variable degree of orientation

Friday, March 2, 2018 - 9:00am - 9:50am
Ricardo Nochetto (University of Maryland)
We consider the simplest one-constant model, put forward by J. Ericksen, for nematic liquid crystals with variable degree of orientation. The equilibrium state is described by a director field and its degree of orientation, where the pair minimizes a sum of Frank-like energies and a double well potential. In particular, the Euler-Lagrange equations for the minimizer contain a degenerate elliptic equation for the director field, which allows for line and plane defects to have finite energy.
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