Cite this article as:

Kudreyko A. A., Migranov N. G. Electric and Magnetic-Field-Induced Formation of Macrostructures in Ferroelectric Liquid Crystals. Izvestiya of Saratov University. New series. Series Physics, 2019, vol. 19, iss. 1, pp. 58-67. DOI:


Electric and Magnetic-Field-Induced Formation of Macrostructures in Ferroelectric Liquid Crystals


Background and Objectives: The study of ferroelectric liquid crystals in smectic C* phase fits together several most relevant research areas, including electro-optic devices with response time in the range of 10 μs. A distinguishing feature of smectic C* liquid crystals is its chiral layered structure, which is formed due to the center of masses orientational ordering along the preferred orientation [called the director]. The feasibility of creating thin liquid crystal films with different director’s alignment at the substrates makes such films attractive for the study of confined volume effects. The nature of smectic C* molecules allowed to implement a series of electrooptical effects. Methods: Theoretical studies of this work include the functional approach. In particular, we introduced the functional of the free energy density in the desired form, then, its minimization can give the spatial distribution of the director field (or another quantity). Polarizing microscopy and fluorescent microscopy methods were used to observe the formation of macro-heterogeneities in the alignment of SmC* director field. Results: The simulation results reveal that a different alignment of long molecular axes (or director n) at the substrates leads to the soliton formations within the bulk of liquid crystal. The fluorescent confocal microscopy indicates the existence of such inhomogeneities within the bulk of the experimental cell. Another problem which we have discussed is related with the space dependence of the director field for any arbitrary layer structure and common parameters of smectic C*. It is also shown that only symmetric chevron structures exhibit the free energy minimum in the absence of electric field as well as when the electric field is applied. Conclusion: The fundamental effects associated with the different alignment of the director at the substrates, chevron defects and the director field dynamics in an external periodically oscillating magnetic field are discussed in this study.


1. Coles H. J., Pivnenko M. N. Liquid crystal ‘blue phases’ with a wide temperature range. Nature, 2005, vol. 436, pp. 997–1000. DOI:

2. Shi L., Srivastava A.K., Cheung A., Hsieh C.-T., Hung C.-L. Lin Ch.-Hs., Lin Ch.-Huan, Sugiura N., Kuo C.-W., Chigrinov V.G., Kwok H.S. Active matrix fi eld sequential color electrically suppressed helix ferroelectric liquid crystal for high resolution displays. J. Soc. Inf. Display, 2018, vol. 26, pp. 325–332. DOI:

3. Srivastava A. K., Wang X. Q., Gong S. Q., Shen D., Lu Y. Q., Chigrinov V. G., Kwok H. S. Micro-patterned photo-aligned ferroelectric liquid crystal Fresnel zone lens. Opt. Lett., 2015, vol. 40, no. 8, pp. 1643–1646. DOI:

4. Andreev A. L., Andreeva T. B., Kompanets I. N., Zalyapin N. V. Optical response of helix-free FLC: continuous gray scale, fastest response, and lowest control voltage. J. Soc. Inf. Display, 2014, vol. 22, iss. 2, pp. 115–121. DOI:

5. Andreev A. L., Kompanets I. N. Applications of Ferroelectric Liquid Crystals – Real and Possible (Review). Liq. Cryst. and their Appl., 2015, vol. 15, iss. 3, pp. 28–40. DOI:

6. Bramble J. P., Evans S. D., Henderson J. R., Atherton T. J., Smith N. J. Observations of focal conic domains in smectic liquid crystals aligned on patterned self-assembled monolayers. Liq. Cryst., 2007, vol. 34, no. 10, pp. 1137–1143. DOI:

7. Jeżewski W., Śliwa I., Kuczyński W. Strongly nonlinear dynamics of ferroelectric liquid crystals. Eur. Phys. J. E, 2013, vol. 36, no. 2, 13002. DOI:

8. Jeżewski W. Complex superstructures in chiral liquid crystals: Surface-induced helix destruction. Phys. Rev. E, 2014, vol. 89, 032501. DOI:

9. Srivastava A. K., Chigrinov V. G., Kwok H. S. Ferroelectric liquid crystals: Excellent tool for modern displays and photonics. J. Soc. Inf. Display, 2015, vol. 23, pp. 253–272. DOI:

10. Chigrinov V. G. Invited paper: Liquid Crystal Applications in Photonics. SID Symposium Digest of Technical Papers, 2016, vol. 47, pp. 927–930. DOI:

11. Barbashov V. A., Minchenko M. V., Pozhidaev E. P. Electrooptics of ferroelectric liquid crystals, induced in a mixture of nematic liquid crystals with nonbmesogenic chiral compound. Academic Journal “Izvestia of Samara Scientifi c Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences”, 2013, vol. 15, iss. 6, pp. 40–43 (in Russian).

12. Ma Y., Shi L., Srivastava A. K., Chigrinov V. G., Kwok H.-S. Restricted polymer-stabilised electrically suppressed helix ferroelectric liquid crystals. Liq. Cryst., 2016, vol. 43, iss. 8, pp. 1092–1099. DOI:

13. Blinov L. M. Structure and Properties of Liquid Crystals. Springer Netherlands, 2011. 439 p. DOI:

14. Kudreyko A. A., Migranov N. G., Migranova D. N. Stable states of ferroelectric smectic C* liquid crystal confi ned between patterned surfaces. Nonlinear Phenomena in Complex Systems, 2016, vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 95–101.

15. Kudreyko A. A., Song W., Migranova D. N. Observation of macro-heterogeneities in surface-stabilized smectic C* with antagonistically patterned substrates. Letters on Materials, 2017, vol. 7, no. 4, pp. 384–387. DOI:

16. Kudreyko A. A., Migranov N. G., Migranova D. N. Relaxation dynamics of ferroelectric liquid crystals in pulsed electric fi eld. Russ. Phys. J., 2016, vol. 59, no. 7, pp. 938–943. DOI:

17. Stewart I. W. Stability of equilibrium states in fi nite samples of smectic C* liquid crystals. J. Phys. A: Math. Gen., 2005, vol. 38, no. 9, pp. 1853–1873. DOI:

18. Demus D., Goodby J., Gray G. W., Spiess H.-W., Vill V. Handbook of Liquid Crystals, vol. 2B. Weinheim, Wiley-VCH, 1998. 581 p.

19. Kudreyko A. A., Migranov N. G., Migranova D. N. Electro-optic response in thin smectic C* fi lm with chevron structures. Chin. Phys. B, 2016, vol. 25, no. 12, 126101. DOI:

20. Romanov V. P., Ul’yanov S. V., Chernyak K. G. Bistability of a “Chevron” Smectic C* Liquid Crystal in an External Electric Field. Physics of the Solid State, 2010, vol. 52, no. 9, pp. 1985–1991. DOI:

21. Romanov V. P., Ul’yanov S. V., Chernyak K. G. Orien tational Effects in Chevron Smectics C* in an External Electric Field. Physics of the Solid State, 2010, vol. 52, no. 10, pp. 2207–2214. DOI:

22. Kudreyko A. A., Migranov N. G. Chaotic transients in surface-stabilized smectic C* cells induced by magnetic fi eld. Soft Mater., 2018, vol. 16, no. 3, pp. 160–165. DOI:

23. Bylov B. F., Vinograd R. E., Grobman D. M., Nemytskiy V. V. Teoriya pokazateley Lyapunova i ее prilozheniya k voprosam ustoychivosti [Theory of characteristic exponents and its applications to problems of stability]. Moscow, Nauka Publ., 1966. 576 p. (in Russian).

24. Kudreyko A. A., Migranov N. G., Bachurina O. V., Song W. Frequency voltage controlled light transmittance in ferroelectric liquid crystal cells. Eur. Phys. J. E, 2017, vol. 40, no. 58. DOI:

25. Hegde G., Xu P., Pozhidaev E., Chigrinov V., Kwok H.-S. Electrically controlled birefringence colours in deformed helix ferroelectric liquid crystals. Liq. Crys., 2008, vol. 35, iss. 9, pp. 1137–1144. DOI:

Short text (in English): 
Full text (in Russian):