We study the early stages of spinodal decomposition (SD) in polymer-liquid-crystal mixtures by solving linearized time-dependent Landau-Ginzburg equations for concentration (conserved order parameter) and orientation (nonconserved order parameter). The theory takes into account a cross term between concentration and orientation gradients, which becomes an important factor for phase separation kinetics. We calculate structure factors for concentration and for orientation, depending on a quench temperature and concentration. We find a new SD process driven by instability of the orientational order parameter. In this case, the average domain size initially grows as a nontrivial and evolving power of time, which starts as t(1/3) in our minimal model. The domain growth is advanced by the coupling between the two order parameters.
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||Physical review. E, Statistical physics, plasmas, fluids, and related interdisciplinary topics|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 2000|