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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/C512251/1
Title: Quasi-macrocyclic Liquid Crystals for Applications in Photonics
Principal Investigator: Goodby, Professor JW
Other Investigators:
Saez, Dr IM
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Chemistry
Organisation: University of York
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 01 June 2005 Ends: 31 May 2008 Value (£): 240,138
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Materials Characterisation Materials Synthesis & Growth
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
Liquid crystal materials for devices are usually composed of 10 to 20 single component compounds. Each component often has a specific role to play with respect to the overall physical properties of mixture formulations. We have created, and initailly tested, new design templates for component materials based on quasi-macrocyclic ring systems with mesogenic (liquid crystalline) units attached . The mesogenic groups may be the same or different, and the quasimacrocyclic units may or may not be symmetrical, Our initial studies show that materials with this design format are extremely low melting, they tend to glassify rather than crystallise, and in many cases glassification occurs at or well below-50 C, thereby giving us the possibility that desirable material properties can be in-built into a single molecular entity. If for no other reason, these materials would be very interesting as additive components (5 to 40% by weight) to conventional liquid crystal formulations in order to lower recrystallisation temperatures -which is a problem in particular for ferroelectric mixtures for liquid crystal over silicon (LCOS) devices.However, when we consider the template, we can see that there is a wide variety of possibilities for varying the structures of potential materials systems that would give us access to novel liquid crystals with unusual structures and physical properties. For example, in terms of physical properties our prototype materials have also been shown to give very fast on and off responses in weak applied electric fields making them suitable for applications in conventional LCDs.In addition to developing matreials for conventional mixture formulations, we can build into the structures of our materials microphase segregating groups, ie, functional groups or units which do not easily mix with one another, eg, fluorocarbon and hydrocarbon. Microphase segregation can be used to create incompatibilities between the molecules as they pack together to form a condensed phase. One of the consequences of this is that recrystallization is further suppressed and physical properties and mesophase structures can be controlled, leading to a wider variety of applications becoming possible.
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Date Materialised
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Organisation Website: http://www.york.ac.uk