Liquid crystals are classical examples of mesophases or materials that are intermediate in character between conventional solids and liquids. There are different classes of liquid crystals and we focus on the simplest and most widely used nematic liquid crystals. Nematic liquid crystals are simply put, anisotropic liquids with distinguished directions and are the working material of choice for the multi-billion dollar liquid crystal display industry. In this workshop, we briefly review the mathematical theories for nematic liquid crystals, the modelling framework and some recent work on modelling experiments on confined liquid crystalline systems conducted by the Aarts Group (Chemistry Oxford) and experiments on nematic microfluidics by Anupam Sengupta (ETH Zurich). This is joint work with Alexander Lewis, Peter Howell, Dirk Aarts, Ian Griffiths, Maria Crespo Moya and Angel Ramos.
We conclude with a brief overview of new experiments on smectic liquid crystals in the Aarts laboratory and questions related to the recycling of liquid crystal displays originating from informal discussions with Votechnik ( a company dealing with automated recycling technologies , http://votechnik.com/).
- Industrial and Interdisciplinary Workshops