Blue phase (BP) liquid crystals are seen as promising candidate material for future liquid crystal displays and myriad electro-optic devices. BPs possess high Kerr constant (2 orders higher than Nitrobenzene), ultra-fast switching speeds (one order higher than conventional nematic liquid crystals), and transmission independent of linear state of polarization, apart from other unique topological features.
In the purview of this thesis work, student will evaluate the effect of different alignment layers (differing in pre-title) on the orientation of cubic domains of BP. Recently different domains of BP are shown to have different electro-optical properties. Also alignment layers known to have considerable influence on the orientation of domains.
The objective of the thesis is twofold:
1. To realize alignment layers with different pre-tilt angles in Nematic LC
2. Characterize the orientation of BP in the cells with these alignment layers, using
i. Kossel diagrams
ii. Bragg reflections
iii. Kerr constant
Fig. 1. Two orientations of BPI crystal (a) plane  and (b) plane  aligned towards the vertical
Location: CMST Zwijnaarde.
. Kawata, Yuto, et al. "Anisotropy of the electro-optic Kerr effect in polymer-stabilized blue phases." Physical Review E 91.2 (2015): 022503.