High-resolution birefringence investigation on the effect of surface-functionalized CdSe nanoparticles on the phase transitions of a smectic - A liquid crystal

Yıldız Ş., Cetinkaya M. C. , Özbek H., Tzitzios V., Nounesis G.

JOURNAL OF MOLECULAR LIQUIDS, vol.298, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 298
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.molliq.2019.112029
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Chemical Abstracts Core, Chimica, Compendex, INSPEC
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The high-resolution optical birefringence study was carried out to experimentally study the impact of surface functionalized CdSe nanoparticles on the phase transitions of a smectic A liquid crystal 8CB (octyl-cyanobiphenyl). The birefringence data have then been used to probe the temperature variation of the nematic order parameter across both the nematic-isotropic (N - I) and the nematic-smectic A (N - SmA) phase transitions of 8CB + CdSe colloidal mixtures. With the inclusion of CdSe nanoparticles, both the N - I and the N - SmA phase transition temperatures have been observed to shift to lower temperatures as compared to the 8CB host, signalling the stabilization of the SmA phase. For 8CB + CdSe colloidal mixtures, the N - I transition is identified as weakly first order while the N - SmA transition remains continuous within the experimental resolution. From the detailed inspection of the optical birefringence data in close vicinity of the N - SmA transition, the upper limits for a possible latent heat for all colloidal mixtures have been derived. Also, the specific heat capacity critical exponent alpha values near the N - SmA transition for all compositions have been produced. it has been well established that the incorporation of CdSe nanoparticles to 8CB host leaves the N - SmA transition essentially bulk-like. A Landau-de Gennes type mean-field approach has also been used to describe our experimental data. (C) 2019 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.