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The effect of anchoring on the nematic flow in channels

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4674-4685
Number of pages12
JournalSoft Matter
Volume11
Issue number23
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Abstract

Understanding the flow of liquid crystals in microfluidic environments plays an important role in many fields, including device design and microbiology. We perform hybrid lattice-Boltzmann simulations of a nematic liquid crystal flowing under an applied pressure gradient in two-dimensional channels with various anchoring boundary conditions at the substrate walls. We investigate the relationship between the flow rate and the pressure gradient and the corresponding profile of the nematic director, and find significant departures from the linear Poiseuille relationship. We also identify a morphological transition in the director profile and explain this in terms of an instability in the dynamical equations. We examine the qualitative and quantitative effects of changing the type and strength of the anchoring. Understanding such effects may provide a useful means of quantifying the anchoring of a substrate by measuring its flow properties.

    Research areas

  • LIQUID-CRYSTALS, POISEUILLE FLOW, CONSTITUTIVE EQUATIONS, ANISOTROPIC FLUIDS, SHEAR-FLOW, VISCOSITY, SURFACE, ENERGY, MICROFLUIDICS, HYDRODYNAMICS

ID: 21478414