Heat-capacity measurements have been made on liquid-crystal compounds exhibiting almost no layer-shrinkage (NLS) behavior through the Sm-A-Sm-C* phase transition. The transition was found to be second order for two of the substances studied. It was found that the heat-capacity anomaly accompanying a second-order Sm-A-Sm-C* transition with NLS behavior is quite similar to that observed for typical antiferroelectric liquid crystals of the 4-(1-methylheptyloxycarbonyl)phenyl 4′-octyloxybiphenyl-4-carboxylate (MHPOBC) group, showing three-dimensional (3D) XY behavior in the vicinity of the transition. On the other hand, for one compound which shows a weakly first-order transition, the anomaly is almost symmetric above and below T c, with a significant fluctuation effect in the Sm-A phase. For this compound, the critical behavior of the heat-capacity anomaly is almost tricritical in the immediate vicinity of T c, while away from T c the behavior can be explained with the 3D XY model. This suggests that the underlying transition with the 3D XY critical behavior is driven to almost being tricritical but remaining weakly first order. No indication of low-dimensional character in the critical behavior was found in both cases.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Physical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics|
|State||Published - Mar 2005|