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Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys. 2003 Feb;67(2 Pt 1):020702. Epub 2003 Feb 7.

Field-induced switching between states of opposite chirality in a liquid-crystalline phase.

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  • 1Institut für Physikalische Chemie, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, Mühlpforte 1, 06108 Halle (Saale), Germany.


A tilted smectic phase of a new achiral banana-shaped mesogen is presented. It possesses liquidlike order within the layers and appears with a fan-shaped texture. At sufficiently high electric fields, this texture can be transformed into a texture that displays a complete extinction between crossed polarizers and it forms randomly distributed chiral domains. Above a threshold these domains can be reversibly switched into a state of opposite handedness.

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