We perform a series of Monte Carlo simulations on an interface between a liquid crystal (LC) material in isotropic phase in its bulk and a surfactant membrane. These two objects are simulated using coarse-grained molecular models. We estimate physical properties of the membrane such as the interfacial tension and the bending rigidity, focusing on the anchoring effects of the membrane on the LC. According to our simulation results, when the strength of the homeotropic anchoring denoted by the anchoring parameter ξ is increased, the interfacial tension decreases and the bending rigidity first increases in ξ<ξm, and it then decreases in ξm<ξ. We explain these results by constructing a continuum field model based on the two order parameters: directional order of LC and the membrane shape. These order parameters are mutually interacting through the anchoring effect, the fluctuation coupling between the LC and the membrane, and the effect of the nematic layer.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
- Statistics and Probability
- Condensed Matter Physics