Abstract

In a previous paper [Liq. Cryst. 20, 377 (1996)] we presented a polymer dispersed liquid crystal (PDLC) in a novel geometry in which the quasi-static electric field lies in the plane of the sample. We also demonstrated experimentally the possibility of realizing an optoelectronic polarizer by using such a geometry. In the current paper we present a first-level mathematical model describing this device. Working in the framework of basic PDLC theory, the anomalous diffraction approach is used to compute the scattering cross section of anisotropic droplets. Under the assumption of weakly refracting droplets of the same order of magnitude as that of the light wavelength, we give an analytical expression for the scattering cross section versus the sample order parameter. We show, by comparison with experimental data, that our model, even with its limitations, is able to give a good description of the phenomenon. Finally, we present some examples of the use of the model as a designing tool.

© 1997 Optical Society of America

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