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Liquid crystalline properties of dissymmetric molecules part X: The effect of a terminal nitro group on molecular arrangement in smectic phases in three aromatic ring systems with two ester groups

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The smectic A (SmA) layer structure has been examined by X-ray diffraction for four isomeric systems: 4-nitrophenyl 4-(4-alkoxybenzoyloxy)benzoates 1, 4-alkoxyphenyl 4-(4-nitrobenzoyloxy)benzoates 2, 4-(4-alkoxybenzoyloxy)phenyl 4-nitrobenzoates 3, and 4-alkoxyphenyl 4-nitrophenyl terephthalates 4. The phase transition behaviour and layer structure of the SmA phases are notably influenced by the relative orientation of the two ester groups to the terminal groups, by alkoxy chain length, and by temperature. The SmA phase for compounds 1 and 3 has a mainly 'monolayer' arrangement, where the layer spacing is 2-5 Å longer than the molecular length. The SmA phase for compounds 2 and 4 consists of a mixed layer structure having monolayer, bilayer, and partially bilayer arrangements, the distribution depending on the relative orientation of the ester groups, the alkoxy chain length, and temperature. It is supposed that the diversity of the SmA phase is related to the polar interaction around the nitro or the nitrobenzene moieties through the smectic layers and reversal of the ester groups causes a subtle change in the entire molecular shape.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Advanced Materials Science and Engineering, Faculty of Engineering Yamaguchi University Tokiwadai 2557 Ube, Yamaguchi 755-8611 Japan

Publication date: 01 August 2003

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