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Phys Rev Lett. 2007 Aug 17;99(7):077802. Epub 2007 Aug 17.

Unique pitch evolution in the smectic-C+alpha phase.

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School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455, USA.


Employing resonant x-ray diffraction, we observed unique pitch evolutions in the smectic-C*(alpha) phase in mixtures of two antiferroelectric liquid crystals. Our results show that the pitch in this phase continuously evolves across 4 layers, contradicting a theoretical model that predicts that the smectic-C*(FI2) phase intervenes in the smectic-C*(alpha) phase. The phase sequences we found can be explained by another model that includes one type of long-range interaction among smectic layers.

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