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Effects of flow on topological defects in a nematic liquid crystal near a colloid

Stieger, Tillmann; Schoen, Martin; Mazza, Marco G.

FG Theoretische Chemie

We perform molecular dynamics simulations of a nematic liquid crystal flowing around a colloidal particle. We study the flow-induced modifications of the topological defects in the liquid crystal due to the presence of the colloid. We show that flow distorts Boojum defects into an asymmetrically larger downstream lobe, and that Saturn ring defects are convected downstream along the flow direction, which is in agreement with experimental observations. Additionally, for a Janus colloid with both parallel and perpendicular patches, exhibiting a Boojum defect and a Saturn ring defect, we find that the Boojum defect facing the upstream direction is destroyed and the Saturn ring is convected downstream.
  • This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and AIP Publishing. This article appeared in J. Chem. Phys. 140, 054905 (2014) and may be found at https://doi.org/10.1063/1.4862953.