The equilibrium states of a suspension of single-domain ferroparticles in a nematic liquid-crystalline homeotropic cell subject to an external magnetic field are studied. We predict the existence of magnetic field induced orientational bistability in such a system in a magnetic field ?102 Oe. The existence of the bistability phenomenon is governed by conditions on the cell thickness and on the director anchoring energy. The effect can be controlled using a small bias magnetic field normal to the unperturbed director. The director reorientation in a magnetic field causes an effective change in refraction index, which enables the orientational bistability to be exploited in optical devices
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