Smectic ordering in athermal systems of rodlike triblock copolymers

Szabolcs Varga, Seth Fraden

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The phase behavior of the system of parallel rigid triblock copolymers is examined using the second virial density functional theory. The triblock particle consists of two identical infinitely thin hard rods of finite lengths on the opposite ends of one central hard cylinder with nonzero length and diameter. Stability analyses and free energy calculations show that the system of parallel particles can form not only uniform nematic and smectic A phases but also a smectic C phase. The stability and structure of the tilted structure are controlled by only the diameter and the length of the central cylinder segment. Interestingly, the diameter affects only the layer tilting and the periodicity, but not the packing fraction of the nematic to smectic- C transition. For all values of cylinder length the usual smectic A and smectic C transitions compete with each other and no nematic-columnar transition is observed. At low and high cylinder lengths the smectic A phase is stabilized first, while the smectic C is the most stable for intermediate length values.

Original languageEnglish
Article number154902
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2007


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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