fluids and colloidal systems – / 61.30.Hn Surface phenomena – / alignment – / anchoring – / anchoring transitions – / surface-induced layering – / surface-induced ordering – / wetting – / prewetting transitions – / and wetting transitions – / 61.30.Eb Experimental determinations of smectic, nematic, cholesteric, and other structures – / 42.70.Df Liquid crystals –
© EDP Sciences, SIF, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg, 2009