Density minimum in the isotropic-nematic transition of hard cut-spheres

Rui P.S. Fartaria, M.B. Sweatman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We study the isotropic-nematic transition of hard cut-spheres over a wide range of aspect ratios using Monte Carlo simulation and umbrella sampling. We find a minimum in the density of both coexisting phases near to L/D=0.04 (thickness/diameter) and show that this minimum is a result of competition between the solid volume of the disks and the free volume which is significantly influenced by nematic pre-ordering in the isotropic phase. We expect similar behaviour for other kinds of discotic particles. This behaviour should be observed as a kind of 'partially re-entrant' isotropic phase for discotic mesogens within an appropriate concentration range.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)150-154
Number of pages5
JournalChemical Physics Letters
Issue number4-6
Publication statusPublished - 27 Aug 2009


  • Physics
  • Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
  • hard cut-spheres
  • density
  • chemical engineering
  • isotropic-nematic transition
  • Chemical technology


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