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Phase Ordering in Nematic Liquid Crystals

Abstract

We study the kinetics of the nematic-isotropic transition in a two-dimensional liquid crystal by using a lattice Boltzmann scheme that couples the tensor order parameter and the flow consistently. Unlike in previous studies, we find the time dependences of the correlation function, energy density, and the number of topological defects obey dynamic scaling laws with growth exponents that, within the numerical uncertainties, agree with the value 1/2 expected from simple dimensional analysis. We find that these values are not altered by the hydrodynamic flow. In addition, by examining shallow quenches, we find that the presence of orientational disorder can inhibit amplitude ordering.Comment: 21 pages, 14 eps figures, revte

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