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Biaxial disclinated states in nematic elastomers

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Title: Biaxial disclinated states in nematic elastomers
Author(s): Fried, Eliot; Korchagin, Vladimir A.; Todres, Russell E.
Subject(s): Elastomers Free energy
Abstract: We use a continuum model to investigate the isochoric axial contraction and expansion of a right circular cylindrical specimen composed of a nematic elastomer that is cross-linked in a uniaxial state and then annealed. We build on previous work by relaxing the constraint that the molecular conformation be spherical or uniaxial, allowing instead for biaxiality. The material exhibits an energetic preference for states involving a disclination of strength 11 along the cylinder axis surrounded by a region in which the conformation of the polymer chains is indeed biaxial. We show that such states represent minimizers of the total free-energy. Also, the reactive pressure necessary to enforce the constraint of material incompressibility within the disclination core is found to be reduced by an order of magnitude when the conformation is biaxial rather than uniaxial. A bifurcation analysis is used to analytically determine the thresholds of axial expansion and contraction at which the material prefers a disclinated state. These thresholds are found to be consistent with numerical predictions. Finally, the stability of the solutions for the studied parameters is also investigated.
Issue Date: 2003-12-22
Publisher: American Institute of Physics
Citation Info: The following article appeared in Eliot Fried, Vladimir Korchagin, and Russell Todres (2003). Biaxial disclinated states in nematic elastomers. Journal of Chemical Physics, v 119, n 24. p 13170-13179 and may be found at
Genre: Article
Type: Text
Language: English
DOI: 10.1063/1.1622374
Publication Status: published or submitted for publication
Peer Reviewed: is peer reviewed
Rights Information: Copyright 2003 American Institute of Physics. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the American Institute of Physics.
Date Available in IDEALS: 2007-05-04
Has Version(s): Previously released as TAM Report 1029.

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