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NMR of solutes in nematic liquid crystals : an investigation of the mechanisms of orientational ordering Van der Est, Arthur James


Dipolar and quadrupolar couplings measured from NMR experiments, and order parameters obtained from these couplings, are reported for a number of small solutes dissolved in several nematic liquid crystals. These results are discussed in terms of the solute-solvent interactions. It has been shown that the interaction between the solute molecular quadrupole moment and a mean external electric field gradient due to the liquid crystal accounts for most but not all of the ordering of molecular hydrogen. The remaining contribution to ordering is discussed in terms of possible mechanisms. The anisotropic couplings observed for methane and acetylene are discussed in terms of a model which takes into account the interaction between the vibrations and rotations of the solute. Excellent agreement between the observed and calculated dipolar couplings is obtained. Evidence is given that these two solutes experience the same field gradient as molecular hydrogen. In a mixture of 55wt per cent 1132 (Merck ZLI 1132) and 45wt per cent EBBA (N-(4-ethoxybenzylidene)-4'-n-butylaniline at 301.4K the deuterons in D₂ experience no external electric field gradient. The order parameters of a series of solutes in this mixture are calculated in terms of a simple model for the short range interactions which depend on the size and shape of the solute. These calculated order parameters are in very good agreement with the experimental results. In liquid crystals where the field gradient is not zero it is shown that the combination of the short range interaction model and the electric field gradient - molecular quadrupole moment mechanism predicts the order parameters very well.

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