12 April 2005 Stressed liquid crystals (Invited Paper)
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Abstract
The recently discovered stressed liquid crystals (SLCs) are of a great interest because they provide the largest phase retardation shift achievable within the shortest time interval. This was accomplished by decoupling the speed of a liquid crystal layer from its thickness. SLCs easily switch 5 microns of phase retardation at sub-millisecond speeds. We have produced phase shifts as large 50 microns in several milliseconds. SLCs are therefore able to modulate IR light with response frequencies higher than 10 kHz. The SLCs are polymer/liquid crystal composites; however, their electro-optic properties differ significantly from previously developed polymer dispersed liquid crystals and polymer network/stabilized liquid crystals. An applied mechanical stress aligns the liquid crystal domains, eliminating scattering and hysteresis at the same time. The phase shift is highly linear with the applied voltage, greatly simplifying the drive electronics. The SLCs pose intriguing basic scientific questions and may be used in a host of new electro-optical applications (micro-displays, diffractive optical elements, beam steering devices).
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Anatoliy Glushchenko, Ke Zhang, Guoqiang Zhang, Toshihiro Aoki, John L. West, "Stressed liquid crystals (Invited Paper)", Proc. SPIE 5741, Emerging Liquid Crystal Technologies, (12 April 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.591126; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.591126
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