Liquid crystal displays were discovered in the 1960s, and today we continue to enjoy the benefits of that fundamental discovery and its translation into a wide variety of products. Like liquid crystals, polymers are unusual materials, and have similarly enjoyed a great deal of research attention because of their vast applications and uses and complex fundamental properties. The combination of liquid crystal and polymer properties produces a broad array of new effects-spanning from densely crosslinked, rigid polymer networks to weakly crosslinked elastomers-that are not simply manifestations of either native liquid crystals or polymers alone. Cross-Linked Liquid Crystalline Systems brings together liquid crystal and polymer systems and their variations. The field, much like traditional liquid crystals, is one of an interdisciplinary nature with a broad spectrum, from the very fundamental questions of nature to a myriad of practical uses. There seems to be no shortage of unusual properties and far-reaching applications in densely crossed-linked liquid crystal systems and liquid crystal elastomers. These systems provide a rich new avenue for both fundamental and applied research and continue to fascinate scientists and engineers. Specifically, this book covers:Cross-linked networks created from reactive mesogen materialsManipulation of liquid crystalline by external constraintsAdvances in liquid crystal display screen technologyPhysical and electromagnetic properties of elastomers and magnetic gelsComputer simulations and theory of liquid crystal polymeric networks and elastomersSide-on nematic liquid-crystalline elastomers for artificial muscle applicationsLiquid crystal display technology has driven much of the fundamental research in crosslinked liquid crystalline systems. The systems' ability to enforce three-dimensional structure in the molecular order and capture it created a number of compelling application possibilities because it provided necessary control of the molecular order. This book advances the understanding of basic science behind these systems, accelerates some of the proposed applications to the marketplace, and hopes to inspire generations of scientists to think broadly about these exciting and useful materials.

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