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Anisotropic dynamics of the tenuous gel in a liquid crystal-nanoparticle composite

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • Danielle D. van't Zand
  • Yuriy Chushkin
  • Lhoussaine Belkoura
  • Chethan Lobo
  • Reinhard Strey
  • Katya Lyakhova
  • Paul Clegg

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4062-4066
Number of pages5
JournalSoft Matter
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 21 Mar 2012


We present a study of the structure and local dynamics of dispersed silica nanoparticles in the liquid crystal 4′-pentyl-4-biphenylcarbonitrile (5CB). Electron microscopy and X-ray scattering data demonstrate that the nanoparticles form agglomerates with a fractal structure. Investigation of the local dynamics of the particle agglomerates using X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy reveals pronounced anisotropy in the relaxation rate and aging behaviour. We suggest that the unusual relaxation behaviour is a consequence of the anisotropy of the host solvent.

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