Shear-induced orientation of side-group liquid-crystalline polymers


  • Financial support from NATO-Travel Grant Program (CRG 001037), the National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator Award (JAK), and the Gates Grubstake Fund is gratefully acknowledged.


Side group liquid-crystalline polymers (SG-LCP) will need to be macroscopically oriented if the applications foreseen for them are to be realized. The first observation of oscillatory-sheer-induced alignment of an SG-LCP melt (the Figure shows a schematic of the rheo-optical apparatus used) is reported. This discovery widens the potential applications of SG-LCPs, but also raises fundamental questions regarding the mechanism of flow-induced alignment.

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