385074 Computational Investigation of Dewetting of Reconfigurable Liquid Crystal Thin Films

Tuesday, November 18, 2014: 2:15 PM
208 (Hilton Atlanta)
Trung Dac Nguyen, National Center for Computational Sciences, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN and Jan-Michael Y. Carrillo, National Center for Computational Sciences, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge

A popular material for electronic displays, liquid crystal (LC) molecules are now realized as promising candidates for future thin film applications, particularly in bio-sensing, bio-mimicking devices, and optics, thanks to the ability of LC molecules to respond collectively to changes in their environment and applied external fields. Using a coarse-grained model for LC molecules and molecular dynamics simulation, we investigate the instability and reconfigurability of LC thin films weakly wetting a solid substrate at length and time scales similar to those in experiment. Our simulations show the coexistence of spinodal instability and thermal nucleation in isotropic and nematic films, and importantly, for the first time, evidence of a common rupture mechanism independent of initial thickness and LC orientational ordering [1]. We are able to correlate the macroscopic rupture with the tendency of the LC mesogens to recover their local environment in the bulk state. Finally, we demonstrate how liquid crystal thin films respond to changes in environment and applied fields, suggesting interesting applications for next-generation nanomaterials.

1. T. D. Nguyen, J.-M. Y. Carrillo, M. A. Matheson, W. M. Brown, Rupture mechanism of liquid crystal thin films realized by large-scale molecular simulation, Nanoscale, 2014, 6(6), 3083-3096.

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See more of this Session: Fundamentals of Interfacial Phenomena II
See more of this Group/Topical: Engineering Sciences and Fundamentals