Dependence of interparticle force on temperature and cell thickness in nematic colloids

Noboru Kondo, Yasutaka Iwashita, Yasuyuki Kimura

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15 Citations (Scopus)


We have experimentally studied the interparticle force between two particles accompanied by hyperbolic hedgehog defects in a nematic liquid crystal. The force F was measured with dual-beam optical tweezers at various temperatures and in cells with various thicknesses. In a thick cell, the dependence of F on the interparticle distance R obtained at different temperatures can be scaled to a universal curve of F∼R-4 for R>3a, where a is the radius of a particle. The effective elastic constant evaluated from F is found to be in good agreement with splay constant of the nematic liquid crystal. In a thin cell, the magnitude of F decreases and the dependence of F on R becomes short-ranged as the thickness of a cell, L, decreases. The reduced force curves, F L4 against R/L, at different L are found to be scaled to a single theoretical curve which has been proposed recently.

Original languageEnglish
Article number020701
JournalPhysical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 18 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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