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A Simplified Thermodynamic Theory for Biaxial Nematics

Papenfuß, Christina; Verhás, Jozsef; Muschik, Wolfgang

Inst. Theoretische Physik

A continuum theory of a biaxial nematic phase in liquid crystals is presented. The liquid crystalline ordering is described by a field of three unit vectors. Because these are macroscopic directors, the present approach is a generalization of the Ericksen-Leslie theory to biaxial nematics. The applied tools from nonequilibrium thermodynamics are classical Linear Irreversible Thermodynamics and Gyarmati's variational principle.