We employ the fluorescent confocal polarizing microscopy to image edge dislocations in cholesteric liquid crystals. Surface anchoring at the bounding plates determines the structure and behavior of defects. Two types of plates set in-plane director orientation but differ in the type of associated anchoring potentials. Plates with strong polar anchoring and nonzero azimuthal anchoring repel the dislocations, while plates with weak polar anchoring and no azimuthal anchoring allow the dislocations to escape through the boundary. To explain the results, we propose a coarse-grained model of cholesteric anchoring.
- Received 3 September 2002
- Published 26 February 2003
© 2003 The American Physical Society